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Zurichman

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So I stopped by my Raleigh dealer today whose owner probably has been building wheels for 30+ years. He is that good that another shop uses him for his customer's as he doesn't feel like/have the time or have the experience that this wheel builder has.

This is what he kind of come up with for my Raleigh Tamland 1 and I am around a 185 -195 lb rider

rims Stans Arch EX
spokes butted with brass nipples 32 in the rear
hubs Hope pro 4

Total cost for the set was $584 

Does this look like a good wheel set up and I am guessing much better than my current stock set up? I probably won't get them built up until fall or late winter.

Is this price reasonable? I have no clue but guessing he has good prices as he does on other stuff in his shop.

Thanks
Zman

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sgtrobo

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Reply with quote  #2 
I had a set of Arch EX's laced to DTSwiss 350s on my Salsa Fargo, 32h with brass nipples.  I'm 250# and rode my Fargo weighed down frequently, where the combo of me, my gear, and all the crap I loaded up on the Fargo was close to 300#.  The wheelset was absolutely bombproof, and $584 is pretty solid
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oleritter

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Reply with quote  #3 
$584 does sound quite fair for wheels with those components, yes.

I agree, that should be a durable wheelset.  It might be too durable.  (I know, oxymoron)

What he is proposing is really a MTB wheel build, and nothing wrong with that.  

But - At your weight, you could lighten things up with different hubs and more road oriented disc rims, if you desired.  Riding on gravel does not have the same demands on wheels as MTB riding, so the wheels can be a bit lighter without making big compromises.

I would suspect those wheels as described will weigh in excess of 1800 grams, and I would say something in the 1600 gram zone would be appropriate for gravel riding.  It's pretty tough to get below 1600 for disc wheels.

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oleritter

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Reply with quote  #4 
One more thing, that is a pretty wide rim for gravel tires.


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ridemagnetic

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Reply with quote  #5 
Zman, I've also been building 30 years but have to disagree with the recommendation you got based on my experience. Hope hubs seem like a good deal but out of all the aftermarket hub choices out there they're probably the least desirable. Their bearings are terrible, extremely high drag and fast to wear. The plastic snap ring that holds the freehub body in place is poor design and is conducive to letting in grime as it wears because it's not a proper labyrinth seal. Really soft freehub bodies that are highly prone to cassette gouging. Freewheeling noise when new is loudest in the industry. After some miles it's becomes deafening. All being said, ok for chairlift DH'rs who don't stack miles like we do.

Substitute Hope for DT 350 and you get a much better hub set for very little cost difference.    





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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oleritter
$584 does sound quite fair for wheels with those components, yes.

I agree, that should be a durable wheelset.  It might be too durable.  (I know, oxymoron)

What he is proposing is really a MTB wheel build, and nothing wrong with that.  

But - At your weight, you could lighten things up with different hubs and more road oriented disc rims, if you desired.  Riding on gravel does not have the same demands on wheels as MTB riding, so the wheels can be a bit lighter without making big compromises.

I would suspect those wheels as described will weigh in excess of 1800 grams, and I would say something in the 1600 gram zone would be appropriate for gravel riding.  It's pretty tough to get below 1600 for disc wheels.


So since I am all new to this what hubs and rims would you reccommend. It doesn't help any that I didn't get a chance to ride my 1st gravel grinding ride over the weekend(Farmer's Daughter) I guess I had in my mind it was up over hill and dale. Big Grin

What I do know is that I want to get my rig set up the best way I can(without mistakes I have had plenty of them on the learning curve of road riding) so I can be somewhat competitive and enjoy gravel grinding to the fullest.


Thanks again
Zman

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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridemagnetic
Zman, I've also been building 30 years but have to disagree with the recommendation you got based on my experience. Hope hubs seem like a good deal but out of all the aftermarket hub choices out there they're probably the least desirable. Their bearings are terrible, extremely high drag and fast to wear. The plastic snap ring that holds the freehub body in place is poor design and is conducive to letting in grime as it wears because it's not a proper labyrinth seal. Really soft freehub bodies that are highly prone to cassette gouging. Freewheeling noise when new is loudest in the industry. After some miles it's becomes deafening. All being said, ok for chairlift DH'rs who don't stack miles like we do.

Substitute Hope for DT 350 and you get a much better hub set for very little cost difference.    






So if you were building a wheel for me what rims would you use? Would you use brass nipples or alloy? I know a little bit about road racing wheels and they use the Saphim flat(aero) race spokes. Do you use them for your gravel grinding wheel builds. If I  had my builder use the Saphim is 32 spokes still enough on the rear? I only know enough to be somewhat dangerous here. I just go out and ride my sweet Lemond Victoirre bike and let the chips fall where they may.

Thanks for any and all advice.
Zman

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oleritter

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Reply with quote  #8 
You are coming from a road perspective and you are used to a pretty light bike, and light components overall.  If you are gravel riding, (not touring or bike packing), you might as well have a reasonably light wheel set.  You aren't a lightweight rider, but you aren't heavy, either.  You might be surprised at the weight ratings for <insert prominent name> disc wheels, even as low as 24h/24h.  Up above 200 lbs.

Sapim CX Ray build up into strong and stiff wheels just fine.  Sometimes I'll recommend CX Sprint on drive side of rear wheel.  That is where most spoke failures occur.  CX Rays are popular and very reliable spokes, as are all Sapim spokes.  CX Rays also cost a lot, and add a fair amount to a wheel build cost.  An alternative to them is D Lights, which is a round butted spoke that weighs almost the same as CX Ray.  And cost less.  

I would have no problem with recommending a 24/28 build for you.  I have one rim that has offset spoke holes, which builds into even stronger wheels yet.  I agree that DT 350 are a really good choice, and you can't go wrong with them.  I also like certain Taiwanese made hubs, and prefer them over Hope, even though I have Hope hubs of my own.  

A few of my favorite rims - Pacenti Forza Disc, H plus Son Hydra, also rims from Velocity and Hed, and Kinlin, and DT Swiss

I favor alloy nipples over brass generally.  I know some builders are the opposite.  



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ridemagnetic

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurichman


So if you were building a wheel for me what rims would you use? Would you use brass nipples or alloy? I know a little bit about road racing wheels and they use the Saphim flat(aero) race spokes. Do you use them for your gravel grinding wheel builds. If I  had my builder use the Saphim is 32 spokes still enough on the rear? I only know enough to be somewhat dangerous here. I just go out and ride my sweet Lemond Victoirre bike and let the chips fall where they may.

Thanks for any and all advice.
Zman


Rims: Pacenti Forza, Ryde Pulse Comp, WTB Frequency or KOM, H+Son Hydra. Brass nipples; yes. Sapim CX-Ray spokes; yes, but it comes at a price. 64 Sapim CX-Rays cost $192, 14/15ga double butted Sapim Race spokes cost $64 per set. Ultimately if I was building a set for you I'd request that this conversation continue in a private message. Building wheels this long I've developed a formula for placing riders on the best solution possible for their needs that even the most seasoned builders don't go to the lengths I do, and you can see there's a bit of competition here.

For example; I would not recommend a 24h front wheel for a rider like you for the type of riding you have planned for them.

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oleritter

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridemagnetic


Rims: Pacenti Forza, Ryde Pulse Comp, WTB Frequency or KOM, H+Son Hydra. Brass nipples; yes. Sapim CX-Ray spokes; yes, but it comes at a price. For example 64 Sapim CX-Rays cost $192, 14/15ga double butted Sapim Race spokes cost $64 per set. Ultimately if I was building a set for you I'd request that this conversation continue in a private message. Building wheels this long I've developed a formula for placing riders on the best solution possible for their needs that even the most seasoned builders don't go to the lengths I do, and you can see there's a bit of competition here.

For example; I would not recommend a 24h front wheel for a rider like you.


Please don't interpret this the wrong way, but why not 24h front for a gravel wheel?  Hed and American Classic both have such wheels rated for rider weights above that we are talking here.  I am confident I can build an as good front disc wheel as them, so why not?  And I feel the rim is a big factor here.  Some rims, yes.  Others, no.

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ridemagnetic

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Reply with quote  #11 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oleritter


Please don't interpret this the wrong way, but why not 24h front for a gravel wheel?  Hed and American Classic both have such wheels rated for rider weights above that we are talking here.  I am confident I can build an as good front disc wheel as them, so why not?  And I feel the rim is a big factor here.  Some rims, yes.  Others, no.


24h fronts aren't conducive for good handling or tracking on gravel. Especially so if you're dealing with a big rider with maybe not the best bike handling skills. Less spokes means higher tension, the result of which is a less compliant front wheel. Fine for road or cx racing, but not so much for gravel or adventure riding. As a custom builder I don't queue off what factory wheel co's do because I know 10x out of 10 I build a better wheel than something that was meant for one-size-fits-all/off-the-shelf.

I have personally logged thousands miles of dedicated gravel riding and racing that started waaay back when Almanzo used to start in Rochester 10 years ago. Since then I've lived on the Front Range of the Rockies, now I'm in the Cascades, always seeking out gravel and dirt. After testing many combinations over many different types of terrain I can tell you with no hesitation that 24h front wheels are unnecessary for most. I also average 300-400 sets per year and my customer feedback supports this idea. Just because we can build it doesn't make it right for this application.

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AlanEsh

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Reply with quote  #12 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oleritter
One more thing, that is a pretty wide rim for gravel tires.

I'm curious about this comment... I'm running WTB i25 KOMs on my Raleigh with 41mm tires; I love the added volume and flatter profile this gives my tires. What's your concern with a wide rim? Thanks!
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oleritter

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanEsh

I'm curious about this comment... I'm running WTB i25 KOMs on my Raleigh with 41mm tires; I love the added volume and flatter profile this gives my tires. What's your concern with a wide rim? Thanks!


I'm not disagreeing with you, but it does limit you if you want to run tires on the smaller end.  I'm not sure the OP knows yet which way he'll go with that.  
  
That's all.  

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