The firm that is called 3T now, was established in Torino, Italy in 1961 with the name of 3TTT – Tecnologia del Tubo Torinese. They have lots of contributions to cycling market. For many years, they have been producing high quality supplementary products and accessories for bikes and nowadays they offer new products. The most remarkable examples are; Aeronova handlebars that gets the attention of aero bike lovers and different types of handlebars and accessories produced for triathlon.
Apart from all these, we know that the company is trying to find a place for itself in wheel market. Currently, they are especially working on Discus designs in order not to keep away from the trendy bicycles with disc brakes. Also, they have different choices for the users that love traditions.
Italians, who are trying to offer performance and durability together to the current users with their own technologies, grouped the innovations in wheelset market under four main headings.
Current users’ point of view has changed a lot because professional bicycle world has started to use 25 mm and wider tyres with road bicycles and also the changes about bicycle geometry and changes on production period have impressed them. Now, road bicycles are not known as annoyingly stiff and uncomfortable bicycles and after long rides you don’t have pain. The 25 mm profile wideness on wheelset rims makes it possible to use it with maximum performance. Also you don’t need the high pressure to use the 25 mm and wider tyres which are light and have low friction resistance. It means that you don’t need high pressure with 23 mm or 20 mm tyres during your ride. Also 3T has aimed to have minimum wind drag for the rims produced for Discus and Orbis II. It means that the turbulence caused by the wind coming from different directions during your ride will diminish.
With the technology they named as Linear+, CX-Ray spokes were connected to the rim directly through the hub with a certain angle. Since the spokes are straight, that part hasn’t got too much weight on it. We can say that, with this they aimed to have a more durable performance about wheelset and stable rim alignment. With the spokes inside rim it seems more clean, and it has advantages about durability and aerodynamic form.
The spokes on cassette side on rear wheels go straightly to the rim. On the other side an angle occurs because of the distance. 3T has designed the rim asymmetrically. Engineers have moved the nipples 3mm right on rear rim, they also provide the spokes on left side to come with an angle. For this reason, the pressure on spokes are equal and they have a positive effect on rear wheels’ stiffness.
Apart from this, 3T has a high quality about its carbon products for years. These two provide us almost a perfect wheelset. We have tried tubular 3T Orbis II T35 LTD on four different bikes and it really made us happy with its Italian design, engineering and high quality carbon-fibre products.
The first thing that took our attention -with the contribution of high end tubular tyres- was the comfort. We have tried the wheelset on Pinarello Dogma 60.1, Merida Scultra 7000-E, Guerciotti Record and Orbea Orca OMR. The wheels successfully absorb the vibrations coming from the road and they offer you a great pleasure in riding. You can be sure about this. When we compare the bikes, Scultura is more stiff and less comfortable than Orca. But we can say that with this wheelset the riding enjoyment of Scultura has changed in a positive way. Additionally, we use these wheels with Dogma 60.1 instead of the Bullet Ultra which are the wheels of Campagnolo that has fame about stiffness with G3 technology. It made a remarkable softening on that bike as well. We should also say that we did all these testing with 120 PSI pressure on tyres.
Don’t hesitate about the smoothness of ceramic bearings produced with light aluminium materials. It is clear that, they are the same with their equals, furthermore they are better than some of them. For instance; we can say that their smoothness are the same as Campagnolo CULT technology wheelsets. But at this point you should know that, a good wheelset has tyres as good as it is. The wheelsets effect your bike’s smoothness and the feeling of riding. They are designed to avoid wind and road from outside, hub friction from inside. If you have a wheelset that have advantages aerodynamically and ceramic bearings, it is necessary to buy tyres used by professionals and have high TPI level. Otherwise you cannot have the maximum efficiency from your wheelset.
We have tested the tyres on annoying roads as well, at the end of a three-month period they had nothing on front but very few alignments to the rear. It is not bad for a 1250 gr set.
We all know that carbon wheelset users are nervous about braking. The brake pads come with the 3T Orbis II T35 LTD are extremely successful but after a while because of heating they start to make sound. Or we made a mistake on pad positioning. We will talk about this with 3T to ask whether they have any other complains about this.
The wheelset that comes with special designed bags, different colour choices of 3T logo stickers, brake pads, and valve extensions stands at the best place about price-performance aspect.