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These very impressive new versions of American Classic’s proven tubeless wheels save weight off your trail bike with no obvious stiffness or strength downsides.

The most obvious aspect of these wheels is a very low weight (1,582g) that’s comparable to carbon fibre wheels at a much lower cost. While freewheel pickup can lag, they light up very quickly once locked in. They flick and lift around effortlessly on the trail.

They’re not as stiff as the most rigid wheels available when you’re really ripping them round corners or rattling through rocky sections, but they still hold a line predictably enough to push the pace. The big, rounded rim has a super-wide 24mm internal diameter that fattens up mid-sized tyres noticeably and gives a secure footing for the biggest rubber, so grip or tyre roll is never an issue. 

So far they’ve handled all our local rockeries, steps and drops without denting or losing their tubeless ready integrity either. They’re tubeless taped as standard and valves are included too, although a slacker fit than most means a compressor is useful for inflating. It does mean you won’t be breaking tyre levers or thumbs trying to get your tyres on or off like some other sets. 

American Classic hubs generally last really well even under enduro/24-hour racers, the steel inserts add freehub longevity, and red marker spokes speed up valve finding.

article was originally published in Mountain
Biking UK
magazine, available on Apple
and Zinio.

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