Nukeproof Horizon Wheelset 2018 Mountain Bike Review

Nukeproof Horizon Wheelset 2018

Reviews / Wheels

Nukeproof 80,743

At A Glance

It's not just bikes that Nukeproof makes, their line of components is ever growing and the Horizon range represents robust and wallet-friendly products good enough for the world circuit. Expanding their Horizon range of components, Nukeproof have added a new wheelset into the mix at a bargain price. Developed with WTB, they stay true to the Nukeproof philosophy of being robust and hassle-free, requiring no proprietary parts for repair or rebuild.

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They are Downhill and enduro rated and roll on EZO Japanese sealed cartridge bearings. The numbers look good on paper, with a 29mm internal width enabling plenty of tyre choice and big tyre stability. The hub uses 6 pawls and creates 84 points of engagement to put the power down. They are tubeless ready and come properly taped with valves ready for tyres to be mounted. Twenty-eight straight pull spokes build the wheel, with a thirty-two spoke option with downhill hub spacing available.

Hub spacing allows for boost and non-boost options with 15 or 20mm up front. There is also a 150mm option for the rear. Weight for the 29er boost versions here is a slightly chunky 2120g, but at a price of £314.99 on Chain Reaction, as I type this, it's hard to think of a better value wheelset that is as ready to take some abuse.

On The Trail

Set up was as easy as it should be, with well-taped rims making for quick tyre installation. The tyre shape is good on the 29mm internal, making both my 2.6 and 2.4 tyres look good and well shaped. Freehub swapping is simple and the whole rear hub comes apart with 2 cones spanners, which is easy once you find your old tools!

The style is in keeping with the Horizon range, and long gone are the old Nukeproof graphics that insisted on printing their name one hundred times on every component. The result is a product that looks far more classy than it's price point would suggest.

Once up and running, the wheels won't transform a bike into a rapid racer, but they do promise minimal hassle and maximum strength. They feel a little sluggish combined with a heavy tyre, but it's only noticeable if you are swapping from a lighter wheel. The freehub is pretty standard and clicks along nicely but isn't the most direct, with only 84 points of engagement.

Stiffness whilst pushing hard in descent was excellent, and they track and hold a line well. This stiffness is coupled with a slightly harsh feel, but I get the impression that all out strength and control were the overriding design factors. What we have is cheap and strong here which is a great combination for hard riders on a budget.

Testing the strength was a case of ploughing some rock gardens, in which the stiffness again showed through, and despite numerous rim-rock interactions, the wheels stayed true and rim undented. Repeating a few square edge hits with the back wheel, I managed to scratch up the back rim but couldn't put a ding in the rim under normal riding. This is not scientific, but the sounds from the back wheel would usually cause a rim to bend. It's safe to say that Nukeproof (WTB) has made a pretty burly hoop here.

Overall

I've been very impressed with the strength of these wheels, and for enduro and downhill racers on a budget, these have to be an ideal choice. As a spare set, they would do well on a trip to the Alps to have just in case. Sure they won't help you speed out the start hut, but they will do their best to make sure you make it to the finish line. Living up to the Nukeproof name, the Horizon wheels are a worthy addition to the brand.

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This review was in Issue 55 of IMB.

For more information visit Nukeproof

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By Ewen Turner
Ewen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.

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