692 grams front; 801 grams rear
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Type: Carbon tubeless-ready clincher
Rim depth: 30 millimeters
Internal rim width: 24mm
Spoke count: 28 front/28 rear
Deflection: 5.57mm front/7.14mm rear
DT’s carbon XMC 1200 Spline 29 is a full-on cross-country racing wheelset. In a deviation from the 27.5-inch Dugast tubulars he had been using for the past couple seasons, Nino Schurter used these 29er wheels to win both the Olympic and world championship cross-country gold medals in 2016, pairing them with Maxxis tubeless tires. Too bad Peter Sagan wasn’t running the same setup to give Schurter more of a run for his money in Rio.
I’ve been riding XMC 1200 Spline 29 wheels for a few months, and I have lots of good things to say about them so far. Most notable is that every single time anybody new lifts up the front wheel, they comment on how light the wheel is — especially being a 29er with a big tire.
When it comes to riding, they do everything I want. The light, sub-1,500 grams/pair weight is great for climbing, accelerating, and lifting over rocks and logs. But, more importantly, their stiffness, stability, durability, serviceability, and tire-mounting system makes riding, as well as working on them, a pleasure. In the Microbac lab, they held their own in the stiffness department as well, despite their low weight.
The Asian-made, hookless rims work great with tubeless tires and allow the tire to inflate to a rounder shape. DT’s Tubeless Ready system with pre-installed, sealed rim strips and valve stems makes tubeless tire installation a snap. I have been able to run as low as 17psi in the front tire without burping on long, technical descents; I have to pump the rear to at least 24psi to avoid burping.
Each wheel is laced three-cross by hand in Switzerland with black DT Swiss bladed, double-butted stainless-steel spokes, all of which are 2mm thick at both ends and 2.3mm wide in the bladed section. However, different thickness spokes are used on the two sides of the wheel. The lighter DT Aerolites are only 0.9mm thick in the bladed section, as opposed to the 1.2mm-thickness blades of the heavier-duty Aero Comp spokes, which are used on the drive side of the rear and the brake side of the front wheel. All of them are threaded into aluminum ProLock nipples, which have a two-part threadlock compound inside; the two epoxy components are in separate little spheres in the threads that burst as the spoke is threaded in, thus mixing the them together and providing a very secure threadlock.
The legendary DT Swiss 240s hubs with 36-point star-ratchet freehub system require little introduction and no tools to service. These, however, have straight-pull hub flanges and Shimano Centerlock rotor mounts. I used six-bolt Magura Storm SL rotors with DT’s Center Lock/IS adaptor ring, which is a quick and elegant way to mount non-Centerlock rotors.
I’m using a 15 X 100mm front through axle and 12 X 142mm rear through axle with SRAM XD freehub body. They’re of course also available with Shimano freehub bodies; other axle configurations are: 12 X 148mm (Boost) in the rear, and two 15 X 110mm front configurations: Boost as well as PS (for RockShox RS1 forks).
DT Swiss’s maximum recommended rider weight for these wheels is 110kg (242 pounds).
Aesthetically, I liked the “murdered out” color scheme with gloss black rim decals on a matte-black unidirectional carbon finish. The hubs are also matte black, so they and the rims require some work to keep clean, as dirt adheres to them very easily.
The XMC 1200 Spline 29 wheelset offers a combination of ease of service with low weight and high stability and durability. However, it comes at a hefty price.