In the past two years, you've probably been just as frustrated as us with the slow crawl that's been 700c disc wheel progression. Prior to the HED Ardennes FR Disc Tubular, you could only check one of two boxes on your wish list -- either disc ready and clincher, or tubular and non-disc compatible. However, HED, being the constant innovator, has finally delivered both in one wheel. Now, you can race till your heart's content while enjoying the power of disc brakes and the speed of tubular tires. At last.
To keep the wheel weight around 1560 grams, HED constructed the Ardennes FR Disc Tubular from the lightweight scandium material. And in the Ardennes tradition, it still features HED's proprietary C2 technology -- representing the two Cs of speed, Crr and Cda, standing for the coefficient of rolling resistance and aerodynamics, respectively. With these two principles in mind, HED designed the Ardennes to create a more efficient interface with the tire, resulting in a 22mm width at the brake track. This wider-is-better technology isn't a bunch of marketing smoke and mirrors, however. It directly results in an 18% reduction to rolling resistance, and a massive gain to laminar airflow over the 25mm rim depth of the wheels. Additionally, for 'cross purposes, the 22mm width creates more surface area to glue onto, creating a more stable surface for tight cornering and rugged terrains.
HED didn't rest on its laurels when it finished the rim. In fact, the entire wheel has been reworked. The spokes are Sapim's popular and aerodynamic CX-Ray J-Bend spokes with self-securing aluminum nipples. Both wheels use 24 of them, and each have been laced two-cross for strength, responsiveness, and rigidity. The Ardennes FR Disc has also received new hubs to accommodate rotors -- obviously. So, the venerable Sonic FR Hubs have been redesigned to handle the new variance of torque and stress caused by its centerlock rotor design. The new hubs run on ABEC5 bearings with oversized 12 and 15mm axles. HED spaced the flanges as widely as possible to create a stronger bracing angle that directly results in a heightened level of lateral stiffness. Also new to FR Discs, HED added grease ports to both the front and rear hubs for easy service. This is of particular value when you consider the grime and abuse that occurs in cyclocross racing. And with a mind for practicality, the centerlock rotors are removable, so you can utilize the rim braking surface for cantilevers.
As this wheel has the Flamme Rouge designation, you know everything has been pared down to reduce weight. The rim is Scandium rather than aluminum, the skewers are titanium, and the ratchet ring in the rear hub is titanium as well.
The HED Ardennes FR Disc Tubular is available in a 700c size and in the color Black. Please note that this wheel is sold individually, and that the rear wheel is only available in a Shimano/SRAM freehub compatibility. Please note that this freehub is not compatible with the either Shimano or SRAM 11-speed shift systems.