In part one of a two part review, we look at a deep rim wheel designed to handle crosswinds better.
If you are looking for a set of wheels to up your crit game, or improve your bike split at your next triathlon, there is a new name to consider, Princeton CarbonWorks.
Their Wake 6560 wheel uses a unique rim shape that not only increases the aerodynamics, but also makes it more stable in crosswinds. We had a chance to ride them through the rolling hills of southeastern Pennsylvania on a Van Dessel Motivus Maximus LTD in a disc brake configuration over all kinds of surfaces. We have the full review in the works, but here is a teaser for you.
The quick version is Princeton CarbonWorks was founded by four former rowers that at one point or another were part of the US National Rowing program. As many rowers do, they turned to cycling and triathlon once their rowing days were over. The group wanted to create a better wheel that was more attainable to the masses than the current high end offerings, so the engineers of the group put their experience in mechanical and aeronautical engineering to use, and came up with something very unique. Sinusoidal oscillation is a repeating wave pattern that uses the same amplitude for the peaks and valleys over and over again. The Wake 6560 uses 24 of these waves to create a variable height rim design that is 65mm tall at the spoke hole and 60mm tall at the valley in between the spokes.
A lot of engineering concepts went into these wheels, which we’ll touch on more in the full review, but it all boils down to a strong and aerodynamic wheelset. Not only is it fast, but it also handles cross winds better than a constant height rim design, which was very noticeable in the demo ride. Early on, we rode a decent that hit us with a cross wind at speed. Instead of the usual “punch” that you would feel with a deep wheel that forces the bike to heave sideways, it was a much more stable feeling. You could still feel the crosswind, but it was more of a gradual build up of pressure than an instant force.
On some short, punchy rollers, I give the Van Dessel Motivus Maximus LTD (full review coming soon) a dig to test out the stiffness of the Wake 6560’s. Being an incredibly stiff frame that was especially made for the CCB Pro Cycling Team, any flex would have been noticeable. Even at 190 lbs, I wasn’t able to get the 24 spoke wheels to budge. On the descents, the wheels felt very stable, providing confidence through fast corners.
At a claimed 1495g for the disc wheelset, the disc version of the Wake 6560 is a fairly light option for an all-round wheelset. We’ll get into the weight and drag numbers from their comparison testing before the Wake 6560 was launched in the full review, but we will tell you is that these wheels tested faster than much deeper wheels from brands like HED and Zipp, and fit in the weight category of wheels that are about half the height. Starting at $2,400 for the rim brake version, $2,600 for the disc, Princeton CarbonWorks has a wheel that looks to be just as competitive (if not more) than the big names at a price that is much more attainable for riders looking to upgrade to a quality wheelset.
Look for the full review in the next few weeks once we have a chance to get more time on our home roads, including some racing at a local crit.
MSRP $2400 rim brake version; $2600 disc brake. To see more visit www.princetoncarbon.com.
Scott Kingsley does more than a little bit of everything. A cyclocross racer who found his way into running through his wife, he’s also a journalist, photographer, mechanic and creator of the handcrafted organic beard balms of Lancaster Beard Company. Scott is also the tech editor at BikeWorldNews.com and contributor at VeeFit4Fun Fitness.
Scott is based in Lancaster, PA and is a Veggie Powered Athlete.