Sarma-Naran-29+-in-the-snow

By way of Siberia, Sarma continues to push the envelope for fat and mid-fat products. One of the first carbon 29+ rims, the Naran 29+ is double-walled, 50mm wide, and made for the big beastly traction of a 29″x3″ tire.

Zach saw them at Interbike, and now we have a set for testing. There are very few 29+ specific bikes on the market, so many riders are resorting to running the tires in a fat bike frame, since they fit in most. Doing exactly this, our test wheels are built to Sarma’s fat bike hubs, and we will be testing them on the Shaman fat bike we have on long-term test.

Click past the jump for our first thoughts on their construction, as well as actual weights…

Sarma-Naran-29+-wheelset

The wheels arrived really well packaged, handbuilt by Velocity in Michigan, and with each one signed by the wheelbuilder. This makes sense since Sarma’s US distribution is based in Michigan. As of right now, the wheels are not offered for sale complete, since there are a wide variety of hubs and fitments out there that they could be used on.

Sarma-graphics

I had a set of the first generation Naran 80mm, and the graphics of the new products, as well as the matte black finish are a step above what they started out with. Sarma is growing fast, but also listening to what consumers want. Sarma also says their engineers have deep backgrounds in aerospace composites, and use Finite Element software in the design of the rims to design the proper shape and fiber orientation.

Sarma-external-width Sarma-internal-width

The rim widths measured out exactly as claimed, at 50.33mm on the outside (with the 0.33 probably accounting for finish), and 44.17mm inside.

Sarma-front-weight Sarma-rear-weight

The wheels were sent to us complete, so we were not able to measure the rim alone against the 550g claim, although based on the complete wheel weights, it is probably very accurate. These weights are with Sarma 135/170mm hubs and Sapim butted spokes, with tape and valves installed.

Sarma-Rim-fit-and-finish

One very impressive thing about the rims is that they came with the best internal finish I have seen on a rim. That’s pretty impressive since my go-to wheels are ENVE AMs, and I have ridden many other carbon wheels. These are literally the smoothest, most consistent finish I have seen to an inner rim wall on any carbon rim. This says a lot about manufacturing capability, as molding a hooked-bead rim is not an easy feat. Sarma says that most other companies use a silicone mold in this area, and then finish the rim by sanding, which cuts the fibers. More important to them than the finish, they wanted uncut fibers throughout to retain strength. They do not say what they use to achieve this, probably because it is so impressive, they should keep it as a trade secret.

FEATURES:
  • Width:  50mm
  • Weight: 550g
  • Drilling: Centered (32 holes, spoke holes offset ± 7 mm)
  • Compatible with tubeless 
  • Drilled for Presta valve.
  • ERD: 592.5 mm
  • ERTRO: 622 mm
  • MAX Rim pressure 25 psi
  • Max Recomenden spoke tension 120 kgf.
  • Recommended valve’s length: 45 mm
  • Recommended width of tubeless tape 30 mm
  • Recommended spoke’s nipple: 12-14 mm x 2.0 mm
Sarma-Naran-29+-together
Check back in the near future as we get them mounted up and ridden to see if they shine on the trail too. At $1,200 for the pair of rims, the price is not astronomical like most carbon rims, so these could be a solid option if you are going to, or already have, converted to the mid-fat segment.

7 COMMENTS

  1. $1200 is not an astronomical price for a pair of rims? Really? Wow. And here I was choking on the price of a set of Stans Hugo rims at about $300 for a pair. Are you guys all bazillionaires who just write for Bike Rumor just for fun? C’mon admit it – you bought one of those gold plated bikes, didn’t you?

  2. James…a lot of hand labor goes into making carbon rim. Far more than 4x the amount of labor of making an aluminum rim. Aluminum is also a pretty darn cheap material and production is a very simple process.

    Any carbon rim that’s really cheap is either heavy for carbon or cheap and not durable.

    Nothing is wrong with aluminum. Just know what to expect. A lot of cars are $100,000. It doesn’t piss my off. I’m not gonna complain about them being expensive. I just won’t buy one.

  3. “Any carbon rim that’s really cheap is either heavy for carbon or cheap and not durable.”

    Nonsense. These are nice rims, I have a pair and they are beautifully made, but it is a premium price. Nextie offers a 50mm at less than half the price that is lighter and has a hookless bead. People are reporting great results with it. The finish quality doesn’t match Sarma but it’s hard to pay extra for that.

  4. Calling the cost of a $600 rim not astronomical is kind of silly. It might be justified by material and labor costs, but it is astronomical. We are still talking of a $2000 wheel set, yikes!

  5. cragsj…I wasn’t talking about these rims. I was referring to the last guy that thinks these are stupid expensive when they’re actually sort of a bargain.

    Dodo…$60,000 for a house is astronomical because its still $60,000 despite the fact that that’s a pretty inexpensive house.

    ***You could probably have these laced to a set of “decent” hubs for under $1800

  6. 1,200 for rims alone is astronomical. Better throw in a bike as well for that much. I’m not saying the work that went in isn’t astronomical as well, but crap! Some of y’all got too much dough laying around if you aren’t being sarcastic.

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