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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 01-30-14, 06:26 AM   #1
BROOKLINEBIKER
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Recommend a rear wheel

Hi everyone,
I ride a 26 inch mountain bike as my winter/ commuter bike. I need a sturdy new rear wheel with a freehub that uses rim brakes and that will hold 175 pound me and lots of groceries and survive the occasional hit from a pothole. Lots of spokes would be good. I have pretty new 26 X1.5/1.75 tires and wish to keep using them on the new wheel. I am willing to spend up to $100 on the new wheel. I looked into the Sun CR18 and Mavic Cross Ride but both seem to get mediocre reviews. So what wheels do people recommend?
Thanks,
Neil
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Old 01-30-14, 08:00 AM   #2
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I think CR-18 rims laced to a basic Shimano cassette hub is a pretty remarkable deal. I've been riding a 700c version that I bought from Amazon for a month or so now, and I'm quite happy with it. I had a similar 26" rear wheel with the CR-18 about 10 years ago when I used to use an old rigid MTB as my commuter and I paid no attention to this sort of stuff and I always found that it performed without asking for any maintenance.
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Old 01-30-14, 10:02 AM   #3
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What were the "mediocre" reviews complaining about? Bending when going over 10' jumps?
The above recommended combo is a pretty good meat & potatoes wheel.
Peter White uses that rim for tandems.
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Old 01-30-14, 10:20 AM   #4
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And Winter wheel ? why not an IGH, it will have less exposed to get crudded up in salty slush .
and shift when slowly slogging..

yea the CR18 rim suggested is fine .. Velocity V types may shed snow off the center
more than one thats squared off . Ala, Peaked Vs Flat Roof.


Quote:
I am willing to spend up to $100 on the new wheel.


ah there is your limiting factor you cant get perfect for that price..

that being said there are some decent low end hubs of the cassette type
with well fitting rubber boots over the bearings .. with a modest type rim

can be the CR 18 .. machine built and hand checked at the shop

you want it shipped from Oregon? I have contacts at the LBS..

you might find something similar locally ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 01-30-14 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 01-30-14, 12:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BROOKLINEBIKER View Post
Hi everyone,
I ride a 26 inch mountain bike as my winter/ commuter bike. I need a sturdy new rear wheel with a freehub that uses rim brakes and that will hold 175 pound me and lots of groceries and survive the occasional hit from a pothole. Lots of spokes would be good. I have pretty new 26 X1.5/1.75 tires and wish to keep using them on the new wheel. I am willing to spend up to $100 on the new wheel. I looked into the Sun CR18 and Mavic Cross Ride but both seem to get mediocre reviews. So what wheels do people recommend?
Thanks,
Neil
If it were me, I'd use a Shimano hub (XT or XTR), Mavic XC-17 rim and DT Alpine III spokes. I'd build my own and ride with confidence. I might also use a White Industries MI-5 or, if I were feeling particularly rich, a Phil Wood FSC as well as changing the rim to a Velocity Aerohead or Synergy. But...

Since you only want to spend $100, this one would work just as well and you'd feel a whole lot better if you managed to slam it into a pothole and ruin it. There is a way, however, to avoid that...Don't slam the wheel into a pothole!
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Old 01-30-14, 03:11 PM   #6
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Yea a winter commuting wheel is a consumable , no reason to get attached to it.

particularly derailleur gears + rim brakes in saline-slush..
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Old 01-31-14, 03:56 AM   #7
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Hi everyone,
Thanks for the good advice. It sounds like the Sun CR18 and Mavic Cross Ride are good commuter wheels after all. Bill asked above about where I saw negative reviews. I saw negative reviews on Amazon and mountain bike user websites. I did not see information on how hard the users beat on the wheels.

Cycocommute, I looked at the Dimension w/ Alex X2000 26" MTB Wheel. It looks like a good wheel.
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Old 01-31-14, 11:06 AM   #8
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Some reviews you have to take with a grain of salt and try to read in between the lines.
IF they are comparing a CR-18 to a $100+ rim, it's probably not as "good".
Compare to a similar priced rim and I think it likely rates amongst the best.

I bought one of the $30 front wheels for a CL flipper I was working on, since I couldn't buy the parts for that.
The reviews were great on Amazon.
All the spokes were 2mm shorter than they should be.
EVERY other spoke per side had extremely low tension. (The other 1/2 were where they should have been)
Bearings were WAY tight and had only a slight film of lube. (spray lube?)
I tensioned the spokes & lubed the bearings and the wheel will probably be "adequate".
Great? Never.
The reviews were by people that simply wanted to plug & play, but didn't know diddly about wheels.
I'm pretty sure that 6 months down the road, many of these had crunched the bearings and likely destroyed the hub.
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Old 02-01-14, 04:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
Some reviews you have to take with a grain of salt and try to read in between the lines.
IF they are comparing a CR-18 to a $100+ rim, it's probably not as "good".
Compare to a similar priced rim and I think it likely rates amongst the best.

I bought one of the $30 front wheels for a CL flipper I was working on, since I couldn't buy the parts for that.
The reviews were great on Amazon.
All the spokes were 2mm shorter than they should be.
EVERY other spoke per side had extremely low tension. (The other 1/2 were where they should have been)
Bearings were WAY tight and had only a slight film of lube. (spray lube?)
I tensioned the spokes & lubed the bearings and the wheel will probably be "adequate".
Great? Never.
The reviews were by people that simply wanted to plug & play, but didn't know diddly about wheels.
I'm pretty sure that 6 months down the road, many of these had crunched the bearings and likely destroyed the hub.
Hi Bill,
What you say makes sense.
Thanks!
Neil
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Old 02-01-14, 12:39 PM   #10
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You don't say what gearing you have. Just make sure what you build/buy accepts your cassette and will match your shifters. 7 speed isn't always compatible with 8/9. 10 speed is slightly different too I think, or some versions are. Rim brakes usually mean somewhat older.

I've been obsessing over all this lately, having just built a 7 speed rim brake rear wheel. Now I wonder if I should have started with a new 10sp hub, and new shifters, and new cassette, and new brakes, and on and on. Or maybe I should buy a new bike...
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Old 02-03-14, 03:32 AM   #11
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Hi Zacster,
That is good advice. I hope you do not have to make more changes to your new wheel.

I have a 7 speed with 3 chainrings in the front. I run rim brakes. Will I need a spacer to run an 8 speed free hub? If so how do I install it? (I have not been able to figure that out from watching Youtube).
Thanks,
Neil.
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