X
 

30 Mai 2018

WHY LIGHTER WHEELS TRANSFORM TRAILS

There is no MTB bike modification as revolutionizing to your ride feel and speed as fitting a pair of lighter wheels; and investing in a quality pair will go further than investing the same money elsewhere – they affect every aspect of your ride, from acceleration and climbing to technical navigation and stopping with confidence.

 

Riding your mountain bike, you feel the rotating weight keenly; and the more mass there is in your rims and tires, the more energy you’re forced to expend in order to accelerate; and the same holds true for your brakes when it’s time to stop – they’re forced to do more work to slow the wheels down, and this is happening thousands of times, if not tens of thousands, per ride.


The problem with very light rims (and tires) is, of course, that this can compromise a degree of strength; and while cross-country riders may not need to worry so much about that, trail bike wheels must be equipped to survive heavy forces, and they need stiffness too – there’s little point in a super-fast trail bike if you can’t reliably point it through the first corner!

 

So, what’s the solution? The easiest way to add strength is to add material, but that means heavy wheels which, in turn, causes a dulled response. Downhill-biased products can get away with extra mass, but trail riders need the ultimate combination: light yet strong.

 

Best of both

Fortunately, while adding more material is a simple route to strength, it’s not the only one. The most obvious option is switching to carbon fiber, yet while it’s incredibly effective, its premium pricing is not for everyone. But carbon hasn’t killed alloy – and alloy can still be very light. Today’s advanced design and machining means it remains a brilliant choice – in truth, it’s still evolving.

 

Boost your trail riding

The Afterburner Boost148 wheels are a prime example of strong, light and fast wheels that nail both the ups and downs of trails. They’re hand-built by FSA’s experts, are available in both 27.5in and 29in, and are tubeless-compatible for the lowest possible system weight. At just 1660g per set in 27.5in – even with proper brass spoke nipples that won’t seize or strip like alloy – they add serious pep over any standard wheels. The 26.1mm rims are broad but light, as demonstrated by 29in versions: despite longer spokes and bigger rims, each 29in wheel gains just 40g.

 

The Afterburner Boost sizing, with its wider 110mm/148mm axles (requires compatible frame/fork) creates a stiffer wheel thanks to its extra triangulation, and their small extra mass is in the hubs – well away from the rim, where the effects are most severe. To feel the benefits of moving weight inboard try waving a hammer by its head, then waving it by its handle… just be careful where you wave it!


Go wide

Very wide rims are gaining traction for trail use, and Afterburner has that covered too. The 2018 WideR Boost 148 wheels use a new hookless bead design for lower weight, less hassle getting tight tires on, and improved durability. Their 31mm rims bring serious stiffness and strength, while overall weight – both in 27.5in and 29in – remains impressively low for sprightly, zesty responses.

 

That’s not the limit of their versatility either – the 29in Afterburners are also gravel and CX compatible, the perfect complement to any modern Boost frame and fork. If you’re after even more of an advantage, there are K-Force  and SL-K spec Boost 148 wheelsets too… with brand new graphics for 2018, the only downside is that everyone else will be able to see why you’re so much faster!

There is no MTB bike modification as revolutionizing to your ride feel and speed as fitting a pair of lighter wheels; and investing in a quality pair will go further than investing the same money elsewhere – they affect every aspect of your ride, from acceleration and climbing to technical navigation and stopping with confidence.

 

Riding your mountain bike, you feel the rotating weight keenly; and the more mass there is in your rims and tires, the more energy you’re forced to expend in order to accelerate; and the same holds true for your brakes when it’s time to stop – they’re forced to do more work to slow the wheels down, and this is happening thousands of times, if not tens of thousands, per ride.


The problem with very light rims (and tires) is, of course, that this can compromise a degree of strength; and while cross-country riders may not need to worry so much about that, trail bike wheels must be equipped to survive heavy forces, and they need stiffness too – there’s little point in a super-fast trail bike if you can’t reliably point it through the first corner!

 

So, what’s the solution? The easiest way to add strength is to add material, but that means heavy wheels which, in turn, causes a dulled response. Downhill-biased products can get away with extra mass, but trail riders need the ultimate combination: light yet strong.

 

Best of both

Fortunately, while adding more material is a simple route to strength, it’s not the only one. The most obvious option is switching to carbon fiber, yet while it’s incredibly effective, its premium pricing is not for everyone. But carbon hasn’t killed alloy – and alloy can still be very light. Today’s advanced design and machining means it remains a brilliant choice – in truth, it’s still evolving.

 

Boost your trail riding

The Afterburner Boost148 wheels are a prime example of strong, light and fast wheels that nail both the ups and downs of trails. They’re hand-built by FSA’s experts, are available in both 27.5in and 29in, and are tubeless-compatible for the lowest possible system weight. At just 1660g per set in 27.5in – even with proper brass spoke nipples that won’t seize or strip like alloy – they add serious pep over any standard wheels. The 26.1mm rims are broad but light, as demonstrated by 29in versions: despite longer spokes and bigger rims, each 29in wheel gains just 40g.

 

The Afterburner Boost sizing, with its wider 110mm/148mm axles (requires compatible frame/fork) creates a stiffer wheel thanks to its extra triangulation, and their small extra mass is in the hubs – well away from the rim, where the effects are most severe. To feel the benefits of moving weight inboard try waving a hammer by its head, then waving it by its handle… just be careful where you wave it!


Go wide

Very wide rims are gaining traction for trail use, and Afterburner has that covered too. The 2018 WideR Boost 148 wheels use a new hookless bead design for lower weight, less hassle getting tight tires on, and improved durability. Their 31mm rims bring serious stiffness and strength, while overall weight – both in 27.5in and 29in – remains impressively low for sprightly, zesty responses.

 

  1. That’s not the limit of their versatility either – the 29in Afterburners are also gravel and CX compatible, the perfect complement to any modern Boost frame and fork. If you’re after even more of an advantage, there are K-Force and SL-K spec Boost 148 wheelsets too… with brand new graphics for 2018, the only downside is that everyone else will be able to see why you’re so much faster!