BIKERUMOR.com 2009 SEA OTTER CLASSIC COVERAGE:Ã‚Â Besides the new road wheels (previous post), DT Swiss had their all new XRC and EXC carbon rim mountain bike wheelsets. Ã‚Â Shown above is the EXC, a 1550g set intended for All Mountain riding. Ã‚Â DT Swiss suggests the EXC moniker is for “Enduro Cross” type riding, meaning 6″ travel all mountain bikes, and their rep said they’re tough enough to be used by lighter women for downhill racing, or as a superlight racing wheelset for clydesdale racers.
The EXC is based on their 1750 wheelset, except with 400g carbon rims. Ã‚Â Considering Mavic’s top of the line XC racing wheelsets are 1520g, you’re not paying any real weight penalty for a wheelset that claims to be able to handle all the rough stuff and backcountry abuse. Ã‚Â (Think carbon rims aren’t up to it? Ã‚Â Watch our interview with Tom Ritchey…)
EXC 1550 rim closeup above. Hit ‘more’ for axle specs, more pics and details on the XRC 1350g racing wheelset…
The rims use a rib reinforced, twin channel design for increased rigidity, and they’re now UD (Unidirectional) Carbon. Ã‚Â Moving to UD versus the 3K weave of older designs dropped about 30g per rim with no loss in strength. Ã‚Â So far, DT Swiss claims to have only a 0.5% return rate on their carbon rims globally.
The XRC 1350 set gets black spokes versus the white spokes on the EXC set, but both are butted and bladed. Ã‚Â Some other differences include:
- XRC uses centerlock disc brake mount, 6-bolt with adapter.
- EXC uses standard 6-bolt system.
- XRC rim width x height: 24 x 20 mm
- EXC rim width x height: 28 x 22 mm
- XRC: 300g rim
- EXC: 400g rim
- XRC spokes: 28 3-cross
- EXC spokes: 32 3-cross
- EXC has a thicker hub shell and larger bearing profile
The other big difference is the axle configurations. The wheels share some options, except as noted in italics.
- 100mm / 5mm QR (XRC only)
- 100mm / 9mm thru bolt or RWS (EXC only)
- 100mm / 15mm thru axle or iRWS
- 110mm / 20mm thru axle (EXC only)
- 135mm / 5mm QR (XRC only)
- 135mm / 10mm thru bolt or RWS
- 135mm / 12mm thru axle (EXC only)
- 142mm / 12mm thru axle or iRWS
RWS: DT Swiss’ exclusive QR replacement, uses adapters with theirs and other hubs (ex. Industry 9) to put a thicker, stiffer skewer that fits in a standard dropout. Ã‚Â The RWS is visible on the wheel below…it’s basically a 9mm axle with a twist-to-tighten lever. Ã‚Â Once you’ve twisted it as tight as you want, press the red button to swivel the arm into the desired position (so it’s not pointed straight forward or down).
iRWS: It’s the RWS, only with integrated threads on the axle for threading into 15mm forks.
12mm REAR: Only available in Europe at the moment.
MORE OPTIONS TO CONFUSE YOU: The XRC 5mm QR can be converted to a 9mm thru axle for use with their RWS skewer, but can not be converted up to the 15mm thru axle.
The EXC, however, can be converted between any of the options, and even down to a 5mm QR if you really wanted to.
XRC: $970 front / $1,450 rear ($2,420 set)
EXC: $1,230 front / $1,560 rear ($2,790 set)
Both are on target to be available in June sometime.Ã‚Â Both wheelsets use stainless steel bearings and come with RWS, bags, spoke tools and the XRC comes with the 6-bolt brake adapter.
WHO’S RACING THEM?
Pua Sawicki is racing the XRC wheels, and Sam Hill and Greg Minaar are beating up the EXC’s.