Needing new wheels, options?

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Needing new wheels, options?

Postby balexander87 » May 1st, 2013, 7:15 pm

So I spent last weekend in Brown County giving my bike a good thrashing. Dropped it off at the LBS for a long overdue tune-up when I got back. Picked it up today and found out that the wobble I was seeing in the rear end was the result of more than just being a little out of true. It looks like the rim has been bent (true but severely uneven spoke tension would seem to confirm this). So, now I'm trying to figure out how to proceed, and would appreciate some input.

First of all, let me describe what I would want to end up with. I don't need something super light (don't race). I don't need something super burly (don't ride super gnarly stuff). I ride XC recreationally, but I like to push myself. I just would like something with a decent weight that is durable, with a slight edge going to durable. The current wheel is tubeless ready (although I'm running tubed) so I think it would be nice to retain that option in case I want to give it a try in the future.

The first option I am considering is buying a new rim and rebuilding the wheel. I bought the bike new less than two years ago, and the hubs are still in good shape. They're nothing super fancy (Specialized house brand) but they have sealed bearings and they get the job done. I'm not sure how easy it would be to get an exact replacement rim. It is a DT Swiss rim that came stock on my 2011 Rockhopper Pro 29er: a 485 D or something. I've not seen them anywhere else, so I'm not sure if they can be had. If not, is there an issue with running a different rim front and back? How much is this likely to cost? I'd be willing to try my hand at building the wheel up myself. Would probably take it by the LBS for a final check before hitting the trails, though.

The next option I'm considering is leaving this wheelset as is, putting some narrow tires on it, using it for the occasional road ride, and buying a replacement wheelset. If I were to go this route, I'd be looking for a used wheelset or perhaps a new "take-off" set from a higher end bike from the LBS. Again, looking for something quality that is durable and not terribly heavy.

I suppose I could also look into just getting a replacement rear wheel and use this one or sell this one to be used with a trainer.

Lots of options. Feeling a little lost. Thanks in advance for the help!
Last edited by balexander87 on May 2nd, 2013, 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby dnale » May 1st, 2013, 8:42 pm

I had a set of velocity rims done for my 29er. Actually the rear I used as-is from the factory build so it has the velocity hub. I had the front built to fit my 15mm thru axle. I rode a while with a stock Giant front wheel/hub and the velocity rear. No issue there. Some may prefer that as it gives you a different tire profile front/rear. Currently I have different hubs front/rear and I see no downside.

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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby BForhan » May 2nd, 2013, 3:52 am

I bought a set of Sun Ringle Black Flag Pro 29er wheels back in Janruary. After 500 miles I can say they have been super nice. They build Stans rims and they use Stans design and come with everything to run tubeless in the box along with hub adapters for the front to run quick release 15mm and 20mm thru axle. They are close in weight to the Stans Arch wheel set someting like 1710 grams is my memory is clear.

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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby Innojazz » May 2nd, 2013, 4:37 am

If you decide to go with new wheels, I have these for sale:

viewtopic.php?t=117264

Other than that, people run different rim and/or hub combinations all the time with no issue. With highly uneven spoke tension, it is likely that the wheel won't stay true very long. Personally I would replace that wheel, be it with a new rim relaced to your current hub or a whole new assembly.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby utabintarbo » May 2nd, 2013, 9:29 am

Replace the rim(s) with DT Swiss X470's. They've stood up to me (~280 lbs.) for several years, and they're not heavy. Reasonably priced as well.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby Jerry68 » May 2nd, 2013, 10:18 am

Normally, I'd say lace a new rim to the existing hub, but since I've seen a lot of Specialized house brand hubs fail, I'd say it's time to step up to a better wheelset.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby balexander87 » May 2nd, 2013, 10:37 am

Yeah, I am sort of leaning towards the "opportunity to upgrade" route. The biggest issue I'm running into now has to do with figuring out what type of wheelset I should be looking for. I come in right around 170# and a buddy of mine that has been around bikes much longer than I have tells me I ride my stuff pretty hard. I don't back down from a rocky, rooty section of trail, small drops, etc. I know a lot can be done with picking the right line, and I'm working on that, but in the meantime, if I'm going to invest in a wheelset upgrade, I'd like it to be one that will hold up to the abuse it will surely see.

As an example, I'm tempted to look into picking up the 70% off voucher for sale in the Classifieds and getting a Blunt SL wheelset, but based on some reviews I've read, they can get a bit flexy in the rough stuff. That makes me a little hesitant to go that route. Not because they aren't a nice wheelset, but because I'm worried I won't be using them as intended.

So, with that said, what are some options for wheelsets that might suit me? Do any mentioned thus far(SunRingle Black Flag, Stans ZTR Flow, etc.) fit the bill?

What weight range for the wheelset should I be looking at (<2000g, for instance)?

If I set my spending limit at $400, am I severely limiting myself?
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby c0nsumer » May 2nd, 2013, 10:53 am

I can tell you that I've ridden Blunt SLs with SRAM X9 hubs quite hard for ~1.5 years and rather liked them. Velocity uses Formula hubs, which are good, basic hubs. That's not a bad way to go. I weigh about 185 and pick pretty good lines, but I fairly frequently clomp into things, hop off of small drops and such, etc.

Avoid many of the online deal site wheelsets. They are often not well built or tensioned, and that is what will make or break a wheel. Buying from Velocity will be good, as will finding a local shop with a known-good wheel builder.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby dnale » May 2nd, 2013, 11:04 am

My velocity rims are the p35 blunts. Very wide and durable from my experience.

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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby iamkickstand » May 2nd, 2013, 11:16 am

c0nsumer wrote:Avoid many of the online deal site wheelsets. They are often not well built or tensioned, and that is what will make or break a wheel. Buying from Velocity will be good, as will finding a local shop with a known-good wheel builder.

Please clarify.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby jfactor! » May 2nd, 2013, 11:21 am

I'd say a solid all-mountain wheelset might be a good option. Not quite XC light, but not DH heavy either.

The Transition Revolution 25 wheelset is in your price range and gets good reviews.
http://www.transitionbikes.com/2013/Store_Main.cfm#
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby c0nsumer » May 2nd, 2013, 11:22 am

iamkickstand wrote:
c0nsumer wrote:Avoid many of the online deal site wheelsets. They are often not well built or tensioned, and that is what will make or break a wheel. Buying from Velocity will be good, as will finding a local shop with a known-good wheel builder.

Please clarify.


I bought a set of wheels from Pricepoint a few years back which were fairly well spec'd (XT hubs, decent Mavic rims), and while they were true the spoke tension was REALLY uneven and the rear was not dished properly. I ended up having to wholly loosen and retension the wheelset myself. I have seen other wheels bought from Pricepoint and Nashbar that were this same way. Good spec parts, poor quality assembly. Thus, I'm very wary of such things.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby BForhan » May 2nd, 2013, 11:24 am

balexander87 wrote:Yeah, I am sort of leaning towards the "opportunity to upgrade" route. The biggest issue I'm running into now has to do with figuring out what type of wheelset I should be looking for. I come in right around 170# and a buddy of mine that has been around bikes much longer than I have tells me I ride my stuff pretty hard. I don't back down from a rocky, rooty section of trail, small drops, etc. I know a lot can be done with picking the right line, and I'm working on that, but in the meantime, if I'm going to invest in a wheelset upgrade, I'd like it to be one that will hold up to the abuse it will surely see.

As an example, I'm tempted to look into picking up the 70% off voucher for sale in the Classifieds and getting a Blunt SL wheelset, but based on some reviews I've read, they can get a bit flexy in the rough stuff. That makes me a little hesitant to go that route. Not because they aren't a nice wheelset, but because I'm worried I won't be using them as intended.

So, with that said, what are some options for wheelsets that might suit me? Do any mentioned thus far(SunRingle Black Flag, Stans ZTR Flow, etc.) fit the bill?

What weight range for the wheelset should I be looking at (<2000g, for instance)?

If I set my spending limit at $400, am I severely limiting myself?



I am right around 195 to 200 pounds and have had no problems with my SunRingles Black Flag Pros and they are 1710 if I remember correctly. The Stans Arch wheel sets are in the same 1700 neighborhood and those if I remember say a rider weight of 230 pounds. For $400 you may have to look for something on sale not sure.

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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby KLydesdale » May 2nd, 2013, 3:04 pm

dnale wrote:My velocity rims are the p35 blunts. Very wide and durable from my experience.

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I'm kind of disappointed in the durability of the P35s on a wheelset I picked up a set a few months ago. I've already dented a sidewall on the rear one and they've haven't even been on a trail yet - just a few bike path/dirt road rides on my Salsa Fargo. For the life of me can't recall doing anything that should have dented it like it is. I haven't done anything like that to a rim in a long, long time and when I did, I KNEW what caused it. Looking at the reviews of them, it seems that the P35s do have a reputation for being soft and prone to dents.
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Re: Bent rim, how to proceed?

Postby iamkickstand » May 2nd, 2013, 3:06 pm

c0nsumer wrote:
iamkickstand wrote:
c0nsumer wrote:Avoid many of the online deal site wheelsets. They are often not well built or tensioned, and that is what will make or break a wheel. Buying from Velocity will be good, as will finding a local shop with a known-good wheel builder.

Please clarify.


I bought a set of wheels from Pricepoint a few years back which were fairly well spec'd (XT hubs, decent Mavic rims), and while they were true the spoke tension was REALLY uneven and the rear was not dished properly. I ended up having to wholly loosen and retension the wheelset myself. I have seen other wheels bought from Pricepoint and Nashbar that were this same way. Good spec parts, poor quality assembly. Thus, I'm very wary of such things.

Interesting. I ordered a custome (hope hubs/mavic rims) wheelset from chainreactioncycles and have been very pleased.

I am curious, a lot of people run Mavic rims, but I don't hear of a lot of people running the complete wheelset, do their hubs suck? I have been looking at the crossmax something or others as a possible replacement on my current bike.
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