Last edited by pj7; 02-22-07 at 09:45 AM.
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Volume, volume, volume! Especially on things like spokes and nipples. If you are getting spokes wholesale you'll almost make up your labor rate on the spoke savings alone, let along what you will save by getting the rims and hubs wholesale too.
Suppose I were a rim manufacturer and I wanted to sell you one rim. First of all I'd have to do a bunch of marketing to get you to want my rim. I'd have to have some kind of consumer packaging and labeling, maybe some instructions. I'd have to pay a tech support staff to answer all of your questions. Also, I probably wouldn't want to sell to you directly, so there'd be some middle men all of whom would also want to make a profit on their part of the distribution process.
Now suppose that I wanted to sell 2,000 rims, all at one time, to somebody who builds a lot of wheels. Other than the actual cost to me of making the rims, everything else is cheaper, easier and faster for me to do. He's going to pay a lot less per rim than you are. Sorry.
.....besides, "hand built" is a marketing term. I can bet you these wheels are at least machine laced. I could be wrong too....
volume has it. THe fixer brings up a good point that they are likely machine laced. THis is okay, but i think its sort of misleading. I only want to ride handbuilt wheels that never have seen a machine (like the ones i make for myself ). Im sure they are fine though