June 23, 2012
Stan’s NoTubes rims, wheels and sealant are a thing of legend in mountain biking. Viciously defended by its fans, who’ll ride nothing else, wondering how the rest of the world can live in such ignorance.
It’s true that Stan’s makes some very popular and very light weight rims – and now wheels too. Stan’s was the pioneer of the modern tubeless movement and once its sealant was established, worked to come out with a range of rims that worked specifically as tubeless rims for the lightest weight possible. To do this, the rim height has been kept to the absolute minimum with barely enough room to fit the rim bead. This, however is what Stan’s calls ‘BST’ or ‘Bead Socket Techology’ where the bead fits tightly into the rim hook and forms a tight seal
The Stan’s Flow EX rim is the new rim that they were keen to show us. This is a super-wide rim with a shorter sidewall and made for burlier applications. In fact, on seeing this rim profile, we went back through our Fort William photos and saw unbadged versions of something suspiciously similar under a couple of well known riders…
Weight for the 26in version is a claimed 490g and it is also available in 29in and, from August, in 650B. It’s slightly heavier than the Flow, but has thicker sidewalls to resist denting and a thicker spoke bed to allow for greater spoke tension.
Aaaand, that was about it for mountain bikes.
For cyclocross, Stan’s is doing an Iron Cross wheel , which uses the same rim profile as its Alpine rims, with a 20mm internal width rather than the Alpha’s 17mm.
Neat, light hubs are no longer the preserve of the XC racer. They’re now for road riders too…