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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 01-13-06, 11:54 AM   #1
you
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sealed bearing hubs

So, I'm looking to get a pair of sealed bearing hubs and am wondering if the Miche is about as nice as the Promx SB, and whether or not they're significantly better than the surly hubs.

thanks.
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Old 01-13-06, 11:59 AM   #2
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I believe ProMax are generally regarded as better than Surly and Miche.
How much? Who knows.

This is my understanding of hub hierarchy.
1. Phil
2. Pro Max/Dura Ace
3. Miche
4. Surly
5. Formula/Nashbar/IRO
6. Suzue Jr.

Obviously I'm missing some makers.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:03 PM   #3
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I'd disagree with that order. If the order of smoothness then it'd be more like

1.DuraAce
2.Campy/Promax
3.Phil
4.miche
5.formula/iro
6.surly
7.suzue jr/quando

but if durability and bombproofness is the main concern then this order goes out the window and phil is on top.

Just my personal opinion, I'm sure others will disagree, but hyper's right that most regard promax to be smoother. The loose bearing is butter and I'd say even the sealed are smoother than the miche, but the miche's are nice and pretty durable. It makes a great city wheelset without breaking the bank.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:07 PM   #4
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I'm sort of wondering if the sealed bearing promax (specifically) is smoother than the Miche. And am wondering if people are maybe also factoring the performance of the looseball promax into their assessments.

Also I'll be riding these in the city, are the Promax less durable than the miche? The hubsets are roughly about the same price at my LBS, so I'm looking for something nice to replace my garbagey SIL-SPs but also something that can deal with being ridden in the rain and over potholes and stuff.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:08 PM   #5
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Phil, Miche, and ProMax use a bigger cartridge than the other hubs listed. The guys here that use hubs with 6001 bearings have to replace them less frequently than with the smaller 6901 that formula/Iro use. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:12 PM   #6
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the sealed promax are cheaper then the looseball and not as smooth but still up there on the smooth o' meter. Promax are pretty durable and the sealed are less maintenance than the looseball ones.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:12 PM   #7
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no no no no

1. Zipp
2. DA
3. Campy (unless they shatter)
4. Miche
5. Promax (SB, loose bearings arent as nice in my experience)
6. IRO/Formula
7. Surly
8. Suzue Jr
9. Quando/Sovos
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Old 01-13-06, 12:17 PM   #8
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IMO, I don't think there's a difference in smoothness between IRO/Surly/Miche hubs. I don't think that smoothness really gets any better until you venture into the suzue promax sealed bearing and phil territory. I haven't ridden all these hubs, so this is jsut all educated speculation.

I will wager that if you replace the stock bearings in IRO/Surly/Miche hubs with phil spec'd bearings, you will NOT be able to tell the difference in smoothness with a phil or promax. Same goes if you replace the stock bearings in iro/surly/miche hubs with what is in the promax hubs, you won't be able to notice the difference.

Sealed bearing hubs are really about bling, rather than performance. If someone cared about performance and value, they would buy IRO/Surly hubs and replace the bearings with phils, and essentially get a "phil" hub.

EDIT: I do see the value that many place on buying an American made product, pays fair wages to their employees, cares about the environment, etc, but [sadly?], a lower price is more important to me, and to many other people in the hub market than other concerns that may not be as easily quantified.

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Old 01-13-06, 12:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonFixed
f someone cared about performance and value, they would buy IRO/Surly hubs and replace the bearings with phils, and essentially get a "phil" hub.
Never thought of that.
Thanks.
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Old 01-13-06, 12:31 PM   #10
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i have ridden both promax sb and miche and IMO they are = as smooth. i think you only see a difference when you get into the more$$$$ like phil campy dura ace....

both my miche and promax look good and run smooth.. but they feel the exact same.. do you like asian or italian
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Old 01-13-06, 01:00 PM   #11
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i was talking to my roommate about this topic really recently -- he needs some new hubs and just "has to have" some cartridge style (**** calling them sealed. that's independent of the type of bearings). i advised him against going with the promax, but, rather, going with formula and just replacing the bearings with something higher grade. perhaps others can speak to this with more authority than i can, but i haven't observed any differences in durability between formula and promax hub bodies. i've seen a formula stripped, but have also talked to people who have stripped their promaxes. i tend to be of the mindset that most stripping is user error and that a lot of the reason that higher end hubs don't strip as much is just because people are more careful in installation given the greater investment (and likely have more experience by the time they end up with a higher quality product). this isn't to say that there aren't very tangible differences between, say, a suzue jr. and a phil wood hub, but that i have trouble believing that the promax and the iro are substantially different in durability of the threads.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:05 PM   #12
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Shants is right on. Get some formula/iro/nashbar hubs and upgrade the bearings. I did that (Nashbar hubs, SKF superhighgrade bearings) and have had no problem at all, and i beat my wheels around like crazy. Just make sure everything is threaded on there tightly/properly.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:09 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonFixed

Sealed bearing hubs are really about bling, rather than performance. If someone cared about performance and value, they would buy IRO/Surly hubs and replace the bearings with phils, and essentially get a "phil" hub.

no exactly true. high manufacturing tolerances, rolled threads vs. cut threads, better warranties / guarantees are all what you get with something like a phil wood. they take pride in their products, and will back them up in almost any case of failure. cannot be said for the formula/surly set.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:14 PM   #14
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I agree with getting formula/iro hubs since the 'upgrade' to promax sb isn't really worth it, not a lot of difference in smoothness that's justifiable unless you get the looseball promax and up.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:15 PM   #15
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i loathe phil wood, but if i wanted the ultrajam of cartridge bearing stuff (and wanted to squander away my money), i'd go with their hubs. loose bearing is where it's at, however.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:19 PM   #16
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***** phil. if I'm going to go with anything like that, I'm getting a Paul.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:20 PM   #17
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ahh yes, i always forget about paul. personally, though, if i were to go with something non-njs, i'd go with a set of levels.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:22 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cavernmech
Phil, Miche, and ProMax use a bigger cartridge than the other hubs listed. The guys here that use hubs with 6001 bearings have to replace them less frequently than with the smaller 6901 that formula/Iro use. Just my 2 cents.
i like picking nits....
IRO/Formula use 6000 series bearings.

but yeah, they're smaller than the 6001's in my Pro Maxes.
I run both Formula and Pro Max. The rear Formula bearings are crapping out, but they were almost as smooth when they were new. Edge to Pro Max though
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Old 01-13-06, 01:22 PM   #19
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$70 Nashbar hubs + $20 bearings = $90 nashbar hubs

Formula hubs would be about the same.

You can get Miche or Promax for $100
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Old 01-13-06, 01:22 PM   #20
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I love the idea, but hate the proprietary-ness of Level.

And they need to cut out the flanges.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:24 PM   #21
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I got my Nashbars for $45 shipped before they got popular.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:28 PM   #22
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if you spend the money to upgrade the bearings to something really high-end, then your **** will spin as well as phil wood or, heaven forbid, better.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:28 PM   #23
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Isn't everything Paul essentially machined billet aluminum?

Shure they have high tolerances and look vry nice, but my understanding is that forged hub flanges are much more durable than machined.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:28 PM   #24
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Personally I am very much a Philophile.
Their stuff is amazing. Very well made!
I ruined a variety of competitor products but not the Phil stuff.
If I did though, all I had to do is go down to SJ and they would replace it.
The main difference betw. cartridge and loose bearings comes into play once your bearing races wear out or pit. Loose bearing you'll need a new hubshell. Sealed bearings you'll need a new bearing. Prices wil vary.
Also, free spinning test is NO indicator on who well the bearing rolls under load.
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Old 01-13-06, 01:31 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teadoggg
I got my Nashbars for $45 shipped before they got popular.
If Nashbar hubs were $45 a pair I'd buy a set in a heartbeat even though it pains me to have their ugly-ass logo on my bike. At the current price I can't understand why anyone would buy them instead of Formula.
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