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There are a host of benefits to 29in wheels, but there are also some glaring negatives. Since 29ers are best applied in fast XC events, sloppy handling due to flex and increased weight are at the top of this list, and Stan's NoTubes' Crest MK3 29in Wheelset goes a long way towards addressing these issues. It's stiffer and lighter than its predecessor, and both of those benefits are primarily associated with the MK3's new WideRight rim cross section.
The WideRight rim is 2mm wider, internally, than the standard Crest, which allows the tire to sit just that much fatter. The effects on the tire are straighter, less bulbous sidewalls, more secure seating, lower PSI requirements, and a more generous contact patch. In terms of actual riding, the wider rim profile reduces a tubeless setup's PSI requirements still further, makes for a plusher ride, and increases traction while climbing across granite faces or rain-slicked root lattices.
The wider rim also increases the wheel's resistance to torsional and lateral flex, which is the force responsible for the often noodly feel of more slender wagon wheel rims. That added stiffness helps the MK3 by boosting efficiency while climbing and resisting deflection while tracking through crunchy terrain. Despite all of these benefits to efficiency, traction, and comfort, the wheels are actually lighter than the original Crest by some 30 claimed grams.
Stan's NoTubes literally built its name on tubeless technology, so it's no surprise that its Bead Socket Technology (BST) remains a key feature in the Crest MK3. All the benefits of wider rims and plumper tires mentioned above are further compounded by BST: more cushion, more traction, higher air volume, lower PSI—the list goes on, and riding is believing. Since Stan's ships the Crest MK3 with rim tape and valves already installed, believing is already only a few steps away.
Stan's laces the Crest rims to its all-new Neo hubs, which set the bearings wider to decrease wear and increase the wheelset's stiffness. The freehub boasts 4 precision pawls that simultaneously engage a forged steel 36t ratchet ring for snappy engagement.
- An XC wheelset that addresses the concerns plaguing wagon wheels
- High-volume rim increases cushion, traction, and stiffness
- Loses weight despite the wider rim
- New hub design decreases engagement angle
- Stan's NoTubes' BST tubeless design remains the industry standard
- Item #SNT003J
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
These wheels are great. Great wheels for the price and really light for an aluminum wheel. The new rim design has stiffened up the wheel and made them stronger when bombing down descents. They are really easy to setup tubeless. Great hubs laced to some great rims.
What's the weight?
The weight on these wheels is claimed by Stan's at 1592 grams with 15x100 (front), and 12x142mm (rear) hubs.