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  1. #1
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    the first ride on suzue pro max hubs.

    you know, when i built those phil hub wheels this summer, i remember the feeling of riding on them the first time - it took all of 10 feet of riding to know that the surly hubs were sluggish and sticky compared to the smooth rolling phils. it was such a cool, instantaneous thing. i wasn't thinking "i will pay attention to what these hubs feel like." they made me feel it.

    well, this morning, i rolled out on my new hubs for the 3rensho. i was replacing no-longer-made Sansin Professional hubs with the Suzue Pro Max. I rolled out, again not even paying attention to what they might feel like, but the new hubs, they did make me know they were there... and they felt worse.

    dammit.

    they're just a little stickier, they give me just the slightest bit more resistance, and when you've ridden a long way on your old hubs, you can feel the difference. i mean, i even transferred the cogs, lockrings, and tires from my old wheels, so it wasn't anything different but the hub.

    i think i'll repack the hubs to see if they feel better. but i'm very disappointed.

    sorry, just musing on the hub thing. it's such a strange feeling. that and had to add my $.02 to the suzue discussion.

  2. #2
    I'm Carbon Curious 531phile's Avatar
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    I'm sure you already know this, but if they are brand brand new hubs, the ball bearing will need to be "broken in" since most new ball bearing have some sort of imperfections. Maybe ride it for another 2 weeks or so before repacking it. That's what I'd do since repacking hubs isn't my favorite thing in the world.

    Quote Originally Posted by avner View Post
    I loled. Twice. Then I cried. Then I rubbed one out and cried again, but thanks for sharing.

  3. #3
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 531phile
    I'm sure you already know this, but if they are brand brand new hubs, the ball bearing will need to be "broken in" since most new ball bearing have some sort of imperfections. Maybe ride it for another 2 weeks or so before repacking it. That's what I'd do since repacking hubs isn't my favorite thing in the world.
    totally forgot about that... thanks for the reminder. smart.

  4. #4
    na975
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    dura ace hubs (hi flange) brand new were sooooo smoooooth.next set i buy will be the same.

  5. #5
    如果你能讀了這個你講中文 genericbikedude's Avatar
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    my advice to anybody who cares to hear it is this: either buy IRO/Formula/Surly, or make the jump to Campy/DA/Phil. Promax tries to be in the middle ground, but its not a good deal. Maybe miche? I dont have experience with those.

  6. #6
    Senior Member gmcaptain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by genericbikedude
    Promax tries to be in the middle ground...

    The sealed bearings are possibly middle ground, but I beleive chimbly has the NJS.

    I have been riding promax loose bearings for a few weeks now and can tell a huge difference between the 2. Even though the SB's are middle ground priced, I'd have to give them a good bit of defense, also. I really beleive that suzue basics are what ruined suzue's name, and people are just quick to dog the promax because of that.

  7. #7
    Senior Member eddiebrannan's Avatar
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    have had new miche hubs on my bike for about three-four weeks now, and no complaints about them. they replaced generic bianchi hubs, so they should feel better, and they do. very fast, very smooth.

    with the bike off the ground they don't spin "forever," but the decrease in rotational speed is gradual and consistent. i can't compare to superbe, dura, record or phil, never having ridden them, but these hubs feel terrific for what i payed for them.

    be interested to read anyone's review of miches compared with the higher end hubs mentioned above.

  8. #8
    Doortrapper popluhv's Avatar
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    "my advice to anybody who cares to hear it is this: either buy IRO/Formula/Surly, or make the jump to Campy/DA/Phil. Promax tries to be in the middle ground, but its not a good deal. Maybe miche? I dont have experience with those."

    How do Phils compare to DA? Phils being sealed and DA cup-cone.

    Has anyone tried the $100 Phil 'Olympic' bearing upgrade?

  9. #9
    not so much. zerobug's Avatar
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    I would say repack now, and later. I look at it like a new car with a new engine, they have a break-in period where you should replace the oil often.

    That and Suzue ships their hubs packed with grease that's little more than a rust preventative.
    Last edited by zerobug; 12-10-05 at 12:01 PM.

  10. #10
    THC Freedom Fighter karmical's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmcaptain

    I have been riding promax loose bearings for a few weeks now and can tell a huge difference between the 2. Even though the SB's are middle ground priced, I'd have to give them a good bit of defense, also. I really beleive that suzue basics are what ruined suzue's name, and people are just quick to dog the promax because of that.
    i don't even know where this dogging came from, i have got nothing but performance from my suzue basic wheelset(s) in the past and they still soldier on. the only thing i could see is that you have to be committed to perform maintenace, wherein with the sb lower end hubs you can shy away from it and just ride.

    a couple weeks into my promax lb as well and i noticed the difference while just putting them on, not even having to ride them to gauge their performance, but after riding them around for a while no complaints whatsoever...
    Smoke all you want too, we'll grow more...

  11. #11
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    Rubbing tiny imperfections off the bearings isn't what's slowing you down here. There's probably a fairly goopy amount of thick lubricant in the hubs to start with that's slowing them down a hair, plus adjustment may be off. And if they are sealed bearing, the sealed bearing hubs have seals that feel a lot more resistant to turning; that feeling doesn't go away completely, but note that when you've loaded the bearings with your weight, they're designed to roll very differently.

    As for the Phil bearings, there are three choices: the standard red ones (highly water and grime resistant), the black ones (no extra cost if they come in the hubs or your shop can swap them for you), and then the ceramic ones at $100-105 extra per wheel. The red ones roll really nicely (and forever) with your weight loading the bearings. The red ones are actually sealed pretty well and for riding in dry conditions work just fine for me; you can replace them with new ones from Phil Wood and they really do spin as well as any loose-bearing hub. The ceramic ones have incredible specs and are slightly lighter, but don't actually do that much better than the black ones (you get 90+% of the improvement from the red ones just by going to the black and you don't pay for it). I've gotten some replacement loose ceramic bearings and swapped them out for steel in some hubs, and if you just lubricate them with oil (in the style of the 70's) they are pretty amazing and really quite durable, but I wouldn't go near the road with them.

  12. #12
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    my phils are the standard red ones, yet i have no complaints.

    but the pro max.. 30 mi today and they haven't really loosened up yet. i was excited to have 'em, but i'm not sure they're all that.

  13. #13
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    I feel absolutely no difference while riding on the road between my Suzue Jr's & Campy Records.
    .cinelli.olympic.surly.long.haul.trucker.kona.ku.surly.steamroller.
    .litespeed.classic.litespeed.firenze.bianchi.pista.dean.colonel.plus.more.

  14. #14
    I bet
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    I have a pair of cheap weinman rims with suzu basic hubs and they work fine, been working, will prolly keep working.

    *Shrug* Not pretty or trendy i guess.

  15. #15
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kurremkarm
    I have a pair of cheap weinman rims with suzu basic hubs and they work fine, been working, will prolly keep working.

    *Shrug* Not pretty or trendy i guess.
    it's not about pretty OR trendy-- you're missing the point.

    the point is that they feel different. really different.
    when i first got on the Phils, i had this feeling that i understood part of the reason i was so slow... it was the hubs. the phils are so smooth and fast.

  16. #16
    hateful little monkey jim-bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chimblysweep
    it's not about pretty OR trendy-- you're missing the point.

    the point is that they feel different. really different.
    when i first got on the Phils, i had this feeling that i understood part of the reason i was so slow... it was the hubs. the phils are so smooth and fast.
    It's not the hubs. 3Renshos are notoriously slow bikes. I recommend you send it to me for disposal.

  17. #17
    I bet
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    Yeah ignore my pretty and trendy remarks. What i meant to say is that my tires and hubs have been real servicable.

  18. #18
    asleep at the wheel fixedpip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chimblysweep
    but the pro max.. 30 mi today and they haven't really loosened up yet. i was excited to have 'em, but i'm not sure they're all that.
    Have you checked the adjustment? My NJS pro max's roll like butter. Take the wheel of the bike, spin it and holding the axle check for any grittyness in there. In my experience manufacturers often send their hubs out a little tight which you should be able to feel.

    I also found that they're prone to 'readjusting' when you tighten the track nuts, if you don't have the lock nut nice and snug on the cone.

  19. #19
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    Second fixedpip's suggestion. This can definitely be an issue, especially if you aren't used to loose bearings.

    Another couple of points come to mind: First, if your chain tension is just a little bit different, it can change the way the hubs feel -- a lot! I'm a big believer in chain tugs. Now that you can get MKS tugs with hex head adjusters and also with wide slots to accommodate thick stay ends, there's no reason not to use a pair; you'll pay for them with the increased lifetime of a chainring and a couple chains.

    Also, you talk about feel. Did you actually spin the wheels while mounted in the frame? Do they rotate back and forth until the valve stem is either at the bottom or the top? If they do then it's in your head. I do find that when I switch from Phil's with the red bearings to Dura Ace high flanges, for example, that the Dura Ace's are perhaps a bit more responsive and this actually makes them a little more sensitive to feeling slow. Hard to describe, but it's like having light track tubulars pumped up hard on a rough track -- you feel faster with ones that don't communicate the road surface quite as much. Go figure, but many people have the same experience.

  20. #20
    ganbatte! sashae's Avatar
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    Yep. When I put my C-Record hubs on my bike, I initially had the chain tension too tight and they felt stiff and awful. Ran the chain lighter and they immediately felt buttery smooth... Worth -trying- at least. When the time -does- come for you to repack (or if you choose to do it now) replace the bearings anyway. Grade 25 bearings are like $3 for a bag from biketoolsetc.com. Grade 25 bearings are the equivalent of Campagnolo/DA bearings and make a -huge- difference in feel. I repacked my Sunshine NJS hubs with Gr25's and they immediately felt super smooth.

  21. #21
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    thanks for the suggestions but i don't think it's chain tension - i flipped my wheel on the ride yesterday, thus resetting the tension twice, and it didn't feel any better.

    yeah, i repack everything with phil bearings, since the shop always has 'em in stock. they're nice.

  22. #22
    roll'em high shants's Avatar
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    while i am highly tempted to suggest that the differences in 'feel' that you seem to detect are purely psychological, i won't. i'll take the possibility seriously.

    that said, i had wheels built by marcus on promax njs (with red deep v rims). immediately prior to picking up those wheels i was running high flange 28h da hubs (the newer style with black sidewalls) on mavic cxp-30 tubular rims. the main difference, obviously, between the two is weight -- quite a bit of weight even -- which makes detecting other differences somewhat difficult. i could tell, though, that the promax hubs did not seem quite as smooth as the da ones initially when i compared the wheels side-by-side. of course, the dura-ace hubs are the smoothest that i've ever dealt with, smoother than the phils that i have come across (never messed with the ceramic jams), so this was not a surprise. in any case, i rode the hell out of the suzue hubs in chicago and have been slamming them since i got back in columbus. during my wonderful bikeforums sabbatical, i saw this thread and decided to take the front wheel off of my makino and see how it felt. it is now markedly smoother than it was before. i couldn't feel the sort of "sticky resistance" anymore. to use the cliche, they spun like "butter." i don't know that i will say that they are absolutely as smooth as the dura-ace, but, well, that is not surprising at all, since the dura-ace are far more expensive hubs. the races on the suzue promax are extremely nice, so i am relatively confident that you could replicate the smoothness of most any hub by buying high end bearings and grease, repacking, and readjusting.

    edit: throughout the post, when i am talking about differences, i am talking about differences "in the stand," not while riding. other than weight, the da and suzue wheels were the same to ride.

  23. #23
    dc pirate, 4evah. chimblysweep's Avatar
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    so, basically, i'm being impatient, and if i wait a bit, they'll wear in to feel better? i'm willing to give that a try. i mean, what with the salty nonsense on the road i'll probably have to overhaul them in a few months anyway.

    plus, i really have no other option, since the 110/8mm hubs were so hard to come by.

  24. #24
    roll'em high shants's Avatar
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    yeah, that is basically the suggestion. i would really wait to see before i spend the time and money on overhauling them. at the end of the day, it will probably be better to get higher end bearings and fancy low-drag grease, but, i think you can see substantial improvement without that.

  25. #25
    MADE IN TAIWAN wangster's Avatar
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    Had a first ride on my promax tonight.... absolute heavenly butter. They roll sooooo smooth and it feels like I'm not even rolling... completely smooth and they just spin forever. I love these things.
    "Oh, I see. Running away, eh? You yellow bastard. Come back here and take what's coming to you. I'll bite your legs off."

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