WTB LaserDisc FR downhill wheelset review£399.98

Beefcake hoops

BikeRadar score2/5

As you’d guess from the FR tag, these are WTB’s beefcake freeride/downhill wheels, but they’re not too heavy for all-day use if the hubs can hold out.

The 30mm-wide rims will take any tyre width you want and the internal I-Beam profile with reinforcing side rib makes them stiff and reliable too. They’ve certainly not suffered on any of the sets we’ve used, even when we’ve cased stuff badly or hit bad lines.

If you get a puncture, they can be an arse to get tyres on and off of, but they're easy to convert to tubeless with an aftermarket rim strip. Despite adjustable stainless steel bearings, hub lifespan is variable at best and they only come in 20mm front, 9mm quick-release rear versions

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

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