Kinesis making wheels? Yes it's a bit of a new direction for them, and you're more likely to have come across them from one of their excellent bike reviews on road.cc. Like this one of the Kinesis Gran Fondo Ti, or this one of its Scandium alloy cousin. Or this one of the TK2 winter bike. We could go on.
Upgrade Bikes, the people behind Kinesis, have plenty of experience with wheels though, both with the DMR brand and also through their dealings with Reynolds. The CX Disc is one of three wheels that Kinesis have produced for this year, the other two being 26" and 29" MTB wheels. Those two sets of hoops will set you back £400 a pair but the Crosslights come in at a very reasonable £274.99.
Disc-equipped 'cross bikes have been gaining ground over the last couple of years but there's still not many off-the-shelf wheelsets available if you're building up a bike. These wheels are built around Kinesis' own hubset, which features four sealed bearings in the back and two at the front, and an alloy 3-pawl freehub. Both have IS 6-bolt disc mounts.
The rim is custom-made for Kinesis by WTB and Dom at Kinesis has been working for the last year to get it right. His main criterion was a really strong rim that could be ridden hard off road with a skinny tyre. Other than that? "real world cost and weight, and high durability and function," he tells us. A bit of everything then.It's a disc specific road/CX rim with 28-hole drilling to match the hubs and a 22mm depth to keep the weight down as much as possible. It’s also a sensible width 24mm so tyre tread should be spread evenly.
The wheels are built up with triple butted spokes and the overall weight is a not-unreasonable 1,828g without skewers. With the chunky hubs making up a lot of the extra weight over a non-disc wheelset we're hoping that they'll feel even lighter than that. They're off out for testing and we'll report back as soon as we've thrashed them about a bit.
Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.