The Vision Trimax T42 is a versatile alloy/carbon wheelset that's suitable for everyday use as well as racing.
Okay, first the essential info... when Vision describe these as 'carbon alloy clinchers' they mean that they're alloy with a carbon surface on the deep section of the welded rim. They call this Carbon Structural Integration, or CSI for short, and explain it like this:
'Once an aluminum component is wrapped in carbon fibre, the fibre becomes an integral part of the structure and increases the overall stiffness of the component.'
So the whole of the rim, including the braking surface, is alloy but the V-section is covered with carbon fibre for reinforcement. Of course, the unidirectional carbon finish doesn't hurt in terms of giving a high-end look.
As the name suggests, the rim is 42mm deep and it's 21.2mm wide. Vision's own CNC-machined hubs are black anodized and they contain sealed cartridge bearings (two in the front wheel, four in the rear). The alloy cassette body comes in both Shimano/SRAM and Campag versions.
Everything is laced up by hand using straight-pull Sapim aero spokes – 18 at the front (radial) and 21 at the rear (seven radial on the non-driveside and 14 two-cross on the driveside).
The weight is okay rather than something to get excited about. Ours hit the scales at 804g (f) and 966g (r). That's a total of 1,770g (including rim tape) plus a combined weight of 110g for the quick releases. That's not mega-light but it's certainly comparable to similarly priced rivals.
In use these feel really tight; they're extremely well built. I've been using them for [checks calendar] four months now and I've not had to tighten a single spoke, which says a lot for Vision's construction methods and quality control.
The rims don't slice through the air as well as something a little deeper but they're still impressive and the advantage is that you can use these in most conditions. You don't struggle to maintain control in a strong crosswind like you can with a rim depth of say, 50mm+. Okay, if it's blowing a gale you might have a bit of a fight on your hands but if you want to buy just one set of aero wheels (rather than having the luxury of two or three pairs and swapping them around according to the conditions), these are worth considering.
They climb fine too. They're not electrifying on the slopes but they're not a bad weight for their depth and price. Plus, the alloy braking surface is far more predictable than any carbon model out there.
If you want some versatile aero wheels that are going to put in a solid performance, give these some serious thought.
High-quality aero clinchers that are versatile enough for everyday use or racing; decent price too.
road.cc test report
Make and model: Vision TriMax T42 wheels
Size tested: Shimano
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Vision say, "The new Vision TriMax T42 CSI clincher wheelset is built for racing and all day riding. The T42 rim is 42mm tall, and 21mm wide, to cut through the wind and still remain light enough to tackle the steepest climbs. Using our Vision proprietary hubs and aero bladed spokes, the T42 tip the scales at 1720 grams per pair and is tough enough for any level of road racing."
Ours weighed a little more - but that's nearly always the way.
You can get considerably lighter if you go for full-carbon rims of a similar depth and pay a lot more, but these are a decent weight compared to other options of a similar price.
A good price when compared to similar wheels from brands like SRAM and Fulcrum.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They put in a solid all-round performance. They're designed to be versatile and that means that there are going to be compromises, but if you want some fit-and-forget aero wheels, these are worthy of serious consideration.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The balance: good aerodynamics, reasonable weight, predictable braking and handling.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Any weight saving would be welcome but, as I said, these are a reasonable weight for the rim depth and price.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
About the tester
Age: 41 Height: 190cm Weight: 75kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.