With 29ers getting more and more travel, wheel options continue to expand. The latest comes from Crank Brothers with their Iodine model getting wagon wheel super sizing and designed for 100mm to 130mm travel bikes.
These were introduced with limited info at Sea Otter, so the news is that they’re shipping now, plus full specs and claimed weights are in. Available in two levels, 2 and 3, the 29er wheels get a redesigned rim profile to handle the increased abuse of all-mountain riding and the additional stresses of the larger diameter. Interestingly, this was done by making the extrusion thinner, which helps minimize rotational mass.
UPDATED: Just spoke with their wheels engineer who said the outer shape of the extrusion is the same as the 26″ Iodine wheels, but the internal shaping is slightly thinner because simply making a 29ee wheel from the 26″ rim would have been heavier than necessary given the intended use. The “stronger” claims come into play when comparing this rim extrusion to the lighter, narrower (19mm inside) Cobalt 29er rim.
Both models use the same rim and come with front hub end caps for 15mm and 20mm thru axles. The rims carry forward their paired spoke design, which attaches the spokes without penetrating the rim bed so they’re tubeless ready out of the box.
Click through for product photos and specs…
The higher end 3-series wheelsets get a double anodization on the rims, and they get a new convertible rear hub that can swap between 12×142 and 10×135. Other premium features are an alloy freehub body and hollow alloy spoke sections (the thicker “nipples” that connect the short steel spokes to the hubs) with Sapim stainless steel spokes.
The 2-series wheels get a steel freehub body, standard stainless steel spokes with solid alloy “nipples” and a non-convertible rear hub available fixed in either standard. UPDATE: you can down comvert the 142 hub to 135, but not vice versa.
Both wheels use the same rim, though, so at least the extra 70g of weight on the 2-series is concentrated more toward the center.
They’re at distributors now and should be in shops soon, with a limited number available through Crank Brothers’ website this week.