20.5 or 23 mm rim width for 23c tubular tire?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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by istigatrice


I believe you want 20.5mm wide rims, I think the 23mm rims are for cross use. Not a tubbie expert, but I think the edge of the 23mm rim may strke the ground on hard cornering - don't quote me on that though. That said, Zipp firecrest tubbies are much wider than 23mm, for aero effect.

For Tubbies wide = more aero
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by Weenie

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by fdegrove


Define rim width.

Technically it is the outer width of the rim measured across the rim bed. That is what defines the minimum tyre width you can mount on the rim and that should at least be equal to this width.

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by Zen Cyclery

I've found for tubulars rim width isn't nearly as important as for clinchers. I don't think you'll see any real world difference between the two. It's all about the tires!

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by tinozee

Yes many do ride 22 and 23mm tires on wide firecrest rims. That is also what Zipp recommends for firecrest rims. Personally i like 25mm veloflex or fmb tires on mine.

To answer the OP, go with the 23mm wide rims if you can, it's a more modern design, better aero, feel and works better with even wider tires like 25mm.

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