Sun Ringle Black Flag ceramic mountain bike wheelset£699.99

Subtle yet smooth hoops

BikeRadar score3.5/5

It would be easy to miss these conventional looking race wheels among all the pimp sets on the market.

The Equalizer 21 rims are skinny enough to make any tyres over 2.1in feel precarious, but their shallow profiles keep them tight and tough.

The 28 super-skinny double-butted spokes at either end mean you’ll need to allow for torque elasticity and wander under braking or hard cornering – but that’s to be expected on a sub-1,500g wheelset.

Not so common are the fantastically smooth rolling ceramic bearings that minimise rolling drag and maximise lifespan.

The freehub needs regular servicing and engagement isn’t all that quick, but they’re damn quick once they’re hooked up, and there are no weird spoke replacement worries.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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