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Carbon clinchers

stueysstueys Posts: 1,332
edited August 2014 in Road buying advice
Fancy a set of aero wheels for faster days so have been researching the full carbon options. Much as I would like tubs the lure of clincher convience is hard to ignore, so I've been looking at clinchers and trying to work out the latest on whether these things still have a braking issue.

From everything I've looked at the general consensus seems to be that early designs and cheap designs are a problem. However the newer higher end stuff (zipp, enve, reynolds, etc) all seem to have invested a lot of time and money into heat management and are confident that the problem is tackled. Zipp are claiming that they lifted their tolerances to the same level as the tyre (ie the rim isn't the weakest link).

On the other hand there's no doubt that the tolerances on a carbon clincher have to be lower, ultimately physics cant be completely rewritten. And a bigger safety margin on things like having non-exploding wheels is making me think sod the convience, I'll play safe with tubs.

What's the view and experience out there?


  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    I have a couple sets of Reynolds carbon clinchers with the Ctg brake track. I'm quite pleased with it and have never had a problem with heat even though I do loads of hills. That said, when I go somewhere very hilly (Spain for example) I take tubs. I prefer having that extra level of peace of mind.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    edited August 2014
    Braking today on -20% gradient calabrian hill (road surface broken up so could not get any speed up) and I had to stop due a puncture and the rim shall we say was quite hot, its alloy though a good 50 degrees (could not hold it until it had cooled down). If that had been carbon even the best carbon well it may have been fine or maybe not as the rim would have been hotter. This was not a huge hill just one where you have to brake alot. -wheel building and other stuff.
  • StillGoingStillGoing Posts: 5,207
    There is no inconvenience with tubs. I switched to tubs late last year and will never go back to clinchers. I use tubs on all training rides and in all weathers. I've ridden over gravel strewn roads, roadside debris and unseen pot holes with only one blow out when I didn't see the pothole under the water from rainfall and hit it at 28mph following a car. The wheel was fine and it took all of 5 mins to rip the knackered tub off and replace it with a pre-glued spare carried with me. Tubular wheels are cheaper than clinchers and lighter. Glueing or taping tubs on is a doddle. They can be repaired on the rim if the hole is small enough using sealant in the valve and superglue on the tyre surface. You can even unstitch the tub to patch a bigger hole. They roll better, are more comfortable, suffer less punctures and can be run at low pressures. The downside is that decent tubs are expensive.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • xscreamsukxscreamsuk Posts: 318
    I have Enve 3.4 clinchers on best bike. Zero problems with them, great braking in the dry, perfectly acceptable in the wet. Been over all The Peak can muster in sometimes unexpected bad weather and some hot days as well. Done about 2500 miles in them and pads are nowhere near needing changing. Lovely wheels.
  • stueysstueys Posts: 1,332
    Thanks, interesting. Think I would always stay Alu weekend but good to hear the reynolds track works, the stuff on the internet about it all looks positive. Using tubs as an everyday wheel is interesting, how big is too big for sealant?
  • LegendLustLegendLust Posts: 1,022
    If you're anywhere near one of the participating dealers, Miche are running a wheel test demo programme for their new SWR RC carbon clincher - gets a good review here: ... her-wheels
  • Can't remember which one it is, but Mavic claim they ran their latest carbon clincher with AG2R for the whole season without a single problem.
  • bobloboblo Posts: 360
    Just a thought... Sprint wheels are typically 200-300g lighter than wired on but you have to carry a spare tub and a can of censored (vs a 60g spare inner tube). So overall, they're not lighter allbeit the rotating mass is less.
  • Bar ShakerBar Shaker Posts: 2,313
    We don't talk about rotating mass here. Some people get very upset about it.
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  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    Just thought I add I have been running some chinese sourced rims on my race bike for rides so far only in east anglia - no massive decents and the braking has been fine. Carbon clinchers in rolling east anglia yes else where don't know. Tubular rims are safer in this regard. -wheel building and other stuff.
  • mrolimroli Posts: 3,622
    Don't ride cheap carbon clinchers if you are doing any proper descents. I have ridden a set through SE England without any problems, but a 2 month old pair my mate was riding in Croatia had the rim explode 1km down a HC mountain (it was snowy at the top). I've posted pictures on here. I can't talk for the higher cost brands.
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