If you’re looking to drop some weight on your plus build, it might be time to catch some Raptors. Known for their weight shaving skills with carbon fiber (among other materials), HED is aiming for the growing plus market with a rim that is anything but portly.
Along with the new Raptor, HED was also showing off the next evolution of the Big Deal with a skinnier No Big Deal that fits somewhere between mid fat and full fat wheels…
At its heart, the Raptor is a true 27.5+ rim with a 45mm external/40mm internal width. The carbon rim uses an all new tubeless profile that is quite wide, but also fairly tall. HED calls it the widest, most durable and lightest carbon plus rim on the market, and at 430g per rim it’s certainly light. Especially when you consider that this is a double wall construction compared to their single wall construction used for the wider Big Deal series.
Offered in 32 hole 27.5″ rims only at this time, the Raptors will be available with HED Brickhouse hubs for building up a fat bike compatible plus wheelset ($2100), Onyx or I9 Boost spacing hubs ($2280/$2225), or you can even send in your own hubs for HED to build up with black Pillar PSR1420 spokes and alloy nipples ($1650). One thing to note – HED specifically says not to use tire levers on the Raptor rims, so keep that in mind if you end up with a set.
Fat bikes seem to be in a continual state of flux, and for a while it seemed like everything was trending bigger. Bigger tires, bigger wheels, bigger axles. Now it seems that things are starting to dial back a bit and more companies are pushing bikes with narrower Q-factors and tire and rim widths that are more suited to the terrain. Because of that, more brands are recommending narrower rims than the fairly standard 80mm.
HED’s 26″ No Big Deal is a new addition to their single wall carbon line up which features a 65mm external/60mm internal rim width. Because it uses the same construction as their other Big Deal models, the rim is only 380g and should be able to be run tubeless without tape thanks to the gasketed nipples.
Available with HED, Onyx, or I9 hubs, this front wheel was hot off their factory floor in Minnesota, and was the only NBD on hand. Built with a HED Brickhouse 150 x 15mm front hub, the complete wheel came in at 757g. Pricing for the NBD set starts at $2100 for the Brickhouse build, or $1650 to your own hubs. Individual rims for both the Raptor and the NBD are priced at $700 a piece which includes the tubeless washer kit.