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  1. #1
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    Custom wheel set Endurance bike

    Hello folks!

    I'm a German guy living in the USA and I could need some help/recommendation finding my new wheel set.

    Regularly my passion is riding my mtb's. Two weeks ago I pre-order my first road bike (2018 Orbea Avant M30, Endurance, carbon frame and fork, 105 group set, 11-speed, rim brakes). Hopefully I'll receive it this month.
    I dont want to race with the bike. My primary goal is making longer bike rides (30-50 miles) in the El Paso area. Honestly I don't know if I'll like road biking as well as I love mountain biking. Nevertheless I definitely want to get a good set of wheels for my new bike. I only ride handmade wheel sets on all of my mountain bikes for years and enjoy the benefit of handmade wheels.

    I'm 6'4" and my weight is 216lbs right now. I live in El Paso, TX and we have a lot of stickers and other sharp objects on our rough roads. Therefore tubeless is a must.

    I've no explicit budget and I pay what is needed to get a light, stiff and aerodynamic rim set. My goal is 1500g -1600g. Of course carbon rims would be very nice but I think this would be a bit to much and way more expensive for my first road bike wheel set. And what I read the last days there are some nice alloy rims on the market.

    What do you guys think about these rims:

    - BOYD Altamont ceramic
    - Pacenti Forza
    - A-Force AL33

    Their specs are all pretty close together and for my understanding "aerodynamic". Any other recommendations?

    Which hubs would you take? I'm a fan of ratchet system on the mtb but CK is very expensive and DT's are a bit boring....

    Spokes should be CX-Ray or DT Aerolite I guess?

    Any help and recommendation is highly appreciated. Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    From my understanding, tubeless ready is mainly used to prevent pinch flats. I have never been to El Paso but if the sharp objects are serious enough, tubeless tires probably wont help.

    I have heard good things about the BOYD with ceramic coating. Definitely win on the coolness factor. looks like carbon since its all black. Braking is said to be better. But the ceramic coating sets are slightly more expensive at around $900. You can almost get a carbon set from competitive cyclist (with the TDF sale going now) Most AL wheelsets have enough braking power, I don't know if you need to spend another $200 more than the regular brake track models?

    I read a lot of good things on the Pacenti Forza on the forum but i haven't seen one around in my neighborhood yet. So I can't comment on that.

    AForce got internal nipples. Your bike mechanic is probably not going to thank you for that lol.

    CK is awesome and my buddy has a set of enve on them. if you are into loud freewheeling.

    Saw an ad from Irwin Cycling on here and they got the Arlo 30 which is also similar to the Boyd wheels spec wise but only $600, and they got this rapid engagement hub that sounds like CK if that buzz is what you are after!

    I think at the sub $900 you probably wont be getting CX ray but you def can get it on aero spokes. Hope this helps

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumpride View Post
    From my understanding, tubeless ready is mainly used to prevent pinch flats. I have never been to El Paso but if the sharp objects are serious enough, tubeless tires probably wont help.
    Good point. I'm only familiar with tubeless on mtb wheels. It's great. But on a mtb wheel you don't ride with that high air pressure like you do on a road bike. Probably tubeless is not the right way to go in this case. But what else would prevent against a flat?

    Quote Originally Posted by bumpride View Post
    I have heard good things about the BOYD with ceramic coating. Definitely win on the coolness factor. looks like carbon since its all black. Braking is said to be better. But the ceramic coating sets are slightly more expensive at around $900.
    I`m not looking to win a coolness award :-) Important for me is the functionality. I heard good things about this rims as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by bumpride View Post
    Most AL wheelsets have enough braking power, I don't know if you need to spend another $200 more than the regular brake track models
    Great input. Thanks!! I'll never ride in rainy conditions. El Paso is known as the "sun city". Therefore I don`t need better braking under wet conditions. I should better keep the money and take regular alloy rims.

    Quote Originally Posted by bumpride View Post
    AForce got internal nipples. Your bike mechanic is probably not going to thank you for that lol.
    Thatīs the reason I would like to get it from a professional wheel builder :-) Internal nipples look great imo.

    Quote Originally Posted by bumpride View Post
    Hope this helps
    Absolutely! Thank you very much!!!

    By the way, got a phone call of my local bike store 2 hours ago. My first road bike is ready to pick up :-) I guess I have to

    May I introduce: MY2018 Orbea Avant M30 in size XL:

    Attachment 319780

  4. #4
    changingleaf
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    In my experience the Pacenti or the A-Force are best for tubeless use.

    There are several other nice hubs I would recommend including Onyx and White Industries.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Pete! Is there any other rim similar to the Pacenti, A-Force or Boyd?

    By the way what is your all opinion about "lightness vs aerodynamic" of a road wheel set? Would you go with a light wheel (with a 21-25mm deep rim) or a heavier and more aerodynamic wheel (with a 30mm+ deep rim)? I'm not sure which way would be the best. I know both (light and aerodynamic) is only possible with carbon rims. The stock wheel set (Vision Team 30) has a 30mm deep rim.

    I'm a heavy rider and need solide hubs. I definitely won't go with cheap hubs like Bitex or Novatec. I have to many bad experiences on the mtb with them. Top of my list are DT's, White Industry, i9 and Hope.

    Any tire suggestion? I need an Allrounder. I was thinking about the Continental Grand Prix 4000S II. Main goal is a high puncture protection.

  6. #6
    changingleaf
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    The Grand prix 4000s II is a very good choice for a balance of weight, low rolling resistance and flat protection, but if your main goal is flat protection then Continental and other brands have tires designed for that.

    The scientific consensus seems to be that that aero trumps weight for speed in most riding conditions, but there are trade-offs like cross winds pushing the wheel and adding to the overall bike weight.

    Those are great aluminum rim choices. The DT Swiss RR 511 is another good choice in that category.
    Last edited by changingleaf; 07-17-2017 at 05:28 AM. Reason: spelling

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by changingleaf View Post
    The Grand prix 4000s II is a very good choice for a balance of weight, low rolling resistance and flat protection, but if you main goal is flat protection then Continental and other brands have tires designed for that.

    The scientific consensus seems to be that that aero trumps weight form speed in most riding conditions, but there are trade-offs like cross winds pushing the wheel and adding to the overall bike weight.

    Those are great aluminum rim choices. The DT Swiss RR 511 is another good choice in that category.
    Thanks again!

    I checked the Continental webpage and ordered some "Gator Hardskin" tires. They seem to be undestroyable :-)

    Pete, may I ask you for two wheel set recommendations? A budget version (but with reasonable hubs) and another one (limit round about $1000)? I'm absolutely unsure what to do. Sorry! If it`s not allowed here I can e-mail you. Thanks!

  8. #8
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    I build custom tubeless road wheels for customers, and they love them. One customer does coast to coast rides on them.
    Hey everybody, ride my wheels! They ride good, real good.
    I'm a wheel builder. SRLPE Wheel Works. Send me a PM.

  9. #9
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    If I had alot of stickers where I ride and most of my flats occured from them, tubeless would be high on my list as well. If you get large cuts from glass or other objects, I'm not so sure. Of course with tubless rims you can always run a tubed tire as well.

    I have the A-force rims and they're great. I think they balance weight and aero very well. If you want more aero, you will have to go much deeper which can sacrifice handling and weight (depending on the wheel and how much you are willing to spend).

    I don't know the specs on the Orbea that you are getting but since it's an endurance bike it likely has loads of room in the fork and rear stays for a wider rim and larger tire. You may want to double check however. My A-force rims with a Vittoria Rubino Pro III 25c tire measure just over 27mm wide if I recall correctly. I don't think you would have an issue, but it's worth being sure of before purchasing the wheels.

  10. #10
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    Thanks! Main problem in the El Paso area are stickers. I'll give tubeless a try. But I'm not sure if it will work as good and easy as on a mtb. Road bike tires are way smaller than mtb tires and have much higher tire pressure. I ordered the Continental Grand Prix 4000S II today. The Gator Hardshell are not available...

    Do you have the ceramic version of the A-force by any chance? If so is it worth it?

    I guess the Orbea has plenty of room for 25c tires. It has the exactly same specs like the 2017 version. I'm pretty sure there's enough room for 27mm. But thanks for the hint. I appreciate it!

  11. #11
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    I assume the stickers you're talking about are these little devils:
    Name:  CDA-trail-2011-052-goathead-thorns-ww.jpg
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    They are the fruit of an invasive species (originally from Asia) that is very common throughout the western U.S. If you want to find lots of discussion of them in connection with road bike tires, do a forum search on the term "goatheads," or google "goatheads road bike tires." I think there a number of tires that deal with them pretty well, though there's probably some tradeoff in ride quality.
    We are far from pefect,
    But perfect as we are
    We are bruised, we are broken,
    But we are goddamn works of art
    Works of art

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by john81 View Post

    Do you have the ceramic version of the A-force by any chance? If so is it worth it?

    !
    I have the "ceramic" version of the rims.

    Are they worth it? Honestly, depends on what you see as "worth".

    I based my my decision on what was available initially since I think I was in the first batch of builds from November and ceramic was what was immediately available (I think). I had experience with "ceramic" brake tracks from my old mtn bike wheels (early Mavic Crossmax) so I was willing to risk it. Lastly they looked really nice to me. However if only standard brake tracks were available, I still would have gotten the wheels.

    Supposedly ceramic offers superior braking. How much I'm not sure. Since when I got mine I had to also upgrade my old brakes to be able to fit the wider rim and tire. So I can't give you an apples to apples comparison vs my previous wheels as my old stock Pinerallo brand brakes were a bit more spongy. (New brakes SRAM or Shimano should not be a problem as most are now designed to fit 28c tires - not sure about Campagnolo if that is your preference.)

    Better looking. I think look really great - pretty much like carbon. However the jury is out on how long that will last since it's just a coating. However, mine still are looking great after a few months (since late March ~1500mi) . I don't usually ride in the rain or muck if I can help it. I also don't live on the coast or in a really sandy environment so that also contributes to the longevity of the coating. Of course once the coating wears off, you are left with a regular aluminum braking surface.

    Ultimately, I think get ceramic if you want the carbon look (possibly temporary) and don't mind the premium up-charge. Otherwise get the standard.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCavilia View Post
    I assume the stickers you're talking about are these little devils [...]
    Exactly!!! These guys are sharp like a samurai sword. They go threw a tire like it would be made out of butter.

    Thanks for the hint. I'll have a look to the discussions.

  14. #14
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    Thanks again for sharing your experience with the A-force rims especially with the ceramic coating. I read about it and I thought there would only be a benefit in braking performance if i would ride in the rain... Anyway it looks pretty nice :-)

    May I ask you how satisfied you are with the quality of the rim and which hubs and spokes you used to built the wheels? There are no long term experience on the rim because itīs a new rim. I'm 216lbs and therefore I need a strong rim.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by john81 View Post
    Exactly!!! These guys are sharp like a samurai sword. They go threw a tire like it would be made out of butter.
    Thanks for the hint. I'll have a look to the discussions.
    Not only sharp, but tough and hard, so the spines don't break off easily. If you ever stepped on one with a bare foot, you'd have vivid memories -they can go to the bone. (I grew up in Nevada).
    We are far from pefect,
    But perfect as we are
    We are bruised, we are broken,
    But we are goddamn works of art
    Works of art

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by john81 View Post
    May I ask you how satisfied you are with the quality of the rim and which hubs and spokes you used to built the wheels? There are no long term experience on the rim because itīs a new rim. I'm 216lbs and therefore I need a strong rim.
    I'm very satisfied with the quality. I had built a set of wheels prior that I really liked but the rims failed (Pacenti SL23 v1). However having November build these was really the best decision. They are SOLID. I haven't had to touch them at all still completely true. I only had to get valve extenders for my tubes since all my stock were/are a bit short for the chuck on my old pump (now have a Lezyne that works great with short valve stems).

    I got the default build with the bitex hubs, Sapim CX-Ray (front and NDS rear) and CX Sprint (DS rear) 2x rear spokes, and brass nipples. I have the 24/28 build and I was sitting around 180 when I ordered them.

    One consideration I would make, given your size, possible lower gearing, and torque you may put into the drive train, is to look at the White Industries hubs. They cost a bit more and I think they may be just a tiny bit heaver, but the titanium freehub body is probably going to be worth it from a durability/gouging perspective. Very durable and easily serviceable hubs from everything I have read.

    Contact Dave at November Bicycles and give him the details of what you need. He'll steer you in the right direction for your build. I definitely will be going to them for my next set of wheels.

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