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Best Mountain Bike Wheels Reviewed
Getting the right wheels is arguably one of the most critical upgrades you can make to your mountain bike.
Believe it or not, a bike wheel isn’t only responsible for setting your mountain bike in motion.
The right wheel plays an important role when it comes to the general stability and durability of your mountain bike.
Upgrading to the best mountain bike wheels results in better overall control of your bike while promoting speed on the trail. That’s why we here at cogmag.com have scoured today’s saturated market and reviewed our top 5 mountain bike wheel sets that we believe will be the perfect fit for your mountain bike rig.
If you’re reading this, then it is safe to assume that you’re a mountain bike enthusiast looking for the perfect set of wheels for your bike, or you’re looking forward to joining the amazing world of mountain bikers.
Either way, upgrading your bike’s wheels can make a mountain (no pun intended) of difference to how you handle your mountain bike, the ride quality you get out of it, and its general performance when you’re negotiating different trails.
Another safe assumption worth making is that it probably already had its own pair of wheels when you bought your first mountain bike. However, every bike wheel needs replacement at some point, depending on how often it is used(or other issues).
But picking the wrong bike wheel will quickly affect your bike’s overall performance, reduce its speed, and make it a bit more uncomfortable to control. Put all these together, and you’ll have a mountain bike not worth using at all.
The best mountain bike wheel can make every trail an enjoyable one while offering better weight distribution with the durability you need.
Picking the wrong bike wheel will not only affect your bike’s performance but may not also be durable enough to last as long as you need them to. So, in this article, we will take a look at the best mountain bike wheels worth your money.
Check Out Our Favorite Mountain Bike Wheels
Top Mountain Bike Wheel Comparison Chart
Best Mountain Bike Wheels
The ICAN 29er Mountain Bike Carbon Wheelset is an excellent place to start.
This wheelset is a tubeless 29er carbon fiber product with an outer width measurement of 35 mm and an inner measurement of 30 mm. It features a Novatec hub(D712SB-812/D711SB-B15) Shiman0, which delivers speeds of 10/11 or a Sram XD driver with 10/11 speed. The wheelset weighs about 40 grams, which is great for handling and perfect weight distribution.
ICAN offers a 2-year guarantee on this set of mountain bike wheels. But there is very little likelihood that you will need it, considering that this wheelset is built to last you several years.
When it comes to durability, these pair of mountain bike wheels are designed and built to endure the abuse and rigor of top-level mountain biking.
It delivers performances that pros and experienced riders can only be proud of – and current reviews of the product on Amazon are enough proof.
The wheels come nicely packaged, and it takes next to no effort to get them fixed on your mountain bike.
Up next, we have the Cobalt Crankbrothers Cobalt 1-29 Inches set of mountain bike wheels from Crankbrothers.
This set of wheels exemplify the strength, durability, stiffness, and uniqueness that Crankbrothers add to their wheels.
This product comes in a special twin pair spokes design blending with a wheel construction that gives off a more traditional appeal.
The Cobalt I set of wheels offers an elegant design and construction and is yet available at an entry-level price. The wheels come in mainly two sizes to choose from – 27.5 and 29 inches.
Each mountain bike wheel comes with a rim made from high-quality aluminum material with a monotone finish. It also features durable spokes made of stainless steel blending with a steel-free hub body and aluminum nipples.
The wheel designs are simple and beautiful, distributing mass closer to the hub to ensure faster acceleration and deceleration.
The wheels also operate on a twin-pair spokes technology, which uses the strongest shape in construction to maximize strength and stiffness. Also, each wheelset is tubeless and comes with a manufacturer warranty of two years.
The third entry onto our list is the Hulk-Sports Carbon Mountain Bike Wheelset.
This set of mountain bike wheels may look pretty simple to the untrained eye but comes with everything you need to make an unforgettable riding experience.
Each wheel construction is designed to withstand the rigors of years of active mounting bike riding, involving negotiating unyielding terrains.
The Hulk Sports Carbon Mountain Bike Wheelset features a tubeless compatible system with Toray rims made of T700 full carbon fiber material.
And this blends perfectly with its Presta valve type. Each wheel size measures 29 inches with 25 mm of reliable depth, an inner width of 30 mm, and a general width of 35 mm.
The construction also makes room for 28 spokes made of durable alloy material. The spoke construction uses a disc brake system that offers brake compatibility. The nipples are also made of alloy material and give a full black finish to match each wheel’s general look.
Each wheel weighs about 30 grams, which is ideal for a great riding experience, as it offers better control while taking nothing away from its speed. Each package comes with a wheelset, two spokes, and nipples. And if you’re still not convinced enough, Hulk Sports company has added a two-year warranty under normal usage.
Moving on, we have the RaceFace Turbine Mountain Wheelset. If you are looking for a set of hoops that will bring a touch of no-nonsense and XC to your trail riding experience, then you are probably looking for the RaceFace Turbine Mountain Wheelset.
The construction allows this set of mountain bike wheels to be lightweight mainly because the RF strong rims are laced with bladed spokes that are lightweight and burley straight-pull.
This type of construction gives the whole wheel a strong, stiff, and very responsive feel when riding, which should be at the heart of every wheel if you’re looking for the best riding experience. That means you have better control of your wheels without losing your speed.
Each set of wheels is designed to offer excellent value for money, including installing the tires. It also offers a tubeless setup, and while you may need a conversion kit to go tubeless, you should be able to get around it with little difficulty.
Plus, you are assured that you’re not going to lose any significant amount of air even after weeks of active riding.
The construction also allows the wheels to handle heavy weights without needing to have the spokes tensioned. Plus, the wheels are fantastic and offer excellent control, giving you the chance to test yourself.
And last but not least, we have the WTB SX19 Mountain Bike Wheelset. These mountain bike wheels are known for their very hard build quality, mostly by hand. However, the spokes parts are handled by a pushing machine. That means that you ride for weeks without worrying about the spokes extending further.
This is very important for any mountain bike enthusiast, as it ensures that the wheels always stay true. Because the construction is hand-built, a lot of care, attention, and detailed work has gone into it.
And at a weight of 9.012 pounds, each wheel is lightweight, offers flexible handling, and yet stiff and super durable enough to handle the rigors of active use.
The WTB SX19 Mountain Bike Wheelset features rims made of high-quality stainless steel material. It features a WTB SX19 Disc Brake rim that measures 29 inches with 32 spokes per wheel.
The design makes this wheelset great for all your mountain bike riding projects, including commuting and touring. Installation is super fast and easy and requires no adjustment at all.
Top Mountain Bike Wheel Features To Consider
Before you pull out your wallet or dash off to the store, there are some important features you should pay attention to when shopping for the right mountain bike wheels.
Nowadays, the axles used on most mountain bike wheels are mostly thru-axles, which are stiffer and offer a more secure interface.
However, there are different thru-axles to pay attention to. Most manufacturers now prefer wider-spaced axles to boost stiffness. Before you pay for your new bike wheels, ensure that it comes with the same axle width and type as your frame.
Alternatively, you can also find a hub that you can change to a different axle size if you decide to change your frame but keep your wheels in the future.
Carbon Vs. Alloy Rims
Most manufacturers are increasingly opting for carbon fiber materials for their high-end wheels, mostly because carbon rims are both super stiff and lightweight.
However, if you’re not too interested in your wheels’ weight or stiffness issues, you can instead opt for aluminum rims. This option will provide you the wheel upgrade you need at very affordable prices. Plus, there are several options available to choose from.
The downside is that you are more likely to dent your aluminum rims in case there is an impact. Carbon fiber is less likely to show such dents after an impact.
Another vital factor to consider is the rim width. Rim width size has also increased over time. However, the most important thing to focus on is the internal width measurement.
If you opt for a wider rim, your tire volume will increase, giving it a more flat or squared-off profile.
If you choose a narrow rim, you will end up decreasing your tire volume, giving it a more rounded look or profile.
A wider rim may offer a bit more riding stability. However, if they go too broad, you may end up creating knobs on the ends of the tires.
Tubes Vs. Tubeless
Whether to use a tire that only comes with a sealant or to opt for inner tubes pretty much depends on your preference. Inner tubes are mostly easy to replace and very affordable.
However, their design makes them a lot prone to punctures. Plus, they generally require you to run at higher pressures. A tubeless system offers a lighter option with the added advantage of being able to heal some small punctures by itself.
The downside is that this option is more expensive, and you’ll have to deal with some mess if you get a flat tire.
Then again, if you end up destroying your tire beyond repair, you may need to use an inner tube anyway or dispose of your tire.
Most people often overlook how quickly the freehub engages. And yet, this is a critical feature to look out for. Most riding experts refer to it as the point or degrees of engagement. A faster freehub makes pedaling a lot easier and better.