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Dare to be different.
Strikingly situated with its two-tone anodized rim and twinpair spokes, the Crank Brothers Cobalt 3 29in Wheelset turns heads as you rip down your favorite cross-country loop. Billed as an elite-level alloy wheel for XC racers and trail riders, the Cobalt 3 optimizes strength and stiffness with its twinpair spokes, which distribute rider forces across a triangular structure. To those not familiar with engineering, triangles are employed in bridges and overhanging structures, namely for their load-bearing ability. When translated into the Cobalt 3's riding characteristics, you'll appreciate a noticeable increase in stiffness over flimsier stock wheels, especially when you're tracking across the rough stuff.
Another benefit, these unique spokes distribute mass closer to the center of wheel for quick acceleration when you're spinning up steeps and bursting from tight corners. Tipping the scales at 1735 grams, the Cobalt 3 29in Wheelset skews towards the trail spectrum, yet it's not portly by any means, should you use it for cross-country racing. Something to note, the 24 spoke count is less than others in the XC/trail category, yet its stiffer twinpair design makes up for the fewer number of spokes.
Seeing the 6061-T6 alloy rim sits at a relatively narrow 23 millimeters, we'd recommend running tires somewhere in the 2.2-inch range, although you could squeeze on larger tire at the risk of exposing more sidewall. The undrilled rim profile makes tubeless set-up a cinch without the need for rim tape. For greater reliability, Crank Brothers redesigned the hubs a couple of seasons back with durability in mind. Both hubs run on sealed cartridge bearings, with the rear hub featuring a three-pawl freehub with 21 points of engagement.
- Competitive XC wheels with striking twinpair spokes
- 24 twinpair spokes increase stiffness and strength
- Spokes place mass closer to center for acceleration
- 6061-T6 alloy rim for strength and low weight
- 23mm rim width optimally supports tires of 2.2in
- Undrilled rim profile for easier tubeless set-up
- Three-pawl freehub with 21 points of engagement
- Separately available SRAM XD freehub body