After making their mark in the carbon wheel world, thanks in part to a generous lifetime warranty, Reserve are adding two new aluminum wheelsets to their lineup, the 30|SL AL and the 30|HD AL. And yes, these wheels come with a lifetime warranty too – more on that in a bit.
The rims are made from 6069 aluminum and have a 30mm internal width, a dimension that's become the norm for almost all types of mountain bikes no matter the intended use. The SL rim has 28 holes and weighs 500 grams for the 29” version, while the comparable HD rim has 32 holes and weighs 580 grams.
Reserve 30 AL Details
• SL and HD versions
• Internal rim width: 30mm
• Rim material: 6069 aluminum
• Sapim spokes, DT Swiss 350 hubs
• Weight (mixed wheel 30|HD): 2036 grams (989 g front / 1047 g rear w/ valves)
• Price: $699 USD / Rim only: $150 USD
• Lifetime warranty
The SL rims are designed for XC to all-mountain riding, while the HD rims are intended for trail to enduro riding. Essentially, more aggressive riders who are hard on their equipment should likely go with the HD rims, while lighter or less aggressive riders will can save some weight by going with the SL option.
Sapim spokes are used to lace the wheels to DT Swiss' workhorse 350 hubs with a 36-tooth ratchet ring. The rim profile is asymmetrical, which offsets the spoke holes in order to allow for more equal spoke tension between the drive and non-drive side.
The $699 wheels come pre-taped, and the price includes Reserve's own Fillmore valves. SRAM XD driver or Shimano Microspline options are available, and there's also a version of the HD wheelset with a 157mm Industry Nine 1|1 hub for the SuperBoosters out there. For riders who want to build up their own wheels, the rims are priced at $150 USD each. Warranty Details
With carbon wheels, they're typically good until they're not – carbon doesn't dent or deform the way aluminum can, which means that if you crack your carbon rims it's time for a new one no matter what. Carbon rims are also much more expensive than aluminum ones, one of the reasons why lifetime warranties have become a popular selling point in recent years. After all, if you're going to shell out over $1,200 or more on a set of wheels it's nice to know you're covered if something happens.
It's a different story with aluminum rims – they're less expensive, and a ding here or a dent there isn't usually the end of the world. It's not a stretch to consider most alloy rims consumable items, something that needs to be replaced after it turns into more of a square than a circle and can no longer be properly trued. That's why Reserve's lifetime warranty is so surprising, and certainly makes these wheels a very attractive proposition. The full terms of the warranty are as follows: General Warrany Policy
• Lifetime warranty for original owner
• Crash replacement rim or wheel cost at 50% of retail cost
• Ship out complete wheels as first option, rims and service credit as second optionDetail on Issues
• Dented rim, no paint chipping, holding air: crash replacement
• Dented rim, paint chipping, holding or not holding air: warranty
• Dented rim, not holding air: warranty
• Seam separation: warranty
• Crack at spoke hole: warranty
Basically, if the rim becomes dented enough to prevent a tubeless tire from holding air, Reserve will replace it free of charge. It's tough to beat those terms, especially considering that we're talking about a $699 wheelset here.
DT Swiss' 350 hub is equipped with a 36-tooth star ratchetRide Impressions
Getting the Reserve wheels up and running was as easy as it gets, thanks in part to those handy Reserve valves. Yes, they're expensive when purchased on their own, but the fact that they come with this wheelset is an added bonus. They allow much more airflow than a Presta valve does, which makes it easier to get tubeless tires seated and sealed with a regular floor pump. I've been running Continental's Krpytotal tires in the DH casing inflated to 20 psi in the front and 22 psi in the rear.
I have a few weeks of riding time on these wheels so far, and many of those rides have been in softer, muddier conditions, so this isn't anywhere near a comprehensive, long-term test. That said, so far I have zero complaints about the feel of these wheels out on the trail – they haven't exhibited any unwanted characteristics during high speed cornering or rough landings, and they're still rolling as straight and true as when I pulled them out of the box.
The weight of the HD|AL wheels feels very reasonable, and even though they took the spot of a fancy carbon wheelset that was 300 grams lighter the extra grams haven't bothered me in the slightest. The DT Swiss 350 hub's 36-tooth ratchet ring creates a 10-degree engagement angle, another number that I don't mind, despite not being the fastest engaging option on the market. My local trails don't have a ton of slow-speed ratcheting maneuvers, but even in those scenarios I've never thought, “If only I had a faster engaging hub...”
I'll keep riding these wheels over the coming months and report back if anything unexpected happens, but so far they're sitting firmly at the top of my 'highly recommended' list. The lifetime rim warranty combined with J-bend spokes laced to DT Swiss' proven 350 hubs is a recipe for success – there aren't many other wheelsets on the market that tick all the boxes the way these ones do.
Great for us consumers!
AND MY GOD SANTA CRUZ NO FREE BEARINGS FOR LIFE ON HUBS. Ya hang your hat on that fact like it means anything for a $5 item that you can buy in bulk for next to nothing and then DONT offer it on the thing that actually spins a full circle on a bike. You had one job to do and you blew it.
And as mentioned already, SC/Reserve isn't making the hubs. It's not their responsibility to replace worn out bearings (which are wear items...)
At the end of the day, they will replace the part that they made free of charge, and if you bought a whole wheel, then you recieve a brand new replacement wheel. What's not to love there?
SC chooses to replace the bearings that they use in their products to keep their frames running well all the time. It's up to the hub brands if they want to cover the bearings that they use in the products that they make. At least SC chooses to use one of, if not the most reliable hub on the market.
C’mon please be serious…
Bontrager line comp isn’t worth the time setting tubeless…
And the hub will break in one year.
Broke 1 spoke on a snag but they came with spares.
Bearing have held up to the uk slop great too.
The WTB ones.
No question asked.
I found out because I was trying to buy the exact same rim and could not find it.
Turns out that they buy the whole production run.
Nice one Reserve, this is what riders want!
Definitely a good deal, less than $1000 CAD for a Alloy wheelset with lifetime warranty.
Maybe I have not been paying enough attention to recent price increases but to me it seems like this wheel isn't particularly cheap.
As for best value, I haven't ridden Shimano hubs since I moved to thru axles years ago so maybe things have changed but if they're as good as they were back then, they're really good value as long as you're willing to pull out a spanner every now and then. And again, this is cheap service if you compare it to what cartridge bearings cost you. Cone spanners are dirt cheap and I don't think even the cheapest ones will ever get you in trouble.
However, the cost of a wheel rebuild each time will probably make me pause.
Also that would be "Hydras", not "Hydra's". Apostrophe + S is possessive. Just adding an S makes it plural.
Now go tear up some trails!!!
Cushcore/Tannus? Nah, bro/maam. I got this lifetime replacement policy that covers all the damage I'm going to do to this wheel running 12psi! Send it!
Realistically though, I've considering going carbon because I'm now at a point that by end of the fall, even with an insert, I've nursed my rear wheel to the end of it's life. So Santa Cruz will just give me a new rear wheel every year?
The current wheels I'm on will send me a crash replacement rim for a great deal, but I still have to get it rebuilt, which also usually means some new spokes and all new nipples.
With this option, I don't see a reason to switch to carbon anymore.
I'd still run an insert on these, the same as I do on my current lifetime warranty WAO rear rim, because it's far easier to not HAVE to warranty it regularly.
Pleased to discover that carbon wheels are also unbelievably tough. I’ve only broken two. They stay tight and true even after the most disgusting sideways landings and can shrug off some pretty major rock strikes as well.
The aluminum Reserves might be good peace of mind for many riders, but if you’re heavy and like to huck then carbon is actually worth the price in the long run.
Either way - the smart way to do it is to keep the shitty stock rear wheel that comes with your bike, so you have something to ride while waiting for the replacement/rebuild.
Incidentally, I don't know why anyone would want to deal with anything other than ratchet hubs. Easy maintenance (and no worry about those tiny mini springs and pawls getting lost when you take apart your fancy I9 hub), bullet proof. If you want faster engagement, the 54 tooth ratchet kit is dead easy to install yourself in five minutes with no tools required.
But I have two frames warrantied over the years (in Europe) and that's the best warranty experience I've ever had - they replied immediately and I got both frames in two or three days.
Same story with the bearings - two days and they're in your postbox.
A few years back it was great.
Canada, so it has to be the spirit bear residing in the Great Bear Rainforest. Look em up, super cute snuggly guys.
Good news is I have a hardtail that needs a new set of wheels, so it'll get the RF's. Would have been nice to get these from the factory tho!
But when it comes to alloy, I can’t see why you’d ride anything other than these at this point
I have Fillmore valves, would pay $100 not to deal with plain old Presta valves again!
Nice move, SC..
Only problem is bleeding down to get to your psi.. So fast!
I refill my sealant through the valve, and I’d have to change the valve core every time with typical presta’s.
No more, now I can Fill-More!
Man… the aliens are most def here.
But im in!
what is your experience? Aren't there many more defective rims due to the almost unasked / unlimited „warranty“? Directly half of all those commenting here are now happy to case more and dent rims without thinking. Are there also new hubs and spokes, as with carbon wheels as you mentioned in your FAQ? What happens to all the old spokes and hubs?
Unfortunately, I can't find a FAQ on sustainability on your homepage.
Basically, I think the concept is pretty cool, the wheelset also turns me on, but I would still be interested to know what you think about the incentive to dent the rims and whether the remaining components end up in the rubbish or are recycled?
All the best for you
It was nevertheless a serious and, above all, interested question.
This won't lead to some increase in dented rims, and even if it did... you can recycle aluminum.
I'[d still rather have a good carbon, they last longer, so you avoid wheel failures.
So I am thinking your Math is off.
When it comes to price I compare the original MSRP, listed here www.pinkbike.com/news/race-face-turbine-r-wheelset-and-vault-hub-2016.html of USD MSRP Front: 479.99, Rear: 639.99. Which has come down significantly from 1200 to the current $900.
So your right, I was looking at outdated pricing. It is interesting to see what the turbine R originally retailed at.
And if you gave the same impact to an alloy rim, it's very probably time for a new one as well.
Looks like a decent set of wheels, but not what I'd call outstanding.
Fair point about DT Swiss being cheaper on that side of the pond. That is due to import costs I guess. In North America, an EX 511 rim is $220 CAD, and rim only pricing for the Reserve AL should be around $200 (I guess the replacements are factored into rim only pricing). The even better value is in the complete wheels. The EX1700 (EX511 on 350 hubs) wheelset is $ 1470 CAD. The Reserve 30 HD AL (with 350 hubs and Fillmore valves) is $915 CAD and comes with crazy (for alloy wheels) warranty. It makes sense that it is reversed over in Europe.
Steel hg freehub HWRABX00S6530S
• Lifetime warranty for original owner"
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