Thursday, September 18, 2008

Hope Pro II and DT Swiss EX 5.1d Wheelset

The Hope Pro II Hubset offers quite possibly one of the best hubs out there for the money that you can buy.

The Hope Pro II hubset is simple and easy to work with. The rear freehub engages on a 4 pawl system that gives 24 points (every 15 degrees) of engagement. The rear hub has 5 bearings total in the rear and two bearings in the front. The rear hub is easy to disassemble and requires no special tools to take it apart. The rear hub can almost completely be taken apart with your hands except for the bearing removal. This makes the hub very easy to service and fix it should any thing ever go amiss. The pawl/spring system uses some pretty durable pawls that offer quite a positive engagement.

DT Swiss EX 5.1d:
The DT Swiss EX 5.1D rim offers a lot of benefits when building a lightweight wheelset. The rim uses their optimized design for torsion-resistance. It’s a single-pocket hollow rim construction/extrusion. It’s Swiss made and uses single eyelets that are stainless steel. They are black, come in 32 or 36 hole, and are available in disc only.

Pairing these rims together with some good spokes like the DT Swiss Supercomp with some brass nipples have proved to be a very nice lightweight weelset. If you’re a heavy downhill rider, ride in lots of rocky places, or aren’t a smooth rider this wheelset might not be for you if you’re using it on a downhill bike.
The rims can get dings in them but as a downhill race wheelset they work pretty great. The wheelset accelerates quite fast but the slightly lower engaging Hope Pro II rear hub is noticeable in tight or quick maneuvers that require a quick pedal kick

This wheelset isn’t cheap, but it’s not super expensive either in comparison to other factory race wheelsets (DT Swiss 1750, etc). The complete weight of this wheelset at 1896g, which is a very cost effective weight savings that is immediately noticed once you pedal the bike.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Easton Havoc AM Wheels

Easton is known for making everything from hockey sticks to tubing for frame sets, so when they stepped into the world of wheels, we were stoked to see what they had.

Easton recently sent over a set of their Havoc AM wheels, their answer to those aggressive cross country, or all mountain riders needs. First off, the Havoc wheels are 24 spoke, built from the factory with Sapim Triple butted spokes. Sapim has been known for creating high quality spokes, usually found on higher end wheels like these. The Havoc AM wheels are also laced up with straight pull spokes, in a 2 cross pattern, and are rolling on sealed bearings.
MSRP: USD990.00

The Havoc AM wheels weigh in at 1875 grams, which is a nice weight for this style of wheel set. The Havoc AM wheels are built with a complete alloy hub, including the freehub body. It has low drag seals, and is built with Mountain bike abuse specific grease from the factory. The pawl engagement on the Havoc wheels is very smooth, and aids in the low rolling resistance.