We are huge fans of Industry Nine wheelsets here at the shop. They are some of the highest quality, highest performing, top-notch wheels that we love to put on our bikes. And although the bicycle wheel has been around forever, Industry Nine still keeps making them better. The 2020 model year lineup for Industry Nine is no exception with their new carbon fiber wheelsets. This is their largest offering to date with a large number of different options for whatever your preferred flavor of riding is.
Industry Nine knows quality, which is why they partnered with British Columbia’s We Are One Composites, who are expert carbon manufacturers, to develop their latest wheelsets. These aren’t just rebranded We Are One wheels, though. These are layups, molds, and specs exclusive to I9, so you’re not getting an off-the-shelf product. Industry Nine worked in conjunction with the Canadian carbon pros to engineer these wheels to be exactly what they wanted. And what did they want? They wanted a focus on ride quality, which is something that carbon wheels of yesteryear couldn’t offer.
One of the features of these new wheelsets include a thicker bead wall to help reduce your chances of getting pinch flats or damaging your rim (they can’t help it if you decide to be a bad rider). Industry Nine also decreased the rim depth and re-worked the layup to provide more compliance. When carbon wheelsets were first introduced, the main benefit that manufacturers advertised was added stiffness. It didn’t take too long before people realized that stiff wheelsets were great for certain situations, but ultimately too uncomfortable and pretty bad at helping your bike track the ground. Industry Nine realized that by making these changes, they could produce a wheel that actually conforms to the trail better, resulting in more traction and more comfort.
The UL280 wheelset is for those who love to exist in the pain cave. This XC-focused wheelset only comes in a 29” flavor with a 24 hole count. The inner width is an aggressive 28mm, which is great for helping you find traction with tires that typically aren’t the grabbiest kind around. Speaking of tires, your ideal tire width is 2.1” to 2.4”, so whether you’re a cross country purist or more of a downcountry kind of person, the UL280 will fit the bill.
You’re a mountain biker, which means you ride your mountain bike. Cross country, all-mountain, enduro...does it really matter? Just get out there and ride your damn bike. This wheelset is for you. Industry Nine envisioned the TR280 as a gravity wheelset that went on a diet. It can do anything that you want it to. It comes in both a 24 and 32 hole count, depending on your proclivity for danger. The inner rim width is 28mm, making it great for tires from 2.2” to 2.5”, or in other words, almost any tire you realistically want to ride.
Here is where things get interesting. Industry Nine knows that enduro riders are a finicky gang that like their bikes a particular way. This is why I9 offers four different options for you to build your bike exactly how you want it. There are two different inner rim widths, 31.5mm and 35.5mm. The 31.5mm option is great for 2.3” to 2.6” tires while the 35.5mm option is better suited for bigger rubber, like 2.4” to 3.0”. You can also choose your preferred hole count. Each wheelset can be had with either 24 or 32 holes. So want something light and nimble? Get a 24 hole count EN315. Do you want maximum traction and durability? A 32 hole count EN355 will fit the bill. Need something in between? I’ll let you figure it out…
These are the wheels that you can probably throw off Mt. Everest and still be able to ride (maybe...don’t try it, even if you could). Built for gnarly downhill, be it racing or rampaging, the GR315s are burly, stiff, and durable. These wheels aren’t just one of the other models with a little extra carbon. They were engineered with a layup specifically for brutal downhill, so they can resist heavy impacts without adding much weight to your bike. They are offered in both 27.5” and 29” options, so you can stick them on your old-school 27.5 DH bike or your futuristic 29er.
All of these wheelsets come equipped with Industry Nine’s Hydra hub that offers an eye-watering 690 points of engagement. If you haven’t ridden a high-engagement hub before, it might change your life (or at least you’ll never want to ride anything else again). With the exception of the UL280s, each wheelset can be had with SuperBoost 157 and they all come with Industry Nine’s revolutionary System Spokes (they look and perform sweet). As far as pricing goes, you absolutely get what you pay for. Front wheels are offered at $1,015, rear wheels are $1,235, and the whole wheelset can be had for $2,250. Industry Nine’s carbon wheelsets are 100% worth the price when you consider their performance, looks, and did I forget to mention the lifetime warranty? And then remember, Industry Nine’s Ano Lab is just about the coolest wheel building tool in existence. Go visit their website and start playing around with the colors. Even if you have no intention of buying, it’s just fun to mess around with. So just take a look at these wheels and maybe, possibly, potentially buy them… You'll be happy you did.