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  1. #1
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    26" touring rim suggestions?

    My girlfriend is shopping for a touring bike. She's looking at getting a 42 cm surley with 26" wheels. We were talking about rims, and we realized that neither of us know much about 26" rims. I've found a list of ATB touring rims on Peter White's site, I thought I'd ask here for input. She's planning on doing loaded touring, weighs around 120 lbs and will generally be riding them on the road. We're thinking of getting a set built up with double butted spokes and XT hubs. Not sure about whether to go with 32 or 36 spokes.

  2. #2
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Peter White is a tad expensive, but well worth it!
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  3. #3
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    We aren't going to get Peter White to build it up. There's a local shop in town that specializes in building wheels, I'm just looking to see what's out there.

  4. #4
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbotron
    My girlfriend is shopping for a touring bike. She's looking at getting a 42 cm surley with 26" wheels. We were talking about rims, and we realized that neither of us know much about 26" rims. I've found a list of ATB touring rims on Peter White's site, I thought I'd ask here for input. She's planning on doing loaded touring, weighs around 120 lbs and will generally be riding them on the road. We're thinking of getting a set built up with double butted spokes and XT hubs. Not sure about whether to go with 32 or 36 spokes.
    For someone small, even with a load, the demands on a wheel are much less than for, say, a 200 lb man. 26" wheels are also inherently stronger than 700C wheels because of their decreased diameter. For touring, you could probably use a 32 spoke 26" wheel without issues for that 200lb man. However, 4 spokes don't weigh that much so if you can do them in 36, you'd have a little cushion of safety.

    I'd probably go with an XT hub and an X517 rim and never worry about my wheels again. The wheels will probably outlast the bike
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  5. #5
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    I have 26" wheels with 32 spoke mavic rim and have not had a problem at 135lbs with a loaded rig. You are better off going with a local builder. I have had problems with Peter White in terms of delivery time and return of defective merchandise.

  6. #6
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    I have a 42cm LHT. The wheels I have on it right now are Bontrager Mustangs, eyeletted, 32h on XT hubs. They are very nice wheels and should be fine for a person my weight (110lbs). I'd seldom carry more than 50lbs of gear.

    I have another set of wheels I got for this bike last year. They are Sun Rhynolite, 36h on XT hubs. I was keeping an eye out for a good wheelset (I had a low-end set on the bike at that time) and the Suns were $110/set at Nashbar. Too good a deal to pass by. However, they are a very heavy duty, overkill-for-me wheelset. They are pretty heavy too. I can put them on my commuter bike, or as a back-up touring set. Can never have too many nice sets of mtn bike wheels laying around.

    We got the Mustangs at Veloswap in Denver last fall. My bf had been looking for a set of these for a long time. He got them for $94/set. They had a second set also and now we are kicking ourselves for not getting both sets. They were brand new.
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  7. #7
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    I've had good luck with Alexrims DH22 in both 700c and 26" For some reason when you go on their site you have to enter dh22 in the search function to find them. They are cheap and very sturdy at a reasonable weight.

    I always go for the most spokes, however on 26" wheels 32 spokes is more than enough for someone who is 120. The downside of 36 is the lessor availability of parts. You can find a 32 hub or rim anywhere in NA. Not a big issue but I would give that more thought than any weight in 4 more spokes and nupples.

    I'm building a touring bike right now that has a Rohloff rear hub that is available in only 32, though not dished, and I am building a dished front that is 36 spokes. Normally If it weren't for the Rohloff I would probably go 40 spokes on either,

  8. #8
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peterpan1
    I've had good luck with Alexrims DH22 in both 700c and 26" For some reason when you go on their site you have to enter dh22 in the search function to find them. They are cheap and very sturdy at a reasonable weight.
    I don't know much about Alex rims, but I do have a set of Alexrim DX18 rims, 32h on my commuter bike right now. They came on a Haro V4 mtn bike I used to have. I don't know what the hubs are, no name on them. I figure that I'll ride those wheels around town until they run out. No problems so far.

    I also have a set of Mavis X221 rims, 36h on Deore hubs on my mtn bike. These came on a Novara Safari that I used to have. They have been fine for several years now.

    I wouldn't use either of these wheels sets for a long tour though.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Nigeyy's Avatar
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    I think one thing to be careful of is some 26 rims will not allow for a thinner tyres on. I have Sun Rhynolites on my ht mtb and they've been great, but on my tourer I wanted 1.125 tyres, and the Rhynolite width was just too much. Add to the fact Rhynolites are no lightweights, and Sun CR18's seemed a better fit for me, which is what I ended up using, with 36hs, and they've been no problem. Since I use disc brakes, the braking surfaces are not affected, and I recall seeing some posts where people have said Sun rims are a bit soft, but no problem here.

    Sheldon Brown has an interesting article on the minimum tyre widths on rims, though I think he's errs more on the side of caution and safety than not (just as well!).

  10. #10
    More Energy than Sense aroundoz's Avatar
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    You might also want to see what QBP has to offer. They build a great wheel for a lot less money. I bought some Velocity Aeroheats a couple years ago and they have remained spot on true since. They were perfectly true and tensioned out of the box. I am not saying not to support your local wheel builder but if you want to save a few $..... BTW, I weigh 230lbs. You might also want to look at the Velocity Synergy OC rim. I believe it's about the only asymetrical 26" rim out there and an asym rim builds a stronger wheel.

    I agree w/ others about the rhynolites. They are heavy and overkill even for touring and you are limited to about 1.75s and above.

  11. #11
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    This is really interesting guys, thanks for all of the replies! You`ve given us a lot of ideas. Time to do some researching and get down to the Phat Moose (the place that`s going to be building our wheels.)

    Assymetrical rims... What advantages do they have?

  12. #12
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbotron
    This is really interesting guys, thanks for all of the replies! You`ve given us a lot of ideas. Time to do some researching and get down to the Phat Moose (the place that`s going to be building our wheels.)

    Assymetrical rims... What advantages do they have?
    Spoke length is the same and the dish on the wheel is less. Makes for a stronger wheel. Not a big issue for a smallish woman but it's no disadvantage either.

    I've fought the battle of small woman and bicycles for ages. Look for the lightest weight rims you can find with a 32 or 36 spoke count and that will take a 1.5" or narrower tire...not Rhynolites! The rotating weight of the wheels will make more of a difference than you think to them. Small women have a pretty low weight-to-strength ratio and you are going to load her bike up with more weight (be nice and carry the tent, cooking stuff and any communal property ). Anything you can do to lighten her bike or load will pay dividends down the road.

    If you are worried about the strength of the wheel, don't. I've been riding a Mavic X517 for 5 years on a mountain bike that I regularly jump, pound and generally abuse. I'm about 2 of your girlfriend and I haven't broken them yet.
    Stuart Black
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