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Is there any form of "rule" on how many spokes riders of particular weights should use? I.E. Anyone under 70kg can use 20 spokes on the rear wheel or under while anyone over 80kg should use 24 etc.
I've been having some problems with a rear wheel that has 24 spokes (multiple broken spokes using different brands of spokes) and I'm coming in around 80-83kg. So I'm looking at new wheels now and I'm thinking that I should aim for 26-28 spoke rear wheels or should 24 be able to put up with my fat arse on it?
From my quick peruse of wheels, I'm struggling to find a wheelset that I can use to race and train on that is greater than 24 but less than 32 spokes.
There is no 'rule', as it depends on build quality and wheel design.
Good build quality with 24 spokes may be fine, but bad build quality and 24 may fall apart quickly.
Hub width, rim design, wheel profile, rim material, spoke type, spoke lacing etc. all influence the forces on the wheel during riding.
Best to check the manufacturers recommendations about rider weight limits and read up online about durability of specific wheel sets.
Personally, i'm 87kg and looking to get some Dura Ace 7900 C50 wheels. Shimano have no rider weight limit, a mate rides them without issues (he's considerably heavier) and all the reviews I find say that they're bomb proof. C50's have 16f / 21r...
I've thought about getting a cheap training set, say the Pro-Lite como's or Shimano 500's and using them. But call me superstitious, but I don't want to change the bike set up between training and racing, especially if it comes to playing around with the RD setup!
Interesting - I'm contemplating a pair of the RS81 C24's or C35's. I've previously ridden on a pair of stock Shimano wheels and they were bulletproof so I'm hoping the quality would transfer over to the higher end wheels.
But I dodge, duck and weave out of potholes!
Yeah, but what tyre pressure do you run? Is it below the recommended maximum for your rims? Were the wheels hand built or machine built? How much tension is there in the spokes? Are they even?
How much power are you laying down? What is your braking technique? Do you grind up hills, or put it in a lower gear and spin your legs off?
Do you stay in the saddle over bumps, or do you stand up? How hard are you on the bike, generally?
Some people are hard on their equipment. Some are just unlucky... But there are about a million reasons you could be breaking spokes.
Racing wheels and Training wheels are different animals. For sure you can find something in the middle that will do both but generally a 1500g wheelset isn't going to last as long as a 2000g wheelset.
The simple and most cost effective solution long-term would be to buy two sets. Running something heavy to train on most people feel is a training benefit. It also means you can pair your Training wheels with Training tyres and keep the good rubber on your race-day wheelset.
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Also look at rim depth,..deeper rims generally flex less and load the spokes more evenly.....but getting any wheel set tension checked makes such a difference,and get it done every few thousand k"s.....I train and race on 60mm carbons (chinese) and only just broke one spoke after 11000k,more likely fatigue failure.
I've run the RS80 (c24) with GP4000s 23 at 110psi for several thousand klms with never a broken spoke nor any adjustment needed. Thoroughly recommend them. I am 98Kg.
100kgs here and my c24's melted on me whilst descending a minor hill. Perth doesn't have any mountains. I wouldn't recommend them for a heavy rider.
8 of these spokes detached themselves from the aluminium brake track.
I'm on Fulcrum Racing Zero's now and can't fault them. Interestingly Fulcrum have a 85kgs weight limit whilst Shimano don't!!
The Fulcrums are much stiffer in comparison.
I've done over 7,000kms on a set of RS80 C24s now without any trouble whatsoever, they have never needed truing and there is very little wear on the braking surface. I'm very surprised to see the damage to Hugor's wheel, I have done repeats quite a few times of a local climb which peaks a long way north of 20% and is around 10% average over 5kms and haven't had any signs of trouble yet. I weigh about 82kgs btw.
When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments- Elizabeth West.
Yeh I had done about 1000 on these. I was descending a 20% twisty gradient for about 3k. I was on the brakes sure but didn't expect this.
Most of the drive side spokes pulled off the rim.
I never understood what people were talking about when they spoke of flexy or stiff wheels.
After changing to the Fulcrums I noticed an immediate improvement in my high speed cornering confidence.
The steering felt so much more predictable and precise. I attribute this to the stiffness of the Fulcrums compared to the C24's.
I think the weight of the wheels is comparable.
My 2c anyway.
My Fulcrum Racing 3 just gave me a good scare... Well the front one did. Cruising along at 42ish and an almighty bang clatter clatter. Front spoke broke at the nipple and ripped itself out of the hub.
Luckily I had a spoke key as it was jammed into the fork. Loosened off a couple and limped 20ks home.
Sort of killed the ride .
I've done a bit over 13,000 kms on a set of Fulcrum 3's. Currently weigh 90kg but was over 105kg when I first got them. They've remained true, the only issue I've had is needing a new freehub at ~7,000 but I suspect it was faulty from day one - always had an oscillating sound when freewheeling which the new one doesn't have. Anyway - I'm a big fan - your mileage may vary.
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I think it's more complicated than just a spoke to rider weight question. If you have a strong rim you'll get away with less spokes because the load will be better distributed across the spokes - you don't see many deep rim 32 spoke wheels around. Similarly the lighter the rim the more spokes you'll need.
I'm riding a 16/20 spoke combo on my commuter which has been fine (shimano rs31) but is pretty heavy at about 1900g. I've also recently but up some lighter wheels (1450g) with 20/24 spokes (Pacenti rim. CX ray spokes, Novatec hubs) which have been great though in hindsight I wish I'd gone for 28 spokes on the rear.
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