Hey there, I'm rather new to Bike Forums, and instead of lurking and trying to find a thread that fitted my topic (which I couldn't), I decided to go ahead and post a thread.
I'm in the process of building a bike from parts I've bought and am currently buying online. This bike will be my commuting, touring, and general road bike. The frameset I'm using is a Surly Cross Check, and I'm looking at buying a Shimano 105 groupset. The only thing I'm not entirely sure of is the wheelset. I've looked on Performancebike.com, and I kind of like the Forte Titan wheelset, but that's probably because it's so cheap. From what I've been told, more spokes = heavier wheel = more durable wheel. Less spokes = lighter wheel = More likely to taco wheel. Basically what I was wondering if what are some standard spoke counts, and what do you think would be best in my situation?
How much do you weight? When touring,
how much cargo do you expect to carry?
What's your budget?
I'm not quite sure how much I carry when touring. My current bike is a Giant Sedona hybrid, and both of those wheels have 36 spokes. They do fine when carrying my stuff, which usually consists of a textbook and a binder in each rear pannier.
As for my budget, I don't want my wheelset to go over $300. I may go up to $350, mostly because I'm not sure what to expect to pay for a good wheelset.
Rans Enduro Sport, Hase Kettweisel Tandem, Merin Bear Valley beater bike
To me, the base line wheelset is Ultegra hubs, Open Pro rims and 32 DT competition spokes 3X. They'll weigh around 1,800g without the QR.
A little heavier rim, like a Velocity Dyad, will give you a more durable wheel. There's lots of ways to get a wheelset that's either lighter or more aero, but you're going to have to give up something else to get it.
Whatever wheels you buy, the importance of build quality can't be over stated. If I were buying a wheelset from a source that I didn't know I'd want to check and balance the tensions of every single spoke.