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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-19-09, 12:36 AM   #1
SeizeTech
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building a strong rear wheel for a 380lb clyde

I have a canadian tire schwinn Izip, which is basically a Currie Ezip that Dorel Canada has stamped their own name on.

I have less than 1000 kms of commuting on it, and I noticed that there are 4 spokes broken on the rear wheel they are all right next to each other and broke at the hub, not the rim.

When I took it to the local bike shop, they told me that the spokes were already the strongest spokes that you can get, and they didn't seem optimistic that a different rim would help.

Has anyone had their rear wheel rebuild with specialty parts that make it super strong? what parts did you use?

There is a local bike shop in town that is also a good motorcycle shop, I'm thinking that the 2 shops can collaberate to make an extra strong wheel for me, but I am curious if someone can recommend their build?

thanks in advance.

TS
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Old 08-19-09, 08:37 AM   #2
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It sounds like you got a bum wheel.

A well built 36 spoke wheel with a solid rim should do fine, especially if you don't ride over curbs and stand if you see an obstruction you can't avoid instead of sitting in the saddle.

The stock rear wheel of my Sedona has over 3,000 miles on it, and has had one broken spoke, and I have weighed between 300 and 365 the whole time. A well built wheel instead of this cheap machine built wheel should do even better.

Don't try some hybrid of bicycle and motorcycle wheels... I can't imagine that any good would come of it.

If you are really paranoid, simply get a rear wheel that is built for a tandem.
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Old 08-19-09, 08:42 AM   #3
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I would suggest a setup used for loaded touring, something along the lines of a Mavic A719 Rim with a Shimano XT hub and DT swiss comp spokes.

Built right a wheel like that will support your weight and then some.
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Old 08-19-09, 10:18 AM   #4
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I'm with mtclifford. A loaded touring wheel built by a reputable shop should do it. When I weighed 250, I'd routinely load 80 pounds of groceries on my bike and not collapse the wheels, and I ride on 32h rims.

A 36h double wall mid-to-high profile rim should be plenty strong. Now, I looked up the iZip and there's 2 models of it: A 26" and a 700c model. Which one did you get? (A co-worker of mine just bought the 700c model and moved the electronics and assist kit to a lighter bike.)

For a 700c rim I would look at the Mavic A719 or Velocity Dyad. You don't need to go as high-end as the XT hub, but it won't hurt any. I fully agree with the DT spokes, but I'm a fan of the straight gauge Champion series. DT Champion 2.0 spokes go on all my builds. The db Competition spokes make for less road vibration and allow the rim to soak some additional impact because the spokes can flex a little more, but I feel this flex when standing/climbing and think the wheel feels "soggy". A straight gauged build is going to be stiffer and transfer more vibration (so run a wider tire), but it will not feel flexy.
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Old 08-19-09, 07:02 PM   #5
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More or less seconding/thirding what Clifford and Clifton have said. A quality mid/high profile, 36 spoke rim, laced 3 or 4X with straight 14 ga DT or Wheelsmith spokes, properly stress relieved and tensioned should be able to handle your needs.
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Old 08-19-09, 07:45 PM   #6
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are we talking about a "comfort bike" or what are you riding?
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Old 08-19-09, 10:26 PM   #7
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Look at the wheels for a tandem. Phil wood hub is pricey but recommended. You might have a custom wheel built for example at Harriscyclery.com, explain the weight issue to them .
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Old 08-19-09, 11:02 PM   #8
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Careful with tandem hubs. The spacing will be too wide for a regular (130 - 135mm) frame. Tandem frames are built on 140 - 160mm spacing.
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Old 08-20-09, 12:06 AM   #9
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I don't think that a tandem hub, Phill Wood or any other hub is going to work. This thing has an 450W electric motor attached to the rear wheel. I think his only choice is to take the thing to an expert wheel builder and have him redo the whole thing with new spokes. If you've broke four spokes the rest of the spokes are probably toast as well. If you don't replace all the spokes you'll just continue to break spokes. You are better off starting from scratch.
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Old 08-20-09, 02:23 AM   #10
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While you can make a Phil Wood Hub would work, I think it is overkill. You can get a solid shimano hub for 1/4 of the price. Now if you were taking your bike on a trip across say the Gobi desert by all means I would say get the Phil Wood
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Old 08-20-09, 12:53 PM   #11
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I have a Mavic 721 downhill mtnbike rim( designed for jumping) with DT Swiss 2.0 spokes being placed on my hub. The reviews for the Mavic 721 are quite good, so I think the bike mechanic didn't give me bad advice.
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Old 08-21-09, 11:16 AM   #12
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My previous bike had a set of Phil Wood/Mavic A719 wheels with 32/32 spokes that I rode for 7 years and 75,000 miles with excellent results. The bike was used for both cyclocross, commuting and loaded touring during that time. On a number of occasions the bike was used for normal mountain biking in the northwest where I had no fear of bunny hopping logs or taking rock gardens at speed. I only replaced the wheel set when I wanted to change to a 9sp setup and at the time couldn't afford the $400 for a Phil Wood casette hub and to build a new wheel.
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