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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 09-23-11, 02:36 PM   #1
nazran
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I need some advice on rear wheel issue...

I have a comfort bike with entry level Alex z1000 26" wheels. I started riding it 3 or 4 years ago weighing as much as 371 now 319. About a year ago it started breaking spokes and now breaks them about every 100 miles. I am commuting to work these days. 12.5 miles round trip.

I assume I will get lots of replies that I need to have a wheel specialist build a new wheel for me. Well the one I talked to quoted me $375 to by the components, build the wheel, swap out my cassette, hub, etc.

Not in my budget....

So I go out to ebay today and I see a new Alex Z1000 rear wheel for about $40 (with shipping) My question is: Do you think it is reasonable to expect that a new wheel of the same type and brand might give me a year or two of non exploding spokes like the original wheel did?

or is it a crapshoot?
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Old 09-23-11, 03:31 PM   #2
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I should imagine the new wheel will be the same as the old wheel but why don't you check out stronger wheels, maybe a higher spoke count would be stronger? Maybe Alex do a wheel which is only slightly more expensive than the z1000 but has more spokes and is stronger? You'd have to take advice on this, i'm just speculating.
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Old 09-23-11, 03:54 PM   #3
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That is probably a good suggestion but I am ignorant as to what would be compatible with my current hardware.... if anyone would like to point me to a slightly better or stronger wheel that is compatible with my specialized expedition sport 2008. I would be grateful!
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Old 09-23-11, 05:34 PM   #4
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Hi Nazran;

Not a crap shoot; you need to build or rebuild (or have someone do it for you) a wheel with properly tensioned spokes.

Personally; I would get this wheel:
http://www.amazon.com/Alex-shimano-A...6820369&sr=1-3
and this spacer for your 7 speed cassette to fit properly on the 8/9 speed freehub:
http://www.amazon.com/Avenir-7Spd-Ca...6820485&sr=1-2
(note get both from Niagara to save on shipping).

And then re-tension and stress relieve the spokes.

This is what I found on your bike:
http://www.bikepedia.com/quickbike/B...port&Type=bike

The 36 spoke wheel will be stronger.

You don't mention where you are, but I have a wheel that will fit you bike that will not have a spoke failure; it has 36 Wheelsmith DH13 spokes; properly tensioned, stress relieved and trued.
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Old 09-23-11, 07:11 PM   #5
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Hi Nigel, thank you for the suggestions. I live in Texas. I'm a complete newb, but what is the spacer for?
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Old 09-23-11, 07:26 PM   #6
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I recommend getting wheels stronger than the originals, especially for a big guy like you. (and like me). I have no suggestions though. I am getting some of those expensive custom wheels. A higher spoke count is always good though.
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Old 09-23-11, 09:43 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by nazran View Post
Hi Nigel, thank you for the suggestions. I live in Texas. I'm a complete newb, but what is the spacer for?
7 speed cassettes are 4.5mm narrower than 8 and 9 speed cassettes. It is very difficult (old stock only) to find a 7 speed free hub, or wheel with a 7 speed free hub to accept your 7 speed cassette; thus the spacer solution.
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Old 09-26-11, 09:39 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nazran View Post
So I go out to ebay today and I see a new Alex Z1000 rear wheel for about $40 (with shipping) My question is: Do you think it is reasonable to expect that a new wheel of the same type and brand might give me a year or two of non exploding spokes like the original wheel did?

or is it a crapshoot?
Assuming it's really a new wheel, I think you can get a wheel that should give you no problems for $100. Get the wheel off the bay, take it to a real wheel builder, and ask him to tension, true, and stress-relieve the wheel.

To expound a bit further, buying a machine-built wheel is the cheapest way to get the parts. The build is just about guaranteed to be awful. That's why you need to get someone who knows how to build a wheel to do what the machine didn't -- the machine gets it round, but the spokes aren't tensioned correctly, so they'll unscrew, or fatigue and break. $50 is the going rate around here, so +/- $20, and that C-note should give you a wheel that should last a long time with minimal problems.
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