Wheels for climbing

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.

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by Paddypurplepuss

Hey guys. So im about to buy a new set of wheels which will mainly be used for climbing. My budget is around 2k. Im looking at rim brake only. The main reason for buying these wheels is to acheive the best time possible for next years etape. Ive narrowed it down to a couple of wheels which I will list here - if there are any other wheels that arent in the list and you think are woth trying maybe post them in the comments.

These are the wheels im looking at and am trying to figure out which are the best for the job. ¬

1. Mavic Cosmic Carbon Pro SL
2. Fulcrum Racing Zero
3. DT Swiss Pr 1400 dicut
4. DT Swiss Pr1400 dicut oxic
5. Dt Swiss PRC 1400 spline 35mm
6. Hunt 36 UD carbon spoke

Just to give some more clarity - at the moment I have a set of 2 year old Zipp 404 firecrest carbon wheels on my bike which is a canyon ultimate. So I want a wheel that is obviously better for climbing than these. The Zipps are actually fine on short climbs but on long decsents they are very hairy! Also im 1.83cm tall and am 82kg. I will be around 78kg for the etape if that helps.

by Weenie

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by petert123

I'm a bit lighter I'm afraid ( :roll: ) but I ride Mavic SLR's, Campag WTO's and Zeal camerig's - if I had to pick one I'd say the WTO's; don't know what I was thinking when I got the SLR's, the Mavic freehubs are terrible; the Zeal's are nice but overrated - again I got the ceramicspeed coated bearings.. what can I say I'm a sucker for less weight and friction :)

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by eins4eins

2k budget and heavy aluminium wheels on the shortlist doesn't match up.

If your not comfortable with carbon rims in the mountains, get some custom wheels with alu rims and quality hubs build. Open Pro UST with light hubs will be somewhere around 1300gr for much less than those system wheels you listed.

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by nickf

Check out Farsports. I have a set of their tubulars built up with the following FSC45TM-26-UL rims, CX-Ray spokes, Carbon-Ti hubs 1118g. I'm around 79kg. Absolutely solid build. Also, their brake track is also really nice, no pulsing, and quiet. Shipped to the USA they come out to $900.

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by StevenH72

So, I've gone through a similar decision. I just love wheels. I currently ride a set of Enve 3.4SES Gen 2 for summer and some A-Force AL33's for winter, both laced to Tune Mig70/Mag170 hubs with CX-Ray spokes.

The Enve's come in at 1420g (with rim tape) and the A-Force at 1,475g. I run both tubeless on Schwalbe Pro Ones.

I fancied a lighter set, not because I think I'll gain any great performance benefits, I just like geeking out on wheels.

For reference, I am 80kg at the moment and will float between 75-77kg through summer. Next year I am attempting the Cingles du Mont Ventoux, so my "climbing" set is really for that.

I was trying to decide between Schmolke TLO45s and Hunt 36 UD Carbon Spoke and ended up going down the Hunt route.

I doubt the Hunts will actually come in at 1,295g, but that is where I ended up going. Not being a traditional grimpeur, physique wise, I liked the stiffness offering of the Hunt's and even at low 1300g's it is a crazy light set.

I had an email from Hunt yesterday saying that my set is due for delivery in November Wk2, so hopefully I will have them soon. I'll update once I have received them. I think they look like a great wheelset and the ceramicspeed bearings is just a bonus. Great value imho

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by LewisK

I have a set of Fulcrum Racing Zero Carbon wheels, and they are very good! I brought them at the start of the year and it was a tough decision as there are so many great wheels out there. For the money (I paid about £1250), I think they are hard to beat! The bearings are brilliant, and have to say, its the best braking performance ive come across for a carbon clincher. I couldn't justify ENVE which are more than double the price, at least!

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by csteenbe

Would take the DT Swiss Pr1400 Dicut Oxic, that said I have also WTO45 - nice wheels but feel a bit heavy.

I myself prefer my LW Gipfelsturm for climbing, they are fast, agile and light - but again the DT Swiss mentioned are a good option!

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by petert123

csteenbe wrote:
Wed Nov 06, 2019 4:25 pm
I myself prefer my LW Gipfelsturm for climbing, they are fast, agile and light - but again the DT Swiss mentioned are a good option!
Would love to even try a pair of Gipfelsturm's; but tubular-only, and over budget here! Can't go wrong with DT rims and hubs.

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by Nefarious86

Having ridden several on that list I'd take the DT Swiss Pr1400 dicut oxic with GP5K tubeless hands down from that list given your remarks on descending manners. Stiff without being harsh, excellent tubeless compatibility, easy to source spare parts for ongoing maintenance, DTs build quality and rim brake performance that is as close to disc as I've found in a rim brake with the recommended Swissstop Blue pads that seem to last forever.

Yes they aren't the absolute lightest option but I've beat the absolute snot out of mine at up to 90kg at times and they havent skipped a beat or shown signs of wear.

The only other option I could recommend would be the Mavic R-SYS SLR Clincher Wheelset but beware, the coating on these will wear and they are very sensitive to brake setup and will squeal like a banshee if you get it wrong.

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by Paddypurplepuss

Hey guys thanks for all the feedback. So much stuff I dont know about wheels. I hadnt though about getting custom built wheels at all.

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by DarthKrutall

If we are talking disc I recently aquired some DT Swiss P41400's, 1477g with rim tape

They spin up great :D

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by robertbb

Agree that of the list provided, the Dicut Oxics sound best. Never ridden them but I switched to SwissStop BXP (blue) pads on my bike (with Zonda C17's) and they changed the braking performance totally. Incredible power and modulation and they don't kill the brake track. I'd imagine they'd be ever better on a rim with the Oxic coating.

With that said though, let's just disspel the idea of "climbing" wheels.

You gotta start by looking at your "system" weight.

You'll be 78kg by the time of your event. Lets say your bike weighs 7kg (just for convenience and round numbers) so your system weight is bang on 85kg (not including water bottles which might add ~1kg).

If you drop 500 grams on your bike, as a percentage of the system weight (80,000 grams) that equates to a whopping 0.63% reduction in weight.

Now that's 500 grams across a whole bike. If you look at just the wheels, the difference in weight between the lightest and heaviest of the wheelset options you've listed might be 250 grams so you can halve that to 0.315%....

Of far more importance are stiffness, braking, bearing quality (poor bearings really will slow you down), the number/thickness/pattern of spokes (can have effects on handling, especially in sidewinds) and the interface to the type and size of tyre you want to run.

I'm not saying go out and run 1850gram clinchers... just understand the diminishing returns of light weight (often at the expense of stiffness, handling and braking).

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by wheelsONfire

Schmolke TL or TLO rims (30 or 45 deep), Carbon Ti hubs, CX-ray spokes and internal nipples.
Bought TLO 45 and same spec as above. Rim tape or strip of own choice.
TL is braided T800 weave, TLO is braided T1000 weave.
Weight is alot less than most options above.

Schmolke have NO restrictions of brake pads, as long as it's for carbon.
You can use Reynolds Blue power for instance. Most are very restricted when it comes to pads.
https://reynoldscycling.com/products/cr ... brake-pads

Ax Lightness Vial EVO Race (2018.12.21)
Paduano Racing Fidia (kind of shelved)
Open *UP* (2016.04.14)

Ex bike; Vial EVO D

by Weenie

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by Pierre86

robertbb wrote:
Thu Nov 07, 2019 12:18 am

With that said though, let's just disspel the idea of "climbing" wheels.
Came here to say just this, you'll likely go faster on aero wheels even if they're 100g heavier
S6 Evo
S5 Aero

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