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Old 02-13-10, 01:37 PM   #1
lukasz
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2003 vintage American Classic carbon tubulars--bad?

I've found some on sale reallly cheap. They look to be deeper than 38mm but not quite 58 with an 18/24 spoke count--I've asked the seller but have not received a response yet. Did these have issues I should know about.

I know to look for cracks around the nipples, check out the hubs, yadda yadda. Are these going to for some reason kill me even without manifesting severe signs like cracking?
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Old 02-14-10, 09:37 AM   #2
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I can't respond to your question but have another question for you. Are you sure they are AC wheels? IIRC, AC carbon wheels came in only 38 or 58 w/ the 58s using the predimpled Zipp hoops. If they are 50cm, I would guess they are other carbon hoops w/ the AC stickers on them.
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Old 02-14-10, 09:46 AM   #3
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I've found some on sale reallly cheap. They look to be deeper than 38mm but not quite 58 with an 18/24 spoke count--I've asked the seller but have not received a response yet. Did these have issues I should know about.

I know to look for cracks around the nipples, check out the hubs, yadda yadda. Are these going to for some reason kill me even without manifesting severe signs like cracking?
Have they been raced? Crashed? (A dishonest seller is probably not going to answer either of these questions truthfully, obviously). I would carefully look for externally for signs of damage but with all things carbon damage is not 100% detectable in this fashion
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Old 02-14-10, 09:53 AM   #4
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They've definitely been raced on, and they are 58mm. I will go take a careful look at them. Would these wheels have structural carbon, or just a carbon fairing? The braking surface is carbon. At 165 lbs, am I pushing the limit for 18/24 wheels?
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Old 02-14-10, 11:48 AM   #5
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7yr old really cheap carbon wheels...I like life far too much
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Old 02-14-10, 12:35 PM   #6
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If they are 58s then they are probably the same hoop as the Zipp 404 from that same year - not carbon fairing. My 404s are pre-dimpled version from 03/04 and have had no issues so far but are only used on race days (crits, TT, tri).
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Old 02-14-10, 01:00 PM   #7
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^^
They are the 58, and they have stickers like these on them:

http://www.pezcyclingnews.com/?pg=fullstory&id=847

Presumably they are the same type of wheel being reviewed, except the 58mm version.

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7yr old really cheap carbon wheels...I like life far too much
Well, this is how I feel, except I've not yet been able to think of why they might fail if they are structurally sound. Would you stop riding a 7 year old wheelset with only race miles just because it is made of carbon fiber and old?
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Old 02-14-10, 01:21 PM   #8
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Yes...very much..metal you can see/hear fatigue carbon no...I would be scared to death of them even after a close inspection..I have had no problem with used carbon bars and seat posts and such but I don't think I would go used carbon wheels..
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Old 02-14-10, 04:00 PM   #9
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Depends what metal you are talking about. I wouldn't differentiate carbon from metal so drastically. Carbon exploding suddenly and without warning is kind of an old wive's tale.

Don't get me wrong--I have the same worry as you but it is as-yet unsubstantiated by any sort of evidence. Thinking scientifically, I see no reason why a carbon component would fail after 7 years unless it had developed stress marks of some kind. Carbon fiber has a far superior fatigue life compared to metals.

I also feel that if it is in good condition, I would trust a deep-dish wheel over a carbon seatpost of the same age. I don't think that I would even trust a new carbon seatpost, actually (mostly because Thomson seatposts exist). Having built wheels myself (though only aluminum), I kind of feel comfortable about the durability of 2.2 inch deep CF rims assuming they pass a thorough visual inspection. If it were an ultra-light weight, low profile design, then I would certainly be more wary.

I was basically wondering if anyone had heard horrible things about this model of AC wheels, but having found that Pez review, they actually seem to be pretty solid. I think I've been beaten to the punch, anyway. I should have been a bit quicker considering the seller was letting them go for $200.

As usual, what was an impulse buy is now turning into me scouring ebay for parts (though the cheapest I am going to be able to get away with is probably 2.5 times the original price, haha).

Last edited by lukasz; 02-14-10 at 04:08 PM.
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