First Look: Spengle Carbon wheelsets ready for gravel or mountain bikes

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Rachael Wight's picture

Previously Editor here at, Rachael is happiest on two wheels. Partial to a race or two Rachael also likes getting out into the hills with a big bunch of mates. In the past Rachael has written for publications such as, Enduro Mountain Bike Magazine, Mountain Biking UK, Bike Radar, New Zealand Mountain Biker and was also the online editor for Spoke magazine in New Zealand too. For as long as she's been riding, she has been equally happy getting stuck into a kit review as she is creating stories or doing the site admin. When she's not busy with all the above she's roasting coffee or coaching mountain biking in the Forest of Dean. 


5 years 1 month ago

I don't think that any engineer would agree with "They also told us that a regular wheel struggles manage stresses through the spokes, rims and hubs where these three separate parts mean the forces are typically distributed across the wheel disproportionately, which results in the rim and spokes being prone to bending and buckling."
Some of that is true, but tension spokes aren't subject to buckling forces. The buckling forces on the rims increase as the number of spokes decreases. Their spokes are massive to resist buckling forces.
Their objective is to produce a wheel that is simple to design and make. Unfortunately, that leads to a heavier wheel.
Carbon fibres are only strong in tension and CF composites would make excellent tension spokes. Motorcycle engineers have designed rims which are both spoked and air tight, but using metals.
An ambitious CF composite design would produce a one piece wheel with the spokes continuous with the rims and hubs and pre-tensioned before setting the matrix.
It seems to me that the put upon Spengle engineers are struggling to produce an affordable design and some (most?) of the development budget has been funnelled into "Marketing".