Steven’s custom ENVE SES 4.5 clincher wheels

Steven had previously purchased a set of custom hand built ENVE SES 8.9 clinchers with red Chris King R45 hubs. He uses them for Ironman and triathlon competitions. This fall, he ordered this set. Sticking with the same red CK R45 hubs, he chose the very balance all-rounder ENVE SES 4.5 clincher rim, a new model for 2015. This rim is a great balance between aero and weight and this build, with Sapim CX-Ray spokes comes in at a hair over 1500 grams. For an aero clincher set with Chris King hubs this is a very good weight.

Steven said his 8.9s have been great. I’m always happy when I hear about satisfied customers. That never gets old. I hope Steven enjoys this wheel set as much as he’s enjoyed the ENVE 8.9s.


James’ ZIPP 404 upgrade

James asked to have his ZIPP 404 clincher wheel set upgraded to DT240s hubs. This would allow him to run 11 speed Shimano/SRAM cassettes on this older set of ZIPP wheels. The black nipples and black Sapim CX-Ray spokes definitely indicate a custom ZIPP build.

ZIPP has done well over the years, but I have to say, these rims technologically are showing their age. First, they are traditional width rims, at about 20mm wide. Secondly, the construction techniques of these older ZIPP models left a lot of bladder material and remnant carbon inside the rim. These often rattle loose over time and cause noise while riding.

While building these, I accidentally dropped a nipple inside the rim. This proved more challenging than usual to remove mainly due to the small nipple holes inside the rim combined with carbon remnants and plastic bladder remnants inside the rim blocking the nipple’s movement. After several attempts, I managed to get the nipple out. While doing that, I shook loose what I thought was a piece of bladder. It turned out to be a rolled up ball of masking tape, likely an artifact from the manufacturing process.

The wheels came in at 1800 grams for the set. While not too bad for 24/28 alloy brake rim carbon clinchers, they are heavier than today’s standards of sub 1500 grams for all-carbon clinchers.

That said, this extends the useful life of these aerodynamic wheels and I’m sure Jim will be happy knowing his original investment will result in many more years of use.

Hope Mono RS | Pacenti SL23 wheels

I had ordered a set of Hope Mono RS 11 speed compatible road hubs awhile back and had been meaning to build up a set. If you’ve seen my builds with Hope disc hubs, you know I am a fan of Hope Technologies. Hope hubs are manufactured in the UK, not China or Taiwan and the quality shows. Hope has a lot of reasons to be proud. The addition of 11 speed freehub bodies to their lineup has given them tremendous versatility. Hope can currently deliver 142×12 rear pass-through 11 speed road Shimano/Sram disc hubs that many other leading suppliers simply do not have, such as, oddly, Chris King. So impressed with Hope’s disc hubs, I thought I’d build up a set of rim-brake road wheels using their Mono RS hubs.

To support a wide range of rider weights and added durability this set is 28 drillings rear with cross 3 lacing and radial 20h front. Using Sapim Race butted spokes, and Sapim Polyax alloy nipples, they are laced to the new and improved Pacenti SL23 rim (version 2). This very popular rim was improved in many ways:

1. Thickened at the nipple hole for improved durability.
2. Wider at 24.5mm external but more importantly wider internally for improved tire profile.
3. Deeper internally to ease tire mounting.
4. Lighter weight at 425 grams, down from about 450 grams.

The brake track has narrowed in response to shaving weight. The previous generation Pacenti SL23 had a very generously wide brake track. This newest generation is quite narrow, but not too narrow. I’m running standard issue Dura Ace 9000 brake pads and properly setup they work just fine – no tire rub.

This is a tubeless ready rim, and while I haven’t actually ridden it tubeless, I’m am planning to very soon, once Vittoria releases the new 700C Speed tubeless ready tire in 25mm width.

This wheel set, available now at Broad Street Cycles, weighs in at a very decent 1500 grams. This is an everyday wheel set – as suitable for long training rides as it is for that weekly criterium.

Brent’s ENVE SES 45/Tune build

As I posted earlier, Brent had a set of Hadley disc hubs built onto two rear ENVE SES 3.4 clincher rims, the 45mm tall rear version, 24h. He figured they’d do him better on his road bike so asked ZED to build the rims onto Tune Mig 70 front (72g) and Mag 170 rear 11 speed Shimano/SRAM (174g) hubs with CX-Ray spokes. This is the result. A sub 1450g clincher wheelset ready to roll on his road bike, saving the Hadley/Pacenti SL25 disc build for his gravel bike.


  • ENVE SES 3.4 rear (45mm deep) x 2 24 hole.
  • Tune Mig 70/Mag 170 hub set. 11 speed Shimano/SRAM
  • Sapim CX-Ray Spokes

A nice a setup and rare given the use of two rear rims and matching 24 count spokes front and rear.

Brent’s Hadley/Pacenti SL25 Disc wheelset

Brent had a pretty cool set of custom built ENVE 3.4 45mm rear rims 24h, laced to made in the USA Hadley disc hubs. Front and rear, 24 holes. He found the ENVE’s would be better utilized on his road bike and asked ZED to build put the Hadley hubs on some disc rims and build up the ENVE 3.4 rear rims onto Tune hubs for his road bike.

The Pacenti SL25 is the disc-specific version of the popular and high quality Pacenti SL23 rim. At about 456grams per, at 24 hole drillings, they are decently light without being stupid light.

This was my first build using Hadley hubs. For a boutique USA made hub there isn’t really anything outstanding, in my opinion. The hubs have no outstanding redeeming features, and a rather overly complicate preload locking system requiring proprietary tooling.  I’d personally stick with the affordable and configurable Hope Pro 2 EVO hubs.  Nevertheless, this is what Brent had and so it made sense to make use of them.