Pushing to empower more riders with light and nimble carbon hoops, the designers at Reynolds have crafted up their new TR 309 Boost 29in Wheelset for all-mountain charging, enduro hard-hitting, and with a slightly smaller price tag to accommodate more riders upgrade budgets. They start with a set of the same hoops employed on Reynolds' Blacklabel wheels, with stiff, over-engineered carbon fiber that offers reliable tracking and durability on the trail, and are stretched outward to accommodate a loftier tire for floating through the chunder before lacing up to a set of Reynolds' own CNC machined three-pawl hubs for quick actuation that doesn't drain the wallet.
Like its big brothers, the Blacklabels and TR309S, the TR309 uses Reynolds' Mountain Rim 5 (MR5) carbon fiber layup. This layup involves five different carbon matrices applied to five different areas of the wheel. A decidedly serious carbon layup — this construction process is more complicated than many frames, placing specific matrices to maximize strength. And though we don't often dwell on the possibility of equipment failure while blasting berms and charging into lines that are a bit too rowdy, the fact that Reynolds puts so much engineering into the rims helps ensure that we won't have to dwell on equipment failure. For months. While wearing a cast and saving up for a new wheelset and/or bike.
Focusing on a friendlier price point than the deluxe Blacklabel line, and the mid-range TR309S, the designers are Reynolds went for a dive into hub creation for the TR309, capable of exceptional performance without the somewhat painful price tag that comes along with some other hubs. Using CNC machining, they created the Reynolds TR3 hub, cut from aluminum in one piece to ensure strength, and features three phased pawls to propel you forward, with just 10-degrees of engagement, so the wheels carry you with the responsive and light-on-the-feet feel you want for quick power bursts up punchy climbs, or chomping at the bit right out of the gate on race day.
In addition to being strong, the rims feature a wide profile capable of accommodating the plusher tires that have been afforded by the addition of boost spacing to bikes. The rim's internal width lands at 30-millimeters, which most of us here in the office are in agreement on being the optimal rim width for enduro and trail rigs. This width allows for running wide, but not plus tires, with our happy place being 2.5-and-2.6-inch tires that allow us to run slightly lower tire pressures around 18psi for gripping loose corners and soaking up beefy roots and rocks, but without gaining rolling resistance the way most ultra-plush 2.8's do.
The TR 309 wheels are built with asymmetrical rims that we also saw on the Blacklabel series, which enables a stronger wheel through more even spoke tension. This translates to a ride that powers through the rocks without deflecting when you pick the wrong line and would otherwise get bucked around. When combined with the wide, Boost spacing, the wheels strength truly shines through with a completely evenly tensioned wide angle to keep you locked into your line no matter what. While Boost may not be news to quite a lot of us, it's worth reiterating how it works: by setting the flanges wider, Reynolds is able to improve the spoke bracing angle, which stiffens the wheels laterally and torsionally (translating braking and pedal input from the hub to rim to trail) without stiffening them radially (so the wheels don't translate every bump and root straight up the seatpost). While bumps and trail chatter are less of an issue with such a wide rim, we're generally under the assumption that less of a bad thing is a good thing. Adding 28 straight-pull spokes to the mix, you'll find lasting durability, and just the right amount of flex, so your wheels don't feel harsh through wily rock gardens.
- Rocket down the trail with the lightness of 29in carbon hoops
- Reynolds MR5 carbon is ultra-precise and stiff
- Asymmetric rim increases strength and stiffness
- CNC machined TR3 hub offer 10-degree engagement
- 3 phased pawls propel you forward with speed
- Wide 30mm internals allow for larger, plusher tires
- Boost spacing helps increase lateral and torsional stiffness