Break them if you can.
We won't encourage you to go out and thrash the living crap out of the Santa Cruz Reserve 27 27.5in i9 Boost Wheelset on massive urban drops and stairs like Danny MacAskill, but we won't criticize your choice to take the biggest and baddest lines when you're rolling on these stout carbon wheels. Santa Cruz designed their Reserve Wheels to be the strongest carbon hoops on the market through extensive research of critical failure points, going so far as to redesign the impact testing protocol used on traditional carbon rims.
Instead of replicating the pothole-like impact test used on traditional carbon rims, Santa Cruz developed their very own testing procedure that simulates one-sided impacts that normally occur when a rider lands on a square, protruding rock after getting airborne off a roller or launching from an abrupt drop. As they began testing leading manufacturer's carbon rims, it became readily apparent that most carbon rims not only broke along the expected bead, but they also failed along the spoke nipple interface, due to the drastic increase in spoke tension as the wheel flexed upon impact.
To mitigate these breakage issues, Santa Cruz beefed up the rim bead, increasing its thickness by one millimeter along each side for improved resiliency when you're thrashing the hell out of these wheels on the trail. The design engineers at Santa Cruz then fortified the spoke holes with square-shaped reinforcements you can visibly see, which protect the spoke nipples from suddenly pulling through due to harsh impact. Although Santa Cruz isn't the first company to reinforce a carbon rim's high-stress areas, they're one of the first to offer a lifetime warranty, so long as you actually break them out on the trail.
It's worth noting that this particular Reserve Carbon 27 Wheelset is laced to Industry Nine Torch Hubs with a lightning-quick engagement of three degrees. This quick engagement helps you get up and over trail impediments standing in your way, plus they sound incredible, giving hikers and bystanders notice of your impending trail mischief. The 27-millimeter internal width provides optimal support for your average trail tires, ranging from 2 to 2.5 inches in width. J-bend spokes and mechanical lock nipples make for easier replacement, should you break a spoke or nipple when you're riding in distant locations. Please note, they're available in Boost spacing only.
- Designed as the strongest carbon wheels on the market
- Meticulous carbon lay-up for strength and stiffness
- Reinforced spoke holes prevent pulling through rim
- Thicker beads provide reinforcement from heavy blows
- 27mm width optimally supports 2.0 to 2.5-inch tires
- Industry Nine Torch Boost hubs with rapid 3-degree engagement
- J-bend spokes and mechanical lock nipples for easy replacement
- Santa Cruz backs the rims with an impressive lifetime warranty