DT Swiss 240 EXP Hubs - LTD Oil Slick Colorway
DT Swiss 240 EXP Hubs - LTD Oil Slick Colorway
Yup, the oil slick DT Swiss 240 EXP hubs have arrived! One of the top features of any DT Swiss hub is the ratchet system. DT Swiss recently updated this system to what they call the EXP system which, in short, is stiffer, faster, more simple and even more reliable, if you can believe that. DT Swiss reached out to us a few months ago to collaborate on a custom build that featured these special, limited edition hubs, and it's as good as it gets. We started with an Unno Dash frameset that happens to be #1/50 for 2021 model year. Of course it has to have DT Swiss EX511 rims, along with a DT Swiss F535 fork up front to get the full package. Oh, and there is no shortage of sweet details including the assortment of oil slick hardware that is sprinkled all over this stunning custom build.
DT Swiss is known for making some of the best, most reliable hubs on the market. When we have a customer that often has issues with hubs and engagement, be it a strong rider or a lack of maintenance, we always push them towards DT Swiss ratchet system hubs. With Swiss engineering, the quality of their hubs normally make a first time user a believer for life. But you might say there has been a lack of some flavor. While the product is as high quality as it gets, some riders want that bling, to make their bike different from others, to match or clash with other parts. A funny saying that I heard once, “You can get DT Swiss in any color you want as long as that is black” (I’m pretty sure it was Henry Ford who said this). Poking fun at the black only hub options used to be a pretty easy thing to do. Not anymore though, DT Swiss not only made a new color, but it's the very on-trend oil slick and it also happens to be limited as well. Only 250 sets are going to be available in this oil slick color of the 240 EXP hub, so don't sleep on these. Grab a set, they’ll last you nearly forever, and you will not regret a thing! Except if you don't get them...you will regret that.
As I stated earlier, we started with an Unno Dash frameset, and Unno was kind enough to reserve the first frameset made in 2021 for this build. It’s already a rare bike, so #1 is the cherry on top. DT Swiss wrapped these limited oil slick hubs around their classic and most popular EX511 rim. This rim has a 30mm internal width and is likely a rim you will see around the EWS or World Cup circuit on the pros’ bikes. The rims also have some oil slick custom graphics that match the fork provided by DT Swiss. The DT Swiss F535 fork comes in at 140mm of travel up front on this build to round out the full DT Swiss package. We also have a full review on that fork, so check that out.
Next on the build we have a full SRAM AXS setup, with SRAM XX1 AXS drivetrain and a RockShox Reverb AXS dropper post. It's considered the best and looks amazing, plus you don't have to worry about cables. SRAM also takes care of the brakes with the G2 Ultimate brakes, complete with rainbow hardware. OneUp Components is also in the mix here with their carbon handlebar, the OneUp stem up front and a OneUp chain/bash guard to keep the chain on. We also can’t forget about the Ergon grips with oil slick clamps and the Ergon SM Pro saddle to support the contact points. Then we got the finer details: BetterBolts completes the titanium oil slick hardware for the stem bolts, rotor bolts, brake mounting bolts, and more! I mean is there such thing as too much oil slick on a bike? It’s a hard line to find, but I think this bike is just enough and not too much. Let’s take a look at all those details!
With over two decades of use, the original DT Swiss Star Ratchet system hasn't changed much and it’s always a great sign of quality when a brand keeps a system in place for 25 or more years. So DT Swiss found they could keep all the great traits of the original Star Ratchet system yet improve things like maintenance needs, durability, and reliability. Thus, the EXP system was created and it does all of those things. Maintenance has been simplified by having new end caps that do not require any tools to take off and even for most of the hub, you can service or swap your freehub without tools. The EXP system also improves durability in many ways. Bearings last longer as the ratchet system has been redesigned, allowing the bearing to rest into the inner ratchet ring that actually threads into the hub. Now the bearing stance is wider on the hub, which makes the bearing last longer and also improves stiffness on the hub axle. With the inner ratchet ring threading into the hub, it also eliminates a few moving parts from the previous Star Ratchet system, meaning fewer parts and less weight. Fewer parts to wear, fewer parts to replace, fewer parts to service...all of those add up to better durability and wear inside the hub. Durability also adds up to reliability in many ways, but one way the ratchet system works is the Star Ratchets make full contact, making it one of the most reliable drive systems on the market. Compare that to a pawl system where if all pawls engage (3,4 or 6 are most common), you only get a few millimeters of contact surface, whereas the full ratchet system makes contact, no slipping, no issues. Reliable as ever.
Below are just the specs for the LTD Oil Slick DT Swiss 240EXP hub, as the 240 EXP hub is available in 58 different configurations, but to sum that up, there is a DT Swiss 240 EXP hub to fit your needs, almost guaranteed!
If you wanted to compare the two different systems, they are very similar, but with the pictures here you will be able to see that there are some differences. Mostly, the new EXP system has fewer moving parts, as noted above. Anytime you can get fewer parts in a moving system that always makes a mechanic happy, and you are happy as you don't have to see your mechanic as much!
We are stoked to have the opportunity to collaborate with DT Swiss on this limited hub launch as well as showcasing this amazing Unno Dash dream build with all the DT Swiss oil slick and details from SRAM, Ergon and OneUp. It’s also a great way to share the love of the DT Swiss EXP ratchet system. With the original having 25 years of life and still running strong, we expect the EXP system to do the same. If you plan on having your bike for a long time, choose the DT Swiss 240 EXP hub to go with that long term bike of yours.Mechanic: Liam Woods Photos: Reamonn Ryan & Scott Jackson Video: Scott Jackson & Adam Englander