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  1. #1
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    MTB rear wheel repair question...

    I'm just getting back into biking after a 7 year hiatus. My trusty old 1993 Specialized Stumpjumper with mostly '96 XT parts seems in good shape overall, but the rear wheel had a significant wobble. I took it to my local ghetto bike store (they mostly sell BMX and kids bikes) - they tried to true it, but they said the spoke nipples were stuck, and they didn't have any replacement spokes of the right kind.

    So i took the bike downtown to a better bike store, and they took one look at the wheel and said the rim is garbage, you need a rebuilt wheel.. Apparently there is a small vertical wobble, and they told me that vertical wobbles are unfixable.

    The wheel has a 1996 XT hub, DT revolution spokes with alloy nipples, and a Mavic 217 SUP hard anodized rim. I had it built in 1996, and don't remember taking any particularly huge hits on it, but maybe i've forgotten.

    Anyway, the guy there suggested rebuilding it with a Sun Rhyno Lite silver rim and regular 14 gauge spokes. He had a cosmetically scratched Rhyno Lite rim that he said he'd sell for $30, and would charge $1 per spoke, plus about $25 for labour. The total for the rebuilt wheel would be a bit over $80.

    My question is, is this a much lower end wheel that i'm getting, and is the price OK? I used to know everything about everything when it came to bike parts, but that was long ago, and now i have no idea whether this is a good deal or not.


    Thanks

    -R

  2. #2
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    30 bucks for a cosmetically scratched rim? You can buy it new for 30 bucks. 1 dollar per spoke? Unless hes using revolutions, its more like 50-69 cents per spoke. 25 for labor sounds fair. Just find the parts elsewhere.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    Will most bike shops build a wheel if you give them the parts?

  4. #4
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    I think so, i see no reason why not. I know the current one i go to will
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  5. #5
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    Hmm.. i have another crazy idea.. can i order the rim, new spokes, and a spoke wrench, and assemble the wheel myself on the pattern of the current one, and then just take it to a store for truing?

    or is there some wheelbuilding voodoo that i'll miss out on?

  6. #6
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    you might be able to. WHeel building is a whole new story here. In most instances, its not worth the one time builder to do it.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Regular retail for a rhyno lite is around $40.00 to $50.00. There's a welded version that retails for about $60.00. I'd say that $30.00 if it has a cosmetic scratch is probably a fair price at an LBS. $1.00 apiece for DT Champion spokes is on the pricy side. I used to charge 50 cents if a guy bought a whole wheel's worth of spokes but $1.00 if he only wanted one or two. I'd charge you a dollar per spoke for building so roughly what you'd save on spokes at my shop, I'd get back in labor.

    Assuming an average or better wheelbuilder, you are going to get a much better wheel. I can't believe the stunts that my sons do on rhyno lite wheels that I've built for them and I don't think that either of them has broken a spoke. Rhyno lites are pretty much my standard rim replacement for mountain bikes. They are reasonably priced, probably the easiest rims ever to build up, and they are tough. If there's a downside, it's that they aren't the easiest rims to mount tires on.

  8. #8
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    C://dos
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  9. #9
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    There are several good premade wheelsets available as well. Normal sets can range as low as 80-100 bucks. Jensonusa.com is a good source. Nashbar.com and Frankfordbike.com have several good parts prices.
    Aviation Mechanic, Bike racer, Fitness Equipment Restorer

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  10. #10
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice. I'd rather not go with a premade wheel as i already have an XT rear hub which i think is still good - a cheap premade wheel would probably have a cheap rear hub, i'm guessing.

    This LBS was in Manhattan, BTW, where everything is expensive. Maybe i'll try trekking over to New Jersey and see if their prices are better.

  11. #11
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    I would snag that Rhyno Lite rim. 29 bucks brand new, and you can buy Sapim spokes for cheap through Thorr USA which are very nice by the way
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  12. #12
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    I called around a few other bike shops. Most want about $35 to build up the wheel, plus about $20 for spokes. That, figuring in about $35 for the Rhyno Lite rim from JensonUSA, and it's close to $100 to get the rear wheel rebuilt..

    Then i saw these on Jenson: http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...+Wheelset.aspx

    XT hubs, Mavic rims, and $130 for the _pair_.

    This sounds like a better deal, no? I could have a set of wheels with slicks and a set with MTB tires.

    But is that wheelset 9-speed only? My 1996 XT derailleur and shifters are 8 speed...

  13. #13
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robo
    But is that wheelset 9-speed only? My 1996 XT derailleur and shifters are 8 speed...
    8-speed and 9-speed wheels are identical.

  14. #14
    Senior Member robo's Avatar
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    Ah, thanks that's good to know. I'm sort of torn here. i could get my wheel rebuilt at the LBS for ~$90, or i could get a brand new wheel for about $110 .. (looking at bike nashbar's deal on an XT Rear hub with 14/15 spokes and a Mavic 717 rim).

    I suspect the LBS might make a better wheel than some mailorder place... hmm..

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