Twenty Nine Inches has just taken delivery of a pair of the Edge Composites “XC Clincher” carbon fiber rims. These are the same rims we reported on at Sea Otter last April. Edge Composites also makes an “All Mountain Clincher” that is wider than the “XC Clincher”
Edge Composites describes the XC Clincher with the following text:
A case can be made that our two-niner XC clincher is the fastest-rolling wheelset in the world. But can it make you a better rider?The lightest wheel on the market, in a 29er diameter results in a wheel with deft handling capability on the downhills, allows you to carry speed over short rises. But its biggest benefit comes on the ascents. Its light enough to carve significant rotational weight off your XC rig to power the longer, technical ascents. Less weight on tricky ascents equals less work, thus conserving the energy needed to power over technical terrain.
They go on to talk about the benefits to the process used to create the rims by saying:
Our proprietary molding process creates a spoke interface that permits the running of higher spoke tensions than any carbon rim, of similar weight has seen to date. Not only does our spoke interface allow for higher tension, but it is also designed to enhance the durability of the wheel as a whole by limiting spoke fatigue and increasing durability.
I’ll have more specific dimensions in an upcoming post, but for now I can report that the two samples sent to Twenty Nine Inches weigh 380 and 390 grams each. I will be choosing hubs and spokes soon and will have a build report afterwards.
The rims appear to be very well crafted. The carbon fiber appears to be of the unidirectional type, although Edge say that they have honed the process to a point that they have produced a stronger yet lighter product than anyone else on the market. The spoke holes are not drilled in these, but molded in. Along with the spoke seat inside, it is a special design that allows the spoke to travel in a straight line from the rim to the hub. The rim has a deeper section than most 29″er rims, almost aero, if you will. The hook on the rim beads is well formed and uniform all the way around the circumference of the rim. A pretty impressive product all in all, and we haven’t even made it into a wheel yet!
Stay tuned for more soon. I’m off to go hub and spoke shopping now!