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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 02-23-06, 04:20 PM   #1
MacG
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new wheels arrive damaged

There is a thread in SSFG about a pair of track wheels on sale for a good price. (Mavic CXP22 rims and Formula flip-flop track hubs)

Nashbar - $150

bicyclewheels.com - $125

I ordered a pair from Nashbar right before this thread showed up, and they arrived today. They look like nicely built strong wheels and the bearings are silky smooth, but they were damaged right out of the box.

For starters, both hubs show small scratches and dings on the flanges. I understand that wheels being assembled will probably take some wear on the hubs because scratchy steel spokes are flying all over the place, but these scratches and dings seem a tad excessive. Maybe my standards are too high.

The rear hub has a small ding on the lockring threads bad enough to prevent a lockring from threading on. I could fix it by filing off the bent parts of the two affected threads with a jeweler's file, but it shouldn't be that hard to keep hub threads from being damaged during wheel assembly.

The front rim has some pretty serious scratches in several places around one side, as if it was slid around on a concrete floor a few times before being laced up. This isn't Nashbar's fault, since they purchase the wheels prebuilt from someone else, but it's still definitely not a good feature of a brand new wheel.

I called Nashbar and firstly informed them that their website listed the wheel as fixed/fixed whereas I received a fixed/free. They said they would take care of that. I asked about the scratches and dings and the CSR explained that the wheels are purchased prebuilt. She says I can send them back and they will send me another set and reimburse me for the shipping.

My questions for you all are as follows:

How much scuff/scratch/ding is acceptable on wheels right out of the box?

Anyone ever have this kind of experience?

Would it cost me a ton more to buy similar rims (deep Vs maybe?) and the formula hubs and lace them up myself? I have been meaning to learn to build wheels and think I can do it, so this would hopefully allow me to control the scuffing and scratching to a level I am happy with. I could live with silver wheels, but if I could get something with some color for a similar price, I would have done that. Maybe this is my opportunity to send these wheels back, use the money to buy hubs rims and spokes in colors I like, and learn to build wheels to boot. Should I try this?

OR should I send these back and order from bicyclewheels.com and save $25, but maybe get similar problems?

argh...
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Old 02-23-06, 04:41 PM   #2
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my guess is you got a pair that had been sitting around the warehouse for a while. just return them to nashbar. perhaps nashbar will comp you for your troubles.

i remember while i was checking if the wheels on my iro complete needed truing, how pristine they were.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:49 PM   #3
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sounds like more shop wear than I would find acceptable. Usually new wheels look new.

As for building wheels, it's tough to build an inexpensive wheels for less than $150, but if you shop around for bargain parts you can build a very nice set for not too much more than you would pay for an inexpensive set, and the act of building them is very rewarding. I built mine on black Open Pros with Miche rear, and Promax front and double butted spokes for about $225. That's a much nicer wheelset than I could have bought for that price. It was a cool project, and I now have a new skill.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:50 PM   #4
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When they said they would take care of the fixed/fixed - fixed/free issuse did they mean by sending you a new wheel, or changing the descrition on the website?

Receiving damaged product is really the worst thing ever.
First of all because you had to wait for it to arrive, now you have to wait as you send it back and then wait for nashbar to send replacements.

I'm so impatient i would just ride them as they are and try to forget about the scratches.
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Old 02-23-06, 05:07 PM   #5
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They're going to correct the website description. I'm pretty sure they were using fixed/free hubs all along, since that is the only type I can find references to Formula using.

I'm tempted to just ride them, but I'm such a perfectionist that I know this is going to bug the hell out of me if I do it. To boot, I don't have tires, tubes, rim tape, or the other package with the new cog lockring and chain yet.

Here are a few closeups showing some of the worst offenders on the front rim:






I think I'm going to run up to the Hub in Minneapolis and look at rims and wheels and hubs in person to decide if I really want to keep these wheels, replace them with another set, or return them and build a set with parts bought locally.
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Old 02-23-06, 05:15 PM   #6
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Looking at those photos, I would be upset also. That seems a bit excessive to me.

Not to make you feel bad, but I thought I should mention I received that same wheelset
earlier this week from Nashbar, and aside from one or two tiny scratches, they were in good shape.

I would return them.

Last edited by * jack *; 02-24-06 at 07:13 AM.
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Old 02-23-06, 05:20 PM   #7
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yeah, the vast majority of the damage is on the braking surfaces and hubs. The wheels were not incredibly well packaged, but it was enough to keep them from touching eachother and keep them away from the sides of the box. The kind of damage I was originally looking for would have been caused by the box being dropped on the top or bottom or having a heavy load set on top of it, since there is no padding or anything on those two faces of the boxing and the rims are sitting up right against the insides of the box flaps.

I'm really tempted to take them down into the basement and go at it with a fine file and sandpaper, but that's not what I should have do to. I'm goona go over to the hub to keep myself away from these wheels and convince myself that I should be able to do better.
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Old 02-23-06, 05:24 PM   #8
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The good thing is, damage appears to be only cosmetic, on the rims (in your pictures) and on the lockring threads (from your description). Nothing that a little work with a file (careful, though) won't cure. At least, it'll cure it to where function is fine.
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Old 02-23-06, 05:50 PM   #9
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yeah that's too much. I'd be bummed out and ship them back.
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Old 02-23-06, 06:18 PM   #10
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Interesting-----

My deepv/velocity wheelset that i ordered from bens cycles came from the Brown Santa man today---like you, my wheelset was packaged less than ideally, just a bunch of paper on the sides---the box had a big puncture whole in it and looked beat up.

My rims look ok, although the paint is uneven between the braking surface and the rest of the wheel at one point.

More importanly the fixed side of my rear hub also has a gouge in the outermost lockring thread---i dont know if this will be a problem, as i do not have a spare lcokring to thread on---i was going to order today.

also, anyone know why forumula doesnt print their brand names on black hubs?

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Old 02-23-06, 06:40 PM   #11
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i was contemplating ordering the bicyclewheels.com wheelset. i emailed them to ask them if they were available in fixed/fixed and they haven't emailed me back for a couple days.

i would definitey send them back, just on principle. i hate to play the IRO card, but tony gets his wheels prebuilt also (as far as i know). after recieving two IRO wheelsets, there was never any noticable damage, scratches, etc. also, they didn't require any truing out of the box. the rear that i use now (4-5000 miles) is still perfectly true, and the front was also perfect until i crashed and bent some spokes. post spoke replacement it has been perfect.

i guess it's just one more case of 'you get what you pay for.'
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Old 02-23-06, 07:22 PM   #12
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I would not accept those wheels. Cheap or not, they weren't advertised like that.
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Old 02-23-06, 08:43 PM   #13
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uff.. the question is if u want to deal again with the delay and spend more money on them. Always u can sell them to somebody. I got a brand new Campy vento wheels 1 year ago, the box it was sealed, all perfect? nope... the front hub has a little scufff apparently produced by the hitting with the rear wheel. I can live with that.

What I would do from the begining is save money and buy the parts here and there. Then pay a few bucks for the assembly or buy the book to learn to build wheels and build them my self. Sometimes its better because u know exactly what are u getting...

UM
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Old 02-23-06, 09:51 PM   #14
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I thought about it a bunch and went up to the hub and bought some snazzy tires (red zaffiros). I guess I really should return them and get ones that aren't scuffed up, but I don't like the idea of waiting another two weeks or so to start putting this bike together.

I'll take them downstairs and dress the worst of the gouges with a jewelers' file and buff the rest down closer to smooth with some purple scotchbrite. Maybe chock the wheels up in an old fork or something and get them spinning with a drill and an old rim strip for a drive belt. Ghetto lathe!
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Old 02-24-06, 12:25 AM   #15
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i got a wheelset from iro, but the rear hub was all scratched up, which i could live with, but the lockring threads were gashed, which sucked. tony reimbursed me in full for the shipping back to him and sent me a new rear wheel ASAP! thats customer service for ya. . .

i'm sure nashbar can help you out somehow- they have a reputation to preserve. 'd give em a call. . .

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Old 02-24-06, 12:58 AM   #16
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pshhhhh get over it and ridde them. You must not actually need a wheelset. If they were high dollar wheels I would be concerned... these arn't.
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Old 02-24-06, 04:26 AM   #17
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I personally would send 'em back mainly cause of the lockring thread damage and partly because of the rim damage.

That way you'll (with a minor delay) have a pristine wheelset that you can either keep or maybe sell once you've got the money together to build some wheels.
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Old 02-24-06, 06:21 AM   #18
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Yea man just send them back. And the other guy is right, new wheels should look new.
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Old 02-24-06, 10:30 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbertfixy
i hate to play the IRO card, but tony gets his wheels prebuilt also (as far as i know).
Just a quick point: Tony's [IRO's] wheels are handbuilt at velocity, where as these wheels from nashbar/bicyclewheels.com are machine built.

The nashbar hubs/wheelset were definitely fixed/fixed at one point.
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Old 02-24-06, 10:36 AM   #20
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i hate hearing about this ****. online shops put small LBS's out of business with lower prices, but too often have problems like this, that are simply inconvenient for the customer to address... meaning they get away with bull**** like sending you a gouged-up product. and the postage comes out of your pocket if you do call them on it, meaning that it's quite the disincentive for you.
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Old 02-24-06, 10:47 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by queerpunk
i hate hearing about this ****. online shops put small LBS's out of business with lower prices, but too often have problems like this, that are simply inconvenient for the customer to address... meaning they get away with bull**** like sending you a gouged-up product. and the postage comes out of your pocket if you do call them on it, meaning that it's quite the disincentive for you.
How does IRO fit into this?
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Old 02-24-06, 10:48 AM   #22
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I still think you should send them back, but if you do decide to keep them, you can clean up the scratches a bit with some 320 or higher grit sandpaper. You'll probably have the do the whole side wall to make it look consistent, but that would be better than what you got now anyway.
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Old 02-24-06, 10:52 AM   #23
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If it were just the scratches on the rims, I'd say ignore it and ride them.
But messed up hub threads are another story.
Don't flirt with the possibility of stripping a hub.
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Old 02-24-06, 11:00 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonFixed
How does IRO fit into this?
buncha people have mentioned how tony reimburses shipping if he's made an error. furthermore, IRO is hardly a mammoth dealer like nashbar-- he doesn't offer below-retail prices.
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Old 02-24-06, 01:06 PM   #25
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just took my rear wheel to an lbs in town. The mech said that the damage to the threading was very minor and shouldn't be a problem--whew!---one less thing to worry about-

----to OP---hope everything works out well with your wheels
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