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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Rolf Prima Elan Aero

    I am thinking about buying a set of these wheels as I would like a set of lightweight clinchers, BUT am wondering about reliability and power transfer (stiffness). I have read the reviews on this site and they have been good and have heard that that wheels could be noodly as well.

    I am trying to get as comfortable as ride as possible and do not want to go to a mid V or deep V wheel as I have that with my carbon tubular race wheels.



  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    I have a set of the non-aero Elans that are on my dry weather bike. They have around 7-8,000 miles on them. OVerall, I'm quite happy with them. These are 2004 wheels with White Industries hubs, changed slightly for Rolf Prima.

    A few issues I've had: One of the bearings in the rear hub got a little rough. I changed out all the bearings in the hub since I had it apart anyway the first winter. The bearings are generic sealed bearings that can be bought on the web.

    The second issue was clunk noises in the free hub. The free hub is also very loud in it's factory state. The only louder freehub is a Chris King IMO. Rolf's instructions say to not lubricate the pawls/spring assemblies. I had a shop lubricate the free hub (Hutch's in Eugene Oregon) with some Mavic grease. They claimed I had assembled one of the pawl springs backwards (I hadn't). The clunk was back in 6-8 weeks. I decided that "more is better" and used some moly grease on the free hub. It's worked flawlessly in the 2 years since and makes little noise.

    As far as the special spokes, I've had almost zero issues in that regard. I've trued the rear wheel 3 times and it was very minimal. The front has never been trued. I weigh 190 lbs so the wheels get some loading.

    I've seen a moderate number of these available used for $500-650. There was a set of Elan Aero's on the Portland Oregon craigslist this week (the wheels were in Eugene).

    I don't know whether I'd pay $900 for a set again but given the issues that many other "special construction" wheels have had, I think the Rolf's are a good value still.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    they are great wheels, one thing i noticed is they are really harsh even with 23c miche pro race 2's at 100psi . They are really stiff and the power transfer is awesome. I have them on a stiff carbon frame and I am 150.

  4. #4
    Reputation: Juanmoretime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    I had a set of the Prima Elan Aero's. They were very stiff wheels and stayed true and I rode them very hard. They did require frequent maintenance since the axle on the rear wheel would go dry and squeal. I would pull it apart and have to grease the axle and within a week to month I would have to do it again. I had Troy from Ligero Wheelworks build me a set of wheels that were Crostini 3.1 rims, Sapim CXray spokes and tune hubs that came in at 1276 grams and were everything that the Rolfs were without the maintenance issues. The best part is the cost was about 1/3 less than the Rolfs and overall better. I've since put about 5,000 miles on these wheels. I sold the Rolf's.
    For my next trick I will now set myself on fire!

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