I put it on the good old Cheeta for some initial urban abuse and I was really surprised at the crazy difference that a smaller rear wheel made. It made my bike feel really good, and I liked the way it handled after the switch. It made getting up over the rear wheel a lot easier, and it made my wheelie spot much more comfortable. A couple small drops, and I was convinced it could take a bit more abuse.
A couple months passed, with some random COP action, and a few road trips - still going strong. The wheel felt great over small bumps, and was really sturdy from side-to-side. After a couple of rips from the 10K trail entry point on Golden's Mt.7, I was really impressed with the sturdiness of the wheel, it felt solid and as if it wasn’t ever going to flex in any way, and that’s a really good feeling when you’re bombing the Psyshosis course. The wheel kept relatively straight, It did need a bit of truing love every once and a while, but nothing out of the ordinary. I put it through a bit more abuse; roof drops, Kicking Horse Resort, and I really just kept riding without any worries. I was pretty impressed, so far it had lasted much longer than my old hard-anodized Mavic D521.
During a Weekly DH Race last year, I was ripping through the top section when I came upon a small rock garden, of which I had picked my line, and dialled it in. Tonight I was really pumped, and was goin' a bit faster than usual. The jump before the rock section I took a bit long, and I got squirrelly, putting me through a different line into the rocks, a line which happened to have a sharp edged rock right at the start of the section, 6 inches off the ground. That one hurt, it put a huge inch long pinch flat on both sides of the tube, and a really good-sized dent in the rim. This was the first experience I had that made this rim look fallible. A little while later, a small round rock on the trail right after the plywood huck on the Psychosis course claimed another small dent in the other side of the rim. And now, almost one and a half years later, that’s the only damage done to the rim; one and a half years of my abuse, and I’ve maybe trued it 4 times, and it only suffered 2 small dents. I was, and still am impressed.
The wheel also spent a few months on the Sinister Ridge I was reviewing. It felt just as good on the hard tail, and made the bike ride like a dream. Never felt anything but solid.
There are a few things that were a bit undesirable about this rim I've noticed or found out. I was told that the way the rim was designed, it made it a bit challenging to build up, because of the way the eyelets are. One other thing I found very peculiar was that the rim came from the factory out of true. When being built, spoke tension had to be adjusted to make the rim straight. That’s a weird one. The paint is a sexy semi-gloss black, but seems to chip and scratch very easily. Not really a big deal, but who doesn’t like a shiny bike from front to back?
Overall, this is a sweet rim. I loved, and still love riding it. Avro is no longer in business, but the same rim, called a Mythos DH45 is now sold by Bike Runner Germany. If you’re looking for a fat, affordable rim that will hold up to some serious abuse, contact Markus at Bike Runner Germany.
Thanks to Steve T. for shooting some of the above photos.
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