Vision Metron 55 SL Disc
Your next everyday wheels.
2020 has been a unique year. No one reading this needs an explanation of that statement but it has changed my riding. I haven’t touched on the aero road bike project since last year. I didn’t touch the road bike during a harsh winter and when it was time to start riding, and reviewing, road products again a global pandemic hit. I’ve been stuck inside and while I’ve been riding, I haven’t been riding an aero road bike. For better or worse lockdown has started to ease and I’ve been able to get back outside. It’s time to talk about wheels. In particular it’s time to talk about the Vision Metron 55 SL Disc.
Good wheels just work. From a user perspective they aren’t complicated and a review can be tricky. The Vision Metron 55 SL Disc are a set of really good wheels.
I struggled with how to tackle the discussion of the Vision Metron 55 SL Disc. The problem is that they are so good it’s difficult to say much about them. They are wheels that just work. I chose them for this project because they represent a summary of the current technology when it comes to road wheels. They cover all the details that should be standard if you are buying a road wheel right now. Not only that, but they do it with excellent service, at a great price, and without carrying unnecessary weight.
The whole point of this project, and past projects, is to choose a selection of products that represent the technology of right now. For road wheels that means deep, wide, carbon, tubeless compatible, and disc. The Vision Metron 55 SL Disc hits all the marks.
Rim brake wheels are a dead technology. It’s time to move on.
If you are buying a road bike today, you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you chose a rim brake frame. It’s still a controversial statement. Many people, correctly, claim that rim brake wheels and frames are lighter and more aerodynamic. Many of those same people will also claim that rim brake bikes stop as well as disc brakes. That the tires are the limiting technology when it comes to brakes. These are correct statements. So why disc brakes if they are heavier, less aero, and they don’t stop any better?
The real advantage of disc brakes isn’t in the obvious.
The real advantage of disc brakes is what they allow designers and engineers to do with wheels. A good rim brake requires an exceptionally stiff brake caliper. As the stiffness drops off the quality of stopping also degrades. As a wheel gets wider the caliper arms must be longer and the stiffness drops off. At the same time wheel designers want to make wheels wider for increased comfort and aerodynamics. The solution for this push pull between braking quality and aerodynamics is to get the brake off the rim.
Disc brakes allow wheel designers to make a better wheel.
When you’re riding buddy focuses on the stopping ability of rim brakes vs disc brakes, they aren’t wrong. They are just missing the point. There are other advantages to disc brakes also. If you overheat a disc brake on a long descent the discs or pads might be trash but the wheel remains in good shape. Same goes for grit accumulated while riding in the rain. You’ll never have to worry about wearing out the braking surface on an expensive pair of wheels.
There are real usability advantages to disc brakes as well.
Every wheel company makes disc wheels these days so why the Vision Metron 55 SL Disc? The 55 Disc SL is a no-nonsense wheel. The internal diameter is the current, unofficial, standard of 19mm. They are tubeless compatible and 55 mm deep with a weight of 1619 grams for the set (rear 884 grams with Shimano driver and front 735g). These are your 2020, and beyond, everyday wheels. Good enough to race with and tough enough to leave on for training rides. If they do go out of true, they feature external nipples for ease of truing but I don’t expect this to be an issue.
When I ride, I spend a lot of time in my head writing reviews. I sit on the bike and think about how I want to tell the story of a particular product. With the Vision Metron 55 SL Disc my thoughts drifted to the ease of mounting 28mm tubeless road tires. A distinct upgrade from other wheels I’d set up tubeless. I also thought about how smooth they feel. The thing I kept coming back to though was what a great company Vision is.
There are plenty of companies offering high technology in a wheel. Most of them won’t return a call, about a technology that’s not theirs, within hours.
My first interaction with customer service came when I was setting these wheels up and I needed an XDR driver for the rear. Vision didn’t have it available yet but they were easy to reach. They clearly communicated that it was on a ship and gave an estimate on the time frame it would arrive. I was able to pre-order the driver so that I would get it without needing to think about it more. When it came in, I got a call that it had arrived and headed my way.
Once the part came in the customer service experience didn’t drop off. My part got shipped so quickly that it hadn’t had any grease applied. A quick call, again without trouble getting through, and I got advice about which products they recommended for the need. The Look frame uses the Mavic Speed Release system and as it was new to me, I was a bit confused on how it worked. This is not the responsibility of Vision customer service but I called them again. They said they’d check into it and return my call. With most companies I would have been lucky to get that return call in a week or two. Instead I got a call back later that day.
The Vision Metron 55 SL Disc has everything a modern road wheel should.
As I said before, the Vision Metron 55 SL Disc is a wheel that represents all the must haves for road wheels in 2020. It’s easy to mount tubeless tires, it’s not unnecessarily heavy, it comes with all the axle pieces you might need, and at $1798.99 it represents a good value. There are other companies that come close to that mix of technology and pricing. We are a small community in the cycling world and when a company stands forward in support of that community it’s worth consideration. The Vision Metron 55 SL Disc is a quality no nonsense wheels set that delivers on current technology with the backing of a great company.