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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 04-27-10, 02:24 PM   #1
2slo2run
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I think I'll need stronger wheels...

Took my Tricross SS out to one of the local single-track trails today. I had ridden that trail many times on various mountain bikes, but this was the first time I braved it on the cyclocross. I gotta say, when I got back to the trail head the only thing I was wondering is how much my Stumpjumper is worth since I obviously wont ever need it again!

The only downside is that I am HARD on my wheels. I'm not a clyde (6' 3" 165#) I just seem to find that wrong spot to hit. I've bent my share of 29er and 26er wheels, and with the amount of wobble in the stock Singlecross wheels tells me that I need to plan an upgrade sooner rather than wait for a serious crash.

So, I'm looking for a strong, reasonably priced (always negotiable) cross wheel. Pre-built would be nice (but not necessary) as long as it's SS/FG compatable. This bike does everything and I do flip between fixed/free at least weekly depending on where I ride.

The bike: (in it's BF debut)
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Old 04-27-10, 02:54 PM   #2
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there may not be anything wrong with the wheels you have. Maybe take them down to your local LBS and have them take a look. They may just need a rebuild to get them perfect.
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Old 04-27-10, 03:54 PM   #3
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They may just need a rebuild to get them perfect.
Or just properly trued, tensioned, and stress-relieved.

32-spoke wheels with reasonably stout rims are fine for trails, but most machine-built wheels come undertensioned and therefore go out of true right away. A good mechanic can fix that in one visit.

You might still have occasional troubles with the rear, because of the imbalance in tension between drive- and non-drive-side spokes. One trick is to use thinner spokes on non-drive-side, it allows both sides to be under tension even with a lot of dish in the wheel. Depending on the mechanic he might be willing to just replace those 16, and it would be a lot cheaper than a new wheelset or replacing all 64 spokes.
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Old 04-28-10, 08:44 AM   #4
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Or just properly trued, tensioned, and stress-relieved.

32-spoke wheels with reasonably stout rims are fine for trails, but most machine-built wheels come undertensioned and therefore go out of true right away. A good mechanic can fix that in one visit.

You might still have occasional troubles with the rear, because of the imbalance in tension between drive- and non-drive-side spokes. One trick is to use thinner spokes on non-drive-side, it allows both sides to be under tension even with a lot of dish in the wheel. Depending on the mechanic he might be willing to just replace those 16, and it would be a lot cheaper than a new wheelset or replacing all 64 spokes.
A rear wheel built on a flip flop hub should have no dish. The rim is centered over the hub so that you can flip it and reinstall it the other direction without alignment/clearance issues.
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Old 04-28-10, 10:48 AM   #5
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Oops I didn't notice it was singlespeed. Even better.
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Old 04-28-10, 11:00 PM   #6
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One other question that may effect the integrity of the wheels: What tire pressure would most CXers run when riding single track trails? Fire roads? Street?

The tires that came on the singlecross say max 100, I usually run it at 100psi on the street, maybe a little less in back if I'm playing around in the dirt. But for trail riding I'm still experimenting with what is best in terms of traction, comfort, and strength.
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Old 04-28-10, 11:05 PM   #7
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well, for cross I ran around 50. Trails and dirt roads I would drop it down to about 80-85.
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Old 04-29-10, 08:00 AM   #8
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IIRC I used to run 40-50 psi when I rode mtb trails on a cross bike. There are no hard rules, you have to experiment and find the sweet spot w.r.t. cushioning, traction, and not pinch-flatting too often.

Always carry a spare, a patch kit, and reliable inflation for multiple flats.
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Old 04-29-10, 08:37 AM   #9
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Oh wow I need to let some air out! I was running mid-80s yesterday and wasn't having too many problems with traction. The front skipped a couple times but never slid out.

I'll have to bring the pump to one of the smaller local loops and play around with pressures for a day to get it right!
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Old 04-29-10, 09:11 AM   #10
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Here's an article on what sort of pressures get run at Paris-Roubaix. (Remember, they're running mostly 25-27mm tires, not 32-35mm knobbies.)
http://www.belgiumkneewarmers.com/20...echnology.html
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