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It's not so much weight, but watts per kg. Taller racers put out more watts. But it only goes so far, and the weight-per-inches scale actually works against taller riders.

Again, if you're about 5'10", 200, you're gonna want to put in more work in the offseason rather than buying new wheels. And it's not just climbing that'll be affected, but acceleration and cornering too. But who knows, maybe you could have success in Cat 2, not really sure the levels we are all competing at.

https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/why-is-weight-so-important-in-cycling-part-1/
 

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I am well aware my weight problems :) (and doing what I can)

I don't really care about results so much - 1300gr wheelsets still feel amazing to drive.
If you are heavier you can still buy lighter components - it's just means more research before decision.
 

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I'm 175lbs and for 4 years have raced XC on a 1135g wheelset built before Berd spokes existed. So for a 200lber in 2020 add a little weight to go from Carbon Ti hubs to DT, a little more for wider tougher rims, and subtract some for Berd spokes. That's the wheelset I'm building for my trail bike. I'd say a 1250g wheelset should do just fine for you if the use is XC racing and trail riding on tires no burlier than a 2.35" Ikon. The Industry says you're just fine on 28 spokes and alloy nipples and unless you're an accident prone hack I agree.
 

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The number of spokes thing, you other guys are way over-thinking this: a carbon rim will be stronger with fewer spokes than aluminum. Like long stems, 32h is outdated and old school. I have a buddy who just bought some Synchros Silverton SL fully carbon wheels with bonded carbon spokes, 20h front and rear.
You and I have disagreed on many things, but I think you are on the money with this. To take it even a step further many carbon rims probably ride a lot better with fewer spokes.

Now it seems like a lot of people are searching for ways to get a little more compliance (flex) out of their ultra-wide and ultra stiff rims. Dropping that spoke count might help.

IMHO the only reason to run a high spoke count rim is if you are worried about fatigue life of spokes. But spokes are way better than they use to be and seem to last a long time.
 

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I have Berd spokes on 2 sets of wheels, my wife's and my own.
In the rear I have a 32H, DH layup, 29mm wide wheel and I'll tell you: it flexes notably with those Berd spokes under high load/ traction conditions.
I haven't decided if it's a good thing, a bad thing, or neither. But it does this thing when you nail a turn just right where it feels like the wheel flexes inches for just a moment.

I'm a 180# (before gear) aggressive rider btw.
 

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Thats a silly thing to say.

Just finished building these. 1270g, 30.5mm internal width. The lightest 30mm wheels in the world ;)

They’ll be raced this weekend; I’ll let you know how it goes!





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I apologize if that came off rude. Not sure how many miles you had on that insert but the idea isn't to rely on them constantly for rim protection, they are for tire stability and back up protection.

Nice wheels btw. About a year ago I built a set of 29" CF wheels, 34mm wide front, 29mm wide rear, Berds & P321 hubs. The front is an AM layup and the rear is a DH layup. 1370 grams. They have taken insane abuse, 9' drops, riding out of the Monarch Crest trail at speed on a rear flat, etc.
I built my wife a set of 1054 g 27.5" wheels and if I had selected better rims I could have gotten them under 1000 grams pretty easily.
 

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I apologize if that came off rude. Not sure how many miles you had on that insert but the idea isn't to rely on them constantly for rim protection, they are for tire stability and back up protection.

Nice wheels btw. About a year ago I built a set of 29" CF wheels, 34mm wide front, 29mm wide rear, Berds & P321 hubs. The front is an AM layup and the rear is a DH layup. 1370 grams. They have taken insane abuse, 9' drops, riding out of the Monarch Crest trail at speed on a rear flat, etc.
I built my wife a set of 1054 g 27.5" wheels and if I had selected better rims I could have gotten them under 1000 grams pretty easily.
Gotcha. I don't think I'd have built a trail wheelset with Berd spokes, but good to know they'll hold up to that level of abuse.

Berd are advertised as being stronger than steel spokes but with twice the vibration damping. I don't know your setup but I wonder if you've checked the tension recently? It needs to be at least 10 per spoke with a Park TS-1. It can easily fall below 5 and not feel loose until you start riding, from what I've experienced.

My rims are 35mm wide (external) with a 28mm rim depth (height), which is taller than most carbon MTB rims. I think vertical compliance is cool, like my old Valors, but I believe the Carbonfan rims themselves are very stiff--I tested this before building them and they don't flex. These are my XC racing wheels.

My trail wheelset is very much old school Arch EX aluminum rims/steel spokes at around 2000g, except the foam inserts to help support wider tires at lower pressures. I consider those inserts to be disposable, and yes I've had to finish rides at low pressure before, nice to have that as an option. I'm not much of a jumper but I'm goading myself to with the build of these. I think every racer should have an everyday set of wheels outside of racing, that has been good for me.
 

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I have Berd spokes on 2 sets of wheels, my wife's and my own.
In the rear I have a 32H, DH layup, 29mm wide wheel and I'll tell you: it flexes notably with those Berd spokes under high load/ traction conditions.
I haven't decided if it's a good thing, a bad thing, or neither. But it does this thing when you nail a turn just right where it feels like the wheel flexes inches for just a moment.

I'm a 180# (before gear) aggressive rider btw.
I'm very curious about this and have tried to ask if they behave differently than steel in this manner before. So your saying they flex laterally when pushed in turns? I'd also ask, like chomxxo, what the tension is?

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The E-modulus is a bit more than half of that of steel (worse for this application) but the density is about 1/8 of steel (better for this application / for weight weenies). Thus by increasing the cross-sectional area compared to a steel spoke it can be lighter and stiffer (for extension) than that steel spoke.
Now what the cross-sectional area of a Berd spoke is? (in order to compare it to steel spokes / rank it’s stiffness) I also wonder if they need to be re-tensioned during their ‘lifetime’ in a wheel (if the spoke-tension decreases in time).
 

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Short answer is yes Berd spokes stretch considerably over the first week, this much is admitted in the installation guide.

Do they stretch more after the first week? All spokes are known for needing intermittent maintenance. I’ll await Suns_PSD’s reply.


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I'm very curious about this and have tried to ask if they behave differently than steel in this manner before. So your saying they flex laterally when pushed in turns? I'd also ask, like chomxxo, what the tension is?

Sent from my moto g(6) forge using Tapatalk
Yes, the rear rim makes this very distinctive, but brief, sensation of the wheel flexing a bunch then coming back. It only happens a handful of times per ride, but I notice it right away each time. It's not good or bad, it's just there.
I had both Berd wheels on my bike trued once and they needed a bit. Haven't touched them since cause Covid but they do in fact need a little love.
Built by Berd so no idea what tension is.
I'd absolutely buy Berd's again.
 

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Yes, the rear rim makes this very distinctive, but brief, sensation of the wheel flexing a bunch then coming back. It only happens a handful of times per ride, but I notice it right away each time. It's not good or bad, it's just there.
I had both Berd wheels on my bike trued once and they needed a bit. Haven't touched them since cause Covid but they do in fact need a little love.
Built by Berd so no idea what tension is.
I'd absolutely buy Berd's again.
I see. Haven't had them as long as you, but I did some extensive testing and hard racing so far, and haven't seen that once I got them up to tension (10+ on a Park TS-1). I was ultra-careful since I was building them for myself, and didn't want to crash and burn.

One of the downsides of buying the Berd build is not getting the tensioning tool, I guess. I've tested some small jumps (2 feet or less) and didn't feel any significant compression. They do, as advertised, smooth out vibrations better than steel spokes, but I'd be concerned if I felt significant flex.

One thing I really like about them is they are quieter. You didn't know your spokes were making noise until you ride Berd wheels--don't know how else to describe it.
 

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I've done up to 8' drops to flat and endless small jumps and a few larger ones thrown in as well on my Berds for a year now.
The flex I'm talking about doesn't happen to me while jumping.
It's a very distinctive lateral movement sensation when I'm able to load the rear wheel just right through a turn. It's on the rare occurrence that I get something to push against and I nail the turn better than usual.
Anyways, I really like the spokes and it's no concern, iit just might be something for a larger & aggressive rider to consider.

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