Fulcrum Red Metal 3 mountain bike wheelset review£359.00

Competitively-priced silent runners

BikeRadar score4/5

Good-looking, tight-running and tough enough for the trail, Fulcrum’s entry-level tubeless wheels offer great value for money. Having a tough rim is vital to avoid dents that can compromise tubeless seal, and we’ve hammered these Red Metals through the rocks without a warp or whimper.

The 24 bladed stainless steel spokes are laced 2:1 on front brakeside and rear driveside to equalise loading. They certainly feel tight and responsive under pressure, with no obvious yaw or wind-up. Internal 20mm axles (not 20mm through-axles though) mean good core strength too.

We blew them up tubeless without sealant with no trouble (first time on the front, second on the rear) and tubeless-ready tyres were equally at home once we’d ‘gooped’ them.  The near-silent freehub will appeal to stealth fans and pick-up is fast too. They’re reasonably light at 1,840g, for their stiffness, making them a good tubeless wheel for the money.

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: 45
  • 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 than 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

Related Articles

Back to top