2015 marks a year where many wheel companies are pushing for larger volume with their tubeless rims, all vying to strike a do-it-all wheel that can handle the performance aspects of different disciplines of cycling. Back in April, we caught a first look of Easton’s latest entry into the rim market with its ARC 24 wheels geared for gravel racing and cyclocross. Of all rims currently being offered on the market, few are so similar to Easton’s ARC 24 than the WTB KOM i23, with the numbers in both labels signifying the inner diameter of of rim.
The WTB KOM i23 looks to achieve the right balance of the ever-desirable factors of more strength, less weight and less cost. The arrival comes as a warm welcome, as we have always been fans of large volume tubeless tires for cyclocross applications. And while we saw an earlier attempt by WTB a year and a half ago to enter the cyclocross-specific ChrisCross i19 at Interbike 2013, the move from an inner rim width of 19mm to 23mm means a better capability of running low pressures with both mountain bike and cyclocross tires.
The WTB KOM i23, designed with the riggers of mountain bike and enduro riding in mind, are built with a WT69 alloy, which boasts a 20% higher yield than 6000 series Aluminum alloy, offering a lighter, stiffer product. As WTB states, its goal with the rims is to be “as light as carbon and wider than our Aluminum competition.”
The rims are UST-compliant, using WTB tape and sealant to achieve a tubeless rim. Our test rims were built with WTB black bladed stainless spokes, black anodized alloy nipples, X3 front and rear, and came with White Industry hubs, with a 15X100mm front and 12X142mm rear thru-axle. Both White Industry hubs are build with a CenterLock rotor attachment system.
Stay tuned for a full review. Use the slider below for detailed specs along with more photos. More Info: mtb.com