Long Term Review Of Carbonspeedcycle Products

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tmr5555
Posts: 310
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:13 am

by tmr5555

This is a long term review of two wheelsets i bought from carbonspeedcycle (also known as Helin Liu).
TL,DR: Don't buy Chinese clinchers, Kinlin's are ok.

İn May of 2014 bought a set of carbon clincher wheels (23 mm width, 38 mm at the front, 50 at the back).
Followed by a set of Kinlin xr200's around mid August of 2014.
Both came with Powerway R13 hubs ,Radial spokes (20) at the front and 2x drive side, radial non-drive side at the rear (24 spokes).
Cheap Alloy skewers and cork brake pads were also included in the purchase.

Firstly the carbon clinchers:

Purchased: Mid May, 2014
Km's/ Miles done(acording to Strava):ca 2500 KM/1550 Miles

Image

These were purchased with the aim of racing and the concept of getting full carbon clinchers for so little money seems to override the part of the brain that manages sensibility. You know it's a gamble but you cannot help yourself.
First, everything went quite well, i used them in terrible conditions, on awful stone chip roads and everything was fine.
Braking was a significant issue with the cork pads issued by the seller, but who needs braking RİGHT???
Buying Blue carbon specific Lifeline brand pads significantly improved that area too.
The brake surface had some small imperfections straight out of the box and some spoke holes had slight whitening around them form too much tension, these looked alarming but with close inspection neither of these defects seemed to be getting worse over time and wear. İn the back of my head i knew prolonged braking and delamination were going to be the biggest issues.
Then at the first race of the season i had a big accident where at the sprint finish someone fell in front of me and took me out at around 45km/h. Two spokes were broken but i was amazed on how these wheels had took the beating.
My confidence grew.
This led to keeping the carbon wheelset on the bike for training rides, which led to it's eventual demise.
A group ride, excessive braking to prevent plowing into slower riders down an extremely steep hill made it happen. The front wheel delaminated.
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Honestly i'm lucky the wheel didn't disintegrate, things could have turned out much worse.
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carbonspeedcycle offer a one year warranty on their products, event though a little over a year had passed i contacted them through ebay. Not that i was expecting a response. Unsurprisingly no response was received.

There aren't many long term reviews on these CN carbon wheels out there, i suspect it may be because the buyers do not want to hear the cries of "we told you so!!!", i was told so, many times. İ learned the hard way.
İf you think about buying these ebay/CN wheels don't walk, RUN!!!
Like a friend (naysayer, tried to move me away from this purchase) said: " in certain situations our lives are in the hands of these (in this case, questionable) products. How much are YOU worth?" at best you have to be mindful of delamination and brake vary carefully or not at all. İ'll give carbonspeedcycle that, they made me a much better descender :-D
For those saying " İ live in Florida, Chicago (insert any pie pan flat city) i don't go downhill at all.
Well in that case you don't need the lightness of a full carbon wheelset to go up hills either. At least go with a wheelset with an alloy braking surface, have some peace of mind.

secondly: Kinlin xr-200:

Purchased: Mid August, 2014
Km's/ Miles done(acording to Strava):ca 5200 KM/3200 Miles

Image

İ dragged this wheelset through mud, rain,even mild snow and quite honestly bang for buck, you cannot go wrong here.
They weigh 1290 grams (advertised @ 1260).
Some downsides are: they creak when out of the saddle and I've had to replace the front bearings as they were shot due to water ingress, out came the crappy CN bearings, in went SKF's. No problem since.
Overall pretty chuffed with this purchase. Compared to a low cost carbon wheelset they have been a dream.
Other issues: İ once broke a spoke, i weigh 73kg/160lb, ride aggressively and most probably hit a hole hard for that to happen but this shows the 2x/radial lacing at the back is a definite no no for heavier riders.
İt's these stupid things ebay sellers do to keep the claimed weight of the wheelset down that fail most often. The Cn Spoke alloy nipples they use are utter Cr*p. And let down an otherwise good wheel.
The jury's out on "Cn Spoke" branded spokes, they seem softer than DT Swiss, But in both instances of broken spokes, user error was present, so no opinion on them other then they are cheap and made in China.
So was the carbon rim, but so are iPhones.
İ'm confused, gonna lay down :roll:

by Weenie


Multebear
Posts: 1300
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by Multebear

tmr5555 wrote:
This is a long term review of two wheelsets i bought from carbonspeedcycle (also known as Helin Liu).
TL,DR: Don't buy Chinese clinchers, Kinlin's are ok.



Good to know your experience. But maybe you should't make assumptions or draw conclusions about all chinese vendor out of experience with only one vendors and one product.

Most riders know, that carbon wheels and braking while descending mountains is a tricky one. This doesn't apply only to chinese wheels, this applies to all carbon wheels.

Besides that, you mention a couple of things, that in it self could lead to the delamination of the rims IMO. First of all the crash, that you mention. Second, if you do a lot of group rides with your wheels, this could lead to a huge amount of braking, because you'r in a bunch. And if you don't have a lot of experience with group rides, you will be braking a lot all the time, which will lead to a lot af rimwear. Third, if you'r doing excessive braking on a very steep hill to prevent a crash into slower rides, this alone could lead to delamination. Fourth, braking with carbon rims requires a certain technique. You can't just pull the brakes and hold them for 10-20 seconds or more. Small bursts of 1-2 seconds, 2-3 seconds pause, and then again a 1-2 second burst. That's the right way to brake on carbon rims. If that's new knowledge to you, then I'd say that you have done just about all the things, that will kill a carbon rim.

I'm not judging, maybe your rims really are shit. But my two sets of home build Farsports carbon wheelsets, have done more than 3.000 km without any issues, because I treat them wit care. Mostly races, but several group training rides with gentle braking as well.

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WMW
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by WMW

tmr5555 wrote:This is a long term review of two wheelsets i bought from carbonspeedcycle (also known as Helin Liu).
TL,DR: Don't buy Chinese clinchers, Kinlin's are ok.


Thanks for your review. It doesn't sound like you were that hard on them, and the braking doesn't sound excessive either. Long steep descents are the ones that are hard on rims.

Curious to see what other people think. BTW, can you link to the exact model you have?
formerly rruff...

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WMW
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by WMW

Multebear wrote:I'm not judging, maybe your rims really are shit. But my two sets of home build Farsports carbon wheelsets, have done more than 3.000 km without any issues, because I treat them wit care. Mostly races, but several group training rides with gentle braking as well.


It doesn't sound to me like he did anything excessive. If you really need to brake, then you need to brake. If these rims require a very light touch, then that is good info, yes? We can only know where the limit is by going over it...

Even though your rims are from a different seller, that doesn't mean much. I think Farsports supplies a lot of rims to different retailers, and there are many companies on ebay selling the exact same rims.

I'm curious if anyone has significant use, like over 10k miles of daily riding and descending on similar rims?
formerly rruff...

tmr5555
Posts: 310
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:13 am

by tmr5555

Multebear wrote:
Good to know your experience. But maybe you should't make assumptions or draw conclusions about all chinese vendor out of experience with only one vendors and one product.


There are only a couple of factories over there producing these ebay rims. For simplicity of things i called them CN Wheels.
Let's call them ebay rims if that is less offensive to you.

Multebear wrote:
Most riders know, that carbon wheels and braking while descending mountains is a tricky one. This doesn't apply only to chinese wheels, this applies to all carbon wheels.


İt does not apply to Chinese wheels but why is it that Chinese wheels are the most affected by the phenomenon?
Why does the guy next to me's Zipp's or Ritchey's or FFWD's handle the same stresses day in day out with no hiccups on the same roads with equal abuse?
Obviously there's a class difference between the two products, but it's less obvious to some people.


Multebear wrote:
Besides that, you mention a couple of things, that in it self could lead to the delamination of the rims IMO. First of all the crash, that you mention. Second, if you do a lot of group rides with your wheels, this could lead to a huge amount of braking, because you'r in a bunch. And if you don't have a lot of experience with group rides, you will be braking a lot all the time, which will lead to a lot af rimwear. Third, if you'r doing excessive braking on a very steep hill to prevent a crash into slower rides, this alone could lead to delamination. Fourth, braking with carbon rims requires a certain technique. You can't just pull the brakes and hold them for 10-20 seconds or more. Small bursts of 1-2 seconds, 2-3 seconds pause, and then again a 1-2 second burst. That's the right way to brake on carbon rims. If that's new knowledge to you, then I'd say that you have done just about all the things, that will kill a carbon rim.


Thanks for the unnecessary lecture. :D
The first crash had NOTHİNG to do with this delamination
There are places where you CANNOT pulse brake, such as an idiot suddenly stopping in front of you.

This is my experience with the product, you are assuming i don't know how to ride carbon wheels. This is a long jump.
My general assessment of these ebay wheels is that they are not safe to operate under FAİR conditions

Multebear wrote:
I'm not judging, maybe your rims really are shit. But my two sets of home build Farsports carbon wheelsets, have done more than 3.000 km without any issues, because I treat them wit care. Mostly races, but several group training rides with gentle braking as well.


My review is scathing because we have to stop making excuses for these inferior "brands". İ would think your farsports wheels would not be far off my wheelset, at least if the good brands are on one end of the spectrum and carbonspeedcycle is on the other end, farsports are no dobut closer to my end.

tmr5555
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by tmr5555

WMW wrote:
tmr5555 wrote:BTW, can you link to the exact model you have?



Rather not give a link, but it's the one under "23mm Normal weight Carbon wheels"
the 38/50 one with powerway R13 hubs.


Also, in continuation with my previous post;
Many people (including myself, up to a couple of weeks ago) seem to have drunk the cool-aid on these wheelsets.
When doing "internet research" on the matter not many negative reviews come up. İ feel this is partially because psychologically, we may have problems owning up to our failures as humans.
When doing that "research" you tend to notice the answers that suit you. İ wanted this to stand out as a precautionary tale next to the many "i bought a Wheelset from China, they are awesome and were super cheap" posts. Where are these people 1 year down the line?
İ'm here, have a delaminated wheel and i took good care of these wheels, i did the pulse braking/no braking et cetera...the works.
The gentleman's farsports wheels may be the best wheels out there, but this doesn't mean there is a disproportionate admiration for these dangerous products.

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WMW
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by WMW

tmr5555 wrote:
WMW wrote:Rather not give a link, but it's the one under "23mm Normal weight Carbon wheels"
the 38/50 one with powerway R13 hubs.


So no basalt brake tracks?

Thought it might be your pads, but rave reviews and not a single one (out of 151 reviews) mentioning a delam. http://www.wiggle.com/lifeline-performa ... pack-of-4/

Still it could be that your rims would have been ok with the crappy ones that came with the wheels. If they lack braking ability, then less heat is generated. :wink:
formerly rruff...

tmr5555
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by tmr5555

There's a saying here: "Braking = regret" :-)
Yes, they have "basalt" coating.

Multebear
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Joined: Sat May 02, 2015 10:11 pm

by Multebear

tmr5555 wrote:
Thanks for the unnecessary lecture. :D
The first crash had NOTHİNG to do with this delamination
There are places where you CANNOT pulse brake, such as an idiot suddenly stopping in front of you.

This is my experience with the product, you are assuming i don't know how to ride carbon wheels. This is a long jump.
My general assessment of these ebay wheels is that they are not safe to operate under FAİR conditions




My first impression from your post was, that you gave your wheels a lot of beating. Besides that, I got the impression, that you used them as everyday traning wheels and racing wheels as well. If this was the case, I don’t think any rims; name brands or chinese wheels would survive for very long.

That said, I still wouldn’t treat them the way you did. I wouldn’t ride them in the mountains. It’s just to much braking no matter if the wheels are name brand or not. Too much unecessary wear IMO. And the weight and aero benefit over a light alloy wheelset wheen climbing is really not worth mentioning.

tmr5555 wrote:
There are only a couple of factories over there producing these ebay rims. For simplicity of things i called them CN Wheels.
Let's call them ebay rims if that is less offensive to you.




I don’t get your point? Are you saying, that one is as good as the other?

And are you absolutely sure about this? Where did you get that info?

Where do you think name brand rims are made?


tmr5555 wrote:
Why does the guy next to me's Zipp's or Ritchey's or FFWD's handle the same stresses day in day out with no hiccups on the same roads with equal abuse?
Obviously there's a class difference between the two products, but it's less obvious to some people.



Are you absoulutely sure your wheels and your friends wheels are treated equally?

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maggierose
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by maggierose

Thanks for posting. I just had a similar experience with Light-Bicycle.com (viewtopic.php?f=113&t=133990).

I'm not OK with selling dangerous products. Some people have reported good experiences with Chinese rims. I'm sure I'm more demanding than most consumers but I have been seriously unimpressed by my experience thus far.

BikeAnon
Posts: 399
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Location: NY USA

by BikeAnon

Thanks for this review. I too have been bitten by the desire for a carbon clinchers.

The more I read, the more I'm getting over it.

I'm secure enough to admit... I want them for the look more than anything else.

duvivr6
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by duvivr6

Sorry about your sucky experience, but to help other in their future wheel buying excursions.

What are you calling delamination?

The dots inside the wheels looks weird, where they not there when the wheels where new? Because they seem like it could be a defect from production. Did the wheel loose rigidity? If nothing changed in the characteristic of the rim I would ride it. Safest bet is replace the $100 (if that) rim and be good to go again!

What you show on the outside just looks like melted brake pads, which I have had before on my Carbon Clinchers without it causing a problem. I have many many miles or abuse on a set of carbon Chinese clinchers and have performed great with Swisstop yellow and reynold blue pads. I also have a set of Chinese tubulars that where used for CX and have worn thru the brake track where a hole was created and they are still solid(i don't ride these anymore)

Later
Duvi

BoSoxYacht
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by BoSoxYacht

duvivr6 wrote:What are you calling delamination?

The dots inside the wheels looks weird, where they not there when the wheels where new? Because they seem like it could be a defect from production. Did the wheel loose rigidity? If nothing changed in the characteristic of the rim I would ride it. Safest bet is replace the $100 (if that) rim and be good to go again!

What you show on the outside just looks like melted brake pads, which I have had before on my Carbon Clinchers without it causing a problem.

Later
Duvi
+1

I work for a CF framebuilder, and we keep the lights on by doing CF repair. Without having a chance to physically inspect them, I can't say for certain, but I don't see an issue that would stop me from using them.

YMMV

bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

I think you change what you wrote to don't buy carbonspeedcycle wheels not all chinese carbon wheels. I personally have no issue with the rims I am buying. I have found good ones though. Like all things the are good, bad and so so manufactuers.
Just because it has a brand name does not mean it is any good. Zipp hubs anyone?

My own set have 11,000 km and climbing not issues at all.

Looking at the pictures I can't see any delamination. The marks on the brake track are no an issue. If the rim has failed the wheel would no longer be true. Campagnolo record pads are the ones I use for my rims with a basalt track. These no doubt will brake differently on rims using different resins but they are the best ones I have come across.

This a scare story thread and those wheels still look fine. As for the "hole" in the rim they might have been there from the start. That to me is a manufacturing defect and should have been rejected on receipt of the wheels when they were received. The "hole" may never cause a problem though the chances are they won't.

by Weenie


BoSoxYacht
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by BoSoxYacht

bm0p700f wrote: As for the "hole" in the rim they might have been there from the start. That to me is a manufacturing defect and should have been rejected on receipt of the wheels when they were received. The "hole" may never cause a problem though the chances are they won't.
Those are voids from the molding process, and no big deal. A high end manufacturer like ENVE would have filled those before leaving the factory. Many of the ENVE chainstays and seatstays I've used have small marks like that, but they were filled in the finishing process.

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