FFWD abandons DARC side with new wide and tubeless-ready LAW wheelsets

RYOT44 and RAW feature new rim profile and DT Swiss components

FFWD RAW wheel

Dutch wheel brand FFWD has announced two wheelsets for the road called the RYOT44 and RAW, featuring a new rim design that’s optimised for wider tyres.

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The RYOT44 (pronounced “riot”, apparently) is a tubeless-ready disc carbon clincher with a rim that’s 44mm deep, 21mm wide internally and a full 30mm wide externally.

The wheelset weighs a claimed 1,520g and is built around DT Swiss’s 240 hubs featuring the latest Ratchet EXP freehub design.

These are laced with DT Aerolite and Aerocomp spokes (24 front and rear) in a 2:1 configuration (16 one side, eight the other) for more even left–right tensions. 

FFWD calls its latest rim design LAW (it does love an acronym…), which stands for Laminar Airflow Rim. 

This replaces the quirky DARC design that featured a pronounced ‘hourglass’ cross-section and was optimised for skinnier tyres. 

According to FFWD, DARC was perfect for tyres up to 25mm wide, but LAW “takes aerodynamics to the next level”, improving performance with now-popular 25mm and 28mm tyres. 

Incidentally, the LAW rims have a hooked bead unlike, say, the latest Zipp 303 S and 303 Firecrest, or Corima’s G30.5 wheelset, which are hookless. There is not yet a clear consensus as to which is better for road tubeless and this is a topic we’re going to be exploring in the near future.

With a 25mm tyre fitted, FFWD claims a 7.6 per cent aerodynamic advantage for the RYOT44 compared to the old F4 (DARC) wheelset at 50km/h. 

Although primarily a road wheelset, FFWD considers the RYOT44 suitable for “light gravel use” too and officially it’ll take tyres up to 42mm wide. 

The second wheelset is called the RAW, and it boasts similar specs and the same LAW profile, but gets an up-specced rim that takes internal nipples, features cool moulded-in FFWD logos and, because of the hub specs, gets more conventional lacing with 12 spokes either side both front and rear. 

The RAW also features DT Swiss’s lighter and more expensive 180 hubs and is 100g lighter at a claimed 1,420g for the set. 

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The RYOT44 will retail at £1,499.95 while the RAW costs £1,799.95. Pricing in other territories is to be confirmed and the new wheels are expected to be available from the end of July.