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Benefits of cycling

What To Look For In Winter Wheels | Cycling Weekly


The combination of salt, cold, moisture
and dirt means that British winter roads are absolutely excellent at destroying
fancy bike components and in winter it’s totally essential that your wheels are
up to the job. In winter it’s time to put your fancy featherweight wheels into
hibernation, if you’ve got them, because winter wheels are all about strength,
durability and reliability. Ideally they shouldn’t be too expensive
and affordable enough to replace should you have the misfortune to destroy one
on the edge of a massive flooded pothole. Hunt’s Four Season aero wheelset we have
here are a great example and we previously reviewed these wheels and
gave them a perfect 10 out of 10 because for winter riding they tick all the
boxes and they’re available in rim or disc brake versions and they’re £349 a pair. When choosing a winter wheel we’d recommend going for a higher
spoke count because more spokes should result in a stronger wheel. Now, Hunt’s
Four Season has 24 spokes front and 28 rear making it a very stiff proposition
indeed with a 115kg rider weight limit. But Hunt also
does the SuperDura wheel which has a 130Kg rider weight
limit and even more spokes. We would also recommend going for a
wheel with a wider internal rim width too like this. Now on these Hunts the 23mm tyres sit like 25s and 28mm tyres and wider sit
really well too. And wider tyres great for winter riding because they
give you more comfort and more grip. And while on the subject of rims we
would also recommend that you opt for a tubeless compatible rim. Now this doesn’t
mean that you need to run a tubeless setup but it does give you the option
and the flexibility to do so. Now Hunt ticks this box because their wheels come
tubeless ready out of the box as you can see here. Now running tubeless especially
in winter makes loads of sense because it drastically reduces the number of
punctures you’ll get and let’s face it no one likes changing an inner tube on
the side of the road in the freezing rain. Bearings tend to wear faster in winter
conditions and once your bearings are worn, your wheel will start to develop
side-to-side play and feel a bit gravelly when it’s spun. Now cup and cone
bearings are serviceable if you have a cone spanner and you know what you’re
doing, but cartridge bearings are much easier to replace for the home mechanic.
We’d also recommend that you look for a wheel that has corrosion resistant
nipples such as the brass ones here. If you’re running rim breaks then you need
to be aware that the dirt and grime that builds up on pads and start to act like
sandpaper and dramatically wear down your rims,
now many wheels have a little wear hole on them like this which can be used to
tell you when your rims need replacing because the hole disappears. Now if you
don’t have a wear hole then you can simply use a depth gauge to measure your
rims. This is a big advantage of running disc brakes in winter because on
disc brake wheels is the disc that wears and not the rim.

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