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The great variety of available MTB wheelsets can be bewildering for the newbie mountain bike enthusiast. Technical specifications are full of unfamiliar engineering terms and confusing lists of numbers. And that's why we've decided to use plain language as we tell you how to choose a mountain bike wheelset that's right for you. Let's start with the topics you need to understand.

To choose the right MTB wheelsets, you need to consider the following aspects

4 Important factors you need to know when choosing MTB wheelsets:

  • Rims
  • Spokes
  • Hubs
  • Bike and riding style

Rim Material

Rim Material is an important part of bike wheelsets, we must consider what type of Rim Material we will use.

Alloy is always alloy – with the same properties. But carbon fiber is highly variable, and gives the designer a free hand. He or she can use this miracle material to create rims with all the strength, durability and ride feel required for a specific wheelset. Carbon fiber rims can be laid up in different orientations, thicknesses and laminates to create ideal wheel properties for a specific sporting discipline in the world of mountain bikes.

Spokes are like the cables of a suspension bridge – they gain strength from tension. A poet once described a bicycle wheel as “ a circular harp, with every string tuned to the same note.” Count the spokes and you'll know how strong and stiff a wheel is. Light wheels will have 24 to 28 spokes.

One built to withstand tougher demands will most likely have 28 or more spokes. Count 32 spokes and you'll know that wheel will be hard to break. Big heavy riders would do well to run 32-spoke wheelsets. The nature of the spokes that hold a wheelset together contributes a great deal to how a bike feels under you as you ride – its lively response and transfer of pedal power.

The heavier the spoke, the stiffer the wheel. And there are very useful spokes, designed as a compromise suitable for an entire range of MTB wheelsets – such as the Sapim CX-Ray. This classic product possesses an impressive strength to weight ratio and is widely used in ICAN wheel builds. The Sapim Force is a stronger and stiffer spoke, suited to the brutal demands made on E-MTB and downhill wheelsets.

Hubs affect the feel, efficiency and weight of a wheel. Quick-engaging hubs accelerate faster and give better control – especially in slippery technical sections of a trail or single track descent. Hubs should be reliable and last a long time without needing a major service. Sealed bearings help to prolong working life. When service interval comes around, they should be simple enough be easily worked on. Hub spacing varies, and a boosted (which means wider) thru-axle hub must be mated to drop outs which are the correct distance apart.

Riding Style
Think about the kind of riding you enjoy most, divided into uphill and downhill. Which of these three categories appeals to you the most? ICAN has the best wheelset for your particular sport. The standard analysis of MTB riding styles splits them into three main categories, based on the simple ratio of uphill to downhill riding. The categories are as follows:

Cross country riders who go mostly uphill and cover long distances.

Trail riders who split their exertions evenly between ascending and descending.

Enduro riders who must be prepared for anything that the terrain or weather can throw at them.

We already know the important factors that affect our choice of MTB Wheelsets. When you decide to buy MTB Wheelsets, what options do you have? How do we distinguish between them? Next, we will introduce several MTB Wheelsets that you can choose.

How do I choose ICAN MTB Wheelsets

There are good ICAN mountain wheelsets which are well suited for the above three categories of MTB enthusiast. Light weight riders can use a lighter wheelset. But if you're six feet tall and weigh 180 lbs, play safe with a stronger pair of wheels. They should be tuned to achieve the perfect balance between weight and strength for your individual needs. And picking the right ICAN wheelset will make your days on the bike all the more enjoyable, to say nothing of boosting your performance level. Now it's time to take a closer look at wheelsets to match your favorite MTB activities – and what to look for when you're in the market for those dream wheels.

Cross country:If you're into all day events on top of an all-rounder MTB, you’re the perfect candidate for the ICAN F935 wheelset – light and fast. It uses Sapim Leader spokes laced three-cross to 35mm wide Toray T700 carbon rims, and Novatec hubs with thru-axles. You'll feel at home on these wheels. Especially when they're teamed with Maxxis Minion clinchers as part of an ICAN XC S3 full-suspension MTB which weighs in at just over 13 kgs without pedals. This is a combination for all seasons.

Trail: Going uphill then downhill all day long. ICAN recommends the 29er tubelesss-ready wheelset AM29540. It has 40mm wide rims in Toray T700 carbon which take 29 x2.3 tires – and tough Sapim Basic Leader round spokes – 32 fore and aft. Novatec D791 hubs are boosted, with a 148mm x 12mm thru-axle at the rear. If it's a question of an ICAN complete MTB that uses this wheelset, look no further than the P1 trail bike. Wheelset, frame and the Shimano 6100 groupset are a very effective combination at $3400.

Enduro: These events involve fast, steep, ups and downs. And you'll work up a good sweat. You need the strength of the ICAN tubeless-ready AM2940 carbon rim – 40mm wide for tires up to 3”. It builds up with 32 Sapim Basic Leader round spokes and Novatec 791/792SB hubs. This wheelset comes as standard on the ICAN Enduro bike P9, where it plays a vital part in meeting severe performance demands. You will feel confident on this tough bike, which is built to take punishment at a weight of 14.43 kgs without pedals.

  • Mar 26, 2021
  • Category: Articles
  • Comments: 0