Corecarbon Wheels UCI Approved!
Let’s start with the need to know and then we’ll move onto the feel good ride stuff. Corecarbon Wheels is the brain child of Peter Rosser, a Melbourne brand with the idea of making carbon wheels available for everyone, in other words, a full carbon wheel with an affordable price tag. Yes, it exists, and they’re UCI legal!
Just so we don’t get confused I’ve taken this straight from the website.
Our goal is to deliver a fast, lightweight and durable product to be used in all disciplines. With a primary focus on craftsmanship, quality and design, all components are meticulously selected to provide the best ride quality. Our goal is to produce a high-end product at an affordable price point, so riders of all levels of ability can experience the ride of a carbon wheel.
I was given a set of Corecarbon 38′s (to borrow) from Peter to ride whilst he was away on holidays, I gave my usual full disclosure on things, mentioned my car accidents and my awesome ability to crash and be crashed into. Peter was cool with it and I was scared shitless that I’d write off his wheels, especially since I was looking at a full carbon breaking surface which wasn’t something that I had ever experienced before. I’ve ridden other carbon clinchers with alloy breaking surface and honestly wasn’t that sure about stopping ability, Pete convinced me that I’d be okay and I smiled.
Peter said to ride them, so ride them I did. In the rain, to work, to the pool, Beach Road, the Blvd, to the coffee shop and to the Dandenongs.
The Corecarbon 38′s took my Felt AR4 and turned it into a smoother ride, carbon on carbon mixes it up (it makes my legs spin better) and absorbs the road better than a carbon frame and alloy wheels ever will. I felt more confident on the Corecarbon 38′s than I had on my previous wheels, I was in love.
I often hear things like what’s the difference between carbon and alloy? When you’re not technical minded an english translation is normally required, so I emailed Pete with the question, “Why does a carbon wheel perform better than an alloy wheel?”
Stronger, stiffer and more lightweight. A lighter and stiffer wheel is a faster wheel, it accelerates quicker on the flats and climbs, no lag in power transfer for from rider to wheel, making the wheel a lot more responsive. Alloy rims are more pliable which allows the wheel to bend, twist and loose power transfer. This is noticeable on climbs and sprints where you need power and acceleration. You can also feel the effect of the aerodynamics of a deep v carbon rim cutting through the air and moving mass allowing the rider to hold speed easier, for longer and with less effort.
It turns out that my translation was on the money! The ride is smoother on these wheels than it was on my basic training wheels, I feel more supported and I feel as though my actions on the bike are provided with more reward when I’m riding with the Corecarbon 38′s. For example, I’m not a hill climber, sometimes I like to pretend but the truth is I’m about 20kg’s to heavy to be effective. So when I climb a hill I need my equipment to take over and help me where I can simply cannot help myself. All that power that I put into a pedal stroke on a carbon wheel is absorbed more effectively than it would be on an alloy wheel. Now, I don’t actually know if this is scientifically correct but I do know that that is how it feels to me.
I know that the Corecarbon 38′s feel like I’m pedaling with more ease and less difficulty, I know that my training rides with my friend Paul were better and that I was stronger and that I held my power more effectively than I used to. That was Paul’s comment when I climbed hills with him that my consistency with my power was better and that translated into confidence on the bike.
About the brakes. The first time I took them out in the rain I was nervous to say the least and I new that stopping would come down to two things, my skill to control my bike and the quality of the brakes pads and the braking surface. It was a bigger success than I had expected, the braking surface was good and I’ll be honest with you, I don’t have the best skills on the bike. If anything the nervousness of using a full carbon wheel probably played a big part in improving my skill.
It’s a road bike, we already have a far more limited ability to stop than say a mountain bike with disk brakes but I didn’t feel like it was much worse than the usual breaking ability of pads against an alloy surface. Peter is specific about the break pads that you use, you use his because they’re made to go with the wheels, don’t use them and you void your warranty. Fair enough. On a plus side, or on the aesthetics side of things his braek pads don’t leave those yellow marks like some pads do and they work well.
Carbon wheels have a few roles in the bike world, to make professionals better and give them that advantage that they need to cross the finish line with arms in the air, to aid club races to reach their full potential, to improve your efficiency in a triathlon so that you come of the bike with fresher legs and to make the recreational rider feel awesome about what they ride.
Corecarbon wheels are hitting the spot when it comes to market space, they’re fast, they look great and the swing tag attached isn’t through the roof. I liked them so much that Peter’s sending me a set to ride in Perth (I’m forking out for them, that’s how much I like them) and Perth without carbon wheels is almost criminal, there’s more bling than Beach Road on a Sunday morning. Peter will be letting me use some of Corecarbon’s deeper dish wheels for my first Half Ironman in Yeppoon come this August. It’s the flattest course out there but I’ll feel better knowing that I’ve got some awesome technology underneath me.
Nicole Whitburn (aka Black Cavier) has had huge success on them, most recently coming 2nd OVERALL in the Melbourne to Ballarat. Mate and manager, Rob Cumine, of TasVend/Boutique Bikes Team recently rode to victory winning the Southern Tasmanian Cycling Club Winter Series. Peter has also signed on to sponsor the team with the wheels they need.
Thanks to Pete for letting me borrow his wheels and I can’t wait for mine to come in the post! Check them out, the links for the available wheels are below.
Edit: These wheels are built by Dan at Shifter Bikes in Melbourne, with a name like that you can be assured that the quality is fantastic.
Special Thanks to Clive Roper Photography for the use of the Corecarbon pictures.