Let’s just get something straight to begin with…the Easton Haven is an all–mountain wheel that is said to be capable of pretty full–on conditions and up to 2.5 tyre widths…
From Dirt Issue 105 – November 2010
By Steve Jones.
Let’s just get something straight to begin with…the Easton Haven is an all–mountain wheel that is said to be capable of pretty full–on conditions and up to 2.5 tyre widths. I mean why else would they include a 20mm version of the front if all they had in mind was mincing around the periphery of some lowland golf courses?
Obviously we were very keen to test such theory, as Easton have stepped things up considerably with wheel production, now offering carbon versions of the Haven together with the heavier duty Havoc range plus Havoc DH. They also do a lighter cross–country wheel for southern bastards. Top Crankworx contender Greg Watts runs the Havens, the greatest downhill racer of all, Nico Vouilloz, runs Havens on his downhill bike. Knowing that big teams have access to many sets of wheels per season, with scores of used and abused wheelsets lying like dirty laundry, we did our own business with one pair.
Tyre fitting is straightforward, and being rim tape free also helps keep a clean edge internally. Nipples are internally and externally threaded, but we simply have not had any need to go anywhere near them in the past five months such has been the quality of build. Cartridge bearings have been faultless and the polish has not faded on the rim (also available in black). The only issue we have had with construction was the disc mounts that were not cut short enough which meant that say an XX rotor with flanged centre fit will not slot snugly onto the mount. We found an XT that fitted and didn’t get stressed out about it, we’re more interested in the reliability and strength to be honest. A fault nevertheless.
How they have been? Several trips to the Alps, a serious working over in San Remo for two weeks and countless uplift assisted riding over the summer, the Easton’s have been utterly outstanding. The have simply never missed a beat. They are more than a heavy duty trail wheel, and when fitted with tyres such as a Maxxis Aspen 2.25, provide a superb trail centre wheel that will spin the ups and deal with the increasing carnage of washed out descents.
More than anything I just loved the way Vouilloz reeled off the weight of the wheels in a bike test video we did (after all, they are some of the lightest at 1650g) plus his feedback. “Unlike many rims the metal is good in the Easton’s, if you bend the rim you can turn it back with pliers without the rim cracking as happens on some wheels”. We haven’t managed to bend any yet, but then we haven’t been racing at World Cup speed. I should say that they are also available in 15mm front. Watch out Mavic.