Utah-based composite manufacturers Edge continue to broaden their carbon rim range, while Industry Nine work closely with them to incorporate their custom hubs and spokes.
New Edge 29er mountain rim
Not long after the news that Edge will sponsor the Santa Cruz Syndicate with carbon fibre downhill rims, the small company have unveiled a composite 29er tubular rim. At 32mm tall and 24mm wide, it's designed for cross-country racing.
It weighs a feathery 280g (claimed) and comes with either 28 or 32 moulded spoke holes – as opposed to drilled – a technique that Edge believe to be at the heart of building the lightest and strongest rims possible.
The new rim is disc-specific, which rules out its use for cyclo-cross (note to Edge: please make a rim brake compatible ’cross version with these dimensions). It carries the same hefty price tag as the rest of the brand’s rims – US$750. Edge sell the rims separately or as built wheels featuring Sapim spokes and Chris King, DT Swiss or Hope hubs – or any other hub a customer sends in.
Edge's new 29er tubular rim would give Zipp's 303 a run, if only there was a rim brake version
North Carolina-based Industry Nine (I9) will offer wheelsets built with Edge rims in 2010. The partnership starts with new road wheels which use an I9 hub and straight-pull Sapim steel spokes – a departure from the brand’s alloy signature. I9 cite two reasons for the switch: the steel spokes are more aerodynamic, and the Edge rims require a thin spoke with internal nipple to fit through the in-moulded spoke holes.
The I9 road hubs feature wide set flanges and vertically stacked straight-pull spoke routing (rear), which allows them to achieve the same stiffness as the standard versions with larger alloy spokes. A wheelset built with 18/24 Sapim CX-Ray spokes and Edge’s 25mm 2.25 tubular rim weighs a claimed 960g. Pricing is $2,600-$2,800, depending on rim model.
I9's beautiful new road wheels forgo the use of the brand's trademark alloy spokes
For the mountain bike crew, I9 are prototyping a new wheelset that combines their hubs and alloy spokes with Edge Composite’s AM 30mm-wide rim. Again, I9 can’t fit their alloy spokes through the standard in-moulded holes, but instead of reverting to steel spokes, they're working with Edge to develop a custom rim with larger holes. The prototype version has drilled holes, but when the wheelset goes into production this autumn they will be in-moulded.
I9's all-mountain wheelset will keep the brand's alloy spoke technology