Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking - 2nd set of wheels, for CX or road?
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08-27-09, 09:49 AM
I bought my cross bike last year ('07 fuji cross pro), it came with 32mm Ritchey Speedmax tires, wheel specs: 32H Formula hubs, Alex ACE-19 rims, 2.0mm straight spokes. I don't know how the stock wheels compare to whats available. They need to be trued (never done, possibly poor from factory?) but seem to be tolerating the abuse.
I just got a set of rollers and thought road tires would be a good idea. So if I get a new wheelset, I could go for a lightweight road set and road tires, or get a sturdy set for off-road and use the stock wheels with road tires.
Price limit, under $500. I'm 135 lbs and do some rides exclusively on paved surfaces, but will also mix in some hardpack, loose gravel, and light single-track (a few small bumps/drops cause chain slap, occasional roots/rocks, 4" or less?). I might try cross racing, too. Any suggestions?
08-27-09, 10:06 AM
I'd go with the light road wheels. Quite a few choices for $500, but you probably won't be able to go very light. Still, even 1700 gram wheels will be much better than those Alex wheels. I'd save them for cross even if it's just an experiment. Spend the money on something you know you'll do, not just try.
08-27-09, 10:47 AM
If you stick with the alex ones with road tires, make sure that your road tires are at least 25c. I was thinking the same thing but didn't do it after i realized the alex rims are slightly on the wider side and that my continentals were 23c which didn't look right at all.
08-27-09, 11:01 AM
As soon as I have $500 I don't have another use for I'm gertting these: http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/18735-365_FULR58-3-Parts-75-Wheelsets/Fulcrum-Racing-5-Road-Wheelset.htm
Fulcrum 5 are in the same price range or slightly more expensive than Easton EA50 or Mavic Aksium/Kysrium. They are tubless ready which I think is a pretty cool feature at this price. The Fulcrum, Easton, Mavic's are all good for road or cross. My '09 Kona Jake the Snake came with Aksiums which are nice enough for me and take five minutes to change a conti GP4000 without tools.
08-27-09, 11:16 AM
I had my lbs handbuild me a set of wheels and have been very pleased with them. Just told the builder what kind of abuse these wheels would see and gave price range let them pick parts and configuration of the wheels. Mine with new cassette cost around $425 stronger and lighter than the stock alex wheels that came with the bike I had. They spent quite a while talking with me about what parts would be used and configuration and the advantages of them with initial ordered the wheels with them. My next wheelset will be locally built.
08-27-09, 09:15 PM
>I was thinking the same thing but didn't do it after i realized the alex rims are slightly on the wider side and that my continentals were 23c which didn't look right at all.
Dunno about "look right", but I run Vittoria Rubino Pro 23mm on the Alex-19 rims, and it works well.
08-28-09, 04:00 AM
For running on a trainer and even general road use I'd look on ebay and find something ok for $100. I got a perfectly good pair of perfectly good brand new MTB wheels for less than that - I just had to read a few mtbr reviews on wheels from less prestigous manufacturers. They'd probably die a little sooner than the best $400 wheels if used hard off road and they'd pull me back minutely in a race. But I'm not using them for that, so I don't care.
Use a few bucks of the left over money to get the Ritchey wheels trued, buy a cheap hydration pack, several pairs of good tyres, and put the rest in a bike repair fund. Or invest it in some bike tools. Or beer.
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