In part 1, we looked at the Roval Fusee Star wheels, in this review we give the Fusee E5 wheels a going over and compare them to the Star and a pair of Campagnolo Electron wheels. We give you our opinions on the Roval wheels and the performance of those and our usual wheels by Campagnolo
We give the Fusee wheels a trial over our usual test course of climbing, descending and cornering, with a flat section thrown in for good measure. Basically our course has it all to test wheels and rider, the wheels as always came out better than the rider.
As with the Star wheels we will start with the technology: these wheels are quite normal in comparison to the star wheels, no BIG Star shaped flange, just a normal small low profile hub, beautifully cold forged in a gold color. The axles are adjustable for extra smoothness and maximum rolling on the bearings. The E5 alloy low profile seamless rim is used again with a 21mm width and a 24mm depth and a perfect braking surface without any imperfections in the machined side walls.
DT Aerolite bladed butted spokes are used, 20 raidially on the front and the 24 in the rear are 8 raidially on the non gear side with a small flange and 16 crossed twice on the gear side coming out of a gear side larger flange.
I must say I prefer the look of the Fusee E5’s, maybe I am “old fashioned” but these wheels look light and fast, minimalist is the word that comes to mind. The hubs are small and unobtrusive, the spokes are slim and sleek and the rims are strong and have an aero profile, they look very smart and would be the weapon of choice for any course profile, except perhaps cobbles and very rough road conditions.
The Roval Fusee E5 wheels are lighter than the Star wheels and climbing the steep bends that I found a little sluggish with the Stars, I didn’t notice with these, so weight is noticeable on a climb. I also noticed a difference on the crosswind section, there was no feeling of a side pressure that I found with the Star wheels. On the flat into a head wind I still think the Star wheels came out on top as they did seem to cut through the wind more easily.
And The Comparison?
Comparing the Roval Fusee Star, Fusee E5 and the Campagnolo Electron was not easy as all are top quality wheels. The performance of the E5 and the Campagnolo wheels was so similar that I couldn’t tell the difference. They are both light and fast, climb well and rode with a crosswind without any problems, cornering with the E5’s seemed to be a little sharper and more precise than the Campagnolo Electron. Now the Star wheels felt slow on steep climbs and didn’t feel too good in a crosswind, where they come into there own is when riding into a head wind, they cut the air like a knife, on a descent they were more sure in their performance, the problem is to come down you have to go up first and that is harder work with the Star wheels than with the others.
If you want fast all-round pair of wheels then go for the Roval Fusee E5 wheels, they have everything you need, they perform well in all conditions, they roll smoothly and ride comfortably, the look is traditional and they match any frame colors or designs.
If you want some strange looks and comments from your ride partners then get a pair of the Roval Star wheels, they are definitely different, they roll well, they corner wonderfully and they ride into the wind without slowing you down. Where they are not so good is in a crosswind and on very steep sections of hills. If you can put up with this and like to look of the hubs then these are the wheels for you.
Given the choice, personally, I would go for the Roval Fusee E5 as you can use them anywhere in most conditions. The best thing about both pairs of wheels are the hub bearings, whish are super smooth and the braking surfaces of the rims are faultless and give no worries on the fastest of descents.
I like the look of the Roval Star wheels and they rode well, except where I live its very hilly, so I need a pair of wheels that you can help me climb as I need as much help as I can get fighting against gravity.
If you are interested in any of the specialized wheels, take a look at their web-site: specialized.com, – Equipment – Road Components.
Marks out of ten: –
Roval Fusee Star Wheels.
Roval Fusee E5 Wheels 9.