As its name suggests, the Hunt XC Wide wheelset is aimed at cross-country-specific riding. That said, it's quickly become outdated so Hunt has gone back to the drawing board and updated its budget friendly XC wheelset.
Hunt's third iteration of the XC Wide has been engineered, developed and tested by the UK-based team in-house and been designed to meet the demands of modern XC riders and racers. This time around, the cross-country wheelset has been created using FEA (Finite Element Analysis) modelling techniques.
Such methods have allowed the brand's engineers to refine the rim extrusion profile in more detail than before, meaning the rim wall, bead thicknesses, profile radius and spoke bed reinforcement have been optimally shaped. This helps achieve the desired ride quality and durability.
There's a unique front and rear rim profile, too. The front rim gets a 28mm internal width, and the rear is slightly narrower at 26mm. These have been chosen to support 2.2 to 2.5in tyre widths with the front wheel designed to offer compliance and traction under cornering, while the rear is able to handle more weight and acceleration forces. Of course, the wheels have been built to withstand the usual rock strikes that are specific to mountain biking
The rim material has also been upgraded to 6069-T6 alloy that's said to offer a 25% increase in fatigue and impact strength over the old 6066-T6 alloy, and a 69% improvement over 6061-T6. As usual, these are work-hardened, shot-peened and black, with laser-etched graphics.
As expected from a Hunt wheelset, this one benefits from the brand's RapidEngage freehub that utilises a six-pawl, 3 x 2 alternating system that engages with a 36-tooth drive ring. Hunt then says it provides five-degrees of engagement. The freehub body is coated in the brand's H_CERAMIK treatment that's said to increase hardness and resist cassette gouging. The wheels use a six-bolt rotor mounting interface.
Large diameter, sealed replaceable cartridge bearings have been employed for longevity and they're handbuilt using J-bend spokes with both wheels getting 28 Pillar Spokes made from Sandvik T302 stainless steel.
Hunt's latest XC Wide wheelset is available now and can be picked up for £379.
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