Most people would probably look at Colin Esquibel like he’s crazy for starting a carbon wheel company in a market that’s already so saturated. Colin’s been in the industry a long time and left Crank Brothers for a vital role in the forming of Box Components. Wanting to guide his own ship and create products his way, Colin launched Spēd Precision and has been hard at work ever since. We received the Maul TR wheels a couple months back and have been doing just about everything possible to ride them like a hack on a mission to destroy.
Before we get into our low pressure escapades let’s start by looking at the Spēd’s rim profile and design of the Maul TR wheelset. A lot of contemporary rim manufacturers, like ENVE for example, employ a tall rim profile. Esquibel took the opposite approach, making his Maul TR rims with a shallow but wide design. Colin believes his deviance from the deep rim trend has a functional pay off since all the carbon that would normally be used to make the rim taller could now be strategically applied to structural areas. Another main benefit a shallower rim provides is a smoother ride characteristic., This is achieved by increasing vertical compliance while retaining lateral rigidity. Colin definitely believes that when it comes to carbon wheels, stiffer isn’t necessarily better. After measuring the vertical and lateral deflection of his competitors in the lab, Esquibel was able to find a happy medium where the wheel had ample amounts of lateral stiffness, but still delivered a forgiving ride.
The other feature that sets Spēd Precision’s wheels apart is their development as a wheel system. You won’t find custom build options where you can match your favorite hubs to any of Esquibel’s rims. Instead, each wheelset was painstakingly developed from scratch with careful attention to the spoke angles and hub design. “We wanted to have something that was really well engineered for the money, and, we wanted to have something that was engineered properly,” says Esquibel. As a result, the exit and entry angles of the spokes match perfectly, with the nipple fully seated in the rim and a straight pull achieved at the hub. The Maul TR rims have an offset 28-spoke pattern with reinforced spoke nipple entries that are built up with extra carbon. A 3k weave strengthens the tire bed for impact resistance, with bolstered internal profiles to make them even more bombproof. Should you manage to crack the rim, Esquibel took the time to cross lay the carbon into sides of the rim, meaning that any break will be controlled and not result in a splintering mess. Forged, bladed spokes offer a tuned amount of flex to maintain traction, performance and comfort . The Spēd Precision hubs are constructed with a 42-ratchet ring and a stepped six-pawl driver with four degrees of engagement. The Maul TR wheelset rolls on an enduro bearing equivalent, but Spēd Precision also offers a true enduro bearing hop up kit for riders that are interested.