The Complete Guide To Choose Carbon Fiber Wheels
With all the pros riding around with fancy carbon fiber wheels, we’ve gathered together a complete guide to choosing your very own set of wheels, just to match the pros.
Let’s dive right in.
Table of Contents
# Road Bike Carbon Wheelset
There are many different types of carbon road bike wheelsets. These different carbon wheelsets are all lightweight, durable and with the main focus of speed. Below we will cover in further detail the different kinds of road bike carbon wheelsets.
650c Carbon Wheelset
The majority of road bike wheels are either 650c or 700c, more commonly 700c. 650c carbon wheelsets are more common on mountain bikes. 650c wheels are much lighter than 700c wheels allowing for greater acceleration capacity and capability to climb much steeper hills.
Carbon Wheelset 700c
The tires in which can be mounted to a 700c rim vary massively in both height and width. 700c tires can vary between skinny 22m racing tires all the way up to much larger cyclocross tyres. These carbon wheels, whatever they are mounted too will allow for a much faster and solid ride, perfect for those dreaming of being a pro.
Carbon Clincher Wheelset
Carbon clincher wheels are actually much cheaper than its tubular counterpart. Clincher wheels have an outer carcass, this allows the tires to clinch to the rim of the wheel. One of the main benefits to using a carbon clincher wheelset is that once you get a flat tire, you only need to replace the tube instead of the entire tire.
Carbon Tubular Wheelset
Tubular tires are actually very similar to clincher wheels, the main difference being that tubular wheels are constructed as just one piece, tube, and tire whereas clincher wheels come in two parts. These wheels can be fairly challenging to change in the event of a flat tire, without a flat these wheels are lightweight and much cheaper than many counterparts.
Carbon Disc Brake Wheelset
A more expensive option, carbon disk brake wheels are a tubeless form of carbon wheelset which offers supreme performance and speed, especially when in a straight line, perfect for racing!
# Carbon Fatbike Wheelset
Carbon fiber wheels on a fatbike can reduce the weight of your ride whilst also providing a fantastic stiffness to weight ratio, perfect for tackling rough terrain and even the occasional hill. Not only do these wheels look the part, but they also (if looked after correctly) last a long period of time!
# Carbon MTB wheelset
29er Carbon Mountain Bike Wheelset
29er Carbon wheelsets are specifically designed for mountain bikes, but are also used for cross country and even endure races. These wheels are extremely lightweight, perfect for climbing trails whilst still offering that stiffness and strength we all desire to maintain grip, even on the toughest of trails.
27.5er Carbon Mountain Wheelset
Also known as tweeners, 27.5 carbon wheels are used for mountain bikes, designed to offer great traction and speed whilst climbing without sacrificing stiffness in the wheel to allow for full control on the descents.
# Famous Wheel Brands On The Market
In this part we include the most popular wheel brands on the market that pros are trusting and riding in tours. You might already have your own preference but check these brands and you could find yourself a suitable one to ride
Enve Carbon Wheelset
Manufactured in The United States, Enve wheels are at the peak of all carbon fiber wheel technologies. Enve wheels use the highest carbon fiber available, robust and fast, whilst consistently providing performance in many different cycling events wins.
Zipp Carbon Wheelset
Often referred to as the gold standard of performance, Zipp carbon fiber wheels are some of the best on the market, especially when it comes to being aerodynamic. Available for road, mountain, and even time trial bikes, there is sure to be a Zipp wheel for you. Join the gold standard and break records today.
Roval Carbon Wheelset
Extensive testing on the road and through the specialized wind tunnel sees the introduction of the roval carbon fiber wheelset. Roval wheels are thought to be one of the most aerodynamic wheelsets around, definitely, one to compete with Zipp and many other high-end manufacturers
Giant Carbon Wheelset
Giant carbon fiber wheelsets are surprisingly designed for not only MTB’s but also for the road as well as many other disciplines. Designed with a racer in mind, giant carbon wheelsets offer speed with little to no cost on handling as well as enhanced racing performance when you’re really hitting the pedals!
Boyd Carbon Wheelset
One of Boyd’s most popular wheelsets is their carbon clincher. Designed with all performance components in mind, the carbon clincher is perfect for climbing and aero enough to use in road races. If new to road cycling or a complete veteran, you cannot go wrong with a Boyd carbon wheelset.
Bontrager Carbon Wheelset
Bontrager wheels have been a long-standing competitor in the carbon fiber wheel market for quite some time. Botranger is mainly known due to their Aeoslus pro range, designed towards enhanced durability, optimal weight and increased performance without breaking the bank too hard. Perfect for wannabe pro cyclists or others who have watched the Tour de France one too many times.
Vision Carbon Wheelset
First created in Konda’s in the 1990s, vision carbon wheelsets are definitely not shy on price. Created with a pro in mind, the vision carbon wheelset most certainly keeps up with its competitors, offering the perfect balance between weight, durability, aerodynamics, and stiffness for the ultimate competitor.
Easton Haven Carbon Wheelset
Easton haven carbon wheels are your one-stop shop for a carbon fiber mountain bike wheelset. Designed with lightness in mind, you can be sure to climb the next hill with precision on these premium wheels. Aside from the hefty price of up to $2,400, these wheels are perfect for your wannabe pro mountain rider.
Mavic Cosmic Pro Carbon Wheelset
Known for their tubeless technology, the magic cosmic pro carbon fiber wheelset mainly focuses on clinchers. Perfect for an all-around performer, the Magic cosmic pro provides a fast, stable, and easy to install wheels.
FFWD Carbon Wheelset
With the motto ‘Get Confident Go Fast’, it is hard to ignore FFWD’s position in the cycling world. FFWD’s wheels are towards the upper end of competitors prices, however, the quality is certainly shown once riding. With pro’s using FFWD’s carbon wheelset, you can rest assured knowing a personal best is coming your way soon!
# China Carbon Wheelset
As discussed in another one of our articles, it is advisable to be able to know the difference between genuine and counterfeit carbon bike parts, especially from manufacturing giants in China. There is nothing wrong to choose a Chinese wheel brand if you only how to find the right one.
Most of our clients who run local brands, they prefer to buy rims directly from us, then they could assemble the wheels locally, with flexible hubs, spokes, painting jobs, and test labs.
However, if you don’t know how to assemble the wheel, or you don’t have proper tools to do it, you can always chat before placing the order. Here are a few tips for you
- The types of rims, include width, depth, weight, test report, finishing, tubular/ clincher/ tubeless-ready.
- The shipping method and tax issue. (As we discussed on our Chinese carbon bike buying guide, you need to ask about the carrier and taxes)
- The package of rims. Check the sample package pictures to avoid further issues.
- The warranty. You need to understand, that rims are not like frame, it’s much easier to damage a rim ( like a scratch or hitting a stone). If the rims are damaged because you scratch the rim or you hit the stone, you will not get any refund or replacement. So double check the rims when you receive the package.
Our advice: Keep in mind, rims are not frames. If you want to get good rims, always check these tips before placing the order.
# Used Carbon Wheelset
If you were to ask any cycling fanatics opinion on purchasing a used carbon wheelset, their answer would probably be the same – that you brave. If, however, you do decide to purchase a used carbon wheelset ensure to check for cracks as well as the broken surface for any exposed fibers.
As a carbon bike manufacturer, we highly suggest to check the wheels and ride before you buy the used carbon wheelset. Carbon rims are stronger than aluminum rims, but it’s easier to get scratched or damaged.
Here are a few tips for buying used carbon wheelset (Though we don’t suggest to buy)
- Clean the surface and check if any scratch
- Check the braking surface (If you are buying rim brake wheelset)
- Un-assemble the tires, check the edge of rims, holes with spokes and the rim serial number label.
- Check the spokes if any twist
- Check the sound of hubs if any un-normal noise.
- Ride with your own bike frame. Try to test in uphill, downhill and urgent brake.
With these tips, you may find some used carbon wheels in good condition, but generally, we suggest to buy new rims or wheels. After all, not everyone is as professional as a mechanic.
Now we over to you
Which carbon wheel brand is your first choice?
Do you prefer rim brake wheels or disc brake wheels?
Or you want to buy Chinese carbon wheelset?
Either way, let us know by leaving a comment below.