Never one to rest on their laurels, DT Swiss today debut the new versions of these two hugely popular wheelsets with upgrades from hub out to rim while still offering multiple options for riding genre and interfaces.
The biggest change is 1501 Spline ONE wheelsets seeing a step up in rim material from aluminium to carbon fibre. However, DT also looked to what their avid wheel building community was using and lined up their more affordable aluminium wheelsets with exactly what was being used on a day to day basis by the riding community. Their off the shelf 1700 Spline wheels are a no-brainer for many a rider all over the world on more of an aluminium budget.
In addition to these new physical products, and being riders themselves, they also set out to make your life as a customer easier with a new product ID system and carbon fibre rim warranty, making today’s news not just as upgrades to the wheelsets themselves but also to the after-sales support.
1501 Spline ONE
The previous versions of 1501 Spline One wheels were a solid mainstay for a lot of riders and brands alike looking for high quality, dependable and reliable aluminium wheels. For their new 1501 Spline wheelsets, DT Swiss looked to upgrade the wheelsets with not only their new 240 hub but also change the rim material to carbon fibre to offer a more affordable, but still high performing wheelset compared to their top tire 1200 Spline wheels.
Freehub options in Shimano HG, Shimano Micro Spline and SRAM XD are available and easily exchanged without tools on the new 240 Ratchet EXP hubs. Maintenance is a doddle too.
Keeping their existing naming culture for the wheelsets, there are XRC, XMC and EXC versions for cross country, all mountain and enduro respectively.
The XRC rim now grows to a 30mm inner width for better tyre support and possibility to run a little lower pressure. The XMC rim has a focus on low weight but also still being strong and robust for all day adventures and is in ASTM Category 4. Finally, the EXC rim has its main focus on impact resistance, for the upped aggression of enduro riding, but still with one eye on having a low weight with DT Swiss cleverly considering their wheels as part of the whole bike system, knowing the rear wheel’s weight impact on the suspension performance.
All the 1501 Spline ONE wheels use their Competition Race spokes, balancing out the stiffer carbon fibre rim with the thinner double butted spokes going from 2.0mm – 1.6mm – 2.0mm. Spokes are straight pull front and rear.
At their centre, all the wheels use the latest 240 Ratchet EXP hubs with 36T as standard. For DT Swiss, this provides the best balance of pickup for the least possible suspension interference. There is, of course, the option to change to 54T with the aftermarket kit, if that is your thing.
An interesting point is that the XRC and XMC wheels are available with centre lock only while the EXC adds a 6-bolt option, acknowledging that the more aggressive riders out there tend to be using larger rotors and hammering the brakes with a little more vigour. Max rotor size is a whopping 230mm.
The new wheelsets come with the lighter aluminium tubeless valves with the plastic nut and round rubber head that mitigates any need for aligning it in the rim profile.
Compared to the previous versions of the 1501 Spline wheels there is around a 180g drop in weight, depending on the model, and the XMC and EXC virions have 27.5″ and 29″ options with the cross country XRC version available in only 29″.
The new 1501 Spline ONE wheels offer an incredible package of carbon performance, weight and price for the rider wanting a composite set of wheels. And with the new Fair-Share warranty policy there is even some added peace of mind for the riders still a bit on the fence with the composite rim material.
With the 1501 Spline ONE wheels moving up a rung in the ladder, so to do the 1700 Spline wheels.
The previous M1700 wheels were also a mainstay on many full built bikes, but in addition to that, many budding wheel builders or riders wanting to spec their own individual components for their wheel build often looked to DT Swiss for their hubs, spokes and rims.
The new 1700 Spline wheels take on the moniker of “What Would You Build?”, citing that fact that many riders chose to mate the 350 hubs to one of their wide aluminium rims with Competition spokes. I too am one of those riders, who rarely even posed the question of which components to use for a wheel build, instead going straight for the DT Swiss spoke calculator and ordering everything from the reputable Swiss brand. Call me biased, but there’s a method behind my madness.
So, for the new 1700 Spline wheels, DT Swiss matched exactly their observations and the wheels come with the new 350 hubs front and rear which use a lot of features from the previous generation 240, like the same end caps and ratchet parts. The 1700 Spline wheels come specced with lightweight 36T SL ratchet.
For the XR and XM version there is the centre lock brake option and then for the EX version you have the choice of centre lock or 6-bolt. Freehub options are available for Shimano HG, Shimano Micro Spline and SRAM XD.
The 1700 Spline wheels see the same designation for the different disciplines, with the cross-country set using the XR 391 aluminium rim, the all-mountain set using the XM 481 rim and the enduro set using the EX 511 rim. The XM 481 and EX 511 rims coming with an inner width of 30mm and the XR 391 rim with 25mm.
All wheels use Competition spokes that are double butted from 2.0mm – 1.8mm – 2.0mm. These cold forged spokes are definitely a go-to for many wheel builders.
The cherry on the cake is that all the wheelsets from DT, including the new 1700 and 1501 Spline ones, are completely hand-built either in Switzerland, Poland, Asia or America. Having built my own wheels before I can attest to the quality of their build and still chin scratch as to how they get the tensions that little bit higher and much more consistent with the least run out. I guess I need more practice.
The new 1700 Spline wheels then seek to be a no fuss option for the riders looking for a brilliant balance of aluminium performance, weight and cost.
DT Swiss ID
With the ever-growing catalogue of parts, DT Swiss looked to make it easier for their customers with after sales information. DT Swiss ID is a product support tool for shops, riders and everyone who uses DT Swiss products from MY21 onwards.
Live from the today, products now come with a QR code, in the case of the wheelsets it’s on the rim. Scanning it through the web page returns all relevant user manuals, spare parts and possible conversion and upgrade parts applicable to your product.
If you don’t have a QR code, as your product is a little older, then the system can quickly narrow you down to your product with filters, and return all the same useful information. This works on all products dating back to 2017.
From the outside, applying a warranty to a product might seem like an easy task, especially with all the talk of warranty in the carbon fibre wheel market at the moment. But the reality couldn’t be further from this.
DT Swiss took the time to ensure a global, straightforward and helpful warranty for all carbon fibre wheels that does more than just shout, but rather has everything in place to help the customer out if they do encounter a problem, getting them back riding as fast as possible wherever they are in the world. Step one was humbly accepting that no product is indestructible and that sometimes crashes, riding errors or punctures can damage your carbon wheel enough to render it in need of more than just some TLC.
The Fair-Share policy really focusses on getting you rolling again if you encounter a serious problem with your carbon fibre rim while out riding, and covers the original owner for 10 year after the date of purchase. Conscious to avoid long-winded product registration for times when you’re in need, you only need the original sales receipt to be able to make a claim.
The broken rim will be replaced, the wheel rebuilt at the closest available DT Swiss service centre and shipped for the same 249 price no matter where you are in the world.
This Fair-Share policy is in place for all carbon fibre rims from DT Swiss, be that mountain bike, road or gravel from model year 2020 and later which were purchased after the 1st January 2020.
The new Fair-Share warranty policy is in addition to the standard 2-year warranty on DT Swiss products and also in addition to the lifetime warranty for the original verified owner on all material and workmanship defects.
Both wheelsets see a step up in components compared to the previous versions and given our experience with the individual components so far, this should also translate to a step up in performance.
We’ve got a set of the EXC 1501 Spline ONE and EX 1700 Spline wheels for test already fitted with a set of control tyres, so look out for a full review on each set and perhaps more interesting a comparison between the two different types of wheel material and build components. But so far the quality out of the box is unmistakably as high as all other DT Swiss wheels, no matter price point and they were as simple as it gets to mount tyres, with no need for tyre levers on the Schwalbe Magic Mary Super Gravity tyres and only a few gentle pushes on a track pump making them seat the beads.
Our set of 29″ EXC 1501 Spline ONEs came in at 1729g with the tubeless tape and valve plus the SRAM freehub. The 29″ EXC 1700 Splines came in at 2023g with the same setup.
First ride impressions are also just as positive, with both wheels currently performing impeccably, but I’ll continue to put in the miles with frequent back to back swaps to learn more about the subtle differences in feel and performance between the two wheelsets.