Reynolds Assaults vs Zipp 101s

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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by FIJIGabe

thisisatest wrote:I've seen a lot of recurring broken spoke issues with Reynolds' cheaper wheels, even after only a couple months. I'm not saying the 101 have a stellar record, but they're still the ones I'd go with.

What years/models? I've got a set of their "cheapest" aero wheels, the DV3K's, and even at my heaviest, I didn't break a single spoke.

Regarding the brake surface, eurperg, I stand corrected. I have heard of issues with the braking characteristics of the pre-2011 wheels, but i'll take your word for it. I can tell you my 2011's brake decently, but nowhere near as well as my aluminum clinchers.
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by Doyler

I have both these wheels.

I have Assaults from 2010, well I bought em in 2010, so reckon that's what they are. I've raced em quite a bit and done long miles in the mountains on them. The front one has a bit of play in them, but that's about the only issue I've had with them. For me, they climb well enough for a not so light wheel and they are stiff enough in corners that I don't notice anything.

The Zipp 101s I bought a few months ago and so far two nipples have snapped in the front wheel. The first occurred on a steep hairpin in Spain. Thankfully I had shed off enough speed to safely negotiate a stop before the spoke got wrapped around something. Funnily enough, the Reynolds lasted a weeks hols with no issues on the exact same hills the year before. A second nipple snapped sprinting up a hill two weeks ago. I have since had all the nipples changed to brass ones because I cannot trust the wheels.

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by emkod

For me, the Rolf's have had two significant road accidents and in both cases no troubles at all. Still true (touch wood/ fingers crossed). The track wheels had another rider come down on them, putting their pedals into the front wheel. Two spokes gone in a flash but the wheel held and amazingly one new spokes put in, dead straight.

If its ultimately alloy aero your after, the latest Gipiemme 716 is hard to beat at 42mm, they are just heavier.

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by jvanv8

Another +1 on the Reynolds... with all do respect from first responder from Pennsylvania. I owned the '09 variety for a year and they were great wheels. A big improvement on any other aluminum clincher I had in the past. Very stiff laterally (I never was able to 'hit the pads' although I did with my aluminum clinchers). At the time I was living in the big mountains of Costa Brava region of Spain (long 50-60 minute ascents, fun descents).. in July and August when air temperature is +30c. At the time, the best (lowest heat generating) break pads where Swiss Stop Yellows. They worked great. I was able to find one small imperfection on the breaking surface and was able to warranty the wheel (Reynolds customer service is great). I ended up eBaying the new wheel. I still have the rear. With Reynolds Cyro Blue Pads the performance is even better and the temperatures are much lower.

In 2011, the braking surface on several top-end Reynolds wheelsets changed. They were heavier but a bit more resilient to overheating. The braking was slightly better, but a good chunk of that was the result of the Reynolds Cyro Blue Pads ... much better than the Swiss Stop Yellows. The 'top end' clinchers gained 120 grams however.

Would I buy a older Reynolds wheelset from before the brake track change? Yes
Would I run Swiss Stop Yellows down a 5km -20% grade snaking descent @ 32degrees C sprinkled with gravel? No.
Would I run older Reynolds with the Blue pads down the same descent and air temperature? I just might.

So yes, I did have an older Reynolds rim fail, but I attribute most of it to the conditions (once in a lifetime descent) + the higher temperature yielding Swiss Stop Yellow pads and it happened.
Great wheels. If on a budget, jump.

Knowing what I know now, I'd actually seek out a pre-2011 Reynolds rim since they are light and very true and resilient ... and run the new blue pads... and try to stay away from any descent where you are going 15kpm with your butt over the rear wheel so you don't flip over the bars and say "this feels like mountain biking".
Mine did fine plenty big 'normal' road descents in the Alps, Pyrenees, Spain, and Austria. I've ridden in the Pennsylvania mountains before and it's really nothing to write or comment about.
Great wheel. The Assault isn't the lightest in the Reynolds repertoire during that time period (DV series, especially the DV UL series) but it's a top wheelset even to this day. Also seek out deals on the 'Forty-Six' (in Tubular for around $1199)or 'Sixty Six' around $1299.
But to me the real gem is the 'DV46 UL' wheel ( or the shallower and lighter version)
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by tinozee

Another vote that the assaults are fine. Mine are stiff and true after thousands of training miles. I have those, new 2013 404 tubs, reynolds 46 & 66, and lots of alloy wheels... I'd take the assults over any alu rims. The only alu rims I enjoy now are tubeless because I can run low psi. Tons of crit racers ride assaults and chinese carbon wheels, it's not such a big deal to ride deep rims in 2013 that you look like a poser. If you are fast it doesn't matter what some ancient wannabe Freddy Quirx thinks.

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by FIJIGabe

All the 2011 Reynolds received the brake surface upgrade, not just the higher end models.
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by Shinobi

Thanks guys for all the helpful comments and opinions.

I've been riding 2009 Assaults for the past two years, and the only real issue I have is that the brakes squeal like a swarm of bats. I guess that can be fixed with a little toe-in, but it's not that much of an annoyance to me. I was considering going to 101s, and also considering generic Chinese carbon clinchers.

I guess I am not as serious as most of you guys here -- my average ride is maybe 15-20 miles, and I don't do any major descending or climbing. I think I will try out the 101s and post my own opinion here shortly.

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by jhamlin38

without a doubt. I've ridden assaults for years. at first, I thought they were nice wheels. They're durable and worthwhile "everyday" wheels. with two exceptions. I'd never ride them in the rain. braking is so bad i actually started calling the wife when it started raining during a ride. Brake pulsing. Just unsettling and unnerving. I felt the benefit of riding a deeper wheel when speed exceeded 24-25 mph. But seldom would I ride solo at that speed for long. And if it's windy, and you're not paying attention, you could easily go down.

I upgraded to Eurus 2 way fits, and couldn't be happier. the overall quality is apparent to the eye, and while riding.

I'd definitely give the new 101's a try, but there are probably other wheels i'd go for first.

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by boots2000

How many miles/kms do you ride per year.
Weak spot on 101 is the rear hub. You wear out bearings quickly because they are small.
Otherwise, they are great wheels.
5000 miles/8000 km/year they are fine. More than that you need a more robust hub.

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