Blog: White Industries ENO Hubs

14 Jul 2014

Sweet singlespeed

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This is a photogenic singlespeed cyclocross wheelset. The design is tuned with a lot of coordinated choices specifically for the rider and his needs. Each wheel uses 28 DT Revolution spokes to deliver the desired stiffness at an attractive weight. Brass nipples for reliability in spite of wet, dirty conditions. The rims are H Plus Son Archetypes, which are a nice width for cyclocross tires and strong enough for racing. Hubs are White Industries ENO, which are a basic sealed bearing design with bolt-on attachment and great finishing. The White freewheel is the pièce de résistance.

For a long time it seemed standard 19mm rims were the only option for road wheels. That’s changed a lot in the last few years. Now we’re seeing very good rims 23mm and wider.

To some extent wide rims are a product of racing technology. A wider rim increases the roundness of the tire profile compared to the lightbulb shape on a narrower rim. When tire width closely matches rim width there’s an aerodynamic advantage — aerodynamics are key for pro racers.

In many cases race-oriented technologies don’t translate to the recreational market but wide rims offer benefits everyone can appreciate. You are less likely to experience pinch flats with wider rims; larger air volume allows for lower pressures, which can increase comfort; cornering is improved since tires experience less flop in response to lateral forces; and wide rims are typically stronger with better durability. There are downsides to consider too. You may require brake adjustment when switching between wide and narrow rims; and brake modulation may suffer.

Two excellent wide rims I have in stock at the moment are the H Plus Son Archetype and the Pacenti SL23. The choice is a matter of taste and specific application. Get in touch to see which rim is best for you. Here are some photos of a recent build using the Pacenti rim laced to White Industries hubs for singlespeed use. These are comfortable wheels that handle well and look terrific.