Carbon wheels for mountain bikes are still high-dollar luxury items.The key is to balance a set’s price with their supposedly better durability and lighter weight.
SRAM’s first carbon mountain wheel — Rise 60 — cost US$2,000 feature a 19mm internal rim width. Ours weighed in at just over 1,400g (26in model, without 70g tubeless rim strips), stats that put it within the cross-country and light trail categories. SRAM don’t condone use on all-mountain bikes even for their pro riders.
That said, we have seen SRAM staffers ride very aggressive trails on these carbon hoops.
To further make the no-all-mountain point, the Rise 60s, like the budget-based Rise 40, don’t offer 20mm axle compatibility. Instead, the front offers quick release, high-contact quick release (QR with oversized end caps for RockShox forks), and 15mm front axle compatibility. The rear is 135mm quick release, or 12x142mm through-axle compatible.
The carbon rims are made at SRAM’s Indianapolis factory (i.e. Zipp), which also produces Zipp and SRAM carbon rims. Sapim provide the spokes in the form of the CX-Ray model.
SRAM ship the wheels with a rubber, tubeless conversion strip, which seems awkward for a US$2,000 wheelset
The hubs, also of original SRAM design, are notably smoother and of higher quality, in terms of both fit and finish, when compared to the Rise 40. The freehub body is aluminum alloy and engages via three pawls, each with three teeth, on a 54-tooth ratchet ring.
We’re excited to put some miles on the Rise 60s, and we have plans to push them just slightly past their ‘cross-country trail’ limits in an effort to answer the question of where their line between durability and weight lies. At this high a price, that question demands an answer.