spoke pattern question
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  1. #1

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    spoke pattern question

    Can anyone explain why the Mavic SSC Ksyrium SL rear wheel has radial spokes on the drive side and 2x on the non-drive side. This seems to go against conventional wisdom. I love the wheel set from a riding perspective,but I am a bit concerned that for day to day riding and training,it is not the best way to go.

  2. #2
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    Score = marketing 1, engineering 0

    While MAVIC uttered some mumbo jumbo about extra stiff hub bodies and stress transfer to the spokes with the better bracing angle, it is pretty much a triumph of sizzle over steak. If you could not see the Ksyriums, no one would ever buy them based on price and performance. But many people are taken by the chi-chi factor, and this is how boutique wheels can sell for $100s more than a conventional wheel with equal performance.

  3. #3

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    What wheels do you like?

    Kerry (and others),

    Which wheelset do YOU recommend? Do you like Bontragers? I am building my first bike (wish me LOTS of luck) and I would like to know which wheelset is a good choice. I ride for exercise only and don't race. I weigh around 140 lbs. An extra 300 grams won't bother me in the least.

    Thanks.

  4. #4
    Do not touch the trim.
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    Every rear wheel needs at least one side of the hub with spokes laced tangetially to counteract the forces of the drive system and the wheel winding up ( Front disc wheels apply here also) Mavic and Spinergy moved those tangent spokes to the non-drive side because they simply ran out of room on the drive side. Ksyrium and Spinergy PBO spokes are so big at the hub attachment points that they wouldnt fit in the area allotted near the casette without some ridiculous dish so they moved them to the non-drive side. No big deal really as a hub shell is incredibly strong in torsion( like any tube) and is easily capable of transfering those forces. Like Kerry i'm not a huge fan of pre-built "system" wheels but whatever, I ride what I like, other people ride what they like. Just for comparison you can get Excelports to build you a wheelset with Hugi 240s hubs, DT Revolution spokes and Mavic Open Pro rims that are 30g lighter (big deal, I know) AND $280.00 cheaper than Ksyrium SL's, a no brainer in my book.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by OnTheRivet
    Every rear wheel needs at least one side of the hub with spokes laced tangetially to counteract the forces of the drive system and the wheel winding up ( Front disc wheels apply here also) Mavic and Spinergy moved those tangent spokes to the non-drive side because they simply ran out of room on the drive side. Ksyrium and Spinergy PBO spokes are so big at the hub attachment points that they wouldnt fit in the area allotted near the casette without some ridiculous dish so they moved them to the non-drive side. No big deal really as a hub shell is incredibly strong in torsion( like any tube) and is easily capable of transfering those forces. Like Kerry i'm not a huge fan of pre-built "system" wheels but whatever, I ride what I like, other people ride what they like. Just for comparison you can get Excelports to build you a wheelset with Hugi 240s hubs, DT Revolution spokes and Mavic Open Pro rims that are 30g lighter (big deal, I know) AND $280.00 cheaper than Ksyrium SL's, a no brainer in my book.
    I appreciate all the replies and reviews re: Ksyrium wheels. These wheels came on the bike when I purchased it. I bought the bike from a classified on RBR. I do not have any strong feeling about these wheels one way or another. So far they have been perfect. Having read the comments that pertain to the technical aspects of this wheel leads me to ask for opinions as to whether this wheel is a good everyday wheel albeit expensive or should I build something more traditional and cheaper. I have broken spokes on traditional wheels and been able to continue to ride. That is my main concern. I am a relatively strong recreational rider and not a racer.

  6. #6
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    I recommend the wheels I build

    A bit facetious, I know, but as far as I am concerned, until you get into the carbon rim super wheels (most of which are for tubulars only), there is not a boutique wheel on the market that is better (in any respect) than a normal wheel built on a high quality hub. A Record or Chorus or DA hub with a Velocity Aerohead (Aerohead OC in the rear), Open Pro, FIR, Ambrosio, etc. rim, with 15/16 spokes (brass nipples, and 14/15 for heavy riders or people who are hard on wheels) makes an EXCELLENT lightweight wheel that is reasonable in cost, easy to maintain, cheap to repair, and performs in every way comparably to the $600-$800 factory wheels. Special spoke paterns offer nothing. There's no way you can convince me that MAVIC, Chris King, AC, Hugi, etc. hubs have anything over the Campy or DA units, and in some cases have demonstrated that they are not as good. For the past decade at least, every attempt to get a conventional (aluminum extrusion) clincher rim below 400 g has resulted in all kinds of durability issues. $360 a set with OPs for Record hubs, $330 for Chorus, and $370 for DA right now from Colorado Cyclist.

  7. #7

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    I'm not going to build my own wheels?!?

    What does DA stand for (as in DA hub)? Dura Ace?

    Do you buy a hub, as well as spokes and a rim and build it yourself? That would seem to be very labor intensive, require special equipment, etc. For those of who who don't tear through wheels and are not able to spend the $ for the special truing stand, dishing equipment, etc, where do WE go to get wheels?

  8. #8
    Do not touch the trim.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons
    A bit facetious, I know, but as far as I am concerned, until you get into the carbon rim super wheels (most of which are for tubulars only), there is not a boutique wheel on the market that is better (in any respect) than a normal wheel built on a high quality hub. A Record or Chorus or DA hub with a Velocity Aerohead (Aerohead OC in the rear), Open Pro, FIR, Ambrosio, etc. rim, with 15/16 spokes (brass nipples, and 14/15 for heavy riders or people who are hard on wheels) makes an EXCELLENT lightweight wheel that is reasonable in cost, easy to maintain, cheap to repair, and performs in every way comparably to the $600-$800 factory wheels. Special spoke paterns offer nothing. There's no way you can convince me that MAVIC, Chris King, AC, Hugi, etc. hubs have anything over the Campy or DA units, and in some cases have demonstrated that they are not as good. For the past decade at least, every attempt to get a conventional (aluminum extrusion) clincher rim below 400 g has resulted in all kinds of durability issues. $360 a set with OPs for Record hubs, $330 for Chorus, and $370 for DA right now from Colorado Cyclist.
    I like building with Shimano and Campy hubs also but for no compromise wheels I find Hugi's and Chris Kings are very durable and up to 1/3 pound lighter....and more expensive, a tradeoff. Spoke patterns; your right in that there is really no structural difference in spoke lacing patterns although radial is a bit lighter and looks pretty cool so if the hub can handle the radial load why not. My favorite wheelset is a pair I built to race on using Hugi 240, 28 hole hubs, XL 14's ( I prefer building with wheelsmith after DT pissed me off with that different length J-bend crap a few years ago) and ZIPP 360 carbon tubular rims (404 rim) They weigh 1350 grams and with 28 spokes are absolutley bulletproof. It's weird to build with that rim because it is so solid you actually move the hub around inside the rim during building.

  9. #9
    Arrogant roadie.....
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoachRob
    What does DA stand for (as in DA hub)? Dura Ace?
    yes.
    Do you buy a hub, as well as spokes and a rim and build it yourself?
    Sure. People do it all the time.
    That would seem to be very labor intensive, require special equipment, etc.
    No, you can build a wheel with nothing more than a spoke wrench. That's how I built my first 3 wheels.
    For those of who who don't tear through wheels and are not able to spend the $ for the special truing stand, dishing equipment, etc, where do WE go to get wheels?
    Well, just a [email protected]$$ guess: a bike shop, maybe???
    We are the 801
    We are the central shaft

  10. #10
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    60 gm = 1/3 lb?

    Quote Originally Posted by OnTheRivet
    Hugi's and Chris Kings are very durable and up to 1/3 pound lighter.
    How do you arrive at this figure? CKs are listed as 365 gm for a pair, vs 371 for Record (w/o skewers). Hugi 240s are listed as 310 gm for a pair, and of course cost some $150 more than Record for a 60 gm savings. Given the totality of performance and value, I'll take Record any day.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave_Stohler
    Well, just a [email protected]$$ guess: a bike shop, maybe???
    No, I meant, what wheel do you recommend? But I admit, I left myself open there.

    How do you build a wheel without a truing stand? Don't you need to be sure it is true and the dish is correct? I thought that's what the purpose of those tools were. I'd LOVE to build my own wheels as Zinn describes in his book (my bible); I just always thought it required expensive equipment, without which I'd get very SEVERE wheel wobble.

    How long does it take to build a wheel, start to finish for an experienced wrencher?

    To build a wheel, what specific components would you recommend. I imagine a Dura Ace hub, but what about a rim and spokes? I have a Cannondale R2000 (with Mavic Ksyrium SL SSC's) which I ride for exercise, not racing, but like to average about 18 mph. I'd really like to give it a try! Any advice would be great.

    And yes, I know I can get them at the LBS (or the internet which I prefer, especially nashbar.com)

  12. #12
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    How hard is it?

    You can easily build a wheel without a truing stand - when you spoke it up it will be fairly true, and then you just put it in your frame to finish the job. I built a set of wheels in a South Dakota campground and went on to do over 6K miles of fully loaded touring on them. The only tool I had was a little multi-size circular spoke wrench.

    Depending on what is on TV, and which rim you use, it takes 45-60 minutes to build a wheel. The only downside to Velocity rims is that, with no ferrules, it's a little more tricky to get the nipples in place, which slows down the build.

    I'm a big fan of Velocity Aerohead rims, but MAVIC OpenPro, and various rims from FIR and Ambrosio have their fans. Specific rim choice depends on your goals and budget, though for normal use wheels, a normal Aerohead in front and an Aerohead OC in the back makes for a great set of wheels that are lighter and certainly just as strong as a Ksyrium. I've had good luck with DT and Wheelsmith spokes, 14/15 or 15/16, brass nipples. The Sapim X-Ray and DT Revolution spokes get a lot of good press for a bit more "trick" build.

    For your first build, I'd recommend rebuilding an existing wheel from a commuter bike or a kid's bike. You want to get a feel for the process, and I wouldn't do that with $300 worth of brand new parts. Wheel building is a very logical process, but it also involves having a feel for how much to correct on each pass. Practice on rebuilding existing wheels before doing a "from scratch" job on your first line wheels. Having an experienced builder look over your shoulder can be a big help. SURELY you know, or know of, an experienced cyclist who knows how to do this.

    BTW, just what the heck are you a coach of? Volleyball?
    Last edited by Kerry Irons; 09-21-2004 at 04:03 AM.

  13. #13

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    Volleyball?

    Kerry,
    Thanks for the tips. I will certainly take your advice and de- and reconstruct my daughters wheels first. I hadn't thought of that.

    I like your suggestions for parts. I will probably use DA or Chorus hubs.

    And I coach soccer and lacrosse. Volleyball isn't too popular in my neck of the woods, although the women beach volleyball players would be awfully fun to coach!

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