The even better best.
On paper, it would seem almost a pointless exercise to try to improve upon DT Swiss' 240 hubs, — given their stellar quality, reputation, and the fact that you can find them on some of the finest bikes in the world — but the company's engineers managed to do just that by creating the DT Swiss 180 hubs, the Rear Road Hub here being one of the best on the road, and arguably worth every penny.
Whereas the 240s front hubs use a forged aluminum shell that houses stainless steel bearings (balls and races), the 180 revises the entire design of both the shell and its internals. The aluminum flanges remain, but they are joined in the center by a carbon fiber central tube, a structure that sheds even more weight, and we think, looks pretty sweet, too. The bearings, however, are where the biggest improvement is made, upgrading the 240s house-made precision steel balls to ceramic ones, dramatically improving durability and service life of the bearings, while also noticeably reducing rotational resistance. The result is a featherweight hub that rolls with glassy smoothness and can be counted on to last for many, many miles. Further, thanks to the DT Swiss labyrinth seal system — non-contacting seals that utilize an asymmetrical path to resist moisture, muck, and grit — your bearings will keep their magical smoothness over the long haul, virtually regardless of riding conditions.
In addition to the way it sings on fast descents, the 180's Star Ratchet freehub system is legendary for its simplicity, durability, and instant power transfer. The ratcheting freehub offers tool-free access for routine cleaning and lubrication, and the freehub body is made of aluminum to maintain a lightweight package. Finally, to accommodate both symmetrical and asymmetrical rim designs that are becoming more popular as drivetrains increase in number of increments and frames become ever-more advanced, the 180 rear hub's flanges are designed to make it possible to build it to virtually any rim type.
Like butter but be patient..
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
I own both 240s and 180s. I have raced and ridden both for some time. One important thing I noticed was that once I got about 2500mi on them, they really loosened up and started to spin nicely. In such a way that you would expect from a ceramic setup.