Roc d’Azur Sightings – AWL Carbon Rims, Reverse Components and Maloja Skinsuits

AWL Aero Wheels XC29X12 carbon fiber tubular mountain bike wheels

AWL is a French carbon fiber rim manufacturer that’s been building carbon aerospace components for years before turning some attention to cycling in 2008.

Not only do they design their own rims (which are fairly unique as you’ll see after the break), but they manufacture their own tooling and molds…and the molds are carbon fiber, too! Their manufacturing process yields perfectly smooth interior walls and leaves nothing other than the carbon and resin in the finished product on the road wheels thanks to a removable inflatable bladder. The mountain bike wheels, which are new and available in 26″ and 29er, add Kevlar into the construction for additional durability.

We also photo’d a collection of interesting component ideas from Reverse and probably the hottest women’s skin suit ever from Maloja…

AWL Aero Wheels XC29X12 carbon fiber tubular mountain bike wheels

They only do tubular wheels, which keeps them niche to be sure, but they look great. Built up with DT Swiss 180 Carbone hubs and Aerolite spokes, the 29er wheelsets come in at just 1200g per pair. They come with DT’s titanium RWS skewers and wheel bags, too. Rim depth is 36mm and width is 26mm. Retail is €2,690.

The 26″ rims are 26mm deep and wide, come in at 1150g and €2,490.

AWL Aero Wheels R24X carbon fiber tubular road rims with aero shaping

AWL’s road wheels are also built on DT Swiss hubs and spokes with various hub options. The lightest use the DT 180 Carbones and come in at 1080g. What’s unique is the sidewall shaping near the tire. There’s not much on their website about the aero benefits of it, but superficially it creates a more angular take on the fat Zipp Firecrest profile.

REVERSE COMPONENTS

Reverse Components Twister adjustable diameter headset for straight and tapered steerer tubes

Reverse Components‘ new Twister headsets use two-part upper and lower cups that accommodate either straight 1-1/8″, tapered or straight 1.5″ steerer tubes. Each part is ordered separately, so you simply pick the size you need for the application, with the bottom adjusted by selection of the proper crown race. They’re available in AHead and semi-integrated styles.

Reverse Components Legend Evo adjustable length crankset

Their Legend Evo cranksets use flippable inserts at the pedal threads to change the effective crank arm length between 165 and 170mm. Weight for the crank arm, bottom bracket and 38T ring is 755g.

Reverse Components Legend Evo adjustable length crankset

Reverse Components carbon fiber riser handlebar

They have a new 38mm rise option for their bars, adding to the 20mm original. Both are available in UD and 3K weave finishes. They’re only for 31.8 OS clamp diameters and weigh in at a respectable 176g!

At right, an impressive array of anodized color options for their alloy bars.

Reverse Components Style Lite seatposts in colors

Their Style Lite seatposts have some new ano color/paint two-tone options. Weight from 263g.

MALOJA

Maloja womens floral skin suit cycling jersey and shorts

Maloja makes some nice stuff. This one is incredible.

Maloja womens floral skin suit cycling jersey and shorts

And the print comes in some less tight offerings for the less secure.

Comments

Sevo - 10/20/11 - 5:54pm

Carbon weave rims? I’ll pass. Best you get is a 50/50 fiber to resin ratio and an increase possibility of air bubbles (even with the bladder…which I can tell you violates a stateside patent should they attempt to distribute here0. Rims from leading makers uses unidirectional for a reason….it’s stronger and better. Higher quality fibers and 70/30 fiber to resin ratio is why carbon rims don’t suck anymore and teams like Santa Cruz race DH on them even.

Carbon weave=junk.

Carbon molds aren’t neccesary either….and can prove more expensive. Fiberglass makes more sense because of it’s cost and you then can justify making it thick enough to use for a mold.

Fred Astaire - 10/20/11 - 6:24pm

Kind of an asinine comment, Sevo. Reynolds and several other rim “manufacturers” and resellers use a carbon weave rim…let’s just for a moment think of all of the wheel “manufacturers” in the world that use Reynolds designs. I’m not saying Reynolds is god, but your argument isn’t justifiable.

Gillis - 10/20/11 - 7:22pm

I second Fred’s comments. Not to mention the use of a weave on the outside is most often just for cosmetics.

KR - 10/21/11 - 9:53am

That’s not true and misinformed Sevo, fibers are fibers and I’ve seen easily 70%/30%fiber to resin ratio from weaves easily. It comes down to processing, and most companies use pre-preg anyways, and the uni is for cosmetics. Inflatable bladder technology is nothing new either.

The reason that you have carbon fiber molds is to reduce micro-cracking, which is the cause of most failures as caused by the difference in thermal coefficient of expansion. Obviously similar materials have similar coefficients, hence the carbon tooling. Also the thickness of the mold has nothing to do with anything, thicker = more mass and therefore during your heating cycle it takes longer to heat up the mold and reach your residence time for driving your cure costing the manufacturer more money to run their ovens/autoclaves. Not to mention that fiberglass is an excellent insulator (it used extensively in the home insulation market).

In comparison cost wise most tools now are made of machined iconel of cvd nickel which costs around 5,000$ per sq. ft. a well made carbon mold will be about 1/5th of that price per sq. ft. if not less.

I don’t want to get into an internet flame war I just do not want misinformation. As per credibility, I am degreed engineer at a tooling company.

Post a comment:

Comment sections can be a beautiful source of knowledge, conversation and comedy. They can also get pretty ugly, which is why we've updated our Comments Policy. If your comment isn't showing up or suddenly disappears, you might want to check it out.