Shimano RS81 C35

A well-priced do-it-all wheelset

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5

As little brother to the Dura Ace C35s, which we’ve been using all year and rate very highly, we had high hopes for Shimano’s new RS81 C35 wheels. These marry an aluminium rim with a carbon/alloy 35mm section to 11-speed alloy hubs. 


All this combines to weigh in at 1,664g, including the supplied rim tape – not bad considering the Dura Ace equivalents offer 200 fewer grams for over twice the price. Out riding, we weren’t disappointed. They were perfectly responsive, while not being anywhere near harsh enough to get the fillings rattling, even over some unforgiving roads. 

In fact, they coped well with everything we threw at them: fast flats, longer climbs, short, sharp efforts and while there was nothing they absolutely excelled at, there was nothing they did badly, either. 

That’s the real selling point: they’re a well-priced do-it-all set, which are absolutely perfect for training and would be capable enough for racing if you want an all-rounder.


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