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Sea Otter 2013: HED's new wide, tubeless Ardennes Plus

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HED has updated its popular Ardennes wide-format aluminum clinchers with an even-wider rim to create the new Ardennes Plus range.

HED has updated its popular Ardennes wide-format aluminum clinchers with an even-wider rim to create the new Ardennes Plus range.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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Rim width grows 2mm to a substantial 25mm across (external width). Internal width is roughly 20mm - 5mm wider than a Mavic Open Pro.

Rim width grows 2mm to a substantial 25mm across (external width). Internal width is roughly 20mm - 5mm wider than a Mavic Open Pro.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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The new aluminum extrusion may be wider but weight is kept at 465g per rim (claimed weight). The new shape is tubeless friendly, too, requiring just a couple of layers of airtight tape (included) and a pair of valve stems for the conversion.

The new aluminum extrusion may be wider but weight is kept at 465g per rim (claimed weight). The new shape is tubeless friendly, too, requiring just a couple of layers of airtight tape (included) and a pair of valve stems for the conversion.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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HED says the new, more rounded shape is more aerodynamic than the previous C2 shape at yaw angles over 15 degrees.

HED says the new, more rounded shape is more aerodynamic than the previous C2 shape at yaw angles over 15 degrees.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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The top-end HED Ardennes Plus SL front hub features a carbon center sleeve and straight-pull flanges pre-slotted for bladed spokes.

The top-end HED Ardennes Plus SL front hub features a carbon center sleeve and straight-pull flanges pre-slotted for bladed spokes.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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The included skewers weigh just 104g per pair.

The included skewers weigh just 104g per pair.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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The HED Ardennes Plus SL rear hub features lubrication ports for both the axle bearings and freehub body for easy maintenance.

The HED Ardennes Plus SL rear hub features lubrication ports for both the axle bearings and freehub body for easy maintenance.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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HED's latest wheels are already compatible with 11-speed Shimano and SRAM cassettes.

HED's latest wheels are already compatible with 11-speed Shimano and SRAM cassettes.
(Image credit: James Huang)
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Standard HED Ardennes Plus SL wheels feature 18-hole, radially laced front wheels and 24-hole, two-cross rear drilling.

Standard HED Ardennes Plus SL wheels feature 18-hole, radially laced front wheels and 24-hole, two-cross rear drilling.
(Image credit: James Huang)

 Following on the heels of its very well received Ardennes wide-format aluminum road clincher wheels, HED has now released the next evolution called Ardennes Plus with an even wider profile plus tubeless compatibility.

HED's new Ardennes Plus grows 2mm to 25mm across (external width) while the depth is nearly identical at 24.5mm. Internal width is roughly 20mm – 5mm wider than Mavic's Open Pro. The aluminum extrusion is now tubeless-ready, too, with a deep center channel to ease installation and pronounced 3mm-wide shelves to help securely lock the bead in place. Airtight rim tape is included and, as always, users are free to use traditional tube-type tires as well.

Despite the increased width and depth, claimed weight climbs just 15g to 465g thanks to more finely tuned wall thicknesses. Moreover, the more rounded shape is supposedly more aerodynamic than before with HED saying the new 'Plus' rim beats the old C2 extrusion at yaw angles over 15 degrees when using 23mm or 24mm-wide tires (which also suggests improved handling in crosswinds). The 25mm width also closely mimics the latest top-end aero carbon wheels, too, so there's less brake adjustment required when swapping between racing and training wheels.

For all our Sea Otter 2013 coverage, click here.