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23mm Rim Width

Old 06-23-14, 08:56 PM
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23mm Rim Width

I'm beginning to think about some new wheels, and it appears that the latest trend in road wheels is toward a wider rim. As I understand it, a lot of the existing road wheels have rims that are about 19mm wide at the flanges. Some of the new ones are on the order of 23mm at the flanges.

Does anyone have any experience with the wider wheels? What have you noticed in comparison the the 19mm wheels?
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Old 06-23-14, 11:00 PM
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The theory is that the wider rims are more aerodynamic. I can't vouch for that personally but there's been plenty of wind-tunnel testing, I believe.

I have a set of race wheels with the wider section. They're certainly faster than my old set, but then, they're better wheels all round, so how much of the benefit is down to wider rims is impossible for me to judge. They look better, imo, but that's a minor matter.
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Old 06-23-14, 11:22 PM
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In addition they reduce chances of pinch flats, allow tires to run at lower pressure, and improve handling.
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Old 06-23-14, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by StanSeven
In addition they reduce chances of pinch flats, allow tires to run at lower pressure, and improve handling.
I buy the pinch flat point, but not necessarily the improved handling. Certainly I haven't noticed any difference. They may provide less rolling resistance, I suppose, but so would simply moving to a 25mm tyre, so I'd hesitate to recommend investing in them on those grounds.
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Old 06-24-14, 09:09 AM
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All of my wheel sets are set up for 10 speed with 19 mm rims. The trend is for wider rims for improved aero performance with wider tires or tyres. As I replace my aging "fleet" of wheel sets, I will convert to wider rims and 11 speed. Time marches on.
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Old 06-24-14, 09:58 AM
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I started using 23mm rims last year, and moved up to 25mm rims this season. After several hundred miles on the 25mm rims (HED Ardennes Plus LT), I honestly can't see myself going back. A 25mm tire plumps out nicely, and my favorite 28mm tires end up at 30.5mm wide. Comfort, traction, and control are outstanding.
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Old 06-24-14, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by chasm54
I buy the pinch flat point, but not necessarily the improved handling.
Improved handling/traction is reported due to the contact area being more compliant with less air pressure.
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Old 06-24-14, 12:38 PM
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I'm running velocity A23s with conti gatorskin 700 x 28c tires as my daily riding/training wheels. I just installed and I like them a lot. The profile is a bit better (little to no bulging) and these are clearly pretty tough wheels. I ride them some on gravel and many of the roads I ride on are a bit rough.
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Old 06-24-14, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by StanSeven
Improved handling/traction is reported due to the contact area being more compliant with less air pressure.
OK. i've been running them at my usual 110-115 psi, so if the improved handling is consequent on lower pressures, of course I wouldn't notice it. I'll take it down to 90-95 and see.
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Old 06-24-14, 01:03 PM
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I've got the V A23's, and they let me run my 23mm continentals at 80F 90R with no chance of flatting (bike + rider = 185 lbs) and comfy enough ride. Those tires in particular match the sidewalls almost exactly when inflated. Getting them on and off requires a catholic priest + confession booth + hear no evil monkeys. And that's with the folding version. Wire beads are horrific to get on and off.
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Old 06-24-14, 01:17 PM
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I've been using both Velocity A23 and HED Ardennes for three years. I've very happy with both. A couple of features make them better;

Additional air volume allows the tire to ride like the next size up, without the added weight or aerodynamic penalty. It's air volume that provides a smoother ride and a wider rim increases air volume. I use a 700x25 Vittoria Corsa Evo CX tire. It plumps out to 27 mm wide on the 23mm wide HED Ardennes rim and the ride quality is superb. It has the air volume of most 700x28 tires if installed on a 19mm wide rim.

The shape of the contact patch changes producing lower rolling resistance. I can't say that I'm faster due to this fact alone, but it's sound engineering to assume some improvement.

The rim is more aerodynamic than most Original Equipment rims.

The combination of better ride quality and some reduction in drag helps performance on most rides. Simply feeling less road shock and vibration improves performance. Reducing any source of fatigue induced by road shock can be very significant.

I'm using the Velocity A23 on my Cyclocross bike and have mounted a tire as small as 700x24 and as large as a 700x40. Handling is excellent over a wide range of air pressures on the wider rim. Try that on a 19mm wide rim.
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Old 06-24-14, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by doctor j
I'm beginning to think about some new wheels, and it appears that the latest trend in road wheels is toward a wider rim. As I understand it, a lot of the existing road wheels have rims that are about 19mm wide at the flanges. Some of the new ones are on the order of 23mm at the flanges.

Does anyone have any experience with the wider wheels? What have you noticed in comparison the the 19mm wheels?
I have a set of new 23mm carbon tubular wheels sitting in the shed. Based on the responses here, I may finally get up the motivation to try these. So help me out here...

I don't get the advantage of the wider rims. They are heavier - no doubt. My wheels come in at about 1,250 grams - about 100 grams more than the older narrower versions. Are they more aero? Possibly by a few watts at high sustained speeds. Can you ride bigger tires? I've glued and extensively ridden 28mm tubulars on standard-issue old-school rims with no apparent problems. I cannot see how a wider tubular rim would improve the performance (cornering?) characteristics of the tire...

In the clincher world, perhaps there is the ability to run fatter tires. Since no high-performance riding (definition: money is at stake), is done on clinchers, again, what is the point apart from reduced pinch flats?
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Old 06-24-14, 01:37 PM
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With tires that measure 23mm wide on trad 19mm rims, I measure 25mm wide on 23mm wide rims. 25mm tires on 19mm rims measured 27.5mm wide on 23mm wide rims. Wider rims make the tires effectively wider and it's appropriate to run pressures suitable for the wider size. For 23mm tires on 23mm rims 10 psi or so lower than you'd run on 19mm rims is a good starting point.
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Old 06-24-14, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave Mayer
I have a set of new 23mm carbon tubular wheels sitting in the shed. Based on the responses here, I may finally get up the motivation to try these. So help me out here...

I don't get the advantage of the wider rims. They are heavier - no doubt. My wheels come in at about 1,250 grams - about 100 grams more than the older narrower versions. Are they more aero? Possibly by a few watts at high sustained speeds. Can you ride bigger tires? I've glued and extensively ridden 28mm tubulars on standard-issue old-school rims with no apparent problems. I cannot see how a wider tubular rim would improve the performance (cornering?) characteristics of the tire...

In the clincher world, perhaps there is the ability to run fatter tires. Since no high-performance riding (definition: money is at stake), is done on clinchers, again, what is the point apart from reduced pinch flats?
Yes, from what I've read the advantages of a 23mm wide clincher rims don't directly apply to tubular rims and tires. I know Cyclocross racers like wider tubular rims with 32mm wide CX tires since they are more stable at very low air pressures.
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Old 06-24-14, 03:43 PM
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I'm in the 23mm wide rim camp also and am completely satisfied. My purpose was to get a plumper tire and a softer ride to help deal with a sore back. At present there is a 28m on the back and 25mm in front.
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Old 06-24-14, 06:25 PM
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so its safe to have a 28mm tire on a 23mm rim?i thought i was pushing it with a 32mm tire.on the rim charts i have have seen,they indicated the 32mm were not wide enough for the rims.i would like to go to 28mm tires.am i getting this right?
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Old 06-24-14, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by silkey
so its safe to have a 28mm tire on a 23mm rim?i thought i was pushing it with a 32mm tire.on the rim charts i have have seen,they indicated the 32mm were not wide enough for the rims.i would like to go to 28mm tires.am i getting this right?
Yes. It can easily handle a 28c tire.
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Old 06-25-14, 05:06 AM
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Originally Posted by doctor j
Does anyone have any experience with the wider wheels? What have you noticed in comparison the the 19mm wheels?
Just do it.

The improvement in ride and handling are worth it.

Remember that the extra volume from the bigger rim acts just like extra volume from a bigger tire, so you reduce your air pressure.
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Old 06-25-14, 05:19 AM
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Originally Posted by KBentley57
I've got the V A23's <snip> Getting them on and off requires a catholic priest + confession booth + hear no evil monkeys. And that's with the folding version. Wire beads are horrific to get on and off.
Lemme guess. You have the newer Florida-made tubeless-ready version of the A23, right?

I have both the older Australian-made non-tubeless A23 and the newer ones. Night and day difference in mounting the tires.

Difficult tire mounting is a common complaint with tubeless-ready rims, and not only with Velocity's rims.

From what I've been reading, the road tubeless trend is quieting down as people discover that for larger holes, or if the bead has come off the rim, they're next to impossible to fix on the road. The solution? A tube. Or a follow car.

Current conversations also suggest that the differences between tubeless-ready and tubeless-only rims are significant enough that if going tubeless, forget tubeless-ready and go straight to the tubeless-only rims. Between that and the issue when using tubes in tubeless-ready, tubeless-ready seems like a solution looking for a problem.

Off-road tubeless (CX and MTB) still seems like a valid application and is preferred to tubes. It's only on the road that questions have begun to appear.
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Old 06-25-14, 05:26 AM
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Originally Posted by silkey
on the rim charts i have have seen, they indicated the 32mm were not wide enough for the rims
The rim charts I have seen all date from ages ago when a round tire profile was considered desireable and clinchers still occassionally blew off rims.

Tires and rims are better these days and currently, a straighter sidewall profile is considered desireable. I've run 23, 25, 28, and 35 on my 23mm rims and have found 25 is the sweet spot, followed by 28. I still don't like the ride of 23s, and the benefits of a straighter sidewall profile are lost by the time you get to 35.
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Old 06-25-14, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by tsl
Lemme guess. You have the newer Florida-made tubeless-ready version of the A23, right?

I have both the older Australian-made non-tubeless A23 and the newer ones. Night and day difference in mounting the tires.

Difficult tire mounting is a common complaint with tubeless-ready rims, and not only with Velocity's rims.

From what I've been reading, the road tubeless trend is quieting down as people discover that for larger holes, or if the bead has come off the rim, they're next to impossible to fix on the road. The solution? A tube. Or a follow car.

Current conversations also suggest that the differences between tubeless-ready and tubeless-only rims are significant enough that if going tubeless, forget tubeless-ready and go straight to the tubeless-only rims. Between that and the issue when using tubes in tubeless-ready, tubeless-ready seems like a solution looking for a problem.

Off-road tubeless (CX and MTB) still seems like a valid application and is preferred to tubes. It's only on the road that questions have begun to appear.
Indeed, they are from the USA. I didn't know they were that much different from the older AU versions. Good to know. I'm not running them tubeless, and probably never will.
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Old 06-25-14, 09:02 AM
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I've had difficulty mounting the newer, tubeless compatible Velocity A23 rims also. It appears that the width of the rim just at the spoke holes inside the rim and where you'd cover with rim tape is very narrow indeed. So narrow that rim tape interferes with bead seating. My solution was to cut and narrow the rim tape with a sharp utility knife to just cover the spoke holes. Mounting is normal now.
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Old 06-25-14, 11:12 AM
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Ok, I get the theory of a comfortable ride and the handling advantages to some extent. But wider=more aerodynamic? How does that work? and wider=less rolling resistance? Again, I would need to see actual test results. Certainly the logic is that a harder sharper wheel with less contact with the surface will have a lower rolling resistance and less wind resistance (i.e. more aerodynamic).

It was my understanding that the pros had gone to the wider tire and hence wider rim because: a) the powers that be saw a marketing opportunity (witness this psot); or b) (if you aren't prone to conspiracy theories) because the (slight) mechanical advantages gained by the narrow wheel/tire sets was outweighed by the real world consideration of rough pavement and the (slight) handling benefits of the somewhat wider wheel/tire sets.
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Old 06-25-14, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Mountain Mitch
Ok, I get the theory of a comfortable ride and the handling advantages to some extent. But wider=more aerodynamic? How does that work? and wider=less rolling resistance? Again, I would need to see actual test results. Certainly the logic is that a harder sharper wheel with less contact with the surface will have a lower rolling resistance and less wind resistance (i.e. more aerodynamic).

It was my understanding that the pros had gone to the wider tire and hence wider rim because: a) the powers that be saw a marketing opportunity (witness this psot); or b) (if you aren't prone to conspiracy theories) because the (slight) mechanical advantages gained by the narrow wheel/tire sets was outweighed by the real world consideration of rough pavement and the (slight) handling benefits of the somewhat wider wheel/tire sets.
Actually, the wider tire is both more comfortable and faster on rough pavement. See: https://janheine.wordpress.com/2014/0...-supple-tires/
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Old 06-25-14, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Mountain Mitch
Ok, I get the theory of a comfortable ride and the handling advantages to some extent. But wider=more aerodynamic? How does that work? and wider=less rolling resistance? Again, I would need to see actual test results. Certainly the logic is that a harder sharper wheel with less contact with the surface will have a lower rolling resistance and less wind resistance (i.e. more aerodynamic).
More aero becasue the tyre doesn't bulge out from the rim so much, presenting a cleaner edge to the wind and therefore, I guess, less turbulence. Less rolling resistance for the same reason that fatter tyres roll better than narrower ones at the same pressure. The wider tyre deforms differently in contact with the road - the contact patch is a less elongated oval, so the wheel is effectively rounder when in action. But note the italics. Those people who are running the wider tyres at lower pressures for the handling advantages are probably negating any advantage in decreased rolling resistance.
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