SRAM launched their Rise series mountain bike wheel range with two tiers and four models last fall — 60 and 40 in 26in and 29in variants. We’ve just taken delivery of our first production test sample, a set of 26in Rise 40s.
The wheels sit squarely in the affordable ‘trail’ category, costing US$550 (€465) for the set, which comes with a 15mm through front hub (adaptable to 9mm quick-release) and choice of either 135mm QR or 142mm through axles for the rear; yes it is a choice and not convertible. SRAM complete the set with wheel bags, rear skewer for the QR version, and a rubber tubeless conversion kit.
Our set weighs 1,817g (4lbs) — considerably more than the 1,710g SRAM claimed at their launch, however, our weight includes standard non-tubeless rim strips and is for the 135mm QR version, which uses a steel rear axle; the included QR adds another 62g. The 142mm rear wheel sports an aluminum axle and drops a whopping 52g (1,036 versus 984g).
To convert the Rise 40 to tubeless with the included strips, however, adds another 69g per wheel, which brings the total package into the 1,900-2,000g range depending on rear axle and skewer.
The wheelset employs a 6000-series alloy rim, which sports a 19mm bead-to-bead dimension. The rim has a 2.5mm offset spoke bed and is laced — via 24 spokes, 2-cross both front and rear — to SRAM’s own alloy hubs. The rear has a steel freehub body that offers a 6.7° engagement via three pawls and 54-tooth engagement ring; the pawls are unique in that they have three teeth per pawl for robust engagement.
The red stripes at the rims’ valve holes are a nice touch: Matt Pacocha
For US$550 the Rise 40 set seems like a strong contender
Out of the box our set came dead true with even spoke tension. Despite their heft we’re looking forward to putting the miles on these new hoops.