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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for a wheelset under $200. I ride XC/Trail. Never done a drop over 1ft, don't plan on doing anything over maybe 2ft. I weigh around 200lbs. I do like to ride through pretty rocky terrain at times. Currently running 2.25" tires, don't plan on running anything wider than a 2.3". I've read a lot of good things about handbuilt wheels and Bicycle Wheel Warehouse. I've found two wheelsets there that fit my budget.

First is the WTB Laserdisc XC w/ XT 6 bolt hubs. 19mm wide, and $15 cheaper than the mavics. Welded, seem to be the top of the line WTB rim.

Second is the Mavic EN321 with XT 6 bolt hubs. 21mm wide. Mavic's lower end rim, pinned, but everyone loves mavic.

Planning on using Comp 1.8/2.0 spokes and alloy nipples (for the pretty colors of course).

Anyone have experience with either rim? Or any other suggestions that may work for me?
 

· Former Bike Wrench
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Not really a good comparison as one is an XC rim and the other is an AM/FR rim. The Laserdisc XC is 440 grams and a good solid XC rim. The Mavic 321 is 570 grams, much heavier and more intended for very aggressive riding. From your description I would consider the 321 to be overkill. The Mavic 317 is a better comparison, but I'd still probably go with the Laserdisc ($15 cheaper than the 317 set with the same components). I use SpeedDisc rims and I really like the bead lock on the WTB rims, it really keeps the tire bead in place and it makes for a solid tubeless conversion if your interested in that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The laserdisc is lighter; 1933gms vs 2201gms for the 321.

I was pretty set on the Laserdisc, but I read the reviews here and they seemed pretty negative toward WTB rims. Reviews for the mavic rims are great. I thought I might need a wider/heavier rim due to my weight. But maybe the WTB will be okay.
 

· SSolo, on your left!
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mtnbiker72 said:
Not really a good comparison as one is an XC rim and the other is an AM/FR rim. The Laserdisc XC is 440 grams and a good solid XC rim. The Mavic 321 is 570 grams, much heavier and more intended for very aggressive riding. From your description I would consider the 321 to be overkill. The Mavic 317 is a better comparison, but I'd still probably go with the Laserdisc ($15 cheaper than the 317 set with the same components). I use SpeedDisc rims and I really like the bead lock on the WTB rims, it really keeps the tire bead in place and it makes for a solid tubeless conversion if your interested in that.
X2 :thumbsup: :thumbsup: Love my WTB Laserdisc Trail 29ers...stock on my Haro Mary and a great balance of weight and strength. Also very secure bead setup as Mtnbiker72 said! I'm about 200 lbs geared up, ride all types of terrain and do some 1-2' drops and jumps no problem with these rims. Mine are all stock Haro parts, brass nipples, Pivit 32h hubs, and 14 gauge straight spokes.

http://wtb.com/products/wheels/rims/29er/laserdisctrail29er/
 

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my laserdisc xc's were hard to build up, hard to mount tires to, and flexy even when built to equal tension. i pretty much hated everything about them. my even lighter sun equalizer 23 (410 grams) is much stiffer and built up better.

all the mavics are solid quality rims. cant go too wrong with mavics.
 

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Vmax911 said:
Is it fair to say that Speeddisc = bad, Laserdisc = good. Or am I over-simplifying again?
Over simplifying...there are many factors when it comes to the quality perception of a rim. The wheel build is by far the biggest factor. A poorly built wheel with ANY rim is going to have issues. Beyond that, there are certainly other factors. Mavic rims, especially their Maxtal rims (not the rims your looking at) are IME some of the easiest rims to build up. A rim that starts true and round will lace up and tension more evenly than a wheel that doesn't start that way. That said I have a set of SpeedDisc AM 29er rims that were machine built but I re-tensioned them when I first got them (I rarely build wheels these days, but always re-tension wheels that come on my new bikes if they weren't handbuilt). They have been near bulletproof for 1.5 years since.

IMO if your looking at the Laserdisc XC versus a Mavic rim, the closest comparison is the X317...a very solid rim on its own and only $15 more for the set from BWW. I still would get the Laserdisc myself, but you can't go wrong with the X317 either.
 

· SSolo, on your left!
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A friend has been running Mavic 317 on his 26" wheeled HT and they have been holding good for a couple years of riding including plenty of small drops and jumps....kinda surprised me since I hadnt heard anything good about them when he bought them....apparently they are pretty decent though. Don't remember what hubs and spokes he has.

EDIT: My WTB's hold the tire on the bead alot tighter than his Mavics. When I get a flat I still have to pry my tire off the rim, his kinda easily falls off the rim without any prying at the bead of the tire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Still wheelset shopping. Looks like Cambria has a set of XM321 on Deore hubs for $130, plus their after Christmas sale of 20%. I'd loose the ability to choose colored nipples, but the price seems decent. Anyone care to comment on Deore (M525) vs XT hubs? Are M525 6-bolt hubs?

Also, for spokes it says "Spokes-DT 14G SS Black." Can someone translate that for me?

Can these be retensioned to bring them up to handbuilt spec?
 

· Old man on a bike
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Vmax911 said:
Still wheelset shopping. Looks like Cambria has a set of XM321 on Deore hubs for $130, plus their after Christmas sale of 20%. I'd loose the ability to choose colored nipples, but the price seems decent. Anyone care to comment on Deore (M525) vs XT hubs? Are M525 6-bolt hubs?

Also, for spokes it says "Spokes-DT 14G SS Black." Can someone translate that for me?

Can these be retensioned to bring them up to handbuilt spec?
I do like the F219/XM321/EN321 or whatever they're calling that rim these days, a bit heavy but cheap, use them on a few wheels myself. The M525 is 6-bolt type, fine hub if you maintain it (think it's a bit porkier than the XT but not sure about that). DT is a good brand of spokes (dtswiss.com), 14 Gauge (2.0 mm, straight, not double-butted), Stainless Steel, they're not silver, they're black and why would you think you couldn't retension them (if you do that by hand, they are handbuilt).

You might want to see what bicyclewheelwarehouse.com too.
 

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Buy a "standard" hubbed wheelset

Bikinfoolferlife said:
I do like the F219/XM321/EN321 or whatever they're calling that rim these days, a bit heavy but cheap, use them on a few wheels myself. The M525 is 6-bolt type, fine hub if you maintain it (think it's a bit porkier than the XT but not sure about that). DT is a good brand of spokes (dtswiss.com), 14 Gauge (2.0 mm, straight, not double-butted), Stainless Steel, they're not silver, they're black and why would you think you couldn't retension them (if you do that by hand, they are handbuilt).

You might want to see what bicyclewheelwarehouse.com too.
I have, as well as one of my riding buddies, for three years now, a wheelset with the Shimano Deore (M525) hubs.
I think they are to preferred above the Mavics or other Wheelset brands simply because they're better in the end. They work fine, are strong, reliable, servicable and adjustable.
Only thing I could criticize them on was that the adjustment of the adjustable bearings was a little tight. I took care of that in 30 minutes with a set of special flat spanners (don't know the exact name in English, sorry).

Second thing: because they interface with regular spokes and rims it''s super easy to replace a spoke or a rim (maybe diff. spokelength) when things get damaged or you want a different type (wider / narrower / ust) rim.
 

· Former Bike Wrench
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Vmax911 said:
Still wheelset shopping. Looks like Cambria has a set of XM321 on Deore hubs for $130, plus their after Christmas sale of 20%. I'd loose the ability to choose colored nipples, but the price seems decent. Anyone care to comment on Deore (M525) vs XT hubs? Are M525 6-bolt hubs?

Also, for spokes it says "Spokes-DT 14G SS Black." Can someone translate that for me?

Can these be retensioned to bring them up to handbuilt spec?
Solid if not heavy. The Deore M525 hubs are the same weight as the XT M756 hubs but have a slightly lower level of polish on the races, one less seal on the rear hub, and a lower end FH body. They are durable as long as you keep them greased (Phil Wood or equivalent for wet riding) and adjusted properly.
 

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lexxmeister said:
I have, as well as one of my riding buddies, for three years now, a wheelset with the Shimano Deore (M525) hubs.
I think they are to preferred above the Mavics or other Wheelset brands simply because they're better in the end. They work fine, are strong, reliable, servicable and adjustable.
Only thing I could criticize them on was that the adjustment of the adjustable bearings was a little tight. I took care of that in 30 minutes with a set of special flat spanners (don't know the exact name in English, sorry).

Second thing: because they interface with regular spokes and rims it''s super easy to replace a spoke or a rim (maybe diff. spokelength) when things get damaged or you want a different type (wider / narrower / ust) rim.
You're preaching to the choir here, you couldn't pay me to run a factory wheelset. I prefer to build my own...

Those would be cone wrenches....
 

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Bikinfoolferlife said:
You're preaching to the choir here, you couldn't pay me to run a factory wheelset. I prefer to build my own...

Those would be cone wrenches....
Yeah well, I tried to give my feedback to the OP, not the enlightened ones who know that "branded" factory built wheels come from the loins of the prince of darkness himself :devil:

Thanks about the cone wrenches BTW :thumbsup:
 
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