Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: San Jose, CA
Bikes: Roadie: Calfee Luna Pro, Track: Yamaguchi Aero Track & Makino
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Q. Dear Mr. Hedtech, please explain the difference between Stingers, Jets, and Alps. Can I train on them?
Stingers are tubular only, and jets can be ordered tubular or clincher. This may be all the information you need to make up your mind.
Beyond that, the wheels have different construction: Stingers are bladder molded in one step. They have a carbon brake surface. Jets are made in two steps. The carbon aero section is molded first. The second step is bonding it to the alloy substrate. Alps are made using RTM. The carbon, alloy, and foam substrate are molded in one step. Because Alps only use one layer of carbon (there are 2-6 in jets and stingers, depending on model) they need to have a foam substrate to make the wheel strong and stiff.
We don't offer a carbon clincher because they don't offer any clear advantage to an alloy one. The cost is durability is not as good, weight savings are negligible, and the cost is several times more. Either wheelset will stand up to hard training and racing, but I would give the edge to the Jet. On a 1-10 scale Jets are 10, equal to a hand built 32 hole traditional wheelset. Stingers would be a 9. I have commuted extensively and cyclocrossed on them without issue. Alps would rate about 8, they are stiff and strong, but need fairly regular attention to keep dead true.