Home

I am pondering some carbon rim wheels for my rim brake bike.

I know it is a little "how long is a piece of string" given the various factors involved but....

Would it be unrealistic to expect 3 years or so without wearing the rim down beyond practical use.

I'm a average weight rider (150lbs), not a heavy beaker, won't be going abroad over the mountains, summer only and would not use them when clearly going to rain all day

Best guess answers or experience welcomed but I know an exact answer is impossible.

7 comments

Avatar
Ogi [147 posts] 5 months ago
0 likes

Hi! I used to ponder around the same question - and gave up on carbon rims (from cost/economic point of view).

Depends how much you ride as well and in what weather and how often do you clean your rims/pads. I think this is what will kill your rims fastest. If riding in Italy, say 7000km a year...easily I'd say 5 years.

Avatar
simonmb [616 posts] 5 months ago
1 like

This is a really good question. But, as you suggest, there is no single answer. From my own experience, I went from a year of around 7,000km of flat, dry and consistently fast riding giving virtually no signs of wear to occasionally wet and very hilly routes delivered noticable signs of use within only hundreds. I swap them out for lightweight alloy in the wet. For me, carbon rims can never be considered a 'consumable'. 

Avatar
srchar [849 posts] 5 months ago
0 likes

Difficult to say for definite whether you'd get three years out of a pair, in the dry, on the flat, without knowing what your typical annual mileage is, but I'd say you'll be fine.  In my experience, carbon rims wear better than aluminium rims; it's flecks of aluminium shed by the rim, embedded in the brake pads, that kills aluminium rims.  Carbon rims don't shed abrasive material in this way.

FWIW, I've done 5,000km on a set of Boras, almost exclusively on climbs and technical descents in the Alps and Dolomites, with no discernible wear.  I'm 80kg and spent most of that time in a friendly race with a riding buddy, therefore braking hard into corners from high speeds, but have always used the correct, carbon-specific brake blocks.

Avatar
nadsta [192 posts] 5 months ago
0 likes

20k km into a pair of Reynolds 46 Aeros. The rims look brand new. It’s my summer bike so little wet weather use.  Hope that helps

Avatar
Charlie-CarbsAn... [24 posts] 5 months ago
0 likes

I have ridden 7000k's on giant slr wheels in all weathers . I am 60kg and don't have many steep descents near me and the rims dont look worn at all. Breaking in the wet is not amazing but it is not  terrible, you just realise there will be a slight delay on the braking in the wet

Avatar
Htc [36 posts] 5 months ago
0 likes

I’ve got 3000+ miles on some Giant SLR aero wheels in all weathers too, can’t see any signs of wear on the rim although I will put on a fresh set of pads in the spring. I’m 70kg and always late break into corners. Agree with wet breaking, almost no difference in actual stopping ability but there is a delay in the initial bite which took me a few wet rides to get used to.

Avatar
consa [2 posts] 2 months ago
0 likes

 BTLOS may have something you want