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review
ffwd f4d
 

words and photography by Emil Rosenberg

If your bike is equipped with training wheels, it will never come close to its full potential.

 

With light and stiff wheels, instead, you’ll be flying. 

This is a long-term review of the Fast Forward, F4D tubular wheel set. I’ve ridden it through sunshine and moonlight (yes, actually), wet grass and icy trails (yes, really). I’ve punctured twice and I’ve been putting them up for tough testing over and over again.

The basics are following:
– Carbon
– Tubular rim
– 45mm rim height
– DT240 hubs
– Disc brake compatible (center-lock)
– 28/28 spokes
– 1330g
– €1598

As you see, they’re what many would think of as the cyclocross dream. Light, stiff and aerodynamic. The spoke quantity make two individually stiff wheels and they excel under pressure. 1330g a pair is really light for a disc brake wheel of this rim height, too.

My previous wheel set on this bike, was a pair of Mavic Aksium One Disc’s. They are incredibly valuable for their tiny cost, but they aren’t in the league with fast wheels. My first impression when changing into the FFWD F4D’s was “I’m really flying”.

And that’s what the difference felt like. Coming from training wheels, these roll almost friction-less with the fine DT240 hubs. The stiff rim responds to acceleration immediately and the lightness of the rim helps you spin up to speed in no-time.

There’s not much to complain about here. These wheels make your bike feel lively, and that’s huge. The 45mm profiles add some aerodynamics, but you will feel a very slight pulling on your front wheel if you’re riding or racing in an open field with strong winds. But don’t worry, they handle great.

Aesthetically, I’d personally go for a more understated look when it comes to logotypes – but I’ve seen that you can get almost every FFWD wheel set with white logos.

This dutch company makes wheels that are usually a tad cheaper than their competitors. Their products are usually very light, and that has caused me to doubt their stiffness and durability – naturally.

I’ve now ridden these wheels in a lot of different settings and they feel very durable. I can’t complain about the stiffness either. From what I’ve seen, they are offering great bang for your buck.

Sure, they might not be as trendy as Enve or Zipp at the moment. But if you can see apart from the fashion stamp that FFWD doesn’t have yet, you’ll enjoy great wheels for a very, very competitive price.

My bike will not be the same without these feather-light wheels!

Thanks to FFWD Wheels for granting us the testing opportunity!

worth sharing?

Name: Emil Rosenberg
Age: 23
Lives in: Nacka, Sweden
Team: CK Valhall
Bicicles: Specialized S-WORKS Tarmac, Specialized S-WORKS Shiv TT
About Emil: ”My passion for cycling is the challenge that puts your physical and mental capabilities to its absolute edge. I strive to capture the elegance of the hardest sport in the world.”
Follow on Velonode: @emil

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