An Update on Blister Labs’ Mountain Bike Wheel Testing

Our Wheelset Testing Goals

(1) Develop tests that are accurate, repeatable, and representative of real-world riding conditions.

(2) Use those tests to evaluate a range of wheelsets across a range of price points, materials, and design attributes, both in the lab and with quantitative real-world riding data, and correlate those different data sets to each other to validate the test protocols.

(3) Present the results in such a way that they are easily understood and directly applicable to actual performance (i.e., not just emphasizing a single attribute or metric, but painting a complete picture of the tradeoffs inherent to the various options, weight ranges, materials, and more), and in language that will be clear and understandable to everyone.

(4) Correlate those quantitative results to the qualitative ones that our reviewers have identified on trail (e.g., not assuming that a stiffer wheelset is inherently better, but instead furthering our understanding of how measured stiffness feels in different circumstances, and clearly presenting that information to riders who may not have tried a dozen different wheelsets themselves).

Because the truth of the matter is that there is no objective “best” wheelset (or pair of skis, or running shoes, or anything else); there are products that do certain things better than others and have tradeoffs in other areas, and the goal of Blister Labs is to provide our readers with the best information available in order to choose the right wheelset for you.