The wheelset comes with all of the axle end caps you will need to set them up for different fork and frame configurations. The front wheel includes 9mm, 15mm and 20mm end caps to run on anything from your old XC fork to longer travel forks that use 20mm thru-axles. The rear wheels use either the 10mm end caps to run the 10mm skewer from DT Swiss or will work for 12x142mm thru-axles.
9mm skewers are not an option, however, and I had to purchase a 10mm DT skewer to mount the rear wheel. It is expensive at $60, but it does increase rear end stiffness. My only complaint here (other than the expensive skewer) is you will need a 12mm allen wrench, an uncommon size, and some cone wrenches to change the end caps out. The actual switch took only a couple of minutes, however, and can be done by a novice mechanic. Just be sure you don’t over tighten the end caps, as they can bind against the bearing.
Hubs, Spokes, Rotors
The Reynolds-designed straight-pull hubs have held up well for me, though a longer-term test will be needed to give reliable information. The six pawl rear hub engages quickly and isn’t too noisy.
The spokes are straight pull, butted DT Swiss for greater durability and light weight. All good stuff there. Rotors attach via 6-bolt ISO tabs, so if you have centerlock rotors, you will need to swap those out. Personally, I really like the red color, but this is obviously a matter of individual taste.
So far I have zero qualms about the durability of these wheels. I have ridden them in true “all-mountain” situations, and they have lived up to their billing. Near the end of my first ride on these wheels, after a long layoff recovering from an MCL injury, I was riding along in a tired stupor and managed to clang forcibly into a brick-shaped rock that was about curb height. I heard a loud “thunk,” as you would expect, and thought my test was over before it had really begun. I even hit hard enough to hear the spokes de-tension a bit from the impact force. A close inspection revealed there was nothing wrong. No sign of impact, no warble in the rim, no flat spot. An alloy rim would not have held up to that.
Since that first ride on the Reynolds AM wheelset I have avoided any more wheel breakers, but have put them through their paces on some technical terrain with 3–4-foot drops, rocky downhills, hard turns, and plenty of other situations where a bomber wheel is required. All is well, though the AM wheels do seem to make a little more noise than my alloy set. I attribute that to the carbon material, and it is really not an issue for me.
As you could probably guess by now, I would recommend these wheels. For the money, they are light enough, strong enough, and give enough of a performance boost to justify the expenditure. You would have to go with a considerably heavier alloy wheelset to match the stiffness or go with a considerably more expensive carbon wheelset to get something lighter.