Atomlab Superlite SL 650b Wheelset

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Great Wheels Great Price

Rating: Featured Member Review
The Good:

Weight, Strength, looks

The Bad:

A bit narrow

Overall Review:

This summer i picked up an early season Cannondale Jekyll 4. I bought this low end model because it came with the basic frame and fork set up I wanted but then left me freedom to build the rest the way I wanted it. One of those changes that I made right out of the gate was to install the new Atomlab Suprelite 650b wheels. Atomlab components have always been durable and I was looking for a wheel set that would perform over the long haul in the Las Vegas dust, ledges, and drops that constitute the majority of my riding.

Installation

I set mine up tubeless (is there another way) right out of the box.  I used stan's tape and valve stems.  The first tires that I mounted up were Schwalbe Hans Damph's front and rear.  The tires mounted flawlessly and I was able to air them up first try with just a floor pump.  Since the initial instal I have also mounted Continentals and WTB's with the same results.

The rotor surface is finished beautifully ant the rotors mounted true and flush for nice quiet braking.  In additions the threads for the rotor bolts were much cleaner than the SRAM hubs that came on my bike.

When placing the wheels in the truing stand i found them to be laser straight and perfectly round.  Generally there is a little initial truing that needs to be done on new wheels but not with these.

Performance

My previous wheels were DT 240 hubs laced to Mavic rims 26" style.  I changing to the bigger wheels I had noticed on the bikes that I had demoed there was a noticeable amount of flex compared to what I was used to.  My first ride out my new wheels I was grateful to see that they were as stiff if not stiffer than the smaller wheels that I had been riding.  They accelerated quickly and held my line in rough corners.  My wheels have the older pimp lite hub which has I believe 7.5 degrees of angry bee engagement.  It is a noticeable improvement over the 11 degrees that my 240 rear hub had.  It is a big help on the technical ledgy climbs, being able to ratchet up without the lag in the pedals that I had before.  The new version of my wheels comes with the 102 hub which has a 102 points of engagement giving even crisper performance at the pedals, 3.5 degrees (I'm looking to upgrade soon).

Durability

I have been riding my wheels for 7 months and have put almost 1000 hard desert miles on them.  During that time I have trued them one time.  The spokes had loosened slightly and they had a small wobble.  In addition during that time I had put 2 dings in the sidewall of the rim both of which came from me thinking I can ride with 25 pounds of air in the back tire, but both of those came out with a crescent wrench and can't be seen now.  The bearings feel just as smooth as the first day I put them on and the bees in the rear hub are angry as ever.  When I trued them the oversized nippled allowed me to apply pressure without worrying about rounding them off and the wheels went back to laser straight in less than 5 minutes.

Overall Impression

When looking at wheels, $700 falls into the bargain wheel department now days but these perform better than wheels costing two or three times as much.  As a long time mountain biker and one with 10+ years working in the industry I have worked on , Ridden and built manny wheels.  The Atomlab Superlites are among the best I have ever owned.  My one gripe is I wish the rim was a bit wider.

Specifications

Product Atomlab Superlite SL 650b Wheelset
Riding Type Cross Country, Trail, Other
Wheel Size 27.5" (650b)
Rim Material Aluminum
Rim Atomlab Superlite SL
Inner Rim Width
Hole Count 32
Tubeless Compatible Yes
Rear Hub Atomlab Pimplite12x135
Rear Axle 12mm x 135mm
Front Hub Atomlab Pimplite 15mm
Front Axle
Disc Mount Type
Spokes Double Butted
Nipples Atomlab Torque
Colors Black
Weight 3 lb 13.7 oz (1,748 g)
Miscellaneous
Price $689.95
More Info

 www.atomlab.com

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