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Old 07-26-10, 09:57 AM   #1
flammenwurfer
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650b or EA3 rims and my commuter bike situation

Now that I've been commuting for a while on my Technium 3 speed conversion I've learned a couple things. I really like the bike, but for commuting and running errands the aluminum frame and skinny tires are not very well suited to the pothole-ridden roads in this city. I think I want to transfer commuting duty over to my Raleigh Sports. Hopefully taking advantage of the steel frame and wider tires to absorb the bumps. Then I can make the Technium my "fast" recreational riding bike.

Before I start commuting on it I want to upgrade the wheels. I know there is plenty of information on upgrading Raleigh Sports wheel, which I have read. I've come to the conclusion that my best option would be to use the same 26x1 3/8 size rims or 650b rims since they are close enough. I like the prospect of using 650b for the tire options, but I can't find any 650b rims for sale anywhere! 650b conversions seem fairly common around here, but where do you get the rims?

Even if were to stay with the original size, I can only find 1 rim option, the Sun CR-18. I've seen mention of Weinmann alloy rims but can't find them for sale anywhere. Am I not looking in the right places? I've searched all my usual online parts sites and google as well.
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Old 07-26-10, 10:06 AM   #2
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Both Rivendell and Velo Orange sell 650B rims. That's just off the top of my head, I'm sure there are lots of others.
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Old 07-26-10, 10:24 AM   #3
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I would choose the rim size based on the tires available. I understand the Panaracer Col de la Vie tire is a nice one, and it's available in 650A (26x1-3/8). At $30 each, it better be. Seriously, though, I'm sure it is. I love Panaracer.

I see Harris has quite a few nice 650B tires, including the Col de la Vie. The Nifty Swifty looks, uh, nifty, but might be too narrow for what you're aiming for.

So ironically, you're going to put the Technium back the way it was? After all that work you put into making it a city bike?
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Old 07-26-10, 10:30 AM   #4
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Both Rivendell and Velo Orange sell 650B rims. That's just off the top of my head, I'm sure there are lots of others.
I don't see any 650b rims on Rivendell's site. Just pre-built wheels that are expensive. I forgot to check VO. Those are nice but more than I wanted to spend. However, if that's all that is available I guess I have no choice.

I am finding a Velocity 650b rim at some sites, but it's not really what I'm looking for and $70+

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I would choose the rim size based on the tires available. I understand the Panaracer Col de la Vie tire is a nice one, and it's available in 650A (26x1-3/8). At $30 each, it better be. Seriously, though, I'm sure it is. I love Panaracer.

I see Harris has quite a few nice 650B tires, including the Col de la Vie. The Nifty Swifty looks, uh, nifty, but might be too narrow for what you're aiming for.

So ironically, you're going to put the Technium back the way it was? After all that work you put into making it a city bike?
Haha, well not back the way it was. I'm going to leave it as a 3 speed, but maybe try some different bars. I may even leave my light on it and use it for nighttime riding and longer distances. I've been wanting to make an improved version of my led dynamo light anyways.
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Old 07-26-10, 10:36 AM   #5
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The only relatively inexpensive 650B rims out there are the Weinmann Zac-19 ones. I bought a set from bikepartsusa.com last year at a bit less than $25 each, but that site isn't showing them any longer. You can get a complete wheelset with those rims on eBay for about $100:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...=263602_263622

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Old 07-26-10, 10:42 AM   #6
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I don't see any 650b rims on Rivendell's site. Just pre-built wheels that are expensive.
Rivendell sells the Velicity Synergy and they're not hard to find on their site. You didn't say you were looking for cheap 650B rims. Those are going to be harder to find.

http://www.rivbike.com/products/show/rims-650b/18-183
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Old 07-26-10, 10:46 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by flammenwurfer View Post
Even if were to stay with the original size, I can only find 1 rim option, the Sun CR-18...
Do you not like the CR-18, or do you want - for some reason - to use different brands/models of rims for the front and rear wheels?

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Old 07-26-10, 10:46 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
The only relatively inexpensive 650B rims out there are the Weinmann Zac-19 ones. I bought a set from bikepartsusa.com last year at a bit less than $25 each, but that site isn't showing them any longer. You can get a complete wheelset with those rims on eBay for about $100:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...=263602_263622

Neal
It figures the least expensive option would be unavailable .

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Rivendell sells the Velicity Synergy and they're not hard to find on their site. You didn't say you were looking for cheap 650B rims. Those are going to be harder to find.

http://www.rivbike.com/products/show/rims-650b/18-183
Haha, yep there they are. I guess I just overlooked them. Thanks. Yeah, I would like to find cheap ones if I can. That does appear to be a difficult task. Looks like the CR-18s are going to be the closest to my definition of cheap.
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Old 07-26-10, 10:46 AM   #9
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Do you not like the CR-18, or do you want - for some reason - to use different brands/models of rims for the front and rear wheels?

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No, I just like to have options.
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Old 07-26-10, 10:56 AM   #10
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The CR-18 rim is a good one. I've built two wheels with them. They built up very nicely. I can't speak for the durability, however.

That wheel set that nlerner cited looks like a great value. So you'll be back to a derailleur, but that's really OK. Or you could dismantle the rear wheel and use the hub elsewhere.
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Old 07-26-10, 12:01 PM   #11
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Actually, I want to leave the Technium's wheels as they are. The Sports is the one that I want to build wheels for. I do not want a derailleur on the Sports. I can get spokes and nipples for about $18 per wheel, so for about $100 I can build the two wheels with cr-18s. I think that is probably going to be the cheapest option if I go new. Now if I could find some second hand 650b or EA3 alloy wheels/rims cheaper that would be preferable.

Dang, I need another bike . I just ordered a 2 speed kickback hub that I don't know what I'm going to do with also.
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