PACE 32mm Carbon Clincher Wheelset
- Total Rating
High quality name brand wheels, NOT cheapo Chinese open-mold wheels
Source: Essor website
Made in: USA/China
Features: High quality performance wheelset
Accessories included: Carbon specific blue brake pads, skewers
Compatibility: Shimano & SRAM both 10 and 11 speed. For additional $89, can be configured for Campagnolo
How obtained: Loaned from Company
Tested: Pace 32mm Carbon Clincher Set
Tire size/type: 700c / Clincher
Weight: 1400 gram
- Lightweight, sturdy, FAST
- Crash replacement insurance option
- FREE SHIPPING!
- $$$ for the wheelset, but, if purchased along with a VeloVie bicycle, there is an upgrade discount to $$, also if take advantage of Summer Special, can get these wheels for
- Due to rear wheel radial lacing on the non-drive side, can feel a slight wheel flex when applying the watts.
User Review( votes)
Home-based out of Tempe, AZ, ESSOR USA was created by the same founders who started VeloVie Bicycle Company. Essor, like VeloVie, is designed in the USA and manufactured overseas with state-of-the-art carbon fiber layups utilizing different carbon fibers for specific form and function. No Chinese open molds here.
THESE WHEELS LOOK FAMILIAR, WHO BUILDS THEM?
A set of quick-release skewers that looked identical to Reynolds’ was included. The only exception was that ESSOR was screen printed where Reynolds would have been. Also included were four blue Reynolds carbon brake pads. Having had a set of Reynolds Attack wheels in the past, the PACE wheels looked very similar.
Going through the spec sheets of both wheels (Essor Pace 32mm and the Reynolds Attack 29mm), other similarities jumped out – both use DT Swiss spokes, same spoke cross pattern, same rim profile, same rim layup, the only difference being the design of the hubs. When I asked who makes their wheels, ESSOR USA neither confirmed nor denied. My guess is Reynolds.
ESSOR USA manufactures carbon fiber wheels, carbon fiber bottle cages and custom apparel. There are three models of road wheels which two can be used for the track.
ROAD: PACE 32mm, RUSH 46mm, DASH 66mm.
TRACK: RUSH 46mm, DASH 66mm.
PACE 32mm (produt tested) – In a nutshell, the Essor PACE is a fantastically fast, quick acceleration and smooth riding wheelset. With its proprietary braking system for improved stopping performance, and a sophisticated uni-directional carbon layup, this is no open-mold product. This wheelset is light, strong, durable, stiff, has no rider weight limit, and has very low rolling resistance due to high quality hubs and bearings, which brings me to a pet peeve I have with other wheel manufacturers.
- ABEC rating ( tolerance),
- Ball Grade,
The bicycling and motorcycling industries brag about ABEC ratings and Ball Grades, but never a mention of Clearance which is as important as the other measurements. Clearance is basically how much play the balls have to move around between the races. Unless specified, aftermarket bearing manufacturers will provide the customer a bearing with normal clearance (CN).
I’ve been in the ceramic bearing business for awhile and what I have noticed with some wheel manufacturers is that they will undersize their hubs’ bearing cups and oversize their axles. Undersizing the bearings cups will squeeze and compress the bearing from outside in, and oversizing the axles will squeeze and compress the bearings from the inside out causing the balls to be squeezed too tightly between the races causing the bearings to rotate poorly or squeezed to the point of not rotating at all. Their answer is ‘then buy our bearings’. This forces the consumer to buy their bearings at much higher prices. Among other things, I feel this does a disservice to the consumer.
ESSOR USA doesn’t do this. In fact, they don’t even sell replacement bearings on their site. Their bearing cups are standard (CN) clearance, so any high quality replacement bearings will work. These wheels are of such a high quality that they are worthy of upgrading to ceramic bearings when its time to ‘rebuild the wheels’.
Other high-tech features include optimal carbon for the layup which improves strength and stiffness. The wheels strength and stiffness is further enhanced by a 32mm rim height. This higher profile rim is also more aerodynamic than a standard box-section rim and is an ideal rim height that is not affected by crosswinds and won’t be a hinderance on climbs. To complete the wheels, the hubs are outfitted with high quality bearings and DT Swiss Revolution and Competition spokes that ensure both durability and performance.
The two other wheels in the lineup include;
RUSH 46mm – A stiffer and more aggressive wheel than the all-around Pace 32mm. Can be used for Track.
DASH 66mm – Stiffer, faster and more aggressive than the Rush 46mm. This wheelset sports a symmetrical air foil shape and recognized as having an exceptionally low drag coefficient. This is a great TT wheelset that can be used for Track as well.
HOW DOES THE PACE 32mm WHEELSET RIDE?
ESSOR USA’s website talks about next generation stiffness, aerodynamics, light-weight, low rolling resistance… good talk for a marketing brochure, but how does this translate when taking these wheels onto an actual road or on actual hills?
I mounted a lightweight set of tubes along with a new pair of Hutchinson Atom Comp tires onto these wheels. Mounting the tires was easy by hand. I removed the old wheels from the Cervelo R5ca and popped the Pace C32’s into the dropouts. Since the Pace’s rim is 21.4mm wide and the old wheels are 25mm wide, I had to close down the brake calipers a bit.
The Pace 32 is a great all-around wheel and is best suited for climbing, road racing and crits, but can also be used as a cyclocross wheel. Compared to the Rush and Dash, the Pace is not best suited for Time Trials/Triathlons. But, since the Rush and Dash are considered specialty wheels, the Pace excels at everything else, especially climbing.
Even before the first full pedal stroke, I could tell the bike wanted to shoot out from under me. That first ride had me hooked on these wheels – yes, they are that good. 6 weeks and 1,500 miles later I have put these wheels through the mill. I have done our hill training ride once a week where we climb over 4,000 feet on 13% grade streets. I have done FAST tempo rides where I’m kicking 400-500 watts into the wheels. I’ve peaked these wheels at 1,000 watts and descended at 49 mph on several hill repeats. There has been no clicking, clacking or complaining from these wheels They are rock solid, stiff, and FAST. These are the best wheels I have been on in quite awhile. In fact, I like them so much I bought them!
Wheels are personal thing for both the rider and the bicycle frame. I have tested many wheels and what I have found out is not every wheel works with every bicycle. For example, my Cervelo R5ca loves the Dura-Ace C24 carbon clinchers but hates the Dura-Ace C35. Part of this is due to the R5ca being an extremely light frame and therefore is more sensitive to a heavier wheelset. But, on the other hand, my Giant TCR Advanced SL loves the Dura-Ace C35 more than the C24. Both bikes performed best with the ESSOR USA Pace 32mm!
This 32mm wheelset weighs in at only 1400 grams which is still light enough to be considered a race wheel. These wheels are smooth, light, aerodynamic and FAST! If you need an outstanding wheel set that is versatile enough to handle every condition well, then the Pace is just what the doctor ordered.
DO I RECOMMEND THESE WHEELS?
WOULD I BUY THEM?
I have always enjoyed bicycling and, through a series of coincidences, became a Bicycle Industry Consultant and Product Tester. I test prototype products for companies and have published only off the shelf production products on biketestreviews.com.