IB13: Hawk Racing Sinks Talons into Wide, Aero, and High Tension Alloy Wheelset

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Last year, Hawk Racing introduced their new Veyron carbon rims which featured a wider rim profile and improved aerodynamics. Looking to offer an every day or training wheel with similar characteristics, the new Talon Aero offers a 23mm wide rim with a 28mm deep aero profile. Built with only 16 front and 20 rear spokes, the Talon Aeros may seem like a fragile wheelset, but Hawk Racking claims that thanks to the high tension build on the wheels they are stout enough to be ridden daily.

See what makes the Talons sharp, next.

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Both the front and rear wheels use Sapim CX-Ray straight pull spokes – though the drive side gets its own Sapim CX spokes. The CX is a thicker and stiffer bladed spoke than the CX-Ray which makes it a perfect fit for the high 140 KgF tension on the drive side. Hawk said they get the drive side tension up to a uniform 120 KgF first, then pull the wheel into dish with the non-drive spokes which raises the drive side tension to 140 KgF. The Spokes are laced with nipple washers to Alpina ABS self locking nipples which have the option of custom colors through Hawk Racing.

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The SL11 11 speed compatible hub features a 6 pawl design and uses Folmer Technology Bearings with ISO and ABEC 3 certified non-ceramic bearings made in Japan. At 660g for the front and 875g for the rear, the Talon Aeros come in at 1535g for the set and have a 200lb rider weight limit. The laced in the US wheels retail for $549 and include QR skewers and rim tape.

Comments

Sam - 10/21/13 - 2:23pm

He don’t sound like any American I ever heard.

http://vimeo.com/39728817

know better - 10/21/13 - 8:09pm

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Naton - 10/22/13 - 2:58am

I’m pretty sure Specialized invented high spoke tension.

Psi Squared - 10/22/13 - 5:01am

I think Sam needs to get out more and discover the wide range of accents that Americans can have.

mat - 10/22/13 - 7:35am

Sam- Yes I am from Zimbabwe. Permanent legal Alien Resident. Soon I will be citizen via means of political asylum…its taken lots of $ and 7 years to get that status. Thank you for welcoming me into you country

Know better-Yes with today’s global communications it is very easy to import products from Asia. What matters more than simply being able to throw a wad of cash at a wheel brand is what exactly you import from there and how you put it together and most of all how you stand behind that product. Our spokes and nipples come from Belgium and Italy and hopeful for IB14 we will have a USA made hub set. The spokes for this wheel’s drive side are Sapim CX. They discontinued them a while back in the USA. We had to speak to the guys in Belgium very nicely to have these made for us.
PSI Squared-Thank you!
Naton-High spoke tension has been around since 36 spoke wheels I’m not sure we can credit any particular company for that. The magic behind this wheel is the thicker dive spokes make the non drive spokes work harder to pull the wheel into dish thus giving higher non drive side tension. When they are built the Drive side is almost completely tensioned (and true) while the non-drive is still loose. To my knowledge there are no machines that can do this. The end result is 75-90kgf on the non drive side.
Thank you all for the feedback and thank you to Bike Rumor for the nice write up!

bikermark - 10/22/13 - 9:04am

The wheelbuilding technique described has been mentioned on Wheel Fanaytk. It works very well for rear wheels. It is a good way to achieve high spoke tension without stripping out nipples. Those hubs look like the old Easton design (R3).
Nothing to hate on here: lots of nice details with aggressive pricing. Good luck!

Ross - 10/22/13 - 6:10pm

BikerMark is correct, that tensioning technique is usually called ‘pull-over’ and it’s been around as long as tensioned wheels.
Pull over is a great method but is not well understood by most wheelbuilders and requires well engineered hubs and rims along with an attentive builder.
Don’t try it on your next set of 32 spoke whatevers.

Sean - 10/24/13 - 8:42am

I’m pretty sure Naton was making a joke at Specialized expense.

Dustin - 11/05/13 - 10:35am

@Sam – Mat seems to have a better grasp of the English language than you do.

Simon - 02/14/14 - 11:35am

As a Canadian Hawk rider and sponsored athlete, first on their Carbon 38′s, now about to try a set of the Talon Aero’s, I can attest to the fantastic quality of these wheels. The bearings spin forever, they are as true as the day I received them, great understated looks, handbuilt in the USA, and as good as their wheels are, the service that Mat, Sven and co provide is top notch. I first talked to Sven in Kona at IM in 2011 at Kona Bike Works at a Hawk stand he had set up, and he left an honest impression on me. Knowledgeable and down to earth, passionate about what he does. I left that day with one of Hawk’s BBs and a new set of derailer pulleys, and along with the wheels, if you want to reduce resistance on your machine – invest in a BB and set of pulleys from Hawk. Like the wheels, they spin forever, and though you may not think a small part like derailer pulleys would make a difference, believe me they do. Further, all of Hawk’s bearings are non-ceramic. And I can’t say it enough, they spin forever. No maintenance required, no fragile bearings. You will simply not find better value than Hawk – compare the costs and specs to the big wheel manufacturers and see. The quality and service you will receive, as well as the support of a domestic business (yes I am Canadian and would gladly support a handbuilt in USA product versus something machine manufactured overseas) will have you very impressed.

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