I respectfully disagree. Araya 20A 36-spoke 27x1 anything
are excellent quality and bullet proof. I've been riding
two sets since 2005. They were round and otherwise true when
I got them, installed OEM on two '84 Centurion Comp TAs
(Tange #2, all 8 tubes; Shimano 600EX), and remain so to
this day. I've only replaced their Suzue Sealed Tech hubs'
pitted cones (www.wheelsmfg.com
). Their stainless spokes
and double eyelets look like new.
I also have a lesser set of Arayas, not sure what model
but alloy with single eyelets, that came OEM on an '87
Centurion LeMans RS (Tange #2; Shimano Light Action). This
bike has been used over rough roads and has hit more potholes
than it has spokes (36x2). They were round and true when I
got this bike in 2004 and still are. But these are 700C.
And, yes, you can put wider or narrower 27xwhatever tires
on these rims if they're from the '80s as they will have
I have been riding every day, year 'round since 2003. Two
of my bikes have Araya 20A 27x1 rims (above) and two others
have Araya 20A 700c with Shimano 600EX hubs (36H). All are
giving me excellent service. I just got back from a 20-mile
run this morning on one set of Araya 20A 700c and I'll be
doing twice that with BF's JunkYardBike tomorrow on the same
wheelset. If I didn't trust them, I wouldn't be riding them
that far away from home.
The four Centurions I have with Araya 20As were near the top
of Centurion's lineup for their respective years. Wheelsets
generally matched in quality the OEM groupsets that adorned
a bike and the groupset on all these bikes is Shimano 600EX,
second only to Dura Ace.
Oh, one more thing. Check out what an Araya 20A 27x1
wheelset in excellent condition fetches on eBay. They don't
come up often but when they do, watch out! Some folks out
there apparently like them even more than I do.
Araya was a member of Japan Bicycle Manufacturers, the same
combine that includes Shimano, according to Frank Berto's
"Complete Guide to Upgrading Your Bike" (page 222, 1988