Miche's Race AXY DX Wide Profile Disc Wheels are solid all-rounders that are great for general riding, winter training and even a bit of the rough stuff like bridleways or gravel tracks thanks to their robust build. At over two kilos they are a bit on the porky side, and they're a bit more expensive than some rivals.
- Pros: Solid build, wide rim to suit bigger tyres
- Cons: Heavy, pricey against similar wheels
Just like the three previous sets of Miche wheels I've tested over the previous years, the AXY DXs have that real feeling of solidity from a mix of quality components and decent design. Out on the road they stayed true throughout the test period – even after catching the edges of a couple of deep potholes hidden beneath flood water.
Using 24 spokes in a two-cross pattern, both the front and rear wheels feel to be excellently tensioned and work really well to resist the forces of steering, pedalling and heavy braking. Overall strength and durability is very good indeed.
The Miche AXYs are a little weighty at 2,040g, similar to Mavic's Aksium Disc wheelset at a claimed 2,045g. The Aksiums are pretty hard to destroy too so maybe there is something in having a little bit more material there if you want a really reliable set of wheels. I'd say the AXYs just have the edge on ride quality, though the Aksiums have an rrp of £175 for 2018, which is a cool £75 cheaper than the Miches.
The Miches are also more expensive than Fulcrum's Racing 7 Discs which are intended for similar use to the AXY wheelset. The Fulcrums have an rrp of £224.99 and are also nearly 300g lighter. The Miches are up against some really tough opposition.
What do you get for your £249.99 though?
As you can tell from the name (WP stands for Wide Profile), these AXYs have a wider rim than you'd find on the majority of wheels from a few years ago. Tyre widths have grown and wheels have expanded to match, so here you get a measurement of 23mm from outside to outside making it ideal for tyres of 25mm and above.
Both the 25mm Panaracer Race Evo L (review to come) tyres and the Vittoria Corsa Controls measured just over 26mm when fitted, so the rim pads things out a little too.
Both tyres were pretty simple to fit to the rims, with nothing more than a firm pair of thumbs required.
The AXYs have a 30mm alloy rim which isn't deep enough to create any real aero or performance benefits but they do look pretty cool, especially with the grey decals giving a classy look.
The hubs are aluminium alloy also as you'd expect at this price point, and Miche has gone for quite large flanges either end on both the front and rear. The thinking behind this is that they can provide higher lateral and torsional wheel stiffness.
The rear hub is designed for 12mm thru-axles and comes fitted with an alloy 7075-T6 freehub body. Some softer alloys used for this job can really get gnarled up from the loads applied to the cassette from hard acceleration or standing starts but after a few hundred miles this one is barely marked.
If noise is an issue for you when freewheeling then fear not with these wheels – yeah, it does make a slight click, but no way enough to be offensive.
Both the front and rear hubs use sealed bearings which stood up well to the testing conditions, a lot of standing water, mud and grit, with no problems. The manual that comes with the wheels gives you full instructions on how to swap the bearings and service the freehub, and as long as you have a 12mm Allen key in your tool box it's not too daunting a job.
The front hub accepts a 15mm thru-axle but you do get press-fit adaptors in the box to bring that diameter down to 12mm diameter, which most road and gravel bikes now use.
When it comes to fitting brake rotors the AXYs use Shimano's Centrelock splined setup where you literally just slide the disc on and secure it with a lockring. On the rear axle you'll see an adjustment ring sat on the non-drive side. You loosen the 2mm grub screw to allow you to wind it in or out to ensure smooth running of the bearings with no play or binding.
An outer diameter of 25mm means you can't use the standard lockring (the one that is the same as the cassette lockring) that Shimano normally supplies as it won't fit over the adjustment ring. You'll need to use something like Shimano's SM-HB20, which instead of having the teeth on the inside has them on the outside and is tightened using the Japanese company's bottom bracket tool.
These lockrings cost about a tenner online so it's something to factor into the overall price of the wheels. You can get away with using a standard lockring at the front but the cassette tool you use will need to be deeper than standard to get a good bite on the teeth.
Overall, I'd say the Miche AXYs are a good choice. On paper they are pricey and a bit weighty, but unless you are looking for all-out performance in the hills then that 2kg heft isn't really a massive issue. They roll well and don't feel overly harsh, so if you need a strong set of wheels with great build quality these could be just what you are after – but shop around for a better price.
Solid do-a-bit-of-everything wheels but they are up against some better-priced competition
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Miche Race AXY DX WP Disc wheelset
Size tested: 700C, 30mm rim height
Tell us what the wheel is for
Miche says, "The Race wheel program has expanded to meet even more intended uses. This starts from the very beginning when deciding what materials to build the wheels from. The wheels needed to expand on the characteristics of what made the Race program so popular in the first place. They needed to be comfortable even under intense use.
"The light alloy, medium profile rims provide the aerodynamics necessary to be used in races. The light alloy hubs use sealed bearings to ensure reliability and excellent smoothness in any condition. The new rim profile ensures high end rigiditiy and reactivity. The new Race DX has been studied and developed for the assembly of the disk brake, and the rim profile ensures excellent rigidity and reactivity."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the wheel?
Hub Body: AL 6061 T6
Disc Fitment: Centrelock
Freewheel body: AL 7075 T6
Compatibility: Shimano, Sram: 11x,10x,9x,
Material: Lightweight alloy
Front Rim Height: 30mm
Rear Rim Height: 30mm
Rim Width: 23mm
Did the wheels stay true? Any issues with spoke tension?
No issues at all.
How easy did you find it to fit tyres?
Both sets of tyres I tried went on with just a bit of thumb pressure.
How did the wheel extras (eg skewers and rim tape) perform?
The rim tape went on well and the 12mm thru-axle adaptors just press into the front hub.
Tell us how the wheel performed overall when used for its designed purpose
For general riding and even some soft off-roading they work well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the wheel
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the wheel
Pricier than the competition.
Did you enjoy using the wheel? Yes
Would you consider buying the wheel? Possibly, if I could find a deal.
Would you recommend the wheel to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
These AXYs are a good, solid set of wheels but are a little pricey compared with the opposition. If you can get a good deal they won't disappoint, especially if durability is the most important attribute for you.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.