I am building up a all rounder. One that is comfortable enough to handle just about everything so i can use it no matter where i go, etc. i have a Bianchi Mondiale that is practically new, frame size doesn't fit. but i am checking out the wheelset. Here's the scoop on the wheelset. i copied the specs. It is a 9 speed hub. Would this wheelset work well as a bomb-proof set for commuting, touring, hauling..etc. The spoke are fitted to the funky hub in a weird way and i was wondering what others experiences were with those hubs. Spoke breakage? easy to change out? etc. I am looking to build up a Soma Saga. Opinions? keep this wheelset and use it? i have asked so many questions recently regarding this bike...i am researching every option before i spend. thanks
Shimano Nexave C900
Ritchey Max Cross
Front Tire Size:
700 x 35c
Ritchey Max Cross
Rear Tire Size:
700 x 35c
I don't know if you want other recommendations, but I have a set of wheels made with Mavic A319 rims, 36 DT double-butted spokes, and Shimano XT hubs. The wheelset cost $180 and it's about as "bombproof" as they come. For tires/tubes, I use generic tubes and Schwalbe Marathon tires (I have several sets of Marathons, but my favorites are Racers and Supremes for commuting, and XR/Mondial for my "go anywhere" tires).
It's possible that your current wheelset could prove to be dependable, but I wouldn't bet on it. I'm not familiar with that particular hubset or those rims. Alex and Shimano both make some nice parts and some really cheap parts. Given that the donor bike was a 9-speed in 2002, they're probably decent. The real question is whether they were hand built or machine built, and I'd guess machine built. If they have nice, even tension and the rim is true, then they'd probably do OK.
If I wanted to be completely confident in my wheels for all conditions, I'd probably get something built. What I'd recommend depends on your budget.
Saga is a great bike for an all rounder. There is no downside to using the group from the donor bike other than the time it takes to remove the parts and install. Just do it, ride it, and replace parts when it breaks. You can also shop around for "better" parts when they go on sale or as funds become available. If you are going to change the wheels (and they don't sound all that exciting from your description), I'd lean towards the Mavic A319 rims as well and probably go with phil hubs. Wheels are the most important investment you'll make (after you've decided on the frame).
I just looked at the Shimano techdocs for those hubs. They are quite strange.
The 'C' in the name indicates they were designed for comfort bikes, which isn't a good sign for touring use. The 900 indicates they were a high-end offering for comfort bikes (compare to C-050 parts commonly for on X-Mart bikes). The rim paired with them is likely of comparable quality. They're probably good for general use, but I wouldn't expect them to be bomb-proof.
They're probably good for general use, but I wouldn't expect them to be bomb-proof.
Those wheels are probably only rated as "bullet-proof," not bomb-proof. There should be a little sticker on the rim that looks like a bullet or a bomb, depending on which applies. If no sticker, then either it fell off, or they aren't even good for bullets.
The ratings for bullet and bomb proof are outstanding...it should be a industry accepted standard.
The entire hub itself is very strange. It is silent and i can attest to that...which i really like. Then again, i was always opposed to the hubs that sounded like fishing reels, such as the HUGI hubs. My Bianchi cyclocross bicycle is actually equipped with and oustanding component package that, as a complete, would be ideal and already complete my project. The hubs are LX rear (fat parra hubs) 8 speed, CODA sealed cartridge front. excellent wheelset that has really proven reliable and is still in excellent shape. The triple crankset has perfect top end and excellent granny in case. XT compoenents, it is a great set up....BUT the frameset, the last of the cro-mo ones made in Italy in the late 90s has NO braze ons for racks or fenders. No room for fenders really. It sucks because everything about it has potential and i have considered doing the P clamps, etc. to get the set up complete possible...but i worry that the geometry is just not going to work out.
They are my commuter wheels. They work well. I had one problem which was not good, but the owner of the company sent me a new wheel and corrected the problem. I had a drive side spoke break which caused all sorts of other problems.
The entire hub itself is very strange. It is silent and i can attest to that...which i really like. Then again, i was always opposed to the hubs that sounded like fishing reels
It's fairly ironic, since Shimano actually makes fishing reels, but their hubs do tend to be very quiet. I recently build a set of wheels with Velocity A23 rims and Ultegra hubs. Those are quite silent. I've got 105 and Tiagra hubs on some other wheels. The 105 are about as quiet as the Ultegra. The Tiagra make slightly more noise but are still quieter than any non-Shimano hubs I've heard. The Tiagra are a great value.
For rims, I'm very pleased with the Velocity A23. They're nice and wide, but not too heavy. Build them up with 36 double-butted spokes and you'll have a bomb proof wheelset.