In an industry ever-devoted to bigger and gnarlier, it's refreshing when a manufacturer manages to get all the benefits of the latter without the weight penalty of the former. Ibis' 742 Carbon Fiber 27.5in Boost Wheelset manages that feat by incorporating Boost spacing and a titanic rim width while shedding over 100 grams of claimed weight compared to its predecessor, the 741. The secret to that weight-loss lies in the rim height (which is lower) and, possibly, switching to a new hub standard.
While we've seen different names sitting at the center of Ibis wheelsets in the past, the 742 joins the latest trend in enduro wheel hub choice. Industry Nine gets the nod, and anyone who's spent time on that brand's meticulously CNC-machined freehubs will be nodding knowingly now. The hubs don't come straight out of I9's Indiana manufacturing facility; they make a detour to get fitted to Ibis' 742 hoops en route. The freehub features six, offset pawls in a mechanism that cuts the engagement angle down to just three degrees. If you're brain automatically translated "three degrees" to instant, then you're not alone.
But the hunt for details about the rim is what brought you here, and here they are: Compared to the 741 model it's effectively replacing, the 742 rim features a lower rim height, which has a negative correlation with impact resistance. The lower the rim, the better it weathers big hits, big drops, and surprise roll-overs without failing under you—basically, the 742 is designed to withstand even more enduro abuse. Given that Ibis' internal tests showed the outgoing 741 is between 50 and 300% stronger than competing models, we realize that pushing even further ahead in the durability game is an ambitious—and maybe even unnecessary—move. But that's just how Ibis rolls.
Despite the change in depth, the 742 still has the same 35mm internal width, which further buttresses the rim against the deprecations of the trail while allowing plus-sized tires to sit nice and fat. This increases air volume to decrease PSI and make for more plush traction across everything from root-latticed climbs to rain-slicked granite. The wide footprint is supplemented with a hookless bead that can be setup tubeless with a plain ol' floor pump and which decreases the risk of burping when you're wantonly throwing the bike into switchbacks during flowy singletrack loops.
- A lightweight, plus-sized wheel built for enduro shenanigans
- Oversized footprint takes full advantage of plus-sized tires
- Shallower rims for additional longevity vs. big hits
- High toughness pre-preg epoxy adds additional impact resistance
- American-made I9 freehub engages virtually instantaneously