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Caden Wheels: Review questions.

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As you may know I have a pair of Caden wheels to test.

 

So I can try and answer all your questions, or get Ben to answer the techy stuff, what is it you want out of a wheel review on these.

 

They are the 60 front 88 rear, piccy here:

 

http://forums.transitions.org.au/index.php?showtopic=68304&p=1137206

 

 

Cadens website: http://www.carbonbikewheels.com.au/

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Roxii at the moment I am using an old set of HED jets (60/90) with aluminium braking surface. Basically what I want to know is how do these wheels compare to a set of new HED/Zipp/Enve wheels in terms of feel and performance.

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Been thinking what I need to know, and without having any sort of background in wheel technology, I'm struggling to think of anything I could ask, without needing a crash course in all things wheels first.

 

As I trust your knowledge here, I think it comes down to your opinion on the workmanship and build quality of the wheels.

 

Perhaps:

 

- What is Ben's vision for the company over the next 5 years?

 

- Given that the name is new to most of us, what reassurance can he give that if we buy today, the company won't be gone tomorrow? Might be a bit of a harsh question, but could give Ben the opportunity to express his passion and commitment to delivering quality wheels.

 

- If Ben could take one thing the "big players" have, to bring into his own workshop, what would it be?

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Has much testing / riding been conducted in the hills and was there any failures due to heat build up in the breaking surface?

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Who is making the rims

What hubs

What spokes does he use

What lacing patterns does he use

Why does everyone think wheels can be both for triathlon and cycling. They can't be imo.

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Are they clinchers or tubulars?

What sizes tyres fit the rims?

What tyres are you using?

What tyre pressures?

What brake pads do they supply/recommend?

What is the retail price as tested?

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Hi Guys - Ben from CADEN

Andre Van Gelder one of your senior members bought a set of wheels off me a few months ago and was good enough to speak with Peter Rox who is doing this tech review so thank you. It's a small world as Peter ends up living 500 meters from CST Composites who I work with in Kurnell (CST just won a 1.5 million dollar grant and are doing big things with filament winding and now compression molding which is the process your carbon pedals are made from for example).

 

Anyhoo will try to answer your questions clearly in bullet point form below:

  • Peter Rox came to the factory at Marrickville and took pictures of our prototype molds that we CNC in Brisbane with an old General Motors CNC machine. In saying this we send these molds to Taiwan after developing the shape & layup schedule here in Australia as flying in frozen pre preg carbons with exotic high TG resin systems into Australia is ludicrously expensive as Peter saw by our past date pre preg rolls. Our factory in Tawian make wheels for lot's of other companies but having respect for them and visa versa allows us to innovate & communicate a high quality custom product. Almost all wheel companies use factories in this area to produce the bulk of their rims after the in house dev is complete.
  • Braking surface is one of the most important things on carbon clinchers and any texture negatively impacts stopping power especially in the wet, whether it be carbon weave, basalt weave or twill ect ect. Our layup schedule runs a super flat non textured braking surface that improves braking especially in the wet. It's unique and Peter spent a lot of his time looking at it.
  • "how do we compare to HED, ZIPP, ENVE"? Steve Hed is my idol and was solely responsible for oversized elliptical profile shapes as far as I'm concerned and much much more god rest his soul. I saw him developing fat blunt shapes (very counter intuitive at the time) but with my hydrodynamics background I realised he was trying to make the back half of the wheel the same as the front and just like the first time I rode shaped skis they worked so much better I never looked back at a V shape. To answer the question though our profiles shapes are very close to all of these great wheels mentioned above and you'd be massaging tunnel data heavily to pull much difference between any of them. The biggest drag reduction comes from not having a V shape on the rear half of the wheel as it's like flying with a plane wing backwards.
  • My spoke pattern is triplet lacing which I was taught in France by Pierre Brookson of Brooks Bikes 1997-2000. This is also called 2 to 1 ratio by Fulcrum/Campy who say they invented it but it was actually done first by none other than Henry Ford with his Model A Ford Wheels 1929 (look it up as it's an offset flange that caused the problem he needed to solve just like the narrow drive side flange on a bike hub). I'm not hyping this rear spoke pattern when I say it's the biggest fundamental change you can make to the lateral stiffness and durability of a rear wheel. To give an example Shimano moved to it a couple of years ago for Dura Ace wheels and I can't believe all companies don't use it.
  • Our spokes are Pillar Sandvick Stainless Trilpe Butted who make Mavic's spokes for example and not a well known brand as they are an OEM manufacturer mainly but they make great spokes for half the price:) In saying this I might start to use Sapim just for the marketing advantage as everyone asks for them (Sandvick wire all come from the same supplier btw so the only diff is how it's butted).
  • Our hubs are wide set j bend flange for 2 to 1 ratio which means the bearings are set at a wider stance too (straight pull hubs even though they look good have recessed narrow bearing position so your can lace the spoke through the holes otherwise the bearing blocks this spoke access which is why we don't use them. I showed Peter Rox some prototype ones with our branding on them.... waisted dev money as they're heavier and flex more.
  • Our resin systems has changed three times in the last four years as temperature resistance vs strength/brittleness ratio keep improving. In a wheel the resin is much more important than the carbon as wheels are best suited to mid modulus carbons not expensive high as high mod carbon as it's too brittle for wheels but great for certain parts of frames. Anyway temperature resistance is the thing we spend more time on than any other or we wouldn't be offering 2 year warranty. PS you have to cure resin at 10c above the TG (glass transition or melting point) you want to achieve so we bake our rims at 250c.

I hope this helps and we are currently the only wheel company with any molds or composite dev in Australia so get behind us if you can:) The last company who made tri spokes in Brisbane stopped a while ago but we've worked with some ex staff who are great and still in composites today. Composites are not easy like plastics, it's crazy technical work but rewarding and a growing industry that Australia are starting to compete in so watch out $3k wheel sets you've got a new competitor.

Edited by CADEN
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Please explain: This was mentioned at least twice.

 

"rear half of the wheel"! As wouldn't half the wheel be the same as the other half (Front Half)?

 

What does that mean?

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Thanks very much Ben for getting on board and answering some of them questions much better than I possibly could

 

Since I'm awake early I'll try and answer IronmanFoz's question.

 

Say you draw a line through the bike parallel to the groundat the axles. This represents the path of the wind.

Then you notice that the wind first hits the leading edge of the front wheel (the tyre) then hopefully the wheel does its aero stuff. The wind them passes by the spokes, axle, spokes and then hits the "rear half of the wheel" before hitting the frame, rider and then again the front and rear of the rear wheel.

So the big deal with the "blunt" shape is that when the leading edge of the rear half of the wheel hits the wind (so we are talking about the section of your front wheel nearest the down tube, and this hits the wind spoke edge first) it is hitting it with a rounded aero shape much like the leading edge of a plane wing. The previous (old) shape had this edge as a sharp edge which meant that it was hitting the wind like the trailing edge of a plane wing.

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So far so good.

Easy set up, roll nicely with some 25mm Michelin pro race 4s on.

Ben recommends Schwalbe One so I'll try and chase some of them down and see how they go.

Braking is good, Ben gave me the pads he will be using from now on and they work well even on rims that were a bit damp.

More to come obviously but after one ride would I be confident enough to race on them and happy to think I'm racing on fast wheels.

Yes I would!

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Thanks very much Ben for getting on board and answering some of them questions much better than I possibly could

 

Since I'm awake early I'll try and answer IronmanFoz's question.

 

Say you draw a line through the bike parallel to the groundat the axles. This represents the path of the wind.

Then you notice that the wind first hits the leading edge of the front wheel (the tyre) then hopefully the wheel does its aero stuff. The wind them passes by the spokes, axle, spokes and then hits the "rear half of the wheel" before hitting the frame, rider and then again the front and rear of the rear wheel.

So the big deal with the "blunt" shape is that when the leading edge of the rear half of the wheel hits the wind (so we are talking about the section of your front wheel nearest the down tube, and this hits the wind spoke edge first) it is hitting it with a rounded aero shape much like the leading edge of a plane wing. The previous (old) shape had this edge as a sharp edge which meant that it was hitting the wind like the trailing edge of a plane wing.

and this, the second smooth contact with the prevailing airflow, is why the fat / blunt rims don't get knocked around by the wind as much as narrow trailing edged wheels.... 'cause they present an aero profile at all times.

 

on the other crazy Amerikan forum, when talking about wheelsets, they always talk about aero at yaw angles... at first I had no idea what that was all about.

Narrow sharp rim are good at 0' etc.... i.e front on, but bad at 30' yaw... wind at 30' angle, 'cause its hitting the sharp edge on the back side of the wheel

Blunt rims are also good at 0', front on, but because the back of the wheel is also aero, they are also better at high yaw angles, or wind at an angle.

 

Roxii, as part of your review, could you also take a set of new HED/Zipp/Enve wheels out for a spin, and give us an opinion of the side by side difference in feel.

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Roxii, as part of your review, could you also take a set of new HED/Zipp/Enve wheels out for a spin, and give us an opinion of the side by side difference in feel.

Would love to but seeing I can't get Zipp, Enve or HED to answer an email I don't suppose they will be sending me any wheels soon unfortunately.

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I think avago just assumed you already owned sets of all those ;)

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As a quick benchmark here are the most recent profile widths for 60mm rim depths, the Firestrike is 58mm not 60mm though.

HED STINGER 28mm widest point & 26.5 mid brake track

ZIPP FIRESTRIKE (not Firecrest as this is narrower) 27.8mm widest point & 26.4 mid brake track

CADEN WIDE SERIES 28mm widest point & 26.2mm mid brake track

 

All great wheels & very close in shape, we just round ours a touch more at the brake track for increased yaw angles. Wider rims also hold your tyre at a wider bracing angle reducing tyre deflection around corners which feels more solid. One of my crit riders Sam Rutherford pedals through corners he didn't used to on his old narrow rims.

 

PS if you're track riding or there's no wind V shapes are just as good blunt shapes (but don't tell anyone:). Paul Lew who's is a legend in the industry and famous for initially curing rims in pizza ovens has stuck by V shapes, he makes a sweet wheel and is a composites guru.

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Can I get the rims without the decals or with a custom decal???

Also is there a Matt or gloss finish choice?

Cheers

Ivp

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Quick props to Steve Hed again to say that he had his wide blunt shape available over four years ago at a good price. Has anyone seen the other big companies matching size yet? Let me know as I'd love to have a look at a pair but at $4000USD we may not see them for a while in Australia.

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Hi IVP - Our logo's are a 2 pack epoxy ink which is hand screen printed on the rims as it only uses 10 grams of ink for 40 wheels (I showed Peter Rox the screens). The options are black logos on the matt black rims (all rims are matt black) or we sprinkle a 3M reflective bead on top of the ink which is a silver in colour and then cures into it.

 

In other words black on black or reflective silver that looks normal metallic in daylight and only shines in the dark for safety.

 

One sticker on a wheel is about 1 gram so that's an extra 12 grams rotational mass across two wheels that can peel off which is why we screen print.

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Would love to but seeing I can't get Zipp, Enve or HED to answer an email I don't suppose they will be sending me any wheels soon unfortunately.

Roxii, not for a moment suggesting that the web mogul that you are has these 3 sets of super aero wheels in the shed, I just thought that one of the many thousand of Shire riders down your way may have had a set that you could have used for a ride or two by way of comparison.

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That's actually what I thought you meant, but had to have some fun :)

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Roxii at the moment I am using an old set of HED jets (60/90) with aluminium braking surface. Basically what I want to know is how do these wheels compare to a set of new HED/Zipp/Enve wheels in terms of feel and performance.

 

 

Hi Brett,

I've come from riding the wide rim HED wheels to recently riding Caden Wheels, the ride and feel is very similar to the HED's if not better as these are clinchers. Japan 70.3 was my first race on them (60/88 Carbon Clincher) helping me post the 2nd fastest bike split of the day. I'm not exaggerating when I say this course was a true test for any wheel. We had to navigate rough country roads, footpaths, ramps and I hit them all pretty hard, the Caden wheels didn't falter.

 

 

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Thanks very much Ben for getting on board and answering some of them questions much better than I possibly could

 

Since I'm awake early I'll try and answer IronmanFoz's question.

 

Say you draw a line through the bike parallel to the groundat the axles. This represents the path of the wind.

Then you notice that the wind first hits the leading edge of the front wheel (the tyre) then hopefully the wheel does its aero stuff. The wind them passes by the spokes, axle, spokes and then hits the "rear half of the wheel" before hitting the frame, rider and then again the front and rear of the rear wheel.

So the big deal with the "blunt" shape is that when the leading edge of the rear half of the wheel hits the wind (so we are talking about the section of your front wheel nearest the down tube, and this hits the wind spoke edge first) it is hitting it with a rounded aero shape much like the leading edge of a plane wing. The previous (old) shape had this edge as a sharp edge which meant that it was hitting the wind like the trailing edge of a plane wing.

 

Great question IronmanFoz, and great answer Roxii and explanation Avago.

 

I was wondering the same thing. My initial thought was: surely you'd want as 'pointy' an end hitting the wind, to cut through it like an F1 car - or like my amazing position on the TT bike (note: sarcasm). Then I read the answers, and as opposed to an aircraft wing a rain drop sprung to mind. It has a 'bulb' at the front, and the tail at the rear - hence 'fat and blunt' hitting the wind.

 

I think I dreamt of wheels last night!

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Just so people are aware if they are thinking of dropping some coin on Bens wheels. When the review is done Ben has kindly allowed me to pass them around for a little while if anyone is keen.

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Just had a look at your carbon clincher rim widths CADEN & noticed they are 26.2 at the brake track but only 17.9 internal, where a Hed Jet Plus measures 25 & 20.6. Does this internal width alter how the tyre seats on the rim & the aero relationship from rim to tyre?

 

Assuming the difference is attributed to a full carbon clincher vs alloy clincher with a fairing?

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I am packing my bike today for transport to Roth. IT gets picked up Friday. I would have bought some to take with me rather then use my Zipp Tubbies if I had of read the posts by Ben earlier. Certainly going to clinchers in the not to distant future.

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I would love to try either this set or the other ones Avago (i think) has offered to try. Considering I have flexed, broken, thrown etc most wheels on the market I am a pretty good judge :)

 

Out of Hed, Zipp, Enve, Lighweights that I have owned the only ones I would ever consider again for bike racing are the Hed so it is good to hear that these seem a bit like Hed wheels.

 

I just want some one to make full carbon clinchers that are as stiff as Dura Ace C50 but weigh as much as Zipp or Hed. The 2-1 spoke pattern should help these wheels, quite keen on trying them.

 

I prefer Tubular but hey everyone says clincher is where it is at.

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Here is a question. (or four)

Why is it that the Clincher 50mm has a wieght limit of 75kg, but none of the other clinchers seem to?

 

Also - Do you have specific aero data that we can use to compare your wheels to your competitors?

When designing, did you just use cfd, or have you wind tunnel tested as well?

 

What brake pads do you recommend for your wheels?

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Here is a question. (or four)

Why is it that the Clincher 50mm has a wieght limit of 75kg, but none of the other clinchers seem to?

 

Also - Do you have specific aero data that we can use to compare your wheels to your competitors?

When designing, did you just use cfd, or have you wind tunnel tested as well?

 

What brake pads do you recommend for your wheels?

Where did you see that weight limit, I thought they were all 110kg limit?

Ben is getting his own brake pads made ( most of them come from only one or two manufacturers), he is picking the best compound for his wheels and will be selling them. I think it's "very similar" to the ones giant uses for their carbon wheels and not too dissimilar to the "market leaders"

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Where did you see that weight limit, I thought they were all 110kg limit?

Ben is getting his own brake pads made ( most of them come from only one or two manufacturers), he is picking the best compound for his wheels and will be selling them. I think it's "very similar" to the ones giant uses for their carbon wheels and not too dissimilar to the "market leaders"

Under 'product description'

http://www.carbonbikewheels.com.au/product/50mm-carbon-clincher-wheelset/

but if you go to the 38/60/88mm pages, it isn't listed

Indeed, the 110kg limit you have said I cannot find, where was that listed?

 

(seriously considering a 50/60 combo for the road bike)

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Aaaah I think he is saying its a good front wheel for light riders (not to get blown around) not a weight limit

If you look just below the price in "details" then alongside the rim it gives the 110kg weight limit.

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I would love to try either this set or the other ones Avago (i think) has offered to try. Considering I have flexed, broken, thrown etc most wheels on the market I am a pretty good judge :)

 

Out of Hed, Zipp, Enve, Lighweights that I have owned the only ones I would ever consider again for bike racing are the Hed so it is good to hear that these seem a bit like Hed wheels.

 

I just want some one to make full carbon clinchers that are as stiff as Dura Ace C50 but weigh as much as Zipp or Hed. The 2-1 spoke pattern should help these wheels, quite keen on trying them.

 

I prefer Tubular but hey everyone says clincher is where it is at.

trek52, the offer still stands. 60/88 clinchers, Schwalbe One with Shimao 11 sp. ( mine are sans logo, very stealthy )

( am at Rooty Hill by day and travel M2/M7 )

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Hi IVP - Our logo's are a 2 pack epoxy ink which is hand screen printed on the rims as it only uses 10 grams of ink for 40 wheels (I showed Peter Rox the screens). The options are black logos on the matt black rims (all rims are matt black) or we sprinkle a 3M reflective bead on top of the ink which is a silver in colour and then cures into it.

 

In other words black on black or reflective silver that looks normal metallic in daylight and only shines in the dark for safety.

 

One sticker on a wheel is about 1 gram so that's an extra 12 grams rotational mass across two wheels that can peel off which is why we screen print.

Thanks for your reply Ben

I'm not concerned about the weight of the decals I just don't really like the caden decal look

I'd rather a no decal option

Black on black might be a better look

Cheers

Ivp

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I spoke to Ben yesterday re disc and availability and he said they are currently working on it and to check back with him within 4-6 months. I'll be keen to purchase a disc/50 combo if that's the case.

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I spoke to Ben yesterday re disc and availability and he said they are currently working on it and to check back with him within 4-6 months. I'll be keen to purchase a disc/50 combo if that's the case.

just a question from the uneducated

A/ what's the improvement from a deep rear wheel like 88 mm or even the 100 mm to a disc?

B/ for a mega fast wheelset, why not a 60 or 88 mm front wheel?

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Avago I can't answer the question directly, but the reason I was looking at the disc/50 combo was purely because I've been down the track of running 808's and been belted around on the front wheel at a few races from crosswinds. I ran a 606 combo at Cairns a few weeks ago and again got hammered although those winds were pretty full on, I weigh 72kg and I spoke to Ben about this and he said the better option would obviously be the 50 up front, I'm guessing because of the lesser surface area in regards to cross winds. If I lose a little time because of this so be it, at least I'll feel more in control of my bike.

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If the disc gets going and Ben can get it in at the weights and price point he is hoping for I reckon he could be on a winner selling a 3 wheel set for triathletes.

60mm front and rear and disc.

Leave the 60mms on as your everyday wheels or for windy races then pop the disc in for the big races.

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Avago I can't answer the question directly, but the reason I was looking at the disc/50 combo was purely because I've been down the track of running 808's and been belted around on the front wheel at a few races from crosswinds. I ran a 606 combo at Cairns a few weeks ago and again got hammered although those winds were pretty full on, I weigh 72kg and I spoke to Ben about this and he said the better option would obviously be the 50 up front, I'm guessing because of the lesser surface area in regards to cross winds. If I lose a little time because of this so be it, at least I'll feel more in control of my bike.

Control is Gold.

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Roxii is spot on, I said to Ben I would look at purchasing an 80/50 until the disc came out and this also gives me a second option on windier days and at his current price point that is achievable. I however do not and will not use race wheels as everyday wheels but that's just me.

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Ive been battered in a lot of races by the wind and I'm not a very confident rider at the best of times. But at cairns with my 60mm front and disc on the back I've never felt more stable. Not sure if it was the disc helping me stay more stable or not but considering I'm ~65kg I think it might have been the thing that made the difference cause I'm still shit at riding a bike so it was not an improvement in confidence.

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Ive been battered in a lot of races by the wind and I'm not a very confident rider at the best of times. But at cairns with my 60mm front and disc on the back I've never felt more stable. Not sure if it was the disc helping me stay more stable or not but considering I'm ~65kg I think it might have been the thing that made the difference cause I'm still shit at riding a bike so it was not an improvement in confidence.

Disk Is gold

I've run a disk 404 combo for ten years and never really had any control problems , and believe me I've ridden in some crazy winds

The deeper the front the more control you loose

I also reckon the disk keeps the bike more stable in 90% of crosswind situations

I'm 63 kg

Cheers

Ivp

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RBR, IvP, in the Trannies culture of sharing, I'm more than happy to let you have a few Kgs to help with stability issues. They've been lying around for a while now, and I have no real use for them, so you'd really be doing me a favour by taking them off my hands...sorry waistline...

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Remember the guy from Rolf prima saying a disc 50mm combo was a winner, and that even his small wife could ride about any conditions with it.

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The disc cover option is always worth considering as opposed to buying the third disc wheel. I like the flexibility particularly when travelling to a race that you can add or remove the cover depending on race conditions and only need to travel with two wheels

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