When asked to review the TWE Carbon Pro Extremes 50mm Clinchers I was super keen. Deep dish carbon wheels over the standard aluminium training wheels that come on most new bikes always make for a good talking point at the café!
Before I get into the finer details of the TWEs I’ll point out that I’m relatively new to cycling. I’ve been riding for the last five years with a combination of road, mountain and cyclocross. I currently have four bikes in my collection (I learnt early on that you can never have too many – Rule #12); a road bike BMC SLR01, a mountain bike BMC TE01, a cyclocross bike Giant TCX Advance 1 and a steel frame single speed. I have ridden the 3 Peaks Challenge in sub 10hrs and Audax Alpine Classic Ultimate 320km in sub 12hr 30min but at the moment due to work commitments a lot of my time on the bike has been to commute.
I was impressed the wheels came complete with skewers and carbon specific brake pads. Fitting the tyres was easy with only a little use of a tyre lever at the end to fit the tyres on the rim. The wheel set weighs in at 1580grams, with a rim width of 23mm using DT aero spokes. The front wheel has 20 spokes and the rear 24, with 2 crosses on both. Hubs are TWE branded and are from Japan with EZO bearings with no preload. The profile of the rim is the traditional bladed style, wider at the braking surface (23mm) narrowing to approximate 10mm at the spoke.
I really wanted to give these wheels a great trial and ended up taking them out in differing weather conditions. Out on the road the wheels had a nice hum to them from the bladed spokes and 50mm deep rim profile. The braking with the carbon specific pads was very responsive. I did get caught out in the rain a few times and the braking was slightly less effective but very comparable with the loss you have on aluminium braking surface when it's wet. Along both flat and undulating roads I found the wheels to maintain speed well. They felt really solid on rough road and on the occasion I did hit a pothole, I always felt very in control. In the hills I found them stiff and responsive when climbing. When descending with the TWEs, they gained speed quickly and rolled very smoothly. I even managed to set a few PR’s on my local Saturday training ride with the bunch! One point that always gets raised over coffee is the handling control when you’re in a cross wind. I found them very stable in the wind and I’m probably a medium sized rider at 82kg.
All things considered the TWE Carbon Pro Extremes performance is impressive, fast and responsive for a mid to high end carbon clincher wheel set at an entry level price. Furthermore TWE's wheels can be fully customised for your liking from different rim types and depth, number of spokes and type, all the way through to the colour on the decals. This makes TWE an attractive wheel set option especially if you like to match your frame colour.