Mavic R-SYS

I've had my Mavic R-SYS wheels for less than two months now. The outside weather has been quite amazing so I continue to be able to enjoy long rides on them. I picked up these new Mavics with my new Guru Geneo road bike, I figured that I should go with all the good stuff on my bike and having great wheels makes a big difference when climbing up the steep grades of the Colorado Rockies. Wheels make the biggest difference of any components on a bike.

The Mavic R-SYS wheels have been highly praised by the pro teams and I took a little time to do some research on them recently. Besides looking cool, the use of high end ridged materials such as the tubular carbon spokes, create a wheel with unique performance characteristics.

Traditional aluminum spoked wheels suffer under high loads. The hardware a rider pedals, the more lateral forces are applied to the wheel. This causes continuously changing tension on the spokes where one side of the wheel spokes carry the load and the other side unloads. This causes the wheel to deflect several degrees horizontally, which results in loss of traction and power.

The R-SYS wheels overcome this by using Mavic's TraComp technology. Check out the engineering and technical details on Mavic's TraComp website.

For me, I love these wheels every single bit. They are responsive and comfortable and complement my Geneo in every aspect. I am not a pro rider, but I think I can see why pro riders are riding the R-SYS.

I do have to list one gripe. The valve stem hole is a bit unprotected and can chafe the inner tube right at the valve stem. In less than two months I have had several valve stem failures due to this, a couple resulting in blow outs, and one that nearly caused me a nasty crash.

There are two potential fixes. The first one I tried was a bit of rim tape with a hole in it to act as a gasket for the valve stem hole. That worked pretty good until earlier this week when I had another flat. When I got the tire off I could see the tape had migrated to one side of the valve stem hole and exposed the metal causing an eventual tear at the point the valve stem and inner tube came together.

The second fix that might prove to work better is electrical tape. I affixed a small strip of electrical tape over the whole and put a small slot in the middle. This should allow for some wrap around of the base of the valve step. Hope this works. So far every flat on my Schwalbe tires has been valve stem related and had been a sudden surprise.

Overall the valve stem issue does not keep me from giving the R-SYS a near perfect score.

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