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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I am now starting to look into building a nice wheel set. Right now I am running Shimano SLX Centerlock hubs; WTB Speed Disc AM rims; butted spokes; aluminum nipples, these are what came on my Felt and for all i know they may be just what I need, but not sure and this is why I am here. So I ride at about 200 lbs, I will probably drop to about 190, but I am pretty lean at 200 and I am not ready to give up muscle just to get lighter. I ride hard so the rims I get have to be pretty durable, but I also don't want them to be unreasonably heavy, if possible, right now it seems like the rims I have come out of true pretty quickly, they are a year old so maybe they are becoming weaker, dunno. I would like to have a decent hub, so far I've been looking at the Hope Pro ll but I get mixed reviews on them, also looking at Kings, but also good and bad reviews and I am really unfamiliar with hubs so I am open to any other suggestions. As far as the rims go I don't really know where to start, but I do want to run tubless, so all suggestions are welcome. I do xc style riding, but I am also able to move pretty good and hard on the downhill, no jumpimg really and no big drops. As far as price goes, I don't want to go crazy but I am willing to spend money on quality products. Sorry for the rambling but any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I was actually just looking into those, the reviews said they were cheaper than King's but when I google them they seem to be more pricey, any suggestions on were to pick them up at a good price?
 

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R.I.P. DogFriend
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bigherc said:
As far as price goes, I don't want to go crazy but I am willing to spend money on quality products.
That could mean a lot of things to different people. A Hadley rear hub costs more than I have into any wheelset I have ever owned. We both may feel we aren't "going crazy".

A budget number or range would be far more useful or you'll likely get suggestions that are all over the place.

I built up a set of SLX centerlock (15QR) / Flow / DT / Sapim wheelset for about $300+/-. I weigh 270lbs, so far so good, but I do see them flex a little in the low speed chunky stuff.
 

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Hubs are the component part of a wheelset that you'll notice least, weight-wise. Rims will make the biggest difference, but at 200 lbs I wouldn't worry too much about saving 50 grams a rim as much as reasonable stiffness and spoke count/pattern. If you are "hard on rims" get something a bit beefier that won't go out of true as easily, I would say at least 32 spokes if you are hammering on things. Also, a slightly larger (volume) tire will keep the rim away from the ground as much too. Stan's Arch or Flow rims, or perhaps the Salsa Semi or Gordo, depending on how much you want to "beef" the wheel or not. While I am not a weight weenie, the lighter wheel does feel better, but stiffness is noticeable too. I'd rather have a slightly heavier wheel that I can make it through rough conditions on than a lightweight one that I might have to hike out with. FWIW I have been on a WTB Speedisc, 32h on low-budget SS hubs and the wheels have done me well - but I would like to have a wider rim - probably an Arch or Semi next time around...
 

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Fragglepuss The Chaste
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I owned 2 sets of Hadley hubs and can't say I was overly impressed. They're built sturdy but I had an issue with both pairs where dirt would sneak in really easily into the rear and bind up the springs that operate the pawls. They were easy enough to take apart and service, but for the price I paid I didn't feel that was acceptable.

I've also owned I don't know how many pairs of King hubs. They're decent, super easy to take apart and service. They do take a bit of time to wear in which means that if you're not mechanical you may have to run back and forth to a shop to get them adjusted until everything settles in. Once that short adjustment period is over they're usually pretty golden from there on out.

Although not as 'blingy' as the Hadley, King or even a Hope (never owned a pair), I'm pretty much sold on DT Swiss and have run them exclusively with the exception of a short lived pair of factory Mavic wheels for the past few years. They're not super user friendly in the repair department and you will need some special tools to get deep into the rear hub. You can tear it down with your bare hands or with the use of a vice and a rag to a certain point, but then you're getting into a bit of work.
The reason I've been going with DT Swiss is that I don't have to touch them. After about a year or two you'll probably need to run to a shop and have them swap out the bearings-but that is true with any hub. Also, they're super adaptable. Currently I have an oversize 240 front and a 10mm 240 rear. My front hub can convert from a 20 to a 15 to a 9mm without tools in about 2 minutes. My rear hub can covert from a 10 to a 9 to a Maxle and soon to be released 142mm conversion kit-with tools.

Here they are right before being built up and a bearing change. I have the 9mm caps on the front to fit in a truing stand with the 15mm caps ready to twist on after the build. The rear is set up with the larger 10mm RWS system that fits standard drop outs. The feel is just shy of a single speed bolt on. If you have a flexy rear end, this will help out quite a bit and doesn't require tools to remove the wheel on the trail.



The build featured the above hubs, Mavic TN719's, DT Swiss Competition spokes 2.0/1.8/2.0 and DT Swiss Prolock nipples. I haven't put them on a scale yet, but according to DT Swiss' spoke length calculator they should weigh 1898 grams (without rim tape, cassette, rotor, etc...)
 

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This place needs an enema
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Relace your current hubs with some butted DT Competition spokes, DT Prolock alloy nips, and a set of Stans Flow rims. Perfect build given all you've described; easy tubeless compatibility, relatively inexpensive (since you're supplying the hubs), very light relative to your weight, and very, very durable--you certainly won't need a backup wheelset once you're rolling on these.

MC
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks guys, mikesee, if you were to choose a hub to go with this combo, what would you recomend? I would like to build a whole wheel so that I could pull them off and put the old one's on when I go to sell the bike. Oh the bike is the felt nine elite carbon with xtr cranks and XO deraillur/ shifter combo, smp evolution saddle, and bonty carbon bar upgrades, so I kinda feel like the wheels are kind of holding it back a bit and they seem to be the only thing I ever have a problem with, I just replaced the freehub body with less than a year of riding on it.
 

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I'm a bit over 200 and the WTB speed disc AMs came on my GT Peace multi, front is staying fairly true but the rear wheel is another story. I don't think these rims are really built strong enough for Clydes riding anything more than flowy ST. I don't do much as far as jumping but any rocks seem to take their toll. Just blew out the frehub on the crap Deore m525 hubs that came on them on Tuesday.

Right now I'm looking at the Salsa Semi rims hooked up to some White Ind MI6 front and rear hubs, Cromo axles and freehub bodies and the front can convert to 15mm axles.

bigherc said:
So I am now starting to look into building a nice wheel set. Right now I am running Shimano SLX Centerlock hubs; WTB Speed Disc AM rims; butted spokes; aluminum nipples, these are what came on my Felt and for all i know they may be just what I need, but not sure and this is why I am here. So I ride at about 200 lbs, I will probably drop to about 190, but I am pretty lean at 200 and I am not ready to give up muscle just to get lighter. I ride hard so the rims I get have to be pretty durable, but I also don't want them to be unreasonably heavy, if possible, right now it seems like the rims I have come out of true pretty quickly, they are a year old so maybe they are becoming weaker, dunno. I would like to have a decent hub, so far I've been looking at the Hope Pro ll but I get mixed reviews on them, also looking at Kings, but also good and bad reviews and I am really unfamiliar with hubs so I am open to any other suggestions. As far as the rims go I don't really know where to start, but I do want to run tubless, so all suggestions are welcome. I do xc style riding, but I am also able to move pretty good and hard on the downhill, no jumpimg really and no big drops. As far as price goes, I don't want to go crazy but I am willing to spend money on quality products. Sorry for the rambling but any suggestions would be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
that's the exact situation I am dealing with, I ride a lot of rocky stuff and the rear rim and hub just don't seem to hold up well. What does the combo you are building run? If you don't mind me asking. I'll research those components in the mornig, but right now gotta sleep.:thumbsup:
 

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I've been running what-ifs thru the Universal Cycles site wheelbuilder page for reference and came in at $600, still not completely settled on this setup. Looking at the Hadleys also, but the premium here is that whatever hubset I get can possibly allow the wheelset to be used on a new build with a 15mm susser fork as I'm looking at a new frame as well. Hadley seems to have the most options in that regard but they seem to be in short supply for various models.

bigherc said:
that's the exact situation I am dealing with, I ride a lot of rocky stuff and the rear rim and hub just don't seem to hold up well. What does the combo you are building run? If you don't mind me asking. I'll research those components in the mornig, but right now gotta sleep.:thumbsup:
 

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socal_jack said:
I've been running what-ifs thru the Universal Cycles site wheelbuilder page for reference and came in at $600, still not completely settled on this setup. Looking at the Hadleys also, but the premium here is that whatever hubset I get can possibly allow the wheelset to be used on a new build with a 15mm susser fork as I'm looking at a new frame as well. Hadley seems to have the most options in that regard but they seem to be in short supply for various models.
I believe the red models are now in stock, or should be shortly. I bought some just last week. Black should be available too. Check Balle Racing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
How do you like em randyboy? They don't have to many reviews or info on them but what I can find is all good. I'd definatly be more interested if they came in red or black.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Oh your talking about the hadleys, I thought you were talking about the white ind m16's, let me know about the hadleys
 

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openwound
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I weigh about 180 +/- 5lbs, depending on ice cream and beer intake... Geared-up, no doubt 190. I'd like to think that I ride pretty smooth, hitting the occasional rock due to brain fart, etc. Overall, I'm pretty easy on wheels. I've never had a catastrophic wheel failure in over 20+ years of riding, which includes everything -- road, ss, cross-country, and dh.

Hubs: I've had or currently have King, Hadley, and DTswiss, as well as countless others...
Kings are nice. A bit noisy, but easy to service and pretty durable. Pricey, though you can run across deals if you're willing to pick up a used set.
Dtswiss (I've only ever had the 240's) are pretty sweet. Really simple design. They've just release an upgraded ratchet mechanism, going from (I think) 18 to 36. Super easy to make the swap. Relatively quiet. Their service manual shows a few specialized tools for doing service, though I have to wonder if one could do the service (bearing r&r) with another brand of puller such as Enduro's. I'll likely give that a shot when it comes time for bearings.
Hadley. Love 'em. I'm not doubting nor dismissing SLC's comment about dirt getting past the seals, though I don't know if I would exactly fault Hadley's for this. I think just about any hub will experience a little bit of compromise -- we do ride in the dirt after all. Anyhow, point taken, I just don't think it's all that bad. The hubs are really simple to service and Hadley customer service is really great, IMHO. They're not too noisy either. And they come in many different configurations.

Have you considered adding shimano xtr hubs to your list? My latest wheel build included a 240 with the centerlock set-up. I don't want to start a debate about 6-bolt vs. centerlock, but in mounting up the rotor I was sorta impressed by how quick and easy that system is to use. I guess I just wonder how easy it might be to find a replacement rotor in a pinch. And I know that shimano doesn't use sealed bearings in their hubs, instead they use a cup and cone set-up. This might scare off some folks but it's not that big of a deal. If they're service regularly and adjusted properly a cup/cone hub will spin pretty darn well.

As for rims, for these latest wheels I used the WTB speed disc all-mountain. I don't have any rides in yet (going out today for the break-in ride) but they did build up quickly and easily. I run wtb rims on my nomad and like them a lot -- very durable and they stay true (but I suppose this might be true for any good rim built into a wheel by a knowledgeable, skilled wheel builder). As you may know, the speed discs don't have the center reinforcement that the laser disc's get. Again, I don't know how much, if any, difference this will make. I just figured that since these were going to be ss wheels -- no jumping, lower speeds on dh-type runs [bike is rigid and I'm old] -- I should be able to get by without the extra reinforcement.

For spokes I run dt revolutions with spoke-prepped alloy nipples. I run these on my nomad, too. And that bike gets ridden hard. It's the rig I get on for long rides, including what, for me, amounts to dh practice. I ride the piss out of that bike and my wheels stay true.

When I service my bike I'll put the wheels in the truing stand and use a tension gauge to check the wheels, though they rarely need any real attention. I'd attribute a fair amount of wheel durability to the wheel builder's skills.

I purchased a set of synchros ds28 rims when I was getting my latest wheel set together. Not sure why I didn't use 'em... The added height of the rim profile would mean a shorter spoke length which should add a little to the rigidity of the wheel. And their advertised weight is a little lower than that of the rims I did use...hmm. I'm an idiot... Anyhow, you might take a look at those, too.
 

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bigherc said:
Oh your talking about the hadleys, I thought you were talking about the white ind m16's, let me know about the hadleys.
Checked out rebuild instructions from White and Hadley, Hadley seemed the easier of the two. At least your SLX hubs are probably a decent base to build from. The Deore stuff is throwaway, but while I'm at it gonna go 36H for rim and hub for a bit more strength.

voodoochild said:
As you may know, the speed discs don't have the center reinforcement that the laser disc's get. Again, I don't know how much, if any, difference this will make. I just figured that since these were going to be ss wheels -- no jumping, lower speeds on dh-type runs [bike is rigid and I'm old] -- I should be able to get by without the extra reinforcement.
Good luck on that, hopefully the handbuilt supplies sufficient extra strength to keep that wheel true. Mine are on a fully rigid GT Peace multi setup 2x9(and I'm 51), not bombing DHs, gapping, dropping to flats, just occasional rocks, roots, and mellow jump to transition you know typical trail stuff. First wheelset I've ever had this many problems with, that I wasn't totally abusing and still less than a year old. Closest was a SUN ADD wheelset on my FS26er Jumping flea freehub(12/150 no less) trashed in 2 months but those are a reknowned POS(no reviews prior to buying though), a CK ISO HD now sits in its place.

RandyBoy said:
I believe the red models are now in stock, or should be shortly. I bought some just last week. Black should be available too. Check Balle Racing.
Man, that Balle Racing website looks like a Netscape Composer job circa late 90s.
 

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openwound
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socal_jack said:
...
Good luck on that, hopefully the handbuilt supplies sufficient extra strength to keep that wheel true. Mine are on a fully rigid GT Peace multi setup 2x9(and I'm 51), not bombing DHs, gapping, dropping to flats, just occasional rocks, roots, and mellow jump to transition you know typical trail stuff. First wheelset I've ever had this many problems with, that I wasn't totally abusing and still less than a year old...
LOL. Thanks for that. If they don't hold up, I'll be sure to let you know. Maybe I should've ponied up the extra $ for the laser discs...
 
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