Home > Bike Types > Road Bike

Black Inc Five 5-spoke carbon road wheels promise speed, distinctive looks

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, complete bike
16 Comments
Support us! Bikerumor may earn a small commission from affiliate links in this article. Learn More

Factor bike’s Black Inc component brand has launched the FIVE, a lightweight 5-spoke carbon road bike wheelset developed to make you go fast and stand out from the crowd while doing so. Calling the wheels “the pinnacle of performance and luxury” the tubeless, disc brake Five wheels promise to bridge the gap of all-rounder aerodynamic performance on par with mid-depth aero wheels, but at a light weight that pits them against dedicated climber’s wheels…

Black Inc FIVE versatile 5-spoke aero carbon road wheels

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, black
c. Factor & Black Inc

The idea of fast multi “solid spoke” carbon wheels is certainly nothing new… we’ve seen aero 5-spokes from Pro-Lite, PRO & Mavic for over a decade when it comes to TT, tri & track racing for example. But more versatile, lighter carbon-spoked wheels have remained more elusive, with BikeAhead’s multiple 6-spoke Biturbo variants and Merit’s gravel 5-spoke Windmill coming to mind.

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, Factor Ostro VAM

For Black Inc, the new Five aims to take advantage of the one-piece monocoque carbon rim, spoke & hub construction to create a lightweight climber’s wheel that delivers aero wheel performance. The result is a claimed 1318g weight for the tubeless clincher, disc brake wheelset and “superior handling and faster performance over traditional mid-depth steel spoked wheels.” That also makes them a full 1/3 lighter than Black Inc’s THREE 3-spoke TT wheels.

Aero road wheel – Tech details

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, CFD aerodynamics
CFD aerodynamic analysis

Black Inc doesn’t get into specific aero performance claims for their new Five wheels, other than to say that they were developed & optimized in CFD for “exceptional aerodynamics”. That could boil down to the fact that you aren’t likely to be racing these wheels anyway. They are not UCI-approved for any mass-start (read: road race) events, so the target audience is more likely amateur road riders looking for a unique aesthetic, and then just a generally fast-feeling ride.

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, front wheel

The wheels do incorporate plenty of proven aero wheel tech and details, though. Their rims feature a wide NACA aerofoil-based profile with a hooked-tubeless 21mm internal width, 28mm external width optimized for 25-28mm road tires, and a 30mm rim depth.

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, angled pair

The five carbon spokes themselves also feature NACA/Kamm tail profiles, starting off with a complete aerofoil shape as they meet the rim, then moving to a lighter truncated aerofoil profile throughout the body of the spoke blade.

The Five wheels are laid up as one-piece by hand, presumably in the same carbon manufacturing facility in Taiwan as the other Black Inc carbon rims & components, featuring a mix of TeXtreme, Nippon Graphite Pitch-Based Fiber, and Toray carbon fibers.

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, hub detail

At their center are a set of in-house designed & manufactured alloy centerlock disc hubs, with a mechanical and bonded interface to the carbon construction. The 12mm thru-axle hubs spin on CeramicSpeed ceramic bearings for durability and low drag, and are available with Shimano HG or SRAM XD-R freehub bodies

Black Inc FIVE wheels – Pricing & availability

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, side
Black Inc FIVE road wheel

The 5-spoke aero carbon Black Inc Five road wheels are unabashedly luxury, and come with a fitting $3600 price tag (3052€ excluding VAT, making them +/- the same price as the angular made-in-Germany Biturbo Road).

Black Inc FIVE aero carbon 5-spoke tubeless disc brake road bike wheels, riding

The wheels are available now direct from Black Inc or Factor, with free global shipping.

BlackInc.cc

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

16 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Chris
Chris
2 years ago

I would love to hear how they ride. Are they harsh on rougher roads? How is the flex out of the saddle?

mathew shotbolt
mathew shotbolt
2 years ago
Reply to  Chris

My experience of riding the BikeAhead biturbo wheels was that they’re significantly stiffer out of the saddle and off-road i had to reduce my tyre pressures as these were so stiff that they skipped over rooty/rutted corners as opposed to the mild flex on a standard spoked wheel that gives a little more traction as a result.

Seraph
Seraph
2 years ago

I ride 38c tires on a 21.5mm internal rim. Does that mean I’m a rebel for not riding rims with a width “optimized” for my tire size?

Dinger
Dinger
2 years ago
Reply to  Seraph

Two years ago I was running 38’s on 19.5mm rims in CX and it worked really well. I’ll be running 35mm with 25mm rims this season. If you’re not trying to run super low CX-like pressures it’s unlikely you’d notice any significant difference in going to wider rims.

Matt
Matt
2 years ago

It’d be fun to give them a ride. I’m surprised they didn’t make the carbon around the hub bigger/deeper so that it would match the size of a rotor to shield it from cross winds.

Greg Taylor
Greg Taylor
2 years ago

These look really interesting. Too bad they are not making a campy version.

Crash Bandicoot
Crash Bandicoot
2 years ago

What is the point of wheels like this if they’re banned from road racing? In a TT a tri spoke and a disc is faster, and you need a mass start legal bike for Merckx. People really dropping $3600 to “win” the group ride?

blahnblahblah
blahnblahblah
2 years ago

yeah why not, you can’t take it with you

Dinger
Dinger
2 years ago

So very few “race” bikes are ever raced. I expect they’re catering to people who want exotic tech and don’t care about UCI rules.

Mike
Mike
2 years ago

They are not UCI legal, but let’s be honest, most amateur race promoters “maybe” look for a saddle bag and to make sure your numbers are visible and that’s it. They couldn’t care less what wheels you are using.

PoorInRichfield
PoorInRichfield
2 years ago

Free shipping!

chris
chris
2 years ago

Nothing actually technically new here. Probably using a lost inner bladder structure which is easily removed after curing. Been used for 15 years. Their spoke profiles will do nothing to improve the biggest weakness of all thin spoke carbon wheels and that is compression failure due to side impact. Lot of money for a short ride to the local coffee shop with the bling, bling non-riding types.

G Brine
G Brine
2 years ago

Alex Dowsett gave them a good test and reported on his podcast that they are fantastic. Said the have a great ride, excellent cornering and seem fast.

Tom
Tom
2 years ago
Reply to  G Brine

That may be, but he’s also on a team sponsored by Factor.

Jaap
Jaap
2 years ago

@Seraph Recommended tire size probably has more to do with aerodynamics.

Rob Rocha
Rob Rocha
2 years ago

As soon as they offer a 29″ with 34mm width I’ll take a look. 🙂

Subscribe Now

Sign up to receive BikeRumor content direct to your inbox.

Subscribe Now

Sign up to receive BikeRumor content direct to your inbox.