Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels

Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels

 

Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels

 

Words by Simon Whiten

 

Preview of the Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels

 

Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels: new for 2014 is the Forgiato range, affordable wheels from Corrado Spada that don’t sacrifice beauty and performance.

 

So says the marketing on Spada UK importer, VAM Performance’s website about the Breva Forgiato (forged) wheels. We looked at Spada Wheels before and, though we’ll have to get back to you about the performance, these new ‘budget’ wheels do look mightily impressive. If you have a red and white bike then you will love them. Obviously being from Italy there is a tiny little bit of green thrown in there as well, keeping up the tradition of Italian manufacturers putting il Tricolore onto everything they make, but it isn’t a permanent fixture…
 

Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels
Spada Breva Forgiato Wheels

 
The white hubs and spokes are offset perfectly by the anodised red, aluminium nipples and skewers, all working well with the black rims. I like them a lot. They may be Spada’s more cost effective wheels but they certainly appear to be a quality product. However, in the modern cycling world ‘quality’ should be applied to every detail and on closer inspection of the Breva wheels I am less impressed.
 
Forgiato rear hub is very tidy
Forgiato rear hub is very tidy

 
Firstly I discover that the flashes of colour – red on the white spokes and white on the red – are just stickers and they are already starting to peel off. The ‘BREVA’ rim decals are also simple stickers which have not been applied properly and have bubbles in them. Worse, the rim tape is a plastic tubeless-ready type but it has not been set properly and in places is doubled over and sticking out. I’m not sure about using it tubeless but the first inner tube I insert goes ‘BANG’ as a result. It’s not a good start. However, as soon as I grip the skewers and spin the wheels all those little niggles are forgotten…
 
Rim tape, tubeless ready, was ill fitted
Rim tape, tubeless ready, was ill fitted

 
The lack of ‘rim wobble’ as I spin the front wheel and then the purr from the rear hub, tells me that these are well engineered units. These ‘budget’ wheels are built around the more cost effective Forgiato, or forged, hub but still use the same rim and spokes as Spada’s Crystal series. Apparently each wheel is handmade to order and I’m inclined to believe them.
 
They are very smooth thanks no doubt to the four sealed ‘industrial’ bearings in the rear and the two in the front hub. The Forgiato hubs are painted white but Spada are keen to tell us that they are still high performing, highly weather proofed and very durable. The front weighs in at 90g and the rear is 250g. The rear cassette body seems to be an aluminium unit which in our experience are not the most durable but time will tell…
 
Skewers and hubs look great
Skewers and hubs look great

 
Upfront there are 18 white aero spokes, whereas at the rear there are 24, laced to the 32mm aluminum clincher rims, which may offer some aero benefit. It’s a traditional rim, being narrower than the new on-message wide rims. However, it does look very well made and importantly, looks tough.
 
Continued overleaf…
 

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