Reference / Rims

HED Rims

HED

United States

1996–2000

HED Carbon Fiber Rims

  • Designed for BMX racing
  • Most expensive BMX rims of the late-1990’s ($139.99 each)
  • Developed and tested in 1996 (approx.)
  • Manufactured in late-1996 (Source: Snap magazine, Nov/Dec 1996, p. 21)
  • Unveiled in January 1997 (Jan. '97 BMX Plus! magazine)
  • Only made for 20” bikes
  • 28H and 36H versions
  • Pre-drilled for specified lacing patterns
  • 26mm wide (braking surface), 65mm tall
  • Aluminum rim w/ pinned seam
  • Carbon fiber fairing, glued to alloy rim
  • Made in the USA
  • For reproduction decals, message BMX Museum user slotracer4 (full set for $20 shipped)

After being unveiled in 1997 (Source: Jan. '97 BMX Plus!, p. 26.), HED rims became eye candy of the mid- to late-1990’s.  They were made by the cycling and mountain bike company Hed Cycling Products (https://www.hedcycling.com/) and were the most expensive mid-school BMX rims made.  They were designed to only fit on 20” bikes, came in 28H and 36H versions, and were relatively narrow (26mm wide).

Being exclusively designed for BMX racing, HED rims were built using an extruded aluminum rim, coupled with a non-structural carbon fiber fairing (envelope).  According to Alpine Cycles, this configuration allowed the rims to have all the strength of an alloy hoop while having the aero advantage of a composite wheel (i.e., low drag).  And because the carbon is not structural, it allows for substantial weight savings (Source: http://www.alpine-cycles.com/index.php? … amme_rouge).

Another unusual feature about HED BMX rims is that they were pre-drilled, meaning that when ordering HED rims new, you had to specify how you were going to lace them (kind of like what you must do when ordering spokes).  The reason for this is because, when built, the spokes connect to the alloy rim, and not the 65mm tall carbon aero-section.  This also means that if you were to use a used HED rim, that rim could only be laced up with the crossing pattern that the fairing was originally drilled for (Source: http://www.epinions.com/bike-Wheels-All-BMX?sb=1#).

Being built on a Sun CR18 rim (according to “JP_innovations”), HED rims came in 28H and 36H versions with “a wide range of” lacing options (i.e., pre-drill patterns).  28H HED rims were commonly drilled for radial (zero-cross, 0X) lacing in the front and two-cross (2X) in the rear (e.g., Most of the HED rims used for advertising and promotions in '97 and '98 showed 28H rims with radial front/2X rear lacing).  Some 28H rear rims were also drilled for 2X on the drive side and radial lacing on the non-drive side.  36H rims were most commonly drilled for 3X lacing, both front and rear, like these (http://bmxmuseum.com/bikes/technique/53891).  However, fewer 36H rims were made because they were more difficult to pre-drill (again, according to “JP_innovations”).  This is because for 3X lacing, the spacing between each drill hole in the carbon fairing is not the same distance apart.  For radial (0X) and 2X lacing, the pre-drill holes are the same distance apart, respectively.

Back in the late-1990’s, HED rims cost $139.99 each, which was $85.00 more than the next most expensive rim (Peregrine Mad Max, which isn’t even a BMX race rim).  Also, if you wanted to have Dan’s Comp. build a custom set of wheels with these rims (front and rear), that would cost you an additional $240.00 USD (Source: Dan’s Competition).  HED rims only came with a bare aluminum (silver colored) braking surface and a black carbon fiber fairing.  The carbon fiber fairing is also cross-hatched, unlike HEDs new (2012) Jet road wheels that have a unidirectional carbon pattern (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SqGuY5ealU).

Note that the carbon fairing is glued onto the aluminum rim and the alloy rims have pinned seams (http://i1202.photobucket.com/albums/bb3 … bac6d3.jpg).


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Submitted by pharv85 (View all 395 posts)

  • Posted 12/31/2013
  • Updated Sun 5/26 12:18am
  • 1607 views
  • Comments

    I own one 36H 3X HED rim that is engraved with 696-283.  Does anyone know what this means?  Maybe this rim is number 283 and it was made in June 1996?

    http://i1202.photobucket.com/albums/bb370/pharv85/BMX-Parts/HED-Rims/HED-Rim_696-283_zps2942c79f.jpg

    Serial number's on bigbill's 28H rims:

    • Front (radial/2x):  0408-530 , 309-091
    • back (radial/2x):  1007-031, 325-095

    Thank you pharv85 for an excellently researched piece.  I wish everyone shared your thoroughness. 

    The company is still going, but founder Steve Hed just passed away:
    http://www.bicycleretailer.com/north-am … ed-dies-59

     

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