Chris King has launched a brand new carbon fibre road wheelset, named the ARD44. Long known for its quality hubs, Chris King has developed a high-end road wheelset built around the brand’s R45D hubset. The new wheelset uses a carbon fibre rim developed with Utah-based CCS composites and its FusionFiber technology which the brand says allows them to manufacture rims that are superior to regular carbon fibre ones in terms of impact resistance and noise reduction, as well as being recyclable.
Chris King says the ARD44 wheelset is aimed at serious cyclists who desire all-out speed on flats, climbs and through corners. The wheelset (as the name suggests) has a 44mm deep rim laced onto Chris King R45D (disc) hubs, making for a claimed 1525g overall weight. The brand says this combination makes for unparalleled power transfer, speed and stability.
“While we were fine-tuning the GRD23 and MTN30 rims, I knew developing our own road rim was the next step. To design a high-performance wheel that’s worthy of the King name is no small feat, but the moment I rode the first prototype, I knew we were on to something special/unique,” said Greg Hudson, Wheel Product Manager at Chris King.
What is FusionFiber?
Thermoplastic FusionFiber is a proprietary material and manufacturing process created by Utah-based CSS Composites. Chris King claims to have partnered with CSS because rims produced with FusionFiber are superior to those made using traditional carbon fibre. And there are a few key differences between the two manufacturing processes. We talked about some of them when we covered the launch of the Chris King GRD23 gravel wheelset last year.
Chris King explains that regular carbon fibre components are manufactured using what’s called thermoset carbon fibre paired with epoxy resin. Thin strands of carbon fibre are woven together, mixed with epoxy resin, this is then used to ‘lay up’ or produce a final component.
In contrast, FusionFiber pairs carbon fibre with Nylon. The brand explains that epoxy is brittle and can crack at times, whereas the CSS Nylon fibre bonding process produces a more flexible material that is stronger, quieter and will dampen impacts.
Chris King claims that all rims are tested to withstand 275% of the UCI standard for impact resistance. Instead of ending up in a landfill like a lot of carbon fibre products FusionFiber is recyclable. In the event of a rim…
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