RaceFace Next R31 Rear Wheel [Rider Review]

Our "Rider Review" article series features the honest reviews from verified purchasers of Worldwide Cyclery. They contain the photos, thoughts, feedback & overall review you are looking for. 


Looking for a Carbon wheel that can keep up with your style of riding? RaceFace has your bike. The Next R R31 wheelset was made with progression in mind, to keep going bigger. Our friend, Stephen just threw on their rig. See what they think!!

RaceFace Next R31 Rear Wheel


The plan was to get a new wheelset for my 2021 YT Jeffsy. I have never upgraded a part like this so the task was a bit daunting. I scrolled through multiple site reviews and countless hours on the night shift trying to figure out what I want. I’m an aggressive all-mountain/enduro rider with an occasional endurance race. I ended up settling on the Race Face Next R31. The main reason why I upgraded to the Race Face Next R31 is the hub engagement and a lightweight carbon wheel. The price to weight in this category was one of the best as well. Unfortunately, only the Race Face Next R31 29in Rear wheel was in stock. The front-wheel was unavailable in the way that I wanted (Black). I also do not know when it will be available and hopefully, I’m not stuck with just a rear wheel. This rear wheel is replacing a DT Swiss M1900 which is an aluminum wheel with 15-degree engagement.

RaceFace Next R31 Rear Wheel

Shipping took no more than a week. Installation was straightforward. Rim came pre-taped and the tire is pretty easy to get on and off. I paired it with a new eThirteen Helix cassette, Cushcore XC insert, and Maxxis DHR II.

RaceFace Next R31 Rear Wheel

Maintenance is also very easy for the hubs. No special tool is required. Bearings are easy to get to and pack with grease when needed. I did add extra grease to the bearings when I first received the wheel. I do this as soon as I get a new part or replacement bearings. Bearing companies never seem to put enough grease in them.


My local trails are outside of Vegas and are a great testing ground for durability. I have already taken them through a variety of terrain from fast and flowy, to lots of fast and slow chunky stuff.

First impressions were noticeable. With the reduced weight, these wheels accelerate well

and the 3-degree engagement is very noticeable getting up technical climbs. The wheel is not overly stiff but they are very responsive. I managed to bash the sidewall of the rim into a rock when going around a corner (something that would have taken a derailleur right off). I did an inspection and it just appears cosmetic. I put some on gorilla glue to keep the fibers from fraying.

Final Thoughts

A was a little disappointed about the front wheel being unavailable but I like to think of it as a payment plan because shelling out +$900 for a rear wheel is a bit crazy. You just might have to be slightly insane and addicted to mountain biking if you are upgrading to a part like this. So, is the juice worth the squeeze? The answer is yes and no. Yes, if you are trying to beat Strava times, racing, or you have nothing else to do with your money. And if you're an everyday rider and just like to have fun and still go fast, just keep your money and let off the brakes more. As for me, I can’t wait to get the front wheel when it becomes available.

RaceFace Next R31 Rear Wheel

March 16, 2022

Carbon Wheelset › Next R31 Carbon Wheels › RaceFace › Rider Review › Wheelset ›

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