Wheels and Tyres

Stan’s NoTubes S1 wheels

Strong, durable, tubeless compatible...and affordable

Stan’s NoTubes are one of the pioneers of tubeless-ready wheel and rim systems and haS now launched the S1 wheels. These lower priced options have an emphasis on durability and strength and sit below the MK3 range of wheels in Stan’s range.

Words: Sean White  Images: Ieuan Williams


We’ve long been fans of Stan’s wheels and rims, always finding the rims a good blend of strength and realistic weight with excellent tubeless compatibility. The BST (Bead Socket technology) that Stan’s NoTubes has developed works on most of the tubeless-ready tyres we’ve tried and creates a reliable seal. Running a tubeless tyre set up is common place in 2017 and is certainly an upgrade worth considering on a trail or enduro bike.

Stan’s latest Neo hubs are a definite upgrade over the early lightweight 3.30 series models (and the latest Dynasync freehub bodies improving things further) – an area where some riders felt there was room for improvement. With good spares back up from here in the UK and various rim width options (in both 27.5″ and 29″), we felt this brand now offered a well sorted wheelset. We picked the Stan’s MK3 Flow wheels for the 2017 Dirt 100 line-up.

So, why are we only now looking at these S1 wheels, many months after their launch? Well, the Stan’s MK3 wheels sell at £520 a pair. That’s a great price for what’s on offer, but a touch more than the Hope Hoops and starting to head towards the DT Swiss XM1501 wheels.

There are also some incredibly high priced carbon rimmed wheels out there and it’s easy to think that pricing has spiralled out of control.

If you’re running an affordable trail bike, maybe a Vitus Sommet, then a wheel package that is between 25% and 50% of the bike’s price may not make sense. You need tubeless compatibility, wide rims (for a high volume tyres), cartridge bearing hubs, great durability – all at a sensible price. Step forward the Stan’s S1…

Stan’s S1 wheels – what’s on offer?

With the latest generation Neo hubs now having the new Dynasync freehub body/driver (6 pawls, 36 point engagement, 3 bearings) the heart of the S1 wheels is certainly bang up to date. This is not a cheaper wheelset that uses older or out of date tech to keep the price down – these hubs are CNC machined and have a fast pick up action. The switching over from a standard freehub body to a SRAM XD driver is quick and painless too. With Boost (110/148mm) or standard bolt though options being available (as well as Torque Caps for an ideal fit with dropouts on forks such as the RockShox Pike and Lyrik) there is compatibility for most bikes – but disc fitment is the 6 bolt standard. The Calibre Beastnut uses a 135mm Q/R axle which we though would rule these wheels out but Stan’s offer end caps to adapt to this standard and then switch back if you move them to another bike.

The rims use the classic shape of Stan’s models, with the BST and WideRight tech as with those on the MK3 wheels. The difference with the S1 rims is based around less of an emphasis on weight reduction and more on long term durability and strength. This is the same wheelset being used by the GT team in enduro and DH so it should not just be considered as a cheaper upgrade, these really are a tough pair of hoops. Stan’s has given these rims a 1.6mm deeper profile adding a touch more strength to the already durable MK3 Flow rim. One other touch is the addition on rim eyelets for the spokes – aiding servicing and adding more durability. The spokes as with the pricier MK3 wheels are easy to source double-butted J-bend ‘Race’ type from Sapim, with brass nipples. There are 32 spokes in each wheel (this used to be the default choice) giving a reliable build with no searching the internet in frustration. The Flow rims have a 29mm internal width (33.1mm external) which Stan’s suggest will work with rubber from 2.35″-2.8″. The S1 Arch model is also available and is a touch narrower but bang on for 2.25″-2.5″ width tyres. A wider Baron with a 35mm internal width and ideal for ‘Plus’ bikes.

Weights for the wheels nudge over the 2Kg mark, with a pair of S1 Flows weighing in at 2034g for the 27.5″ size and 2134g for the 29ers. By comparison a 29er pair of MK3 Flow wheels come in at 1918g. Rim weights are 548g (27.5″) / 584g (29″). There is a rider weight limit of 114Kg.

A really promising wheelset with a lot on offer for the price If they go the distance then these could well be a benchmark in affordable wheels.

PRICE: £350.00 (Pair) – including tape and valves.


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