frames and hubs... new bike.
After this last summers tour, it is time to get ready to venture "out" again. I was kicking around the idea of a sun chasing tour before snow hit, but, its too late. so here i am, working on a new time machine. After this past summer, the one thing that i began to hope for each morning, was no tech that day; it rarely happened.
first off, i stripped down my xc bike to salvage some parts, mostly xtr with alot of life left, but a few parts that work good on xc arent best for touring, right?
hubs. I traveled about 2000km (out of 6000), with a loosening front hub, id like a cartridge hub, however, it wouldnt kill me to have laterally bearinged axles and some cone wrenches with me this time around. So i have an lx hub as a candidate, my other option, if i were to buy hubs, seems to be phil woods touring hub set. They are so expensive tho... and a theme in my travels is a fear of getting my equipment stolen, my theory is to keep it as cheap where i can as possible, but im not so sure about the philosophy after my last ride. not sure there is any place for junk while touring.
so, are the accounts of the wood hubs lasting over 15 years without bearing change true?, and that there shell will, under most circumstance, out live there users? and this said, what else are my options for hubs?, there has to be more than the wood hubs for a cartridge style heavy duty 9sp hub.
another area not far from the hub, but related in my chosing something other than my 32h lx, is spoke count. I ran a 32 rear on the last tour and ultimately went through 10 spokes. luckily i did not trust the 32 hole setup before hand, and brought a whip and cassette socket. in addition i had none break until i had rim failure early in the ride and had a rim built with no-name ss spokes, however all the dt's i replaced never broke. so it leaves me to question, was it just a matter of bad spokes? but then as well, even if it was a case of bad spokes, 36 (not 40 for i fear finding a 26in 40sp rim in case of failure far to difficult in most towns and cities) is that much stronger. valid? or should i go even further with this and go for a 40+ spoke rear wheel to excluded heopfully any chance of spoke/true problems? i feel confident with 14g dt's on my 32h rhyno light in the front, should i? are there special spokes ive not come across which really make a difference?
my other concern is the frame I used on the trip this past summer. its a 97 trek 8000 (al) with around 20,000km on it. It also had about a year of the occasional chain suck due to bad adjustment on my part, the the right chainstay is missing some aluminum, critical area? im not sure. I like the frame, it seems beefy for an xc aluminum jobby, fit is decent, and i really do like the stiffness of aluminum. what are my options?.
I am set with a high spoke counted 26in wheeled bike. any of you gurus know an affordable 26in candidate i can be looking for or maybe even buy new? I have an old araya i think (serial says arya72.....), and its a decent size, lugged, but im really not sure about the steel used in it. meaning, im thinking steel may put my mind at rest more than an aluminum frame, and is what im mostly interested in.
thanks for any input.
Last edited by joseph senger; 11-07-07 at 10:13 PM.
Good sealed bering hubs cost a bunch of money--- Woods or DT Swiss hubs are really nice, but if you're worried about thieves, I'd skip them.
Check out the prebuilt wheels at Jenson USA. The often sell nice Sun Rino-Lite rims laced to Shimano hubs for cheap. As long as you stick with 36 spokes, these work fine. You need to tention and true thses budet wheels, and adjust the hubs...
Look at wheels here....
I's rather have 36 spokes, but 32 on a 26 in wheel would be fine, if your load isn't very heavy.
As far as the frame, Alu works fine. By the time you put fat tires on the bike, the bike will ride fine and even cheap alu MTB frames are strong and stiff
Rhinos are so heavy.
I would spring for the phils. The front hub is not all that expensive. I mean it costs that much to fill the tank with gas. Phil has been expensive for a long time, except originally they must have been manually milled, the price is a steal currently. I think the price/number is pretty close to what it was in the 70s back when a hamburger was 25 cents. There are other Cartridge bearings out there like the Surly, once you get to rear wheels though it gets to be a shorter list. Cartridge bearings are a bit of a mystery. According to something I read, the dust shields are actually designed to keep the mild vac effect in some blower applications from sucking the grease out of the bearing. It is designed to stop stuff from leaving not getting in. Other than that, what is there to break anyway, as long as you keep the same spoke pattern.
By the time you have all the other stuff on your wheel, will it really have been worth it saving whatever you do at the margins with a cheaper hub. I see a lot of people on this forum who are bored with their current ride, and are side-grading. Over a period of time they spend tons of dough and are still stuck just a tad above Wal-mart. I have a basic Urbanite, my next bike is going to be 100 percent custom. I've been collecting stuff for 2 years.
Also from Canada, after suffering buying stuff on a 60 cent dollar, this is the time to strike. The dollar is pretty high, and the US shops haven't stocked with stuff reflecting their dollar's lower buying power, when US foreign sourced product prices should go up. And there is an Al shortage. Who knows, this situation could change by next spring. It's like market timing, all you can know is this is the best it has been ever. Maybe it gets better still, but this is historic. We have the CNC, we have the outsourcing, we have free trade, and finally the financial picture is is in line. What more do you want before you buy Phil. I would say that Phil being US made is a little less affected, but still.
I'd have to see your stay to really know. Most stays are really thick walled around the drops. sometime you can see something like an air hole that will give you a clue. A little bit of rub is one thing, but if you have sawn it away, it could be bad. You want any injuries to the frame to be inside, which is to say where the wheel is, or between tubes like within the triangles. Anything outside is bad.
ya, i've decided to go with the phils. thanks for all your info peter. if i remember correctly you made the bamboo fenders? i ended up making a set of oak fenders for me and my friend who went riding this past summer. out of anything, the damn fenders were always to spark a topic, typically with non-cyclists.
thanks for you input.
oh also, im going to use the 32h rhino on the front, what would you recomend on the back? or is a rhyno really not a good touring rim? i found it very strong while breaking spokes, often not even going out of true enough to know id broken one.