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Pro-lite Bracciano review

The Bracciano’s are amazing value for money. You can grab them for just under £300 from many retailers on-line. But don’t be fooled by the low price, this wheel-set  is lightweight yet still manages to boast an amazing built quality.

Price : £349.99 RRP     Weight : 1480 Grams     Distance Tested : 500 miles     Colours : Black/Silver

There is no two ways about it, these wheels weigh in considerably less than the majority of their rivals. You can expect to pay almost double the price to get a wheel-set just as light as these from the big names such as Mavic and Shimano. The advertised weight is 1480 grams, but the set we tested weighed in at a feather under 1500 grams. Even so, that number is impressive.

This wheel-set has a set of 27mm deep rims. I’d name the rims as being semi-aero, with them sporting a V shape but not having a deep section rim. The rims are blinged out with Pro-lite logos, but unusually the logos are actually printed onto the rims whereas the majority of wheels which I have came across use stickers. This does pose a problem to those weight conscious like to de-sticker wheels to save 10 grams. Personally I like having the white flashes on the wheels, they look sexy whilst spinning.

The rims are laced with double butted aero spokes, 20 on the front and 24 on the rear. The double butted spokes provide the wheels with more strength whilst not compromising much weight. A really cool feature which Pro-Lite have patented is the spoke brace which rests on the junction of the spokes on the non-driveside side of the rear wheel. After a little bit of research, it appears that these provide the wheel with more stiffness and power transfer. I’d imagine that they reduce fatigue in the spokes as well by stopping them rubbing against each other.

The best part of these wheels is definitely the build quality. When I received these wheels, they were true. 500 miles later, with many potholes hit and bumps ridden over, they are still perfectly true with no signs of ever changing. What makes it more impressive is that I am no lightweight, and I fully expected after some of the bumps for at least a mm or so of wobble. This simply didn’t occur. Not only do the wheels keep true, but they offer no noticeable flexing. I have thrashed them up hills out of the saddle, sprinted in the drops and cornered at over 40 mph and there hasn’t been any time where I could feel anything.

Pro-Lite designed their own hubs to build these wheels on to ensure optimum strength, weight and power transfre. Before I mention anything else about these hubs, I need to get this off my chest. The free-wheeling sound which these produce is simply orgasmic. A video shall be uploaded in the mean-time of this so you can play it on a loop whilst working, thinking you are out on the road. The other positive thing about these hubs is the durability. Unlike many wheels, the freehubs aren’t made out of cheese and do not get groves in them caused by the sprockets on your cassette. Sealed bearings also mean you can basically put the wheels on and forget about bearing maintenance for 10,000 km’s.

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One comment

  1. Exactly what research shows that the spoke braces act as you suggest? Such a study would be interesting especially in light of studies that show tying and soldering spokes does not change wheel stiffness.

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