PressCamp: Stan’s Wheels and Rims

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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

As you can see, the line has grown rather a lot over the years.

 

 

Rims, rim strips, valves and sealant are all part of the line.

 

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…

Launched late last year, the new Flow EX rim is a wide 25.5mm internal width (up from 22.6 on the regular Flow)

 

Here you can see the wide profile of the rim.

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.

Stan's Flow and Flow EX side by side. You can see the thicker spoke bed and shorter, thicker sidewalls too.

 

The Stan's Flow rim profile
The Stan's Flow EX profile

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.

Tired of glueing on your tyres? This might be the answer. Or it might not.

 

 

Quite a few rims then.

Neat, light hubs are no longer the preserve of the XC racer. They’re now for road riders too…

 

The Alpha 340 is a road disc wheel for tubeless setup

 

Be the first on the block with discs on your road bike then...

 

 

 

 

Chipps

Singletrack Editor

Chipps wasn’t around for the dawn of mountain biking in the UK, but he likes to claim that he arrived in time for second breakfast (about the time he shows up for work, then…) starting in the bike trade in 1990 and becoming a full time mountain bike journalist at the start of 1994. Over the subsequent quarter century, he has seen mountain bike culture flourish and diversify and bike technology go from rigid steel frames to fully suspended carbon fibre (and sometimes back to rigid steel as well.)

His riding style is best described as ‘medium, wheels on the ground, trail riding’ though he’s been spotted doing everything from endurance downhill racing to 24 hour cross country racing. He favours mid-travel trail bikes and claims to be wheel-size, gear, brake and tyre agnostic. In fact, his garage spans most bicycle flavours, taking in steel hardtails, carbon trail bikes, even a mountain bike tandem, along with road, touring and gravel/cyclocross bikes.

While he’s happy to chat about bikes all day, his real interest is in the people and places that bikes can introduce you to and he talks as fondly about the trails he’s ridden and riders he’s met as the bikes that took him there.

Comments (6)

    Isn’t it nice when companies deliver exactly what people have been asking for?

    any idea on whether the flow will now be ditched when the flow EX comes out?

    Was kind of hoping the flow EX (with new BST) would have been a bit lighter, not heavier tbh as per crest/archEX trend, though being that much wider I can see why
    Makes the gap between arch EX and flow (EX) a bit wider now in terms of weight/width/durability

    I can’t see the Flow disappearing any time soon. It’s effectively a completely different rim.

    Surely the flow will stay – the EX is pretty wide/heavy for anything but DH.

    Maybe they’ll use some of the new technology to make the Flow lighter – maybe a lower height but the same width? That would be perfick.

    Was thinking as crest/archEX were 2mm wider than the outgoing models, a 25mm or so wide flowEX over a 23mm or so Flow would fit the trend. Just under 500g its not completely DH only either?

    If only I could get hold of some 29er crests on hopes :@

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