Wheels - what to look for when buying

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TheEnglishman
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Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby TheEnglishman » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:42 am

I'm looking to upgrade a set of OEM DT Axis 2.0 wheels and have around £300 to spend. Now there's tons available around that price, with 2 shops yesterday recommending Fulcrum Quattro as really good value. But other than colour I'm just swamped with jargon and I have no experience to put one set of words against another. Beyond asking for some 700c wheels I don't know if deep dished wheels will actually make much difference over non or whether the lightest wheels I can get will be the best option considering I don't race and just want something reliable that's 'better' than what I have already. And there's cartridge vs bearings, spoke types, etc etc... Arrgghhhh :)

So, has anyone got any tips on what to look for or what to ask in shops? Or for the money am I approaching custom build prices and would be better off going to a builder and getting something made with a personal touch?

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Jehannum
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Jehannum » Fri Sep 21, 2012 10:55 am

I know this doesn't answer your question directly, but for that sort of money you could get these:

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=29086

I have a pair, and I love them. I've done about 1000 miles on them and there's not even the hint of a kink in them, despite the state of our roads. They accelerate well and roll very, very well.

just my 2c...
Reduce your carbon footprint - ride a metal bike!

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TheEnglishman
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby TheEnglishman » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:09 am

Cool - but why them? I'm guessing it wasn't the colour :wink:

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jonomc4
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby jonomc4 » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:16 am

the only advice I can give is read 100's of reviews and gradually gleam from them what to look for.

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TheEnglishman
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby TheEnglishman » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:27 am

jonomc4 wrote:the only advice I can give is read 100's of reviews and gradually gleam from them what to look for.


The problem I have with reviews is that 99% of them only seem to say nice things as saying something's crap is biting the hand that feeds them - that or perhaps the vast majority of like for like things are so similar it's difficult to set something apart from everything else? Perhaps I'm being cynical?

Dmak
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Dmak » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:58 am

TheEnglishman wrote:
jonomc4 wrote:the only advice I can give is read 100's of reviews and gradually gleam from them what to look for.


The problem I have with reviews is that 99% of them only seem to say nice things as saying something's crap is biting the hand that feeds them - that or perhaps the vast majority of like for like things are so similar it's difficult to set something apart from everything else? Perhaps I'm being cynical?


The first thing to look for when buying wheels is that they are, in fact, round. This is quite important. Square and hexagonal wheels don't tend to roll so fast.

Joking aside when reviewing reviews I tend to sort them by lowest rating first, you'll then see any common issues straight away.

Also searching for the wheel model and adding the words broken, problem, faulty etc

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Jehannum
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Jehannum » Fri Sep 21, 2012 12:53 pm

TheEnglishman wrote:Cool - but why them? I'm guessing it wasn't the colour :wink:


No, I got them in black for campag, and they look a lot better than that. Probably a previous year's decoration style, too.

I got them because for the money ( about £240 on fleabay ) they were the best reviewed and lightest I could find. I know there is a danger of self-validating reviews [ it can be hard to admit something's disappointing when you've spend a lot of dosh on it ], but these really stood out as well reviewed when I got them. As someone else said, search the interwebs for your proposed purchase with "problem", "fault" etc... to see if any horror stories emerge.

Good luck!

Edit: Pro-Lite now seem to sell a couple of different sets of wheels called Bracciano - some are carbon, so not all reviews / opinions will be for the cheaper ones I've suggested.
Reduce your carbon footprint - ride a metal bike!

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Pross
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Pross » Fri Sep 21, 2012 13:47 pm

Don't get the Pro Lites. I got some in April as they seemed great value (very light for the money) and loved them. However, in 5 months the bearings have gone and I am in the process of returning them. My LBS reckons the quality of bearings is terrible and that I should try to swap them for Mavics. I would say stick with Mavics, they are easily serviced with spares being freely available and excellent quality. I wish I'd stuck with Mavics myself now but opted to save an extra 100g by going with the Pro Lites.

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rozzer32
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby rozzer32 » Fri Sep 21, 2012 14:15 pm

Shimano RS80's or Mavic Ksyrium Elites
**** Pro Tour Pundit Champion 2011 *****

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TheEnglishman
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby TheEnglishman » Fri Sep 21, 2012 14:40 pm

rozzer32 wrote:Shimano RS80's or Mavic Ksyrium Elites



Very well reviewed and all, but why? What sets them apart from anything else in that price/specification range?

Headhuunter
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Headhuunter » Fri Sep 21, 2012 16:22 pm

Cycling + did a review of wheels around that price a few months back, Shimano RS80s did very well but I think one of the Fulcrum wheels at about £500 were top at that range IIRC...

I've got RS80s on my weekend bike and they're definitely an improvement on the stock Shimano wheels that were on the bike when I bought it...
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Headhuunter » Fri Sep 21, 2012 16:25 pm

Do not write below this line. Office use only.

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Pross
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Pross » Fri Sep 21, 2012 16:27 pm

TheEnglishman wrote:
rozzer32 wrote:Shimano RS80's or Mavic Ksyrium Elites



Very well reviewed and all, but why? What sets them apart from anything else in that price/specification range?


Mavic are just proven quality, smooth rolling hubs and easy to get spares. Shimano also make good hubs but I haven't had much experience of their rims (other than a pair of bottom end RH500s which aren't brilliant but then they are cheap). It's all about the smoothness of the hub and a quality build so a well built set of hand built wheels on Mavic hubs is the way to go. As I've learned, weight saving is good but smoothness is better!

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rozzer32
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby rozzer32 » Fri Sep 21, 2012 16:32 pm

TheEnglishman wrote:
rozzer32 wrote:Shimano RS80's or Mavic Ksyrium Elites



Very well reviewed and all, but why? What sets them apart from anything else in that price/specification range?


Well I have RS80's so I'll give you my experience of them.

They use the same rim as the Dura Ace wheel, just they make use of an Ultegra hub instead of Dura Ace. So the extra 100g of weight is at the hub, so not really rotational weight like at the rim. So I couldn't justify the extra £200+ for the dura ace version. I also find them stiff (I weigh 75 Kgs) and I have used them as my do it all wheels.

I've used them for around 18 months and they've been faultless, I've literally not touched them. Not had to be re-trued or anything. And they've been ridden in all weathers in all terrain. They've been fantastic.

I've decided to give them to the LBS next week for a total rub strip down, clean, new bearings, check spoke tension and give them a true. They use cup and cone bearings and replacement balls are about £7 a wheel. I'm not doing that because they need it but more for preventive maintenance as they will be ridden through this winter as well.

I'd recommend the wheels to anyone. I've been so impressed with them that my next set of wheels will certainly be dura ace (want some bling).
**** Pro Tour Pundit Champion 2011 *****


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Gizmodo
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Gizmodo » Fri Sep 21, 2012 19:01 pm

Send a PM to ugo.santalucia on this forum. He has built wheels for 2 people that I know and both are really happy with his work.

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smidsy
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby smidsy » Fri Sep 21, 2012 19:26 pm

Gizmodo wrote:Send a PM to ugo.santalucia on this forum. He has built wheels for 2 people that I know and both are really happy with his work.


+1. I have just ordered some from him and if you explain what you want he gives you all the options and prices for you to base a decision on.

Main benefit of handbuilts is you pick and choose the rim, hubs and spokes and can get the spares if things do break and done well they are virtually a wheel for life.
Yellow is the new Black.

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Yellow Peril
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Re: Wheels - what to look for when buying

Postby Yellow Peril » Fri Sep 21, 2012 19:45 pm

I've just put a deposit down on some Zipp 404 clinchers. If you want to know how such wheels cope having to continually underperform I'll be able to let you know next season.


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