Fast Forward F6R wheelset (with review)

Everything about building wheels, glueing tubs, etc.
Lafolie
Posts: 628
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:12 pm

by Lafolie

Anyone own a set of the Fast Forward F6 R wheels. Or, perhaps seen any reviews on these wheels? They appear to be at a reasonable price and quite lightweight considering the deep section carbon rims. They come with the FF 'Darc' Aero system, which I have no idea if it actually works?

Image
http://www.ffwdwheels.com/tech/our-technology/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

User avatar
LouisN
Posts: 2319
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 3:44 am
Location: Canada

by LouisN

I built a set last summer with CX Ray spokes and C-4/Novatec hubs.

I am still in love with these wheels. They're simply great. Best bang for the buck in my opinion.
Fast, they handle side winds pretty well (I'm 75kg).
I had a thread with pictures and weights if you do a search.

Louis :)

by Weenie


jeffbong
Posts: 34
Joined: Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:04 am

by jeffbong

LouisN wrote:I built a set last summer with CX Ray spokes and C-4/Novatec hubs.

I am still in love with these wheels. They're simply great. Best bang for the buck in my opinion.
Fast, they handle side winds pretty well (I'm 75kg).
I had a thread with pictures and weights if you do a search.

Louis :)


i built exactly as FFWD...generic taiwan rim and dt240s hub with DT spokes...:)

half the price cheaper than FFWD...:)

beardking
Posts: 261
Joined: Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:22 pm

by beardking

while some of the fast forward wheels do use open mould rims I didn't think these ones did?
information I have on them
- tour mag did a review (on an older heavier clincher version) that had them nearly equal to 404s for aerodynamics
- someone on here posted a rim weight at 370grams I think it was

that was pretty much all the information I could find and going off that I bought a set. the weather here has been terrible so I haven't had a chance to use them yet so i can't really rate them other than to say they look really really sweet.
Image
Image

one of the major selling points for me was the £50 crash replacement policy as these will be my race wheels

HillRPete
Posts: 2292
Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:08 am
Location: Pedal Square

by HillRPete

jeffbong wrote:i built exactly as FFWD...generic taiwan rim and dt240s hub with DT spokes...:)

half the price cheaper than FFWD...:)

The F6R though? IIRC FFWD openly admits that the F4R, F5R (and possibly others) are open mold.

petromyzon
Posts: 260
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2010 4:14 pm

by petromyzon

Wheel smith.co.uk aka leloby on here seemed at one point to suggest that he had some bulged Gigantex carbon rims but I can't work out if they are still available and whether they are "darc" rims which are supposed to be aerodynamically good.

Lafolie
Posts: 628
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:12 pm

by Lafolie

Very self - they look great on your lovely bike!


Ozrider
Posts: 1021
Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:06 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

by Ozrider

I have just bought a set of Fast Forward F6R wheels with Ceramic bearings.
My reference for comparison are Zipp 404 clinchers, Edge1.38 Tubular, DT Swiss R1.1 and HPlus Son TB14 on Chris King hubs.
Image
Image

The wheels were shipped in a nice sturdy box, and the wheels were in plastic and a cardboard sleeve to protect the rims.
Out the box the wheels look impressive, the rims are clear coated over the decals and the finish is really good. I chose the neutral version which has simple white decals on carbon rims, so they will fit with a whole lot more bike colours than their standard offering which has red and white logos. The wheels appear to be true and with no discernible vertical runout. Spoke tension feels pretty uniform. Without any load the wheels spin absolutely smoothly. On my Park Tools scale they weighed in at 1356g (1350g claimed)
The wheels come with FFWD branded skewers, wheel bag and Swiss Stop yellow pads.
The hubs are FFWD branded, but appear to be clones of DT240's. These wheels came fitted with the optional ceramic bearings.

It took me a few days to stretch and then glue some Continental GP4000S tubulars. The rim bed was nicely finished, and easy to apply glue to. The tyres went on fairly easily, and were easy to centre on the rims.

So far riding impressions have been really good. The wheels feel really smooth and spin up really quickly.
They hold speed really well on the flat, and feel similar in this respect to my Zipp 404 clinchers, and subjectively feel better, but this might be down to tubular vs clincher tyres. Variable wind conditions the last few days have made doing a comparitive test over the same course difficult.
On up hills I can't discern much difference between these and my 1120g Edge Tubulars. On the downhills they pick up speed really quickly and feel slightly faster than my 404 clinchers and Edge 1.38 tubulars.
Braking is the best I have experienced with carbon rims. It is smooth and progressive, without any grab or pulsing often felt with carbon rims. The textured brake surface makes a whirring sound when brakes are applied, but it is not overly loud. I am using my Enve pads and not the supplied,Swiss Stop Yellow, as I was switching between these and my Edge wheels for comparison. I have some Swiss Stop Black Prince carbon pads on order and will be trying them out soon.
Today i had strong gusting winds and I found the wheels to be very stable. In my opinion far less affected by cross winds than my 404 clinchers (pre Firecrest) not once was I blown around or felt any pull on the front wheel. The feel was similar to riding my alloy clinchers on a windy day, or the shallower Edge 1.38's.
The wheels feel quite stiff, and when standing on up hills or doing a sprint there was no brake rub noticeable. I am 90kg (200lbs) so I put some strain on the wheels.

I cannot comment on durability as I have only done 200km on them so far. Also I have not tested braking in the wet so no comment at this stage.

I was originally looking at Enve 6.7's or Zipp 404 Firecrests, but then I came across these on clearance - getting rid of 10 speed stock to make way for 11 speed at a bargain price. As I only recently fitted 2013 SRAM Red I will be on 10 speed for a while, and FFWD have 11 speed compatible hub bodies available, so it should be easy to upgrade if I change to DA 9000, and if need be a hub swap would solve the issue.
As I am a C grade Masters racer, I don't feel that an additional $2000 spend on the Enves would win me any races.the Enve 6.7 are still on my wish list, but in the interim these wheels are really impressive specially at the price paid.

At about Au $1500 these are a really good buy for someone looking for 60mm carbon tubulars that are light (1356g) and well finished. They also tested quite well in the Tour Magazine test getting the same 2.0 score for aero @ 40km/h as Zipp 404 FC, with very similar values at 30, 40 and 50km/h. Acceleration of the Zipps is slightly better but Tour tested the Clydesdale clincher version which is 397g heavier than the Zipps. Weight wise they compare well to Zipps 1355g weight and Enve 6.7 (1420g with DT180 hubs)
Price wise they are a "bargain" compared to the Zipps $2500 and Enve $3299 price (in Australia) for someone on a limited budget you get a wheel that performs at the same aero level as Zipp (using Tour Magazines data) at about 60% of the price, and half the price of the Enves.
Ozrider - Western Australia
Parlee Z5 XL (6055g/13.32lbs) Trek Madone 5.9 (7052-7500g)Jonesman Columbus Spirit (8680g)
Chase your dreams - it's only impossible until it's done

Geoff
Posts: 5093
Joined: Sat Dec 13, 2003 2:25 am
Location: Canada

by Geoff

Thanks for the review. I really want to try the deep FFWD wheels. Quite interested in the rim profile.

Ozrider
Posts: 1021
Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:06 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

by Ozrider

I'm considering buying a F9R rear to complement the F6R front, use for TT and flat races.
They are at a price that makes trying them reasonably affordable
Ozrider - Western Australia
Parlee Z5 XL (6055g/13.32lbs) Trek Madone 5.9 (7052-7500g)Jonesman Columbus Spirit (8680g)
Chase your dreams - it's only impossible until it's done

Ozrider
Posts: 1021
Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:06 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

by Ozrider

These wheels are really great value and tested well in Tour Magazines aero wheel test. The rims are made in Taiwan as are many other brands but are FFWd's DARC (Double Arc) design. Weight wise the tubulars are on a par with Zipp and Enve, but the clincher versions are a bit heavier.
Made in Taiwan or China is not an issue these days as Specialized, Colnago, Giant, Cervelo and many other top brands are made there.
FFWD wheels are assembled in Holland by hand and out the box are true and round.
As mentioned in my post, I cannot comment on reliability yet, as I have only had them a short while, but so far they are exceeding expectations.
I have no vested interest, and also own Edge and Zipp wheels I will not hold back in saying so if they fail in any way.
Ozrider - Western Australia
Parlee Z5 XL (6055g/13.32lbs) Trek Madone 5.9 (7052-7500g)Jonesman Columbus Spirit (8680g)
Chase your dreams - it's only impossible until it's done

ultyguy
Posts: 2261
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 1:35 pm
Location: Geneva

by ultyguy

Any comments on rear wheel stiffness? I tend to have a serious issue with brake rub.

User avatar
LouisN
Posts: 2319
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 3:44 am
Location: Canada

by LouisN

Never had brakes rub at any time. I built my rear wheel 2 X DS with 130 kgf.

Louis :)

by Weenie


biotin
Posts: 40
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:34 am

by biotin

You can get a good deal from bikebug website. They seling 40% last time when i checked.

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post