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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Pondering some upgrades for the 2021 Chisel I am riding. I mostly ride XC trails for fun and exercise. I’m a young 52 years old and I am not doing crazy things. I am REALLY enjoying the bike now, but anything to improve whats already great in my opinion would be nice. So I am thinking wheels. Rims only? (or Rims and Spokes) or get an entire Wheelset? I was thinking of the DIY Carbon Bikes or one of the other lower cost carbon wheel options. Dont know alot about the wheel options like Symmetric vs Asymmetric, hubs, 28h or 32h, internal width or the many hub options. My hubs now are Deore (?) Shimano MT410B. Dont need something crazy, but dont wanna take a step back.

So in my position, do I get some carbon rims and have my hubs swapped over. Get a new Wheelset with new hubs? if so, what specs for wheels and what hubs? I was thinking like a 27-28mm internal width rim. My current rims are 25mm internal width. Something lighter and just as or more durable. Also would like to be under $600 if possible...

Thanks for any advice and pointing me in the right direction.
 

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I'd recommend a good quality aluminum rim, double butted spokes, and decent hubs. A nicer rear hub with a little higher engagement is worth the tradeoff of giving up your carbon hoop dreams... unless you up your budget.

Wheels are a great place to spend some money upgrading your bike though. That said your budget doesn't leave enough room for good hubs and carbon rims.

Swapping rims doesn't seem worth it if you're only going for 2mm more width, I'd just make the jump to 30mm. Carbon rims on crappy hubs doesn't honestly make much sense to me either.

What tires are you running? How much do you weigh?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
I am running specialized fast trak tires and i weigh 180. My other upgrade planned was to ditch the Rockshox Judy Silver for and get either a Rockshox SiD SL or a Fox 32 SC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Here is the wheelset i was looking at but again not knowing alot about rims and hubs i dont know if this is junk or just a good deal.
Wheel Tire Automotive tire Light Black

Font Line Screenshot Electronic device Terrestrial plant
 

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Here is the wheelset i was looking at but again not knowing alot about rims and hubs i dont know if this is junk or just a good deal.
View attachment 1951722
View attachment 1951723

I would avoid the DIY stuff as there has been some pretty bad service reported as of late. For the same / similar price point there are much more reliable options.
 

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Hint, it started rosy but went south pretty quick

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the heads up. I was reading some of that. Even when i looked at similar places i still didnt know what options to look for. For example are Bitex hubs better or worse than the hubs I have. Those spokes? Id rather customize wheels based on my needs instead of just checking more expensive options for everything.
 

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Bitex hubs are OK, not great, not crap. They're serviceable, you can get parts for them when something breaks, but they're not as strong or durable as higher priced options. I think they're a good value for people that weigh 140lbs. (I've owned and broken 3-4 Bitex hubs, I went all-in one season, but I'm 210lbs and a strong rider)

Honestly at that price it may be worth a shot?? (I have zero knowledge about the rims or spokes) Just understand that you're not buying Enve rims with Chris King hubs (which would cost you $3k) and reliability and customer service will probably be on par for the price. That's really cheap for a carbon wheelset, honestly I am not personally aware of anything else comparable at that price point.
 

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You're on Deore hubs, so if you are looking to upgrade, upgrade and forget the Bitex hubs. Get the best aluminum wheelset you can afford with DT Swiss 350 hubs, 36t engagement and you will be a happy rider.
This, I would use a $600-700 budget to get a good aluminum wheelset from a quality builder that can tailor to your needs.
 
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I got their xc rims and had my mech build them up with dt240’s on my chisel. Killer wheels to be honest. And light as can be. Liked them so much I ordered another set for my fs and this time built by diy. Nothing bad to say about them quality wise. Shipping time is the only issue. Its coming just takes a while. I would get these rims with the dt350 hubs they offer if looking for lower cost. Mine where around 1200 which is still a good cost as I had the 54t upgrade included. I bet the cost is close to your budget and you can always upgrade the hub latter.
 

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I'm no one important, but I think a good wheelset that's actually an improvement over stock is the best upgrade there is, especially since so many bikes come with basic, heavy wheels these days. As a cost conscious consumer though, I'd probably ride stock until I actually needed to replace wheels. I've bought wheels in the past and found out there wasn't much weight savings vs stock, so take a close look at what you'd actually be getting for your money. If you feel like you have to buy something, I'd get a rear wheel with a better than stock hub.

I'll mirror the suggestion of quality aluminum wheels with 350 hubs, but under $600... probably not. I haven't checked with a lot of builders, but the individual guys I have contacted in the past are in the mid $800 range for that sort of wheelset. You can look around on the bigger, commercial bike websites that offer to build wheels and get to the mid $600 dollar range.

If you spend forever looking, and look constantly, you can find good deals on one new wheel on ebay or pinkbike, but if you have to have a matching set, you pay more for two of the same wheels. I've had good luck buying wheels that way, but it can take a long time, and then the front and rear don't match, but riding my bike isn't a beauty review.
 
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What everyone said is true. Listen to them. Run your own wheels and look out for some take offs. People who race will buy expensive wheels and sell quality take offs for cheap.
In the meantime you could do your plan "B" and upgrade the fork. I think you would notice a difference there more.
 

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Thanks for the heads up. I was reading some of that. Even when i looked at similar places i still didnt know what options to look for. For example are Bitex hubs better or worse than the hubs I have. Those spokes? Id rather customize wheels based on my needs instead of just checking more expensive options for everything.
As others said - bitex hubs are not really an upgrade vs where you are currently at. I would be looking for dt350 or maybe even the industry nine 1/1 hubs.

Spokes I would get a butted spoke instead of the straight guage spokes listed.

Nipples - I am a fan of brass. A bit heavier but more durable in the long run.

Everyone has a preference.
 
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