Forge+Bond 30 EM Carbon Wheelset Review


Words by Drew Rohde  |  Photos by Max Rhulen

We’ve been working hard to test the ride quality and durability in preparation for this long-term review of the Forge+Bond 30 EM wheels. Last Spring (2023), a new, premium wheel company emerged onto the scene. While the Forge+Bond name was new, their experience making carbon bicycle products was anything but. The brand debuted with two American-Made carbon wheelsets and have since added two more to offer a wheel for almost everyone. F+B doesn’t use just a run of the mill carbon layup, instead, they use FusionFiber in all their rims, focus on being as eco-conscious as possible and offer a lifetime warranty on their recyclable, Made in the USA wheelsets. But all the marketing and hype in the matter don’t mean much if the product isn’t worth its weight, so just how did they perform? Read our review to find out.


• 29-inch wheels only
• FusionFiber Carbon
• Tubeless Ready
• Lifetime Warranty


  • Made in USA

  • Environmentally conscious and recyclable

  • Ride Quality

  • Nice blend of stiffness without harshness

  • Looks

  • Durable and Strong


  • Strength comes with a weight penalty

  • Premium price isn’t for everyone

  • Width options are limited


If you’d like to see more details on manufacturing, materials and interviews with the F+B team, we covered them quite thoroughly during our Tech Check from the media camp we attended last year, so click here to watch and read more. For this review we’ll focus more on mentioning the features and let the review video and ride impression notes share our final impressions after a year.


• Made with FUSIONFIBER® Carbon Fiber
• J bend Sapim D-Light Spoke Designed for maximum strength
• Tubeless ready complete with rim tape, valve stems, and easy seating with hookless bead design
• No rider weight limit
• 100% recyclable and manufactured with zero carbon dust
• Front and Rear wheel specific layup for stiffness and compliance
• All Forge & Bond wheels come with our Return to Fun lifetime warranty and crash replacement


Built For: Aggressive All Mountain
Tire Size Range: 2.3″ – 2.6″
Max Tire Pressure: 40 Psi Max
Erd: 594mm
Rim Outer Width: 38mm
Rim Inner Width: 30mm
Rim Depth: 22mm
Beadwall Thickness: 4mm
Spoke Count: 28 / 32
Rim Weight: 530g

Wheelset Weights

• 28H / 32H I9 Hydra Boost CL: 1,873g
• 28H / 32H I9 Hydra Boost 6B: 1,912g
• 28H / 32H I9 Hydra Super Boost 6B: 1,917g
• 28H / 32H I9 1/1 Boost 6B: 1,921g

Forge+Bond 30 EM Carbon Wheelset Review


If you’ve been searching for a new set of carbon wheels, chances are you’ve noticed a few brands recently talking about FusionFiber technology. That’s because Forge+Bond isn’t the only brand using this neat material/process. Forge+Bond is the in-house brand of composite veteran brand CSS Composites, out of Utah. It’s worth noting that while CSS Composites does make wheels for brands like Chris King, Evil and Revel, the Forge+Bond wheels do benefit from a few in-house secrets that set them apart for the more refined palate.

Over the years I’ve spent a lot of time riding carbon wheels, alloy too. I’ve been gravitating back towards aluminum in just about every part of my personal bike builds, from frames to bars and wheels. Maybe it’s the old age creeping in but I’m finding that I really like the compliance, slightly more damped feel and snap-back I get from aluminum. It seems carbon manufacturers have been feeling a push from others like myself as ride quality, damping and comfort have been getting tuned into carbon products more and more each year. I’m happy to say that Forge+Bond’s 30 EM wheels offer one of the best riding carbon wheels I’ve been on recently.

Forge+Bond 30 EM Carbon Wheelset Review

Rider Disclaimer
We had three people put time on these wheels, starting with our lightest tester Max at 155lbs. I put the majority of the miles on the wheels at 190lbs and did so on everything from a Trek Fuel EXe (42lb SL EMTB) to a Trek Slash and Ari La Sal Peak. I feel it pertinent to note that while I do find myself riding bermed, jumpy flow trails, I’m usually seeking out rocky, technical and chunky trails where traction is scarce and the dirt is dry. I mention this because my desires could be greatly different than a rider who’s riding super tacky and blue-groove berms with big g-forces and groomed jumps every day. For that reason, I prefer wheels with compliance and damped ride qualities over absolute stiffness, however as an advanced level rider who likes to push hard in corners, I do want enough stiffness to keep me on-line when needed.

Forge+Bond 30 EM Carbon Wheelset Review

How do the Forge+Bond Wheels Compare?

In short, very very well! While I’ve ridden a ton of wheels, I’ll list a few of my favorites for reference and stack these up. I really like the CrankBros Synthesis wheels and feel they offer some great on-trail characteristics. Also high on my list are the Chris King MTN30, WeAreOne Revolution wheels and SpokeX SX310s. If you read/watched our Zipp Moto review, you’ll also remember I really like those wheels, however, they are definitely more specific in their application and can be awesome, or way to flexy depending on the type of terrain you’re riding.

I believe the Forge+Bond 30 EM wheels sit on or near the top of that list in several aspects of their performance. Where I find some carbon wheels will ping or chirp on high-speed, sharp hits against our Central Oregon lava rock, the F+B 30 EM wheels remain quiet. They also don’t quite send the same shockwave to the rider as it seems the compliance and absorption is a step above some other wheels we’ve ridden. Similarly, when it comes time to point and shoot down eroded, rocky and gnarly sections of trail, the 30 EM wheels offer a nice blend of traction-finding compliance with enough precision to stay out of the cabbage.

The Wolf’s Last Word

Overall, everyone who rode these wheels felt equally happy with them bolted to their bike. There are stiffer wheels out there and for some riders in certain applications, these may not be ideal as they do offer a bit of compliance and flexibility to keep traction there without going as far as the Zipp 3Zero Moto wheels. I’d put these wheels on plenty of my personal bikes from the 140/160 to 160/160mm range and have fun doing so. They’re a bit heavy, but perhaps the lifetime warranty needs to come with a reassurance that there’s enough material there to keep these things spinning round for years to come.

If you are looking for a wheel that nicely blends compliance and comfort while still being stiff enough for most riders to hit some berms and bigger jumps confidently, then I’d certainly recommend the Forge+Bond 30 EM wheels. 

Price: From $1,899 ($2,199 as tested)
Weight: 1,912 grams

Please note that while we may earn a small commission, which does help support our team, we will never compromise the integrity or honesty of our reviews for our readers in an effort to sell a product.

 for all orders over $50


 for all orders over $50


Want to win some free schwag? Leave a comment and vote up the most thoughtful comments and each month we’ll pick a winner. The person with the smartest and most helpful replies will earn some sweet new gear. Join the Pack and get the latest news and read the latest reviews on the top mountain and electric mountain bikes.