Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts
I am on the verge of getting a set of new wheels, the choice is between:
1. Hand Made with Pacenti SL23 rims & White Ind \ Chris King hubs
2. Dura ace 9000 Tubeless
I am leaning towards the handmade as I can specify a higher spoke count and I think they will be more durable, but I would love to have peoples opinions!
Handmade, although the DA wheels are very good.
I'd also go White Ind over CK. The CK hubs are also very good but the WI have a titanium freehub as opposed to alloy, plus everyone is using CK hubs these days.
Bought custom / hand made wheels about 2 months ago. During that time some rear spokes lost all tension. Fortunately, I had the tools, research and an interest in wheel building, otherwise I would have regretted purchase.
That's just a poor build.
We might have had the same wheel builder it seems, as my back wheel died when a spoke snapped off. Was later told it was due to a bad build..
That and the 4 times I had them re-trued
My take on what he's saying is that hand made is no protection against a poor build.
And that would fit with my experience. The supposed local wheelbuilding guru who is, incidentally, the principal of the LBS closest to where I live, got the dishing wrong by 5mm. To be fair, has been good since then - and I have given it some abuse over some terrible pavement.
"People have a right to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Evidence must be located, not created, and opinions not backed by evidence cannot be given much weight." -- James W Loewen
Factory wheels I think are pretty good these days as far as specs and tolerances go. I only ever had hand built when I was racing but that was 35yrs ago and the builders back then were old school. Hand built if you want a miss match of hubs and rims and spoke setup.
I don't suffer fools easily and so long as you have done your best,you should have no regrets.
You have all have me worried now, I was thinking of using Zen or Ergott in New York, any problems with these guys. ? any builder recommendation would be very useful.
I have to say, if I could get the Dura Ace 9000 in a 24/28 spoke count there would be no competition, the new freehub body is also titanium as I understand it...
I would go with a custom wheelset. The Pacenti SL23 has good reviews (it's actually 24mm wide). I have a wide rim wheelset (23mm) and the ride and handling is excellent (you can run 10psi lower). The Pacenti rim will be stronger than the Dura-Ace C24 because it's deeper and wider. A WI T11 hub is better value for money than the CKs (and as mentioned you get a titanium freehub like the Dura-Ace hubs). You can also get the spoke count that is appropriate to your weight.
Surely you can find a recommended local builder?
Source the parts and get it done locally.
I have two custom build wheels from one of the premier US shops and they have been faultless. Based on CK hubs which I don't have enough words of praise for. In the long run I would only choose a builder I trusted and would never go back to off the shelf wheels again.
Just my opinion though.
“Get a bicycle. You will not regret it. If you live.” Mark Twain
Factory, the level and quality is the same.
Expect, mentioned before, if there is a mismatch rim/hub. You can have a personalised wheelset which is great! But the builder is important and you have to know and trust him.
I have factory and handmade, factory is my preference!
I bought a set of Fulcrum CX Quattro wheels online which came with a handwritten label attached with the builders or QA guy's signature on them. Good enough for me and they have been fine - and for less than $400, the most cost effective upgrade I could make on a bike that was around $1600 new 18 months ago.
For a more expensive bike you might consider custom built ... I guess .... but I figure if a guy sits down and makes N sets of wheels every day of his working life and they are properly QA-ed then they should be pretty good.
Here's my blog - A bit of fun
"Riding not racing...."
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