SOC13: Wheels from Xentis, Stan’s NoTubes & Sun-Ringle

Xentis tubular carbon aero road bike wheels with machined carbon brake track

Xentis is better known for their five-spoke full carbon wheels, but it’s their new Silver line road wheels that are handmade in Austria, including the carbon production, that were in the spotlight at Sea Otter Classic.

They build in three depths, getting wider and rounder as they get deeper. The spoke holes are drilled asymmetrically, and they partnered with DT Swiss to make specially developed nipples that keep the spokes aimed straight at the rim, so there’s no binding or bending.

The shallowest is a 25mm deep, narrow, lightweight model. On the 42mm and 58mmm, a magnet is embedded in the rim across from the spoke hole, which not only balances the wheel a bit, but means you don’t need to add one for speed sensors or bike computers.

Xentis tubular carbon aero road bike wheels with machined carbon brake track

They use shaped valve holes with rubber “anti rattle” inserts, too, which is nice, but their big tech story is the braking surface.

They machine off the outer layer of resin, which creates a rougher surface for more friction in any condition. And they don’t require carbon-specific pads, so you can run any pad you want but retain the heat dissipation properties of carbon. The finish is also scratch resistant, so it should look better longer.

Below the braking surface, the rim uses a scalloped raised shape called the Active Tubulator to hold air flow against the surface and reduce turbulence. The Silver Line models get new, 11-speed-ready hubs with ceramic bearings and a slightly oversized flange. The new design runs straight pull spokes on all but the drive side rear. Prices start at $3,095 and go up about $100 per rim size.

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New Silver Line carbon road bike clinchers also made an appearance, weighing in at just 1,225g for the 25mm deep pair.

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For mountain bikes, the new Xentis Squad 29er wheels use tubeless-ready carbon clinchers and come in two varieties. An Extralight model (1,360g with QR hubs, 1440g with 15/X12 thru axles) has an 80kg rider/bike weight limit. The standard model ups the weight limit to a 100kg rider/bike combo and weighs in at 1,450g or 1,530g depending on hub configuration.

SUN-RINGLE

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Sun-Ringle’s A.D.D. freeride/DH wheels get a 27.5″ size with a 30mm outside rim width. Weight is 987g front and 1131g rear (2,118g total). They come with all appropriate axle options (Front 9/15/20 and Rear 135×12, 142×12, 150×12 and 157×12) all of which just pop and play. They use 28 spokes per wheel, price is $799.99.

 STAN’S NO TUBES

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Stan’s NoTubes Race Gold 29er wheels received a couple updates recently, and SOC was the first chance we had to lay eyes on them. Their top of the line (1,390 gram!!!) wheelset now comes with higher end alloy valve stems to save a few precious grams, and the rim profile is changed slightly to give the tire a wider 21.4mm inside bed with shorter interior sidewall heights. Those, combined with a rounded center channel groove, helps the tires seat a bit easier and push more of the air volume up to the tire rather than in the rim, giving it a better overall feel.

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Comments

Psi Squared - 05/17/13 - 8:23pm

Wow. The prices on these is so much higher than they are in Europe.

Michael - 05/17/13 - 8:47pm

“…retain the heat dissipation properties of carbon…” ???

wheelz - 05/17/13 - 10:50pm

Agreed, what does “retain heat dissipation properites of carbon” mean? Carbon dissipates heat very poorly, hence all the breaking-related carbon rim concerns. Is this supposed to be a good thing?

Max - 05/18/13 - 6:36am

CarbonFIBERS are very god heat conductors. The Problem is the Resin. So Xentis does what all bicycle companies do. They pick some positive facts from one components and claim, that the whole product has this very good property (and that’s in 99,9% not true!).

Patrick - 05/18/13 - 7:17am

Xentis has a patent on his brake surface. Thay machine off the outer layer of resin. If you brake, the heat rises as on every carbon rim. But if you open the brake, the temparature falls much quicker than on any other carbon rim I have ever tested.
So it is nearly not possible to over heat the brake surface.

eric - 05/18/13 - 10:35am

In the article you have mentioned that Xentis is better known for their five spoked wheels. butt shouldend this be 4 spoked wheels?

Max - 05/18/13 - 3:39pm

@Patrick: How do you test?

Psi Squared - 05/19/13 - 6:50pm

@Max: easy. IR camera linked to computer to time code image/video stream. Record said stream and use software to temperature change as a function of time, or rim area, or whatever other parameters you need to consider. It’s a standard practice.

Wave - 05/20/13 - 9:28am

My understanding is that there are actually two major types of carbon based on manufacturing process. There are many special varieties of both types. One type of carbon doesn’t dissipate heat very well, but the other type dissipates heat exceptionally well. Perhaps they just chose the appropriate type of fiber.

Psi Squared - 05/20/13 - 10:14am

@Wave: I think you’re talking about carbon-carbon vs. carbon fiber. The difference between the two is that carbon fiber is carbon in a resin matrix whereas carbon-carbon is in a graphite (one form of carbon) matrix. There is also carbon/carbon silicide which is carbon in a carbon-silicide matrix. Unlike the resin in carbon fiber, the carbon matix in C-C and the SiC matrix in carbon/carbon silicide doesn’t retain heat like resin and doesn’t have the issue with resin’s low glass transition. In carbon fiber it’s not the carbon fibers that have the heat issue, it’s the resin. The fibers themselves are excellent conductors of heat and do well in high heat environments.

Blacksmith Cycle - 05/21/13 - 8:42pm

Actually, gang, Xentis removes most of the resin from the brake track, meaning that it is a purer carbon that remains, with higher melting point and also higher friction for greater stopping power. RoadBikeMagazine in Germany confirmed that Xentis had the best braking power on the market in July 2012, and now Mavic, Shimano and Campy are all following up with similar technologies in 2014, so there is obviously some thought to this design. They are by far my #1 wheels this summer, usurping my old ENVE 6.7′s from that spot…great weight, braking and aerodynamics for an awesome combo. But I am pretty biased as a dealer, so get out and ride them yourself!!

Wave - 05/22/13 - 11:06am

@Psi Squared: I read up a bit and PAN carbon fibers have very different thermal conductivity properties than Pitch carbon fibers. In an ideal construction the matrix is minimized so it has less impact on thermal performance than the fibers. http://www.appropedia.org/Carbon_fiber_production

BikeTech - 05/29/13 - 11:17pm

Is it just me, or are the Stans No Tubes valve cores a near direct copy of the cores sold by American Classic (http://www.amclassic.com/en/products/components/tubeless-valves).

I been loving my anodized red AC valve cores for over a year now, and Stan’s new valve cores are supposed to be ground breaking? A ground breaking imitation of the original…

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