Stan’s Flow EX 650B Wheelset – First Look

27.5 Wheels

First Impressions
Installing the tires was a no brainer, and I didn’t have any issues with getting either of my tires to pop on in a tubeless mode. The rear wheel went on the bike just fine, without any issues, and the outer thru axle adapters for the 142mm spacing stayed on as I wrestled the wheel into the rear triangle of my Ibis Mojo HD. The front wheel, on the other hand, caused me a few headaches, and the 20mm adapters seemed not stick tightly to the hub bearings? Once I did get it installed there wasn’t any play, and everything spun freely.

The wheels rolled nice and smooth, without any stickiness, and although the 3.30 rear hub isn’t a high POE type, its 3 pawl and 30 point engagement system worked adequately. What I really noticed was how well the wheel steered, and it offered excellent control and stability, and the additional width was noticeable, especially when rolled over for cornering and when bashing through a rock garden. I didn’t feel any sloppiness, looseness or flex in the wheels, though I do need to crank them harder in some more heinous terrain. The rear pulled fine when I cranked on it on uber steep climbs, and it accelerated well, and gave good traction when required, and the width offered a secure and stable platform.

These are some pretty sweet rims, which have great width, strength, bead socket technology (tubeless), and Stan’s 3.30 hub’s offer an excellent price point. Two words sum up my first impressions of the new Flow EX wheels, control and stability. We’ll have a full in-depth review of the wheels later in the summer.

About the author: Brian Mullin

Brian has been part of the Mtbr team since 2007, where he has become an integral member of the review and test staff, specializing in technical articles. He likes to push the limits in all the sports he obsesses in, whether it's mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, extreme skiing, or sport climbing. He takes those same strengths and a good dose of insanity to his reviewing and writing on mountain biking products, creating technical, in-depth and hyperbolic articles. Whenever he's not on the bike, he might be found watching MotoGP racing, otherwise look for him out on extremely technical singletrack.


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