Novatec is part of the biggest hubs manufacturers in the world. If you have never seen  their logo, you should know that the company provides many wheel builders, and there is a chance that the wheelset that is  on your bike is equipped with their products ! Find out one of the most popular model of the Taiwanese brand !

Here is a Novatec hubset that I have recently acquired. The value for money of this pair makes it a really interesting solution for a light assembly. Original owner totalled around 14000 km with this hubs, and as you can see, they are still in great shape !

Novatec A291SB-SL front hub

With only 60g, this hub comes with no surprise. Two 689 bearing (9x17x5mm) lay on a 9mm-diameter axle. The ends caps snap directly on it. This is not my preferred solution because it often favours plays to occur (Dtwiss M1900 by example…). It can happen on this hub if the skewer isn’t well tight. After 14000km and despite a simple sealing system, the bearings are still in good shape, clearest indication of a quality product.

Novatec F482SB rear hub

239g,this is very fair (the sl version is given at 225g)! We find at the left end of the hub body a 6902 bearing (15x28x7) and one 6802 (15x24x5) at the other side.

 

The freehub body sits on two 6092 bearings (15x28x7). Unfortunately, the bearing nearest of the center is in my opinion too far from the end of the freehub body, it should be right under the pawls. Indeed, the bearings of the freehub body are the only ones to be worn. However they can be replaced without changing the freehub body. I guess this configuration maybe comes from the really small diameter at the end of the freehub body.

Contrary to the front, end caps are fasten on the 17mm axle. Obviously the cassette has left his imprint on the alloy freehub body. On some Novatec freehub, there is one steel spline that prevents this phenomenon.

Conclusion

14000 km, and they still roll ! If you are looking a light and not expensive hubset, it is useless to go further ! We can also find at many manufacturers a competing product with the same weight (Bitex, Powerway, Dati…). So the price will probably decide which one will be built on your light wheelset !

geometry of the Novatec A291SB-SL/F482SB-SL

Novatec A291SB-SL front hub Novatec F482SB rear hub
PCD (mm) 30/30 49/41
Distance hub flange to wheel center
line (mm)
32,1/32,1 35,3/16,5