What do you do when you want wide hookless road rims but don’t want to pay ENVE money? Well, if you’re Bart of Bartthebikeman, you take a Stanley knife and a Dremel to your existing rims and slice those hooks right off!
Before we start, we absolutely cannot recommend carrying out this modification on your own rims. Doing so will undoubtedly void any warranty and could result in serious harm to yourself, your rims, or innocent members of the public. Consider yourself warned.
With that out of the way, Bart is delighted with his “butchered” rims. But why do it in the first place?
As Bart points out, a hook on a tubeless rim is “like a tailbone in humans”, in that it is a vestigial carryover from the days of regular clincher tyres (hooked rims have nothing to do with when we had tails).
Many brands have begun removing hooks from their tubeless rims for this very reason — doing so reduces weight, can ease tyre installation and the resulting rim profile is simpler, making manufacturing easier.
It also increases the internal width of the rims, which works well with high volume wide road tyres.
This last point was Bart’s primary rationale for the modification — by removing the hook from his Light Bicycle RR56C02 rims, he has increased the internal width of the rims from 23mm to just over 25mm. This is enough to plump out a set of 28mm-wide Specialized S-Works Turbo tyres to a chunky 31mm.
We won’t give away anymore and urge you to head to Bart’s blog to read his full report.
The rest of the posts on Bart’s blog are also well worth a read — his approach to building bikes and general commitment to modifying, manufacturing and customising individual parts is admirable. His Rusty Charge Plug build and shaved Schwalbe Racing Ralph tyres for road riding are particular highlights.
Are any of you running similar modifications or does the idea of taking a Stanley knife to your carbon rims fill you with dread? As always, leave your thoughts in the comments.