I was wondering how many points of engagment (POE) are considered standard on an XC wheelset? Along the same lines, at what level does too few become noticable on performance? Or the flip side, is there a number where more doesn't mean better?
I don't think there really is a standard , most commonly on pawl type hubs there are 2 pawls, they are starting to use 4 on xt so thats probably the new standard. the Kings don't use pawls they use rings which engage all at once. The higher end pawl hubs have 6 pawls , each with 3 teeth
I have to disagree with BFL about not noticing the difference , I can definitely feel the lag when using a hub with lower engagement.
You can have too many POE because at a certain point the teeth get too small and weak
Also the more POE the more drag (that buzzing noise is the teeth ratcheting)
If you're a larger/ stronger rider you will probably break the pawls on a 2 pawl system (there is a reason why people spend $300-$500 on hubs) you get better bearings, stronger materials and better engineering . The KIng and I9 hubs are tested to over 700 lbs of torque