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Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:02 pm
by abefroman
OK before I start I have done a search but it comes back with so much that it's hard to see the wood for the trees.

I've just returned from an amazing trip to the Alps. Croix de Fer, Col du Galibier, Alpe d'Huez. Magic stuff.

But...I'd like to do more, and better next year, so first stop is more training, second is some climbing wheels rather than my SLRs.

But where to start? I'm 150lbs/68Kg, usual roads in UK aren't very kind so need to have some life to them. Not CarbonSports price but not cheap either.

Just some options please to get my research under way.

Thanks!

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:06 pm
by audiojan
Here's what I did...

Stans Alpha 340 with Alchemy Orc/Elf hubs laced with Sapim CX-ray. Super light (sub 1200gr.), very stiff (less flex than my Cosmic Carbone, which are not known to flex...), and very durable (road here in New England are full of pot holes and I've probably hit the majority of them by now...).

I'm a little heavier than you, around 160lbs (72kg).

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:35 pm
by gumgardner
ENVE 1.25, extralite Sx hubs and CX rays 8)

At your weight though....

AX 24srt, extralite Sx or Dash, CX rays. Still less than anything by carbonsports and much lighter.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:37 pm
by andyindo
+1 on the stans alpha. Mate of mine weighs <70kgs. Stans built up with cx rays and bike hubstore hubs on a 16/20 front/rear combo. All good so far. Been riding on Surrey potholed war torn roads as well as Dolomites. Spin up nicely, fairly cheap and very light.

I'd steer clear of carbon clinchers for serious mountain riding. Too many horror stories....Also I cant imagine a worse scenario than riding carbon clinchers in the rain and about to go down a mountain with switchbacks!

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 4:20 pm
by abefroman
andyindo wrote:I'd steer clear of carbon clinchers for serious mountain riding. Too many horror stories....Also I cant imagine a worse scenario than riding carbon clinchers in the rain and about to go down a mountain with switchbacks!


Thanks all, all good stuff.

I'd agree with this after the weekend...a friend found out the hard way.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:08 pm
by StuTheWeak
I'd venture with Niobiums...eyelets and tough as coffin nails. Then CX-Rays for good reasons. Dati hubs are light...20/24 would carry you, but flex might be an issue. Realistic weight...~1300g.

$440 in parts alone...

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:14 pm
by prendrefeu
gumgardner wrote:AX 24srt, extralite Sx or Dash, CX rays. Still less than anything by carbonsports and much lighter.


That.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 6:48 pm
by TCx
I've noticed a number of wheel threads, CX's come up a great deal. Does anyone use / have an aversion to DT Swiss spokes? Is there something I should know, or is it that the majority of WW's are stateside so DT aren't as well know etc?

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 6:51 pm
by prendrefeu
DT Swiss products are perfectly well known stateside (the company is based in Colorado, afterall, not Switzerland).

CX Rays can be switched with DT Aerolite spokes, the weight is on par...
However they are slightly more expensive (here, at least).

I also think that the majority of WW members actually contributing to the forum are in Australia or the UK.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 7:05 pm
by StradaJon
DT Swiss Aerolites are really expensive in the UK compared with CX Rays and every wheelbuilder seems to loathe their alloy nipples...

Have you considered a tubular rim such as the Ambrosio F20 Crono? It is light, strong and good value compared to the Alpha.

ETA - forgot to ask are you Shimano or Campagnolo?

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:14 pm
by js
I currently have and love three pairs of handbuilts, but given what you're asking for, I think you'd have a tough time doing better then the DA C24cl wheelset.

It uses what is most likely the lightest weight rim you can find with an alloy braking surface (which makes mountain riding much, much more enjoyable), and to my knowledge, it's much lighter then any alloy braking rims available for handbuilt options. Plus probably the best hubs, for quality and durability, though obviously not weight, that you can get. Add in that it's reasonably aero and the package is reasonably light and I can't see why you'd go elsewhere unless you were running Campag or just didn't want a DA wheel for some reason.

For what it's worth, I've lived (and ridden) in Oxford for the past three years and make my living running tours through the Alps, Pyrénnées and pretty much everywhere else you're dreaming of riding - so I think I've got a pretty good understanding of what you're asking for. These wheels have faired very well by our guests who've had them - in fact, one guy even used them for the Paris-Roubaix sportive this April... 16/20 spokes and still true at the finish, I didn't think I'd see that!

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:22 pm
by legs 11
If you are anal about weight, you need to look into tubular.
And yes, the Shimano rim brake tracks are actually made from plasticine.
I've lost count of the amount of worn out brake track replacement wheelsets I've been doing for EX Shimano wheel users.
But, fact is that if you just want to go faster, you may want to look at training.
Truth is.......most average joe cyclists just aren't ready for tubs?
It's a state of mind type thing. :thumbup:
Feel the tubular love.
Rob.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:26 pm
by mr_tim
StradaJon wrote: It is light, strong and good value compared to the Alpha.


But the brake track is shallow & the joint is often poor with a pronounced bump.

If your looking for convenience I don't see why you wouldn't go with the alpha barring the price premium vs the usual open pro price range at £45 odd.. There are now plenty of posts from regular alpha users that don't have problems with them even though they're low weight.


I think fwiw at the moment I would be pushing tune hubs with standard flange for J bend spokes. But do make sure you get them from a decent dealer just in case the creaks come back to haunt tune.. The standard spokes means you get a easy repair / rebuild should you need to attend to the build, anything with non-J bend spoke ends will be a pain to get fixed away from your home turf.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:30 pm
by kolarzyk
Have you thought about Xentis Squad 2.5, of course tubular? Clincher for carbon rims in serious mountains isn't good idea.

Re: Climbing Wheels - please don't flame

Posted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:34 pm
by legs 11
Tune hubs have been shit for the last 2 years.............at least.
:thumbup:
F20 ambrosio rims built on DT240 hubs would be as light and reliable as you can get.
DT revs and alloy nipples for the front and non drive side rear. :D