Zipp 404 Firecrest Carbon Clincher Wheelset 2013

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Highlighted Features

  • Actual weight 1520 grams
    • Front - 707 grams (Skewer adds 37 grams)
    • Rear -813 grams (Skewer adds 41 grams)
    • Tape adds 40 grams
  • Rims
    • Internal width 16.5 mm
    • External width 26.4 mm
    • Depth 58 mm
  • ABLC dimples hold air to the rim and increase aerodynamics
  • VCLC carbon increases strength in key areas
  • Wider rim increases comfort and aerodynamics
  • Carbon braking track
  • Proprietary resin resists heat build up under excessive braking
  • Forged spoke holes
  • 2013 88/188 hub set 
    • 11-speed compatible
  • Preload adjustable Swiss bearings
  • 17 mm axles increase stiffness
  • Forged freehub body
  • Sapim CX-Ray spokes - 16 front, 20 rear
  • Alloy nipples
  • Includes Zipp Tangent Cork pads, Zipp Titanium skewers, Rim strips and valve extenders
  • Made in the USA (spokes made in Belgium, bearings made in Switzerland)

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While other manufacturers immediately jumped on the carbon clincher bandwagon, Zipp took a more calculated approach. In doing so, they spent two years refining prototypes before releasing the first their carbon clincher wheelset, the Zipp 404 Firecrest Carbon Clincher. It's an entirely new wheelset sharing only it's rim depth with other 404s.

The 404 CC uses Zipp's hybrid-toroidal Firecrest shape, which is unmistakably different from any other aero rim. The size comes from a wider body and brake track to maximize the air volume of your tire, improving ride comfort, cornering stability, and aerodynamics. The Firecrest rim shape is 25.2 mm at the brake track and widens to 27.5 mm at it's widest point. Zipp says this shape is not only the fastest and most aerodynamic carbon clincher on the market, it's also the most stable, moving air past the rim in such a manner as to decrease its effects on turning and cross-winds. Fortunately, all that width hasn't translated to extra girth, as our own gram counter measures these wheels at a svelte 1520 grams. 

Zipp also spent extended time refining the brake track. Because of the increased heat build up that carbon clinchers exibit on tires and tubes, pressure spikes are common. Zipp worked closely with its composites supplier to create a proprietary resin derived from those used in automobile ceramic discs that resists heat build up and eliminates any pressure changes to the tire/tube. When combined with Zipp's Tangente cork pads or a set of Swissstop Yellow Kings, the 404 Carbon Clincher slows down smoothly, predictably, and safely. All the other famous Zipp technologies remain, including: ABLC or Aerodynamic Boundary Layer Control - the dimpling on the rim, VCLC or Visco-Elastic Constrained Layer Control - the kevlar layer that increases strength at the bridge and spoke holes, and Zipp's 88 and 188 hubs which are world class in themselves. 

For 2013, the Firecrest gets a brand new 88/188 hub-set, compatible with eleven speed cassettes.

To say that the Zipp 404 Carbon Clincher wheelset is the ultimate carbon clincher is debatable. What isn't is that it's the most aerodynamic and arguably the most comfortable, riding much closer to a tubular wheelset than a typical clincher. Already the standard by which all other carbon tubulars are measured, Zipp's 404's also set the standard for carbon clincher wheelsets.

*Due to inadequate frame clearance caused by the added width of Zipp Firecrest wheels, they may be incompatible with certain frame models. Check wheel fitment and frame clearance with a professional bike mechanic before riding.