Rear Wheel Recommendation for VERY Tall Rider?
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  1. #1
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    Rear Wheel Recommendation for VERY Tall Rider?

    I have a Trek 1.5 65 cm frame. A spoke in the stock rear wheel broke today while riding, did not hit anything. Should I upgrade my wheel?

    ... I've had my Trek 1.5 for a little over two years since new. Within a few months of buying the bike (within riding just about 500 miles) I started popping spokes on the rear wheel (first rear wheel). My local Trek dealer replaced the rear wheel under warranty, with my current rear wheel that I now have. I thought all of the spoke popping on the first rear wheel was due to a defective wheel, as the new rear wheel went about 18 months and much longer before popping any spokes... until today.

    The dealer back when my first rear wheel was giving me trouble, said I might have to get a beefier wheel because of my 7 foot tall frame and 295 pounds. This second rear tire has lasted much longer, about 1000 miles, before popping its first spoke today. But it seems like once you pop your first spoke, even after repair, the second and third popped spoke come much sooner.

    I just don't want to go through rear wheel popped spokes again like with my first stock rear wheel.

    ... I also used to have issues with my rear tire going flat. Switching to a GatorSkin on the rear tire, and, switching to Michelin tubes and away from Bontraguer tubes, has fixed frequent rear wheel flat problems. Have not had a rear flat in ages.

    ... Now to stop the popping spokes problem.

    Thanks for any advice.
    I can afford a nice rear wheel, but don't want to break the bank because I am not that serious of a rider. I do occasional 15-40 mile rides and an Olympic distance triathlon or two each year.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    see the various posts today about the clydes.... (more spokes better).

    are you running 23mm wide or 25mm wide tires?
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  3. #3
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    Yeah, I am definitely getting more spokes, these stock wheels have 24.
    I have 700cc... and I knew someone would ask me if 23 or 25.... I looked with a flashlight around the wheel and don't see anything that indicates 23mm or 25mm.

    Looked at my bike purchase paperwork, no clues.
    I did pull my Gatorskin wheel receipt from August 2014, from the Trek dealer, it says it is Continental 3869175G.
    That's the tire but maybe it can provide a clue as to the complete wheel size.

    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    The tire sidewall will indicate the size, whether it's 700x23 or 700x25, etc

    32 or 36 spoke (personally I go with a safety margin, with 36 spokes) rear rim, while heavier, should give you durability you desire.

    Shimano 105 or Ultegra hub won't break the bank
    2010 Specialized Secteur Elite with the RBR not-approved Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheelset
    2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp 29er upgraded to SRAM X9 with 1x10 and Stan's Arch EX rims and tubeless.
    2013 Cannondale CAADX-6 Tiagra with 9-speed SLX RD to run 11-32T cassette and Stan's Alpha 400 rims and tubeless
    and
    Some Burton snowboard setups, one with stiff ol' Camber and one with Rocker-Camber-Rocker

  5. #5
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    tdfuller,

    Did I read your post correctly? You're (gulp) 7ft? 295lbs?? Ever play in NBA (j/k ya!)

    Those Trek wheels were 24 spokes only? And you were able to ride them for awhile? Wow, every time I read something like this I think of how strong a built bicycle wheel really is.

    Don't know if this helps, but I am only (hey, I get to write the word "only" for the 1st time) but I am only ~200lbs, and several months ago I built up 32 spoke (2.0-1.8-2.0 all around, except drive side is 2.0-1.5-2.0), brass nipples, on H+ Plus Sons Archetypes (the new wider rims) laced to Ultegra 9 speed hubs, running Rubino Pro 25mm, and if just all opened my eyes.

    The ability to run such lower tires pressures (the comfort...MY GAWD!....what was I thinking riding those narrower tires all these years at 100-110 psi...argh!!), along with the handling, assurance of the new wider rims that allows those lower tire PSI pressures, coupled to the fact that I haven't had (knock on wood) to re-true one spoke since I built them (read Mike T's website to build your own, you can do it!), it all made heading out for my daily ride become a joy again where my wheels are concerned.


    At your weight, I'd get the new, wider rimmed H+ Sons or new Pacenti Version 2 SL23s or some of the Kinlins XC279s (seriously consider 36 in the back as Tednugent says), get them built up with solid spokes (Sapim, Wheelsmith and DT, all good) on brass nipples, laced to a solid hub (many choices for hubs nowadays, but Shimano is still the gold standard for durability and value--the new 105/Ultegra hubs are just as good as the Dura Ace hubs from 7-8 yrs ago). You do all this, you will be the happiest camper heading out for a ride.

    As you probably know there's nothing worse than when you're heading out for a ride and first thought is, wondering if your wheels are gonna hold up.

    Good luck!!
    Last edited by BelgianHammer; 07-19-2015 at 10:47 PM.

  6. #6
    changingleaf
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    There's not many stock bicycle wheels that will last long under a rider of your size. A hand built wheel with a strong rim and correct combination of spoke size and number is the best choice. A custom wheelbuilder can help you determine the best choice for your needs.

  7. #7
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    Pete nailed it. You're a big dude and you need wheels designed for you.

  8. #8
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    bike in shop now, getting an Ultegra hub with Velocity Chukker 36 hole wheel.

  9. #9
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    That is probably a good choice. Ultegra hubs are bombproof. I wasn't familiar with the Chukker rim. A quick look shows the drillings start at 32 and go to 48.....those would be great for loaded tandems. Definitely a rim designed to stand up to heavier loads.

    The rim is 32mm tall by 24mm wide, so you can easily run a 25 or, maybe, a 28mm tire if it will clear the chainstays on your frame. Your LBS can help you there.

    Enjoy the ride.

  10. #10
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    Just wondering... what do you all think is a reasonable labor cost ballpark figure to remove my old rear wheel and hub, and rebuild with Ultegra hub, Chukker rim, tape, 36 spokes, and move over my GatorSkin tire from old rear tire?

    Thanks

  11. #11
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    Last time I had wheels built, the cost for build only was $50-75, but prices vary. They shouldn't charge anything to remove the old wheel....simply open the quick release and it will come out. Assuming the wheel isn't a prebuilt that they have on hand or can order, they will probably charge full retail for all the parts, but you may want to ask them for an "out the door" price before they start so you aren't shocked when they give you the bill.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdfuller View Post
    Just wondering... what do you all think is a reasonable labor cost ballpark figure to remove my old rear wheel and hub, and rebuild with Ultegra hub, Chukker rim, tape, 36 spokes, and move over my GatorSkin tire from old rear tire?

    Thanks
    Wheel build labor is generally $50 give or take.
    Removing a wheel and moving over the tire is probably like $10-15 but I really don't know. If you're having them do that because it would be a challenge for you I'd suggest taking this as a learning opportunity and doing it yourself because it;s somethings cyclists really need to know how to do because you will eventually need to remove a wheel and change tire on the road.

  13. #13
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    Thanks, I have an out the door price, of $365 including parts (and rim tape) and labor, but not broken down in the various parts and labor.

    I see that the Veolcity Chikker rim can be found online for about $60 and Ultegra hub for around $75... if I am looking the listing correctly online for these parts...

  14. #14
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    Not sure where you are looking, but Wheelbuilder has the 36hole rim for $85 and Jenson has an Ultegra Rear Hub for $120, and those are retail prices, so that leaves $160 for spokes, nipples, build, etc. just to give you an idea of what went into that $365.

  15. #15
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    $365.00 to net a mismatched wheelset may be fine for function. But that really makes little sense to me beyond that. The wheel builders abilities being unknown not withstanding.

    Just one point of view. What spokes are getting used? [will look closer at posts]
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  16. #16
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    He never said what all the components were other than rim and hub. Assume it is being built 3X with 36 spokes.

    Agreed, I'd probably have a matching 32 or 36 hole front wheel built too if it were me because a factory set with a 24 spoke rear probably had a 20 spoke front......and it won't last too long either with the power the OP can likely generate.

  17. #17
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    No, it has a 24 spoke front as well.

    .... about $150 for labor, nipples, 36 spokes.... Wonder how reasonable that is

  18. #18
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    I wonder if it is the same place that sold a guy your size a bike with 24 spokes wheels on it??? If yes, I would put some real pressure on them to compensate you for selling you wheels/bike clearly not adequate to keep you safe frankly....

  19. #19
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    No it wasn't, bought it at a Trek dealer in Charlotte before moving to Raleigh.
    ... Actually, the Charlotte dealer already did compensate me because they sold me the bike brand new for $800.

  20. #20
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    Somebody sold you the wrong bike. 24 hole rims for a 300 pound guy??? That's criminal. A 32mm tire on a 36 hole wheel, might even be too small.

    I'm not sure if this is joke, or not, so I'm going to wash my hands.
    If your opinion differs from mine, ..........Too bad.
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  21. #21
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    Ok, so where would you have gotten me a better deal?

    At $800 for a brand new Trek 1.5 64 cm frame, heck, they could have removed both stock wheels and just sold me the bike without front and rear wheels and for that price I would have had at least a decent deal.

  22. #22
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    There is no factory bike with wheels designed for a guy like you, so there's not much point in arguing down that pathway. They could have offered you a set of beefier wheels though.

    As for the price, it's a little high, but I don't know how they break down their pricing. I would charge a little under $300 for a similar wheel, but I don't charge a build fee if all the parts are purchased through me. Add in labor, and tax, $365 isn't crazy for a shop price.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgaddis1 View Post
    There is no factory bike with wheels designed for a guy like you, so there's not much point in arguing down that pathway. They could have offered you a set of beefier wheels though.

    As for the price, it's a little high, but I don't know how they break down their pricing. I would charge a little under $300 for a similar wheel, but I don't charge a build fee if all the parts are purchased through me. Add in labor, and tax, $365 isn't crazy for a shop price.
    I think this is spot on. It's a low end Trek, so expect the wheels to be low end as well. As has been said, there's no pre-built wheels out there that support someone of his size. Hell, a lot of bikes have rear wheels with 20 spokes. Crazy. They probably just wanted to unload the 64 cm frame because there's limited demand for them and that's the wheels the bike comes with be it a 50 cm frame, or a 64 cm frame. Had the OP had a little more bike experience, he'd would have taken the wheels off the bike as soon as he got it and sold them, then replaced them with appropriate wheels.

    Prices at LBS are high. I'm surprised you made out of it that cheap. Hey, for paying $800 for the bike, he made out pretty well

  24. #24
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    I was 240 @ 6 feet when I started riding. It's not just the spokes popping that's an issue, it's the rear wheel bending and flexing when you're pedaling, or standing, or mashing, or just hammering it. I used to have a 24 spoke wheel which would rub brake pad to brake pad as I climbed standing up. I got a pair of 23mm wide rim (rim width, not to be confused with tire with) built with 28 spokes out back and 24 up front and things are much better. The wheel is stiff, my climbing performance improved and no more alignment/spoke issues.

    If the rear wheel has 24 spokes, I bet the front has 20. Instead of focusing on a single wheel I'd just go and get a set built. Face it, it'll be a while before you're hovering around 200lbs so you're going to need your wheels for some time. You can move a wheels between bikes, so if you decide you like this as a form of exercise and upgrade your bike... you can just take these wheels and have them mounted on bike #2. Also, because the front doesn't need as many spokes and uses a simpler hub it's cost will be marginally cheaper.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by MR_GRUMPY View Post
    Somebody sold you the wrong bike. 24 hole rims for a 300 pound guy??? That's criminal. A 32mm tire on a 36 hole wheel, might even be too small.

    I'm not sure if this is joke, or not, so I'm going to wash my hands.
    No, it sounds like someone sold him a bike that fit his budget at the time. At his size, most stock wheels won't last all that long. But bikes are spec'd for the average rider, not the over or under sized. Now, if he had built it frame up, and those are the wheels they recommended, you would have had a point.
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