Vanquish 4 Disc Wheelset
Shopping for deep section wheels can be a tricky proposition, too deep and you'll get blown around like a sail in any crosswind and not deep enough and you won't reap the benefits of going aero. One thing is fairly universal in thought though, constructing the rims from carbon fiber as to boost stiffness and drop grams. So we've been patiently waiting for HED Cycling, one of the biggest names in bicycle aerodynamics, to release a full carbon clincher. Previous deep section wheels from the brand always opted for an aluminum rim bead, hook, and bed in the past, claiming they simply weren't convinced that heating up a carbon braking surface and thus the structure holding back 100psi of constant air pressure was the right application, but with disc brake setups gaining momentum and moving stopping duties over to a dedicated rotor, HED decided the time was right for a full-carbon tubeless clincher wheelset. So, the Vanquish 4 joins the V6 and V8 wheels in the lineup as its lowest profile option, ideal for climbing while HED's engineers crafted these carbon wheels with aerodynamics that rival numbers of other brands deeper options.
HED's Vanquish rims are constructed with a meticulous level of quality in its Minnesota factory, where the carbon layups take on surgical precision. It features an optimized shape with internal and external widths that provide exceptional aerodynamic performance when paired with the now popular 23 to 28-millimeter wide and wider tires, so if your drop bar bike often embarks on off-road endeavors from time to time, you'll be covered. For die-hard gravel riders, you'll be pleased to find that the rims can take up to a 42mm tire for loads of traction and cushion over chunky gravel roads. This pairs with tubeless-ready technology that reduces rolling resistance for more speed over chip-seal and smooths rural roads to ward off undue fatigue.
The tubeless-friendly setup grabs our attention for sure, but the real highlight of these wheels is its refined profile that adds an injection of speed on every ride. Its 40mm deep profile is fast regardless of the yaw angle or gradient as HED also knows that high speed requires confidence and increased control that's often lost on deep, lightweight wheels. HED's Stability Control Technology (SCT) reduces lateral forces at the 0-15-degree yaw angles most cyclists see. This makes the Vanquish's 40mm depth less susceptible to getting blown around in blustery wind conditions with handling more akin to a traditional box-section rim.
Since HED's engineers didn't have to tune the all-carbon rim to handle braking duties, the Vanquish rim forgoes high temp resins that can affect ride quality and durability and the shape can be better tuned for aerodynamics and ride quality while dropping weight. We're simply sold on disc brakes and we get why racers and the industry, HED included, are firmly on board. Discs completely do away with one of our greatest criticisms of carbon rims, inconsistent braking, so you get tons of stopping power with better modulation in all conditions, while virtually eliminating the chance that the Vanquish wheels will violently deform because they hit the glass transition temperature as a result of a long, hot descent.
The rims are laced up with 24 bladed spokes front and rear to a set of 545 disc brake hubs continuing the aerodynamic trend. The hubs themselves use a 5-pawl system with 45-tooth engagement, and large 6902 bearings on oversized axles with wide flanges for a stiff, lateral bracing angle that lends itself to more efficient power transfer and better handling. Both front and rear wheels are ready to roll with centerlock rotors and can be adapted to 6-bolt with the addition of an adapter (not included.
- Carbon tubeless wheels for disc brakes adding speed everywhere
- Brake confidently with centerlock disc brakes
- Wide internal width lets you drop pressure for traction
- Tubeless-ready for increased puncture protection
- Achieves optimum aerodynamics with 23 to 28mm tires
- HED is one of the original pioneers in aerodynamic wheelsets