Enve wheels for heavy riders

Posted by SuperClydesdale on October 3, 2010 under Wheels | Be the First to Comment

ENVE's rims on display at Interbike.

ENVE Composites has a great name in wheels – actually Edge Composites had the great name, but after a trademark dispute, they changed their name to ENVE Composites.  So, even though the name is new, the reputation and (albeit brief) history of Edge Composites is what you are buying when you buy ENVE – same company, different name.

ENVE is unique in that all of their wheels are made entirely in the USA, in their Utah factory, specifically

In addition to having the great distinction of being US-made, ENVE also does something fairly unusual – they make the spoke holes at the time that the carbon rim is molded.  Its part of the mold.  Most other manufacturers make a solid rim, then drill the spoke holes later.  This can lead to rough edges in the spoke holes, and could theoretically compromise the structural strength of the rim to some small degree.

ENVE has no weight limits on any of their wheels, which you can have some confidence in, since they have a formal crash replacement program.  Companies that have no weight limits and yet to crash replacement programs are dubious – but not ENVE.   ENVE offers a heavier laminate of carbon on some wheelsets, to assure even more strength for bigger, stronger riders.

The wheel that the ENVE guys recommended for Clydesdale riders discussed (> 220 pounds) is the 45mm Road 45 Clincher.  This is considered a great all-around wheel, and is extremely aero.   It has no weight limit.

The ENVE 45 Clincher. $2,500 for a pair, so one of the pricier wheels, even when compared to Hed, Zipp, etc., up to 28 spokes. Weight given as 1,362 grams for the pair.

ENVE wheels use the Sapim CX Ray spokes, which are very highly regarded in the wheel-building business.  These spokes are extremely aero and lightweight, and Sapim claims that they are “almost as light as titanium” and “stronger than any spoke currently on the market.”  Wow.  That’s a lot of claims.

Crash replacement

ENVE’s crash replacement is primarily a rim replacement, currently priced at $350 (not including shipping), and they will honor that for 5 years from date of purchase.

Cassette compatibility

ENVE wheels are built on DT Swiss or Chris King hubs, and therefore can be made compatible with Shimano, SRAM, or Campy cassettes.

For more information:  www.envecomposites.com

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