Stan’s NoTubes ZTR Avion Wheels
Stan's Avions are a significant investment for a gravel rig. But they can shapeshift for road racing, climbing, or gravel.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
Spoke count: 24 (both)
Rim type: Tubeless-ready clincher
Rim width: 21.6mm internal; 28mm external
Rim Depth: 41mm
Moment of inertia: 4.36 (f); 4.38 (r)
Deflection: 5.96mm (f); 6.2mm (r)
The tubeless-ready carbon Avion wheels are extremely versatile. Pair them with fast rolling 25-millimeter tires for a slick road racing setup, or go for 40-millimeter gravel tires to tackle the roughest terrain. Even the Avion’s Neo Ultimate hubs are convertible between quick-release and thru-axle configurations so riders can swap them between road, cross, or gravel setups with ease.
Hitting loose and rocky terrain, the Avions were plenty stiff for out of the saddle accelerations up steep climbs. We didn’t feel any flex when putting in these hard efforts and the hubs’ five-degree engagement system translated our pedaling power into instant forward motion.
In our lab testing, the wheels saw 5.96mm and 6.2mm of deflection for the front and rear, landing them in the middle for gravel wheel stiffness. Enve’s 4.5 ARs are slightly more flexible while Clement’s Ushuaias are a tad stiffer. But the Avions scored exceptionally well on our rotational inertia test, measuring the lowest scores we’ve seen with 4.36×105 g-cm2 for the front and 4.38×105 g-cm2 for the rear. This means they use less energy to get moving and will speed up more quickly with each pedal stroke.
The RiACT rim design is supposed to absorb radial impacts according to Stans but this was hard to quantify because we tested them with big gravel tires. Bumpy roads and harsh terrain felt like smooth pavement when we dropped our tire pressure between 20 and 30psi but we’ve yet to determine whether the rims had much to do with this comfortable ride.
At $2,249, the Avions are a significant investment for your gravel rig. But their ability to shapeshift into road racing hoops, lightweight climbers, or gravel wheels might just be worth it.