Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

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Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby stevepeter83 » Tue Nov 16, 2010 6:12 pm

Hi everyone,

I'm interested in getting one of the Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL3 bikes.

This is the URL of the bike: http://www.specialized.com/au/gb/bc/SBCProduct.jsp?spid=52906&scid=1001&scname=Road.

I just notice that the wheels are Roval Rapide SL 45 which turns out to be combination of both aluminium and carbon.

Will you ride those sort of bikes to work? I consulted with LBS and the guy said he wouldn't do that because carbon fibre wheels break easily when hitting curb/pot hole. Is this true?

I currently have Giant TCR Advanced 1 and has Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheel and it's pretty strong.

What's your thought of riding that bike to work? What I'm most concerned really is the durability of the wheels themselves. The road in Perth, WA (where I'm in at the moment) is not so bad. It's not like cobble stone and the route that I normally go through doesn't have any potholes or anything like that.



Thoughts?
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by BNA » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:08 pm

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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby CommuRider » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:08 pm

Go for it. You'd have lots of cyclists checking out your wheels, ahem, your bike. I'd avoid tram tracks but since you're in Perth that shouldn't be a problem.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sogood » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:25 pm

One can drive a Ferrari on daily work commute. But is it the most appropriate tool for the job? Well, it depends on your circumstances.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby CommuRider » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:28 pm

I wouldn't mind driving a Ferrari to work provided I didn't pay for it :-) although my green side will nag at me.

That said, I don't mind riding a $500,000 artwork by Damien Hirst provided I didn't pay for it....
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby ft_critical » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:43 pm

stevepeter83 wrote:I just notice that the wheels are Roval Rapide SL 45 which turns out to be combination of both aluminium and carbon.


Look I just don't think it would be safe to commute on those, unless they had ceramic bearings, then you would be fine.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby Missy24 » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:46 pm

Totally invest in some lightweights.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby stevepeter83 » Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:43 pm

Thanks everyone. I guess I totally agree..I can definitely ride Lamborghini to work but like you all said whether it's the right tool for the job or not.

I guess the answer that I'm looking for is the durability of the wheels. I'm not a racer myself so I would never to have 2 bikes - 1 for work 1 for racing. That's why I just want to buy the best bike with the best frame that is durable so I don't need to buy bikes for some time.

I really-really like that particular bike I just want to know whether the wheels will break easily or not if I use them to work. Or is it better for me to use other wheels (e.g. alloy) such as Ksyrium Elite? Or should I just build my own bike that way I don't have to be bothered selling that carbon wheels? Once again I would never race.


Thanks,
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sogood » Tue Nov 16, 2010 10:05 pm

CF can be more fragile under certain circumstances.
CF is more eye catching and thieves love it.
CF performance is typically not required on commute ride.

I would suggest that you fork out for a cheap pair of commuter wheelset (even carefully chosen second hand). $150-200 will get you a very good pair and won't kill your budget.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sblack » Wed Nov 17, 2010 8:34 am

stevepeter83 wrote:I currently have Giant TCR Advanced 1 and has Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheel and it's pretty strong.

stevepeter83 wrote:I'm not a racer myself so I would never to have 2 bikes - 1 for work 1 for racing.

So what's the plan with the TCR? Is there anything wrong with the wheels on it? You always have the option of swapping the wheels over and selling the new wheels with the TCR (if selling the TCR is your intent).
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby goneriding » Wed Nov 17, 2010 8:51 am

sogood wrote:CF performance is typically not required on commute ride.


Surely you jest! Any advantage in the Commuter Cup is to be exploited.
CommuRider wrote:You'd have lots of cyclists checking out your wheels, ahem, your bike


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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sogood » Wed Nov 17, 2010 9:34 am

goneriding wrote:Surely you jest! Any advantage in the Commuter Cup is to be exploited.

Silly you! Can't you see that I've been trying hard to cull the competition to secure your win? I have money on you... 8)
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby CommuRider » Wed Nov 17, 2010 10:09 am

goneriding wrote:
sogood wrote:CF performance is typically not required on commute ride.


Surely you jest! Any advantage in the Commuter Cup is to be exploited.
CommuRider wrote:You'd have lots of cyclists checking out your wheels, ahem, your bike


Hussy


Flaunt it if you've got it! :-P
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby mikesbytes » Wed Nov 17, 2010 10:14 am

You'll be everyone's target in the commuter cup
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby stevepeter83 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:10 am

I just think that the TCR's frame is not that stiff. It's shaking a bit when you ride it with great crosswind on the side of the river.

It's different from the Specialized frame (and the more expensive frames from other brands I believe) hence the reason why I want to get a new bike. My real intention is really to get the best bike so that I don't have to be bothered with changing bikes again in the near future. I will never race so I will never have 2 bikes.


Cheers,
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby goneriding » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:23 am

If you do get the bike keep the wheels off the old one and use them for commuting and the CF ones for weekend riding. Then you buy a pair of cheapies to put on the TCR before you sell it. Either that or you sell the CF wheels and buy yourself another set of rims.

The other thing to keep in mind is the cost of brake pads for the CF wheels as they are much more expensive.

The main issue with the CF frame is not so much the actual commute but the exposure to damage the frame will get in the work bike cage (assuming that's where it will be stored).
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby damhooligan » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:40 am

stevepeter83 wrote:I guess the answer that I'm looking for is the durability of the wheels. I'm not a racer myself so I would never to have 2 bikes - 1 for work 1 for racing. That's why I just want to buy the best bike with the best frame that is durable so I don't need to buy bikes for some time.


I don't race either , but i stil have 2 bikes (wel, i have more then 2..... :roll: )
1 for work, and 1 for weeken ride and fun rides.

So you have to ask yourself what type of riding you do , and buy a bike according to that.
Not the other way around, drooling at a bike and then wondering if it is suitable or not is not the way to do it.

If you are not planning of riding on the weekend , and doing long rides, you might have to accept that this specific bike is not the best one for you.
Altough it is an absolute stunner of a bike, it's not designed for commuting.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sblack » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:48 am

goneriding wrote:The other thing to keep in mind is the cost of brake pads for the CF wheels as they are much more expensive.

stevepeter83 wrote:I just notice that the wheels are Roval Rapide SL 45 which turns out to be combination of both aluminium and carbon.

Brake tracks are aluminium so not an issue in this case. In regards to durability I wonder if the CF actually makes any difference in this instance. If it's just a carbon aero cap over an aluminium rim as suggested in this cycling news article then why would it have any less durability than the aluminium rim it's based on?
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby twizzle » Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:55 am

SRAM Red. Durable? No. Go and check how much it's going to cost in chains/cassettes/rings over time.
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Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sim-o » Wed Nov 17, 2010 12:30 pm

If all your doing is commuting, wouldn't an upper end flat bar roadie be the way to go? They're more suited for durability right?
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby grimbo » Wed Nov 17, 2010 12:52 pm

damhooligan wrote:
stevepeter83 wrote:I guess the answer that I'm looking for is the durability of the wheels. I'm not a racer myself so I would never to have 2 bikes - 1 for work 1 for racing. That's why I just want to buy the best bike with the best frame that is durable so I don't need to buy bikes for some time.


I don't race either , but i stil have 2 bikes (wel, i have more then 2..... :roll: )
1 for work, and 1 for weeken ride and fun rides.

So you have to ask yourself what type of riding you do , and buy a bike according to that.
Not the other way around, drooling at a bike and then wondering if it is suitable or not is not the way to do it.

If you are not planning of riding on the weekend , and doing long rides, you might have to accept that this specific bike is not the best one for you.
Altough it is an absolute stunner of a bike, it's not designed for commuting.


Actually, I disagree. I reckon you should ride what gives you the most fun and the best buzz, and the heck with "the most appropriate bike for the job". As someone (Lawarence Block?) said "you're a long time dead".

And really, I can't see how commuting to work on "roads" is somehow worse for a bike than weekend/recreational/serious riding on "roads". That makes it sound like commute riding can magically damage a bike because "it's commute riding".
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby damhooligan » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:12 pm

grimbo wrote:
damhooligan wrote:
stevepeter83 wrote:I guess the answer that I'm looking for is the durability of the wheels. I'm not a racer myself so I would never to have 2 bikes - 1 for work 1 for racing. That's why I just want to buy the best bike with the best frame that is durable so I don't need to buy bikes for some time.


I don't race either , but i stil have 2 bikes (wel, i have more then 2..... :roll: )
1 for work, and 1 for weeken ride and fun rides.

So you have to ask yourself what type of riding you do , and buy a bike according to that.
Not the other way around, drooling at a bike and then wondering if it is suitable or not is not the way to do it.

If you are not planning of riding on the weekend , and doing long rides, you might have to accept that this specific bike is not the best one for you.
Altough it is an absolute stunner of a bike, it's not designed for commuting.


Actually, I disagree. I reckon you should ride what gives you the most fun and the best buzz, and the heck with "the most appropriate bike for the job". As someone (Lawarence Block?) said "you're a long time dead".

And really, I can't see how commuting to work on "roads" is somehow worse for a bike than weekend/recreational/serious riding on "roads". That makes it sound like commute riding can magically damage a bike because "it's commute riding".


I don't mean just as for durabitlity, but mor as in comfort.
The tarmac is a racing bike and has a racing geomotry, not very comfy for commuting when carring stuff for work.
it also has racing componentry, needs more tuning and replacing then non racing componentry.
All these things add up into getting joy out of it.
In short term, oh yes, but in long term oh no...

Same with commutting (driving) in a lamborghini/ferrari, fun in the beginning, but it won't last.

But that is just my opinion...
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby sogood » Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:20 pm

grimbo wrote:Actually, I disagree. I reckon you should ride what gives you the most fun and the best buzz, and the heck with "the most appropriate bike for the job". As someone (Lawarence Block?) said "you're a long time dead".

Did you know that fun and buzz can be congruent with "most appropriate bike for the job"? Low spoke count CF wheels, narrow tubular tyres can come to grief when one is called to jump kerbs and run through glass fields. Sitting on the road side with broken spokes and unrepairable punctures is typically no fun. And being late for a major business meeting and getting shouted down by the boss is no fun either.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby stevepeter83 » Wed Nov 17, 2010 4:12 pm

Hi everyone,

Thanks for your input. The wheels on that Specialized bike are not tubular though. It's clincher carbon with alloy spokes.

So, going back to the original question, if I was to ride any bike on that wheels, will they break easily if I ride on a little rough terrain like what it is from my house to Perth? (Anyone from Perth will have an idea on what the bike path terrain is like).

If the wheels don't break easily I guess I'm good to ride on that bike?

I think someone pointed out a good point. What differences does it make if I ride on that bike daily and only on the weekend while I go through the same path anyway? That's really the question I need an answer on. If the wheels are durable enough I guess I will still purchase the bike then.


Cheers,
Steve
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby Baalzamon » Fri Nov 19, 2010 9:23 am

Just where in perth are you riding from and to? Perth is windy and depending on where you are going, handling may be affected.
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Re: Carbon Fiber Wheels for Commuting to Work

Postby goneriding » Fri Nov 19, 2010 9:34 am

The thing to understand about CF whether it be wheels or frames is that it is very strong in the direction it has been laid up but not so good when it is subjected to forces against the lay and whilst it can be repaired does tend to lose its structural integrity once it starts to crack. Added to that CF anything tends to be very thin whereas non CF frames/wheels, as a general statement, tend to be more robust overall.

As I previously stated it is not the commute that will kill the bike but stowing it in the work bike racks where it will be knocked by other people bringing their bikes in.

All that said, it is a very nice looking set of wheels and as grimbo said you are dead for a long time!
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