Strengths: When properly built, these make for a pretty bulletproof trail bike rim, and do tubeless well. Plus they're cheap and build up easily.
Weaknesses: Compared to some newer rims (like Stans), they're a little porky. More color options would be nice.
First off, I'm not a little guy (6'2", 185lbs) and I'm not easy on equipment. I build my own wheels and maintain my own equipment. The wheelbuilder is an integral part of making a strong wheel. Machine built wheels, no matter the brand of components used, will need more initial truing and tensioning, or they'll die.
My SOS rims have been light downhilling (Sol Vista, Snowmass, Crested Butte, Winterpark), raced in super d's and enduros, dirt jumped and abused on whatever rocks I can find on the local trails (Front range CO = lots of rocks). I laced mine up to a set of Hope Pro 2 hubs, and set them up ghetto tubeless. The rear rim has a couple small dings in the sidewall, but they're still round and true, and I've been rocking them since 2008. The only reason I'd think to replace them would be to go lighter, but then I'll be expecting to lose some durability. And if you shop around, you can find good deals on these. Nothing from Mavic comes close to the price.
Bottom line - great all around rim. Get these for your trail or all mountain bike if you need your bike to last a long time and don't have lots of money to spend. But get them built by someone reputable. And don't blame the rim if they don't hold up.
Similar Products Used: Sun Singletrack, Mavic 819, WTB Laserdisc Trail
Bike Setup: Specialized SX supercross (4" travel), Pike air u-turn, Juicy carbon brakes, XT/ X-9 drivetrain, Sunline bars/ stem, Thompson seatpost, WTB seat and tires
a Cross Country Rider
from The Mitten
Date Reviewed: April 18, 2011
Strengths: Light, Strong, Fast, and it looks good
Weaknesses: None found
This is an amazing rim for the price that I paid. In the world of cross country it is heavy but to most others it is a light wheel. I would not recommend this wheel for anything other than aggressive cross country. Also as always you should be sure it is set up correctly and to your weight; when I received this rim it was way way off on tension and dish. I feel that this is where most people are going wrong with this wheel and why they are having bad experiences. I am a heavy rider at 220lbs so I require a rim that can take the beating and this rim is the one for me. I have it mated to XT hubs and some DT swiss spokes.
a Weekend Warrior
from Lexington, KY
Date Reviewed: November 8, 2010
Strengths: They look cool, and have excellent bead retention on my Hutchinson Spiders.
Weaknesses: Why are they so weak? I'd think a rim this wide and heavy would not require so many visits to the truing stand.
I am severely disappointed in these rims. Mounted to Deore hubs by 3 crossed DT 14ga spokes I expected them to handle more abuse. I've bent my fair share of wheels, but the SOS is the only wheel I've ever owned that successfully formed a "full taco".
I don't think the weight penalty is worth the implied durability.
Similar Products Used: Many different Mavic, WTB, etc.
Bike Setup: Ibex Ignition, RS Revelation team, other crap....
a Weekend Warrior
from San Diego, CA USA
Date Reviewed: May 15, 2010
Strengths: Looks cool. Will fit 2.5 tires.
Weaknesses: I need to true them every so often. Spokes will snap if I ride them hard (from impact of landing).
Ok wheel to start out with that comes stock on the bike. Once you have gained confidence in your bike, get to know it a little better and start riding it harder you might think about getting something stronger.
a Cross Country Rider
from Kutztown, PA
Date Reviewed: April 14, 2010
Strengths: After more than 6 months still haven't needed to true them. Disc Jockey hubs spin forever and a day.
Weaknesses: Dudes here who have bashed them! Also, some tires don't want to seat easily - Nevegals don't, but High Rollers are easy to seat - go figure.
Sounds like this particular rim is stuck in between categories. It certainly sounds like the FR/DH guys hate it and the XC guys certainly don't like it's mass.
I ride All Mountain type stuff with lots of PA rocks and log overs and really technical stuff both going uphill and down. I'm not in a hurry to get to the top, but I do want to do it clean and a flexy rim won't help. These rims don't flex for me when I'm riding the front wheel over a log. I don't hit any gaps, but I do put the bike in the air plenty, just closer to the ground. Lots of times I hit rear wheel first and on top of babyheads. Usually nothing more than a couple of feet high and the rear stays true. In fact, I've had this wheelset since Aug.'09 and I haven't had to true them yet.
The Disc Jockey hubs are great compared to the XT's. When I flip the bike to put in air my daughter spins the tires and they just keep going like the energizer bunny. The front hub is whisper quiet. I love the sound of the rear hub. I compare it to the sound of a bee that buzzes past your ear. Once you hear it, it makes you get out of the way fast or else you'll get stung:) The acceleration is also way better than the XT's and I haven't had to service the freehub because of gunk yet either. My XT's needed a service like every month or so from just the littlest amount of grime.
If I get tired of the heft I'll go tubless with Stan's. So far, these SOS rims and DJ hubs are getting the job done.
Bike Setup: '07 Santa Cruz Heckler w/DHX 5.0 Air, Manitou Minute 130mm coil, XT d'train, Avid mech. stoppers
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: February 12, 2010
Strengths: There so week that are easy to straighten.
Weaknesses: They are just week
Theses wheels have been on my for about 2 years since new. I can't count how many times I've had them to the shop to be trued and have spokes replaced, both front and back. I only a XC trail rider. I don't race, freeride or downhill and I weight 90kg, not light but not overly heavy. I ride about once a week doing between 40-60km rides. The only good thing is I have managed to get 2 years use out of them but thats only because I sometime just put up with them being wobbly and kept getting the shop to fix them. They have finally told me its time for new rims as these are unable to be trued. I would not recommend these rims but if they come on your bike like mine did ride them till they die then upgrade as I'm about to do. As for the LX hubs they come with, they are still fine.
Bike Setup: Mongoose Teocali Elite. Full Shimano XT drivetrain, LX brakes and hubs.
from cleveland, ohio, usa
Date Reviewed: February 12, 2008
Strengths: Uh...looks cool I suppose
Weaknesses: Bends like hot metal
As I was shopping for my STP, I researched reviews for each item on the bike, and this rim was the only part that got seriously panned on here. I bought the bike anyhow in anticipation of my rim bending, and sure enough it happened, only faster than I thought. Do NOT buy this rim, that would be my advice.
Strengths: holds 2.35 tires, not overkill weight like most others,
Weaknesses: None yet for the rims
great rim with nice balance of strength and width, can't say how they would behave for downhill/freeride applications as they aren't overbuilt like other wheelsets. Great all purpose set for me, feels like a great trailbike (middle of XC and downhill) wheelset.
Bike Setup: fox talas, ellsworth distance- 5" trailbike
from los altos
Date Reviewed: November 14, 2007
Strengths: uhmm...none that I can think of
Weaknesses: very weak. they have come out of true multiple times. my rear wheel has a flat spot and a bent spoke and my front wheel is out of true. I have taken them into the shop twice. I have only put a handfull of rides on them
I would strongle reccomend that you do not buy these rims.
I've had experience with a few rims now (DT Swiss E450, Sun Single Track, Mavic) but this rim sucks, really, it does. Just go over a curb or a stone that has an edge or a small drop: you've got a rim thats bent like hell and a snake bite. Seriously, i've had to true them like 3 times and had about 4 flats with them, only doing cross country! Oh yeah, I only weigh 60kg... These rims are not expensive, i know that, they came stock, but i mean most rims on $200 bikes will hold up better than these. Don't buy them. Unless you're trying to break the record for destroying a rim in the shortest time.
Weaknesses: the rim is crap!! for XC maybe not but for anything else... front wheel broke and i ended beating up my shoulder... no rides for at least a month...
the rims came out of true after almost every ride or bigger jump, since day one. they are probably good xc rims, but for me, weighting around 100 kilos, they are not the solution for freeride/dh... plus, my friend was sitting on front wheel in the van during the last lift..
Similar Products Used: sun mammoth, sun rhyno, kinlin mx8
Bike Setup: stance 140mm fork,fox van r rear shock...
a Cross Country Rider
from Bozeman, MT, USA
Date Reviewed: March 28, 2007
Strengths: Great rim for the price.
Weaknesses: Isn't designed for DH or free ride.
This is a great stock rim. I am very pleased about how long mine have stayed true. I don't really know why the other guy had such a hard time with his. May bee the wheel set was assembled wrong or something. Sometimes if the spoke tension is not even throughout the rim can be weakened. If he was trying to true the rim and didn't know what he was doing that could be the reason for failure. I'm not trying to bash on the dude, just offering some possible explanation.
Maybe I'm a bit nutty. but it seems too good to be true. I'm a giant fan of 90's rockhoppers, and came across a 95 on the bay for $315 dollars new in box. its a tiny bit high to pay for a Rockhopper, but if its truly unridden its worth it to me. Seller has 100% rating.
Anyone else have some exper ... Read More »
Friggin-A. Poseurs or not, bring your bike and your game. We’re riding up boring-ass fireroads with a local singlespeeding legend who is having a notable birthday. We will be riding in his honour… and he will be riding with us too. We might end up going down Dogmeat and then back up Priest Rock (and ... Read More »
Hey everyone the weather has been good to us these last two weeks so this weeks group ride should be a good one. We will be starting from the Elmore Ball fields at 7pm. Ride time should be somewhere between 1.5-2 hours depending on weather. Come on out and join us for some fat bike fun!Read More »
well, so my fatbike history goes
2) 9zero7 with carbon W bros fork
3) Carver Ti O'beast
I nearly bought a titanium road bike last year, but went for a custom steel frame instead, but always liked the look of Ti
Few months back I bought a BUD & LOU (first in the UK) an ... Read More »