Support road.cc

Like this site? Help us to make it better.

TECH NEWS

Campagnolo releases disc brake wheels - but no sign of actual disc brakes yet

Disc brake wheelset added to range, now it just needs some disc brakes

​Campagnolo might not have a disc brake groupset in its range, though it did provide us with a sneak peek earlier this year, but that hasn’t stopped the Italian company from launching a disc brake wheelset. 

- Campagnolo reveals new disc brakes

campagnolo zonda wheels2.jpg

It’s called the Zonda DB and is a disc-specific wheelset that shares the name of a previous rim brake offering in the company’s range, but there the similarity stops. This new wheelset is compatible with quick release and 12mm thru-axles, uses a 6-bolt rotor mount and asymmetric spoke lacing in both wheels to deal with the disc brake forces. 

Campagnolo is keen to stress that it didn’t just adapt the existing wheelset but has designed it from the ground up, taking into account the extra forces generated by the disc brakes.

- Everything you need to know about disc brakes

The most distinctive aspect of the new wheels is the unique spoke pattern. It has taken its familiar G3 spoke lacing pattern and applied it to both wheels, with 21 stainless steel spokes on both wheels groupset in threes. It uses 14 spokes on the disc side, and 7 on the opposite side and the idea is to prevent the wheel from twisting during heavy braking.

The rims are also asymmetric and made from aluminium, and to save weight, it has removed excess material. It has also applied its Rim Dynamic Balance technology, which is intended to prevent wheel wobble, and basically involves counterbalancing the wheel by added weight on the rim opposite the valve hole.

campagnolo zonda wheels3.jpg

There are all-new hubs, made from aluminium and with asymmetric flanges, so the spokes are shorter on the disc side, again a measure to help deal with the forces generated by the disc brakes. Inside the hubs are cup and cone bearings with an adjustment lockring. 

Campagnolo is offering the wheels with common 6-bolt rotor mounts or AFS, which is the company’s version of Shimano’s CentreLock. Well, you didn’t expect them to just use the Japanese company’s standard, did you?

Adaptable hubs allow the running of regular quick release or 12mm thru-axles, a standard that is rapidly becoming an actual standard on all new disc road bikes.

“The difficult task put before the Campagnolo engineers to create a wheelset that lived up to its extremely successful rim brake predecessor’s good name represented a challenge but it has been one that was more than met by the R&D department in Vicenza. The Zonda disc brake is not only more reactive when compared to the rim brake version but it is also 25 grams lighter than its closest competitor,” says Campagnolo. 

No word on pricing or availability yet, we'll update this story when we do find out. More at www.campagnolo.com

David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes

Add new comment

14 comments

Avatar
MuddyGoose | 7 years ago
0 likes

On the rear the asymmetry is there to wthstand the pedalling power i.e. forces on the cassette side.  On the front it's there to withstand the braking forces i.e. opposite side.  Rear barking forces are less significant.

Oh and to join in the spoking argument.  I have the Zondas (non disc) and the spoking seems pretty good to me.

Avatar
daccordimark | 7 years ago
0 likes

"asymmetric flanges, so the spokes are shorter on the disc side, again a measure to help deal with the forces generated by the disc brakes"

Slightly confused by this. The front hub has this arrangement but the opposite is true on the rear, the disc side flange is smaller therefore the spokes are longer. Are the braking forces significantly less on the rear so the extra strength isn't need or is it more a case of aesthetics/marketing dictating that asymmetry be present on the rear as well?

 

Avatar
srchar replied to daccordimark | 7 years ago
0 likes
daccordimark wrote:

Are the braking forces significantly less on the rear?

Yes.

Avatar
Alessandro | 7 years ago
1 like

+1 for the bullet-proof nature of the spoke pattern. I don't want to jinx myself but I've ridden a pair of Eurus for more than 3 years through every kind of weather imaginable and on the UK's roads and never once needed to have them trued. When I bought a new bike earlier this year, Campag wheels were the only ones I looked at and got myself a pair of Shamals which, again, have, thus far, been perfect. In my opinion they also look absolutely mega but I accept that others may not be of the same view. 

Avatar
willvousden | 7 years ago
0 likes

I see they're still clinging to the hilariously sub-optimal spoke lacing patterns.

Avatar
muppetteer replied to willvousden | 7 years ago
1 like
willvousden wrote:

I see they're still clinging to the hilariously sub-optimal spoke lacing patterns.

 

They work fine for me. And after 10,000km on a pair of Eurus's, I still haven't needed to true them. What's your experience? Still using stablisers?  3

Avatar
srchar replied to willvousden | 7 years ago
1 like
willvousden wrote:

I see they're still clinging to the hilariously sub-optimal spoke lacing patterns.

20,000km on a pair of Zondas, mostly in the Alps and Dolomites, without any need to true the rear, would suggest that Campagnolo know more about building wheels than you do.

Avatar
aladdin pain replied to willvousden | 7 years ago
1 like
willvousden wrote:

I see they're still clinging to the hilariously sub-optimal spoke lacing patterns.

 

I've got a set of Zondas & I ride Shamals everyday, pretty hard.  The only way my tiny brain can reconcile my direct experience with your assertion is to conclude that sub-optimal is the best!

Avatar
Prosper0 | 7 years ago
0 likes

Like the graphics but I wish they didn't use stickers. One wash and they start to look rubbish. 

Avatar
fukawitribe | 7 years ago
0 likes

Rim width ? Rim bed looks continuous, but shallowish - tubeless compatible ?

Avatar
I love my bike replied to fukawitribe | 7 years ago
0 likes
fukawitribe wrote:

Rim width ? Rim bed looks continuous, but shallowish - tubeless compatible ?

It looks like a variation on a theme; see http://www.fulcrumwheels.com/en/wheels/road-bike-wheels/racing-5-db

 

Avatar
fukawitribe replied to I love my bike | 7 years ago
0 likes
I love my bike wrote:
fukawitribe wrote:

Rim width ? Rim bed looks continuous, but shallowish - tubeless compatible ?

It looks like a variation on a theme; see http://www.fulcrumwheels.com/en/wheels/road-bike-wheels/racing-5-db

 

Ah yes, I guess that would make sense (Fulcrum/Campagnolo), cheers. 622x17 is half decent although no mention on there about tubeless compatibility alas. I just thought it might be something that would be mentioned in an article about a wheelset, albeit a brief one.

Avatar
David Arthur @d... replied to fukawitribe | 7 years ago
0 likes

fukawitribe wrote:

Rim width ? Rim bed looks continuous, but shallowish - tubeless compatible ?

No, they're not tubeless-ready - Campagnolo/Fulcrum doesn't drill the rim bed for reasons to do with stiffness etc. Yes, it's a shame they're not tubeless compatible

Avatar
fukawitribe replied to David Arthur @davearthur | 7 years ago
0 likes
David Arthur @davearthur wrote:
fukawitribe wrote:

Rim width ? Rim bed looks continuous, but shallowish - tubeless compatible ?

No, they're not tubeless-ready - Campagnolo/Fulcrum doesn't drill the rim bed for reasons to do with stiffness etc. Yes, it's a shame they're not tubeless compatible

Thanks for the update David. Aye, shame really.

Latest Comments