November 01, 2023 2 min read
We Are One Rims: A First Look
The right equipment can transform your riding experience. We Are One Composites have made a name for themselves that resonates with quality and craftsmanship. They've built their reputation by handcrafting each product in-house at their headquarters in Kamloops, British Columbia. As someone who has destroyed more rims than I care to recount, one key point really sold me on trying WAO rims. Their reassuring lifetime "on the bike" warranty. I was also impressed watching freeriders like Steve Vanderhoek and Hannah Bergmann, beating on these rims and they just kept asking for more!
Craftsmanship Beyond Compare
WAO takes great pride in the craftsmanship that goes into every product they make. From the molds and tooling to even the smallest parts, everything is created with precision under their own roof. The meticulous hand-laid nature of their rims is immediately apparent and the rim bead and wall shine with beautiful weaves of carbon. Every rim is signed by the person who laid the carbon into the alloy mold, which is a really nice touch!
The Right Rims for the Job
This build will be used for enduro/freeride so I chose the Union 29” front and the Strife 27.5” rear. The mismatched set is not noticeable as the outer finish/shape is identical on both. The Strife is just a burlier version of the Union. Which, as a heavier and more aggressive rider, I really need. At the center are White Industries XMR+ hubs, known for their buttery smoothness and near-indestructible build. To round off the setup, Sapim Force spokes and Polyax brass nipples add that extra touch of robustness.
Smooth as a Dream Installation
It’s always nice when rim manufacturers provide very accurate ERD (Effective Rim Diameter) measurements. WAO’s listed ERD resulted in perfect length spokes. They laced up like a dream, resulting in no spokes protruding past the end of the nipples. Achieving lateral and radial true with even spoke tension was a breeze.
Tire Mounting Made Easy
Tire mounting can often be a hassle, particularly when dealing with inserts and thick DH casing tires. However, I was pleasantly surprised as both tires mounted up with ease, using nothing more than a couple of inexpensive plastic tire levers. To top it off, both rims held air immediately with a basic floor pump, ensuring a hassle-free start to my new ride. The Union front wheel is set up with an enduro casing tire without inset, while the Strife has a DH casing tire with an insert for that extra protection.
Excitement on the Horizon
Over the next couple of months, I’ll be putting these We Are One rims through their paces, giving them a thorough test. Anyone who has ridden with me knows the abuse I give rear wheels. I’m eager to test these wheels on a variety of terrain from chunky steeps to big smooth jumps. I invite you to stay tuned for a full ride review, where I’ll delve into the real-world performance and durability of these rims.
We Are One Composites has certainly set the stage for an exciting journey, and I hope this first installation review has piqued your interest in what these rims have to offer!
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