One thing that has become the hot topic and debate amongst road cyclist is the use of disc brakes. Once only used by mountain bike riders, disc wheelsets have become popular amongst riders no matter the discipline. However, due to road disc wheelsets are newer to the market and numerous riders a bit unsure of all the attention. We have put together some helpful tips and topics for finding the best road bike wheelset.
Benefits of A Road Disc Wheelset –
One of the best benefits of disc brakes is the stopping power. Unmatched by traditional rim brakes, disc brakes offer far better control. Riders have the ability to apply less force on the brakes to achieve the same deceleration as a rim brake. This gives the rider a much smoother stopping experience and more control of the brakes.
Typically, disc brakes are offered in two options. The first is mechanical disc brakes which are cable actuated and are less expensive than the second option, Hydraulic disc brakes. Hydraulic disc brakes although more expensive, offer better braking performance than mechanical disc brakes.
Braking Effectiveness –
If you’ve ever road in wet conditions it’s no surprise that traction and braking performance are affected the most. Typically, you may have to ensure you have a solid road bike tire that can match your conditions. Additionally, braking with traditional rim brakes can be quite dangerous because of the loss of friction created between pads and the rim. Which is where a road disc wheelset comes into play.
This combination performs extremely well in wet conditions. First instead of the braking mechanism is placed on the tire/wheel itself, which can get quite wet from road conditions. The disc brake is located in the center of the wheelset near the hub. As a result, there is far less water buildup and requires less water displacement before breaking can occur. Lastly, since disc brakes are made of metal construction and materials water doesn’t affect them as rim and pad are in wet conditions.
Less Impact To Wheels –
When it comes to road conditions they are ever changing and if you ride in the midwest like myself. It seems like the potholes multiple like rabbits. This can cause out of true wheels, and if you’re running traditional rim brakes this poses some issues to braking performance. However, since disc brakes are located around the hub, they are often unaffected by none-true wheels. Hence, you won’t have annoying braking rub with a road disc wheelset.
Tire Clearance –
Lastly, it comes down to tire clearance. Since the demand has increased for wider and larger tires, disc wheelsets provide the clearance to fit larger tires. This provides a huge benefit if you’re a winter rider and need some better stability and control. Most of the time road bikes have the clearance for larger tires, however, the rim brake calipers restrict the clearance. Without the rim brakes, there is plenty of space for larger tires, and disc brakes offer superior braking performance.
Cons Of A Road Disc Wheelset –
It wouldn’t be fair to only talk about the benefits of a road disc wheelset. Hence, why we have a few considerations for you when looking at a set of disc wheels.
Weight Gain –
For racing and the weight guru, the easy con to be aware of is that disc wheelsets are heavier than rim brakes. Therefore, if you’re conscious about weight and want to eliminate every ounce possible then disc brakes may not be for you. However, I’d have to say the braking performance of disc brakes seems to outweigh the weight debate.
Repairs & Maintenance –
Typically, hydraulic disc brakes don’t need much day-to-day repair or maintenance. However, when something does go wrong you’ll certainly be bringing them to your local bike shop for repairs. Disc brakes may sometimes need “bleeding” when there is an air bubble trapped in the system, therefore, again requiring some local assistance.
Wheelset Mobility –
If you own multiple bikes some rim brake and a new one disc brakes. The wheelsets are none-transferable, therefore, if you own a race wheelset or a carbon wheelset for one bike it may not be used with the other. This is a reason why many riders tend to keep their bikes all using the same braking systems.
SES 3.4 DISC | Best Road Disc Wheelset –
Tire Size – 23mm – 28mm
Aero Efficiency – Medium
Front Wheel Depth – 38mm
Rear Wheel Depth – 42mm
The SES 3.4 DISC is the perfect combination of a climbing wheel built with an aero advantage. This wheelset was designed to be ridden in the mountains and built specifically for modern disc road bikes.
If you’re considering the SES 3.4 DISC wheelset, but you’re unsure if your riding style matches Enve Wheels design. Then be sure to pay attention, as the SES 3.4 Road Disc Wheelset is best for road cyclists who need extreme versatility for riding hills/mountains and all-weather conditions.
The Disc SES 3.4 offers road tubeless compatibility, a disc brake specific design and optimized SES aero rim to ensure you get the maximum efficiency. If you’re looking for a wheel that offers not only versatility for everyday riding, but enough speed for racing then the SES 3.4 Disc is the best option.
SES 4.5 DISC | Best Road Disc Wheelset –
Tire Size – 28mm – 32mm
Aero Efficiency – Medium
Front Wheel Depth – 49 mm
Rear Wheel Depth – 55 mm
If you’re looking to gain a little aerodynamics with your wheels the SES 4.5 AR Disc is a great option. This wheelset was designed specifically for disc brake equipped bikes with large tires. Therefore, if you’re looking to gain some added speed, traction, and comfort. This wheelset is going to provide all three! If the road conditions when you ride are ever changing no need to worry as this wheelset is designed to handle anything you throw at it.
Due to the fact of riders desiring larger tire sizes, Enve helped create the SES 4.5 AR Disc with increased tire clearance to accommodate bikes. As a result, you’ll have an added sense of security when cornering and on downhills. Yet you won’t have to sacrifice any speed or performance.
If you’re wondering who these wheels were designed for, Enve would tell you Team Dimension Data, and Paris-Roubaix cobblestone to be specific. Therefore, if you’re wondering if this wheelset is durable enough for everyday riding. Just know that you’re getting the highest quality set available a set that even the pros trust.
SES 5.6 DISC | Best Road Disc Wheelset –
Tire Size – 23mm – 28mm
Aero Efficiency – High
Front Wheel Depth – 54 mm
Rear Wheel Depth – 63 mm
The lightweight highly aerodynamic SES 5.6 Disc is the next model from Enve Wheels. Enve created this road disc wheelset for road cyclists and triathletes running disc brakes. the wheelset is designed and engineered to reduce drag, weight, and the shape of the rim has been optimized for larger volume road tires.
For the SES 5.6 Disc design, it was opened up for pure aerodynamics and weight reduction. As most road disc wheelset models are simply just repurposed wheelsets with disc hubs. Not the SES 5.6 Disc, instead, Enve Wheels was able to eliminate the brake surface on the rim, reducing weight, and adding pure aerodynamics. Without the added brake surface on the rim, it really opened the construction and value these wheels can bring to a rider.
If you’re an amateur or professional cyclist this carbon fiber road disc wheelset is going to offer you the best performance and integrity for any type of riding. These are an extremely lightweight set with the elimination of the heat transfer material required for a rim brake surface. Enve recommends a 25 mm road tire to give you the best optimization for speed, control, and strength. Overall, this road disc wheelset is one of our favorites as it leans toward the speed and efficiency type of rides.
SES 7.8 DISC | Best Road Disc Wheelset –
Tire Size – 23mm – 28mm
Aero Efficiency – High
Front Wheel Depth – 71 mm
Rear Wheel Depth – 78 mm
If you’re looking to ride triathlons or time trials the wait is finally over for the most aerodynamic road disc wheelset. It’s taken some time for the wheel manufactures to catch up to the demand for disc wheels. However, with the SES 7.8 Discs from Enve, you truly get the best road disc wheelset that is built for aerodynamics and structural integrity.
When it comes to road races and triathlons the SES 7.8 Disc is the wheelset for you. Specifically designed for road and triathlon bikes for reduced drag and large volume tires. This road disc wheelset perfectly balances performance with control. Now with a rim depth of this size, you need to be an experienced rider before you throw on a set. These are not only meant to increase your speed but they can take some getting used to when it comes to balance and control in heavy winds.
Nonetheless, there is no cutting the corners with these wheels. They are stripped of the conventional surface rim brake and instead built for extreme aerodynamics instead. As a result, you get a wheelset that is lightweight and has one purpose to cut through the wind and increase your overall speed and efficiency.
About Enve Wheels –
With an origin and desire to create a better ride and deliver leading products without compromise. Enve Wheels is made up of skilled engineers and innovators who share an appreciation for creating the best carbon fiber products known to cycling. It doesn’t hurt to that the same engineers and innovators are experienced riders who share the same appreciation for the sport as we all have. Therefore, with their passion and partnership with leading technology and world-class athlete feedback they create lightweight, stiff, and durable carbon wheelsets.
Enve Wheels Warranty –
At Enve Wheels, they engineer superior carbon fiber products that are built for uncompromised rider experience, and they back it up with providing a superior service and support warranty. Therefore, when you purchase ENVE products they provide a FIVE-YEAR Manufacturer’s Warranty as well as a Lifetime Loyalty Guarantee. The question is what does this mean to you, when you buy Enve Wheels or products.
Each and every product made by ENVE is warrantied to be free from all defects in materials or workmanship for five years. Now, this isn’t your ordinary warranty either. Enve Wheels designed their products to be used every day. For Enve, their products are designed to rode hard, and used frequently. Therefore, their products are designed to withstand daily riding and racing. If for some reason your Enve Wheels fail and have defects, Enve will have you covered and treat you as family for the first five years from when you purchase your products.
Of course, Enve has a few limits to their warranty for customers misusing, misplacing, or improperly handling their products and trying to have it fall under the warranty. Which of course, makes complete since to me. If I drop a wheel or kick a tire out of frustration, that’s not Enve’s fault it’s mine. However, what surprised me most about Enve Wheels is that they still want to help and take care of their customers even when the unforeseen happens.
Lifetime Loyalty Guarantee –
When the unforeseeable happens and you damage your Enve products by accident. Enve Wheels still has you covered with their Lifetime Loyalty Guarantee. This is the catchall program that covers your mistakes or accidents that may fall outside the warranty we described earlier. Enve aims to treat all of their customers as though they were family. Which is why no matter what circumstance happens, Enve’s Lifetime Loyalty Guarantee allows for you to purchase a replacement product for 50% off listed local MSRP. I can’t think of a better way for them to take care of their customers than offering such a program to help benefit when we make mistakes and damage our own stuff.
Helpful Tips –
In the event, you do have a warranty issue and you need to call for assistance. Be sure first to register your Enve products first before you submit a claim. It will make the process much more friendly.
Once you have registered and are ready to submit a claim. These are the following requirements.
- Locate Product Serial Number
- Take a Photo of the affected area.
- Ensure you have a registered valid product.