Trail speed, boosted.
The ENVE M50 Fifty 29in Industry Nine Boost Wheelset has redefined our expectations for what a cross country wheelset is able to do. Built with speedy hardtail and shorter suspension rides in mind, the M50 Fifty replaces ENVE's renowned XC rim with a significant drop in weight for even faster rolling on flats and lower rotational mass to propel up climbs — all without any sacrifices in durability. Pairing carbon rims with the stronger spoke bracing angle of Boost hubs makes for a platform that may well be the stiffest XC wheel on the market.
When ENVE set about redesigning the replacement for its featherweight XC rim, the required parameters were clear: make them lighter, wider, and smoother riding. Unsurprisingly, the team in Ogden delivered in spades. Part of the weight savings has been accomplished by trading in traditional bead hooks for a redesigned beadless hook, which is both lighter and more impact resistant. The width was also changed, increasing to 21mm internally — a gain of 3mm compared to the XC. That translates into a rounder tire profile, resulting in greater cornering stability and more rubber on the ground at any given time.
Anyone who’s familiar with ENVE knows the fanatical lengths that its engineers go to in order to achieve a perfect ride feel. Accordingly, the M50 Fifty was tuned for greater vertical compliance, thereby reducing rider fatigue without sacrificing the fantastic lateral rigidity that endows ENVE's rims with the “on rails” feeling for which they’re prized.
While laying its wheels up, ENVE utilizes a patented process of molding in-spoke holes, nipple seats, and valve stem holes to create wheels boasting the highest strength-to-weight ratio available in the industry. ENVE routes the carbon fibers around each hole to maintain continuous fiber integrity, which results in both increased rim rigidity and lower weight at the spoke face.
When laced to a hub, this system facilitates higher, more uniform spoke tension than standard bladder molding. Additionally, ENVE uses a process that removes the inner bladder, resulting in lower weight compared to the many composite manufacturers who leave the rim-shaping, inflatable bladder in the rim once the wheel is complete. While the removal process takes time and added expense, it results in a lighter rim and a perfectly tensioned wheel build.
The rims are laced to Industry Nine hubs with boost axle widths for stiffer tracking up front and even more responsiveness out back. You can also choose either a centerlock or standard 6-bolt rotor interface, each with the option of a standard freehub or an XD driver for use with SRAM’s one-by drivetrains. I9 has become a go-to for factory and custom builds alike because fo their penchant for reliability and low engagement angles, which makes them a perfect match for ENVE rims that might very well outlast your next few frames.
- Speed demon wheels for XC rockets
- Generous rim width for plush traction and low PSI
- Peerless carbon construction embarrasses alloy wheels
- Hookless bead increases strength and reduces burping
- Boost hubs address worries of wagon wheel noodliness
- Eliminating post-production drilling increases rim strength
- I9 hubs are US made with reliably low engagement angles
- ENVE owes its carbon-fiber dominance to more than just good looks