24 June, 2019

Two New Rim and Fender Designs!

by Igor

Friday was container day, so you know what that means: restocked parts and accessory inventory, tasty group lunch, and temporary cardboard box offices. With this shipment, we received several new products that we are particularly proud of, and I think you'll be quite pleased. Jump down for all the details!


Voyager Rims


A good set of rims are the cornerstone to any good wheelbuild. With nearly two years of R&D, prototyping, factory visits, and extrusion tooling, the Voyager Rims are finally ready for their launch. This was a super fun collaborative effort with wheelbuilder extraordinaire Tommy from Cutlass Velo in Baltimore.

While the Voyager looks like a traditional box section rim, it is packed with modern accoutrements including tubeless compatibility, stainless steel eyelets, and generous tire fitment of 38mm-61mm(2.4"). Magnifique!

Tubeless Compatibility

Having a tubeless compatible rim means that the tire bead and rim hook are able to interlock, and stay interlocked, without a tube placing external pressure on the inner casing of the tire. There are several design details which make this system work.

The valley of the rim must be sufficiently shallow to create a seal between the rim, tubeless rim tape, and tire prior to attempted inflation. While in theory this may make tire installation tougher, we have tested about a dozen mainstream brand and tire combinations, and have not noticed any difficulties.
The next step in the tire and rim, ehm, relationship is the bead shelf. Notice the small protrusion along either side of the valley. Basically what happens is that once air is forced into the valve by floor pump or compressor, the tire bead expands outward ramps up the bead shelf and once the bead makes the jump, snaps into the hook of the rim with a satisfying *snap*.
Once the tire is properly seated, remove the valve core, inject the manufacturer's recommended amount of sealant in (often based on tire size), replace the valve core, and do the sealant dance. I encourage everyone to have a sealant playlist. Mine has a lot of Elvis. Be sure to read your sealant and valve manufacturers recommendations for all the details on how to create a perfect and reliable setup.

All that said, you can still use a tube in a pinch (pun intended) or if the tire you want is not tubeless compatible.

While it can take a bit more initial time to get it all done (with the swishing and swashing), the reward is eliminated or significantly fewer debris and pinch flats and a lighter system without tubes, with the latter having the biggest benefits with the widest sizes of tire. The Voyager Rim is available in 26", 650b/27.5, and 700c/29er in 32 and 36 holes.

Enterprise Rims

While the Enterprise Rim is technically a new rim, it uses a modified RAID Rim extrusion with a single stainless steel eyelet instead of the traditional double eyelet style.
A bit of history: double eyeleted rims were sought-after back in the day because they could better distribute nipple tension within the rim than single eyelets. This was especially useful for randonneurs and tourers as this design led to less chance of rim cracking and premature replacement.

Today, double eyelets simply aren't necessary. Everything about high-quality modern wheel and tire manufacturing is better. Alloys are stronger and more durable, nipples and spokes are more resilient and longer lasting, and tires are consistent.

We switched to a single, stainless eyelet for each hole and dropped a bunch of weight. These new rims will gladly accept tires ranging from 23-38mm in 700c and 27".

650bx58mm Smooth Fenders

We had quite a number of folks asking for a Smooth variant of our Wavy Fenders. While I think the Wavy Fenders may be the coolest design we've released, I can understand they may not fit everyone's build aesthetic.

If you're going with a clean and modern or traditional and simple look, this Smooth set will be perfect. Available in Silver and Noir.

700x38mm Smooth Fenders

In an effort to dial in our fender offerings, we developed this 38mm fenderset to be compatible with tires up to 30mm. They're great for modern road bikes with fender mounts (I love that more companies are offering this feature) or older roadies with fender clearances.

I'm very much aware that we currently offer a 37mm fenderset, you'd be surprised what 1mm of clearance can do for road bike applications. Sometimes you need to make an incremental adjustment to provide the best product going forward.

Available in Silver and Noir!

6 comments:

Unknown said...

Very nice write up on the new rims. 2 questions:
1 Does Voyager use single or double eyelets?
2. Is Enterprise Tubeless compatible ??
3. Does the Enterprise "valley" design provide the same bead placement as Voyager?? The Enterprise cross section does not show a defined "shelf" like Voyager.

John Hawrylak
Woodstown NJ

Rod A Bruckdorfer said...

I built a 650 wheel using a VO Diagonale rim. Spoke tension was about 100 Kfg based on a tension meter. I also built the 26" wheels for my wife VO Campeur. Spoke tension was set at 100 Kfg. These wheels have stayed true. VO makes quality components.

VeloOrange said...

Hey John,

1. The Voyager uses single eyelets. Double is not necessary nowadays with improved alloys and designs.
2. The Enterprise is designed to be a more traditional rim profile and application, so it is not tubeless compatible.
3. The Enterprise does not have as prominent of a valley. Road tubeless is still a bit in it's infancy, scratch that, toddler-dom, unlike wider tires that mid-low pressure tubeless are easy and safe to use.

-Igor

Peter Lombardi said...

Any chance the Voyager will be released in Black? Thanks great looking rim!

Olivia said...

I would love it if you folks ever did your snakeskin or wavy fenders for 700c x 50 (or wider) tires~ There aren't enough pretty fenders options for my two 29er commuter bikes!

John I said...

A 28h polished box section rim would be swell. I have a nice pair of Campy Record freewheel hubs that are itching for a pair.