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  1. #1
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    where to get inexpensive touring wheels?

    where to get inexpensive touring wheels?

    hi Im upgrading a couple of 80's touring rigs (nishiki cresta gt, and schwinn passage) for commuter/tourers for me and the wife. Im a poor man and im looking for some wheels for about 100$ ideally. I have been looking around and have seen some wheel sets on ebay but cant find any info on how thick the wheels are. The rims are mach 1 exe, omega, and rj project. Other than those I have not found anything less than 379.00 which is more than I payed for the bike itself. I was thinking about buying odd size touring bikes on the cheap as an option to get the wheels and reselling the frame and parts. I dont know anyone got any leads?

  2. #2
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    I've had good luck building wheels myself and also buying from Bicycle Wheel Warehouse. For $100, I'd expect to get one wheel (possibly used), not two.

  3. #3
    Senior Member TonyS's Avatar
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    Yeah two touring wheels for my Nashie ran me $195. Bicycle Wheel Warehouse is your best bet for new wheels... and you're not going to save a whole lot of money on eBay ($20 or so) so you might as well bite the bullet and grab some new wheels.

    You're halfway there... better start saving your pennies.

  4. #4
    Senior Member ocho's Avatar
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    Handspun is a QBP company, the old Wheel House group that serviced dealers. I have no knowledge of their product but the web site sounds as impressive as their prices. They seem to offer good quality components, wheels are built by hand in the states and I guess because they deal in certain selections they must get some great bulk pricing from suppliers.

    I've found them for sale online and offering some really nice rim and hub combos from Stan's, Mavic, Hope, SRAM, Shimano and others. Worth looking at.

    Speedgoat and Bikeman carry the wheels, the web site is handspunwheels.com I believe.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    Re: Handspun wheels. I bought two Handspun rear wheels this spring, and had to return both of them. The first one arrived with a large dent in the rim. The second one arrived so far out of true that it wouldn't spin without hitting the brake shoes. The supplier blamed it on UPS, but the packaging was shoddy. I won't order any more of their wheels.

  6. #6
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    A few months ago I purchased the budget wheels from Rivendell.com. The were about $200 for the set, plus shipping costs. The build was Velocity Twin Hollow Rims, Shimano Tiagra hubs, and 36 spokes each. I only have about 400 partially loaded miles on them with no problems thus far.

  7. #7
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    I have read and heard good things about Rocky Mountain Cyclery, a Colorado LBS that has an eBay store under the name rockymountaincyclery. They usually have something like a 36H Dyad wheelset with LX hubs and a second wheelset with XT hubs.

    I never purchased from them, but came very close. They advertise the wheels as hand-made.

    I read all the customer feedback I could on them and as I recall it was mostly positive, with 1 or 2 complaints. They sounded good, and very reasonably priced, to me.
    Last edited by BengeBoy; 06-22-10 at 03:58 PM.

  8. #8
    Gouge Away kaliayev's Avatar
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    I got a set of Handspun wheels from AEBike at the first of the year. Velocity Dyad 36h rims, DT Swiss spokes, LX hubs and skewers for $204 shipped. I have put about 5 or 6 hundred miles on them with no problems.

  9. #9
    Senior Member ZiP0082's Avatar
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    I, too, bought my touring wheels from Bicycle Wheel Warehouse (26" Mavic M117 w/ 32H Deore LX hubs), and they've been great so far.

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    Whatever you decide on, keep in mind that everywhere in cycling there is "Inexpensive" and there is "Cheap".

  11. #11
    Senior Member wrobertdavis's Avatar
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    If you really intend these wheels for touring, especially loaded touring, then you better spend some money. Don't get hung up about what they cost relative to what you paid for the bike. Wheels are THE most important component of your bike for carrying the load and being reliable on a tour. Broken spokes and cracked rims will ruin a fun tour.

    Now haveing stepped off my soapbox, I can recommend Harris cyclery as a reliable, quality dealer. They occasionally have some good deals on suitable wheels. They provide good value for your money. Expect to pay $230-$260 for good, beefy reliable wheels with 36 doubled butted quality spokes and sturdy, wide rims with eyelets. Having said that, they currently have a wheelset listed for $119 that may suit your needs. Their better wheelsets for touring are over $200.

    My current touring rig started with a $140 1992 lugged steel bike. I've put another $400 into it and that does not count racks and panniers. I am very, very pleased with the result.
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  12. #12
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
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    My personal feeling is that just about anything works up front(within reason). Spend your money on the rear wheel and go with just about anything up front until you can afford to upgrade it or maybe you will never need to.

    I've seen my share of broken rear wheels and spokes.. both myself and others.... Only time I've had serious problems with my front wheel has been accident related.
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  13. #13
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    thanks for the good advice peoples. I am heavily considering buying an odd size bike stripping the parts from it and rebuilding with other parts and reselling it. It just might be the best deal to get everything I need. But If that doesnt work out I will go the route as advised.

  14. #14
    But wait... I AM the man. NoGaBiker's Avatar
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    I have 36 spoke Mach III rims from Rockymountaincyclery. No problems in first 500 miles. I weigh 180, but for 200 of those miles my 240 pound friend has ridden the bike, much of it in a rough, urban setting. That is weigh more than any load I'll ever carry on the bike, so I'm happy. Paid $76 in an eBay auction, brand new and handbuilt.
    Stick it to the man.

  15. #15
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    I'll second bicycle wheel warehouse. I built up from a Nashbar touring frame, and got a set of 36h, deore hub/straight-gauge spokes/alex dual-wall rim (I forget the rim model) for a smidgen less than $100. I need to get around to trueing them after 3000 miles of commuting and touring, but they have held up well, especially for their price.

  16. #16
    Senior Member wrobertdavis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kayakdiver View Post
    My personal feeling is that just about anything works up front(within reason).
    I strongly disagree with that statement. The front wheel is your main braking wheel and a large amount of weight shifts to the front wheel in a hard braking situation. That's also why you should never rotate a worn rear tire to the front. A loaded touring bike with front rack and front panniers is (should be) carrying a significant portion of your load in order to maintain balanced handling for the bike.
    2008 Cervelo R3
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    1992 Miyata Triplecross set up for commuting
    1992 Miyata 914
    1980's Univega Gran Sprint
    I ride 5000 miles/year in Texas with wind, rain, heat, armadillos, and wild boars.

  17. #17
    Senior Member wrobertdavis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chmpaignSprnova View Post
    thanks for the good advice peoples. I am heavily considering buying an odd size bike stripping the parts from it and rebuilding with other parts and reselling it. It just might be the best deal to get everything I need. But If that doesnt work out I will go the route as advised.
    I harvested derailleurs for my touring bike from a lugged steel frame Peugeot mountain bike which I bought for $20.
    2008 Cervelo R3
    2011 Surly LHT
    1992 Miyata Triplecross set up for commuting
    1992 Miyata 914
    1980's Univega Gran Sprint
    I ride 5000 miles/year in Texas with wind, rain, heat, armadillos, and wild boars.

  18. #18
    Senior Member TonyS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redbike72 View Post
    Whatever you decide on, keep in mind that everywhere in cycling there is "expensive" and there is "expensive, but crappy".
    Fixed.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyS View Post
    Fixed.
    Works for me!

  20. #20
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I got real reliable service from having all the spare spokes in my rear wheel , 48 of them, even when one broke , there were 47 left, and doing a little bit of re truing on the bike , along the roadside ,
    I could ride along for days until the opportunity arose to replace the broken spoke ..

    I went for a strong axle freewheel hub, but the cassette sorts cover that,
    Shimano's tandem hubs can be modified to fit in narrower dropouts , than the 140 wide frames cause you wont be using the drag brake on the left side.

    Of course if you learn how to replace the spokes in the field, thwn that means you will be ready, and can go with an off the shelf 36 spoke wheel, just bring your cassette ******* for the lockring.

    It always happens the right rear spokes break , and the gear cluster comes of first to replace the broken one ..

    folks have used FiberFix a kevlar substitute spoke to some success, another spare to have just in case.

  21. #21
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    Velo-Orange has wheels with 105 hubs, their Diagonale rims and 14g spokes. $225/set plus shipping.

  22. #22
    Senior Member EKW in DC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaliayev View Post
    I got a set of Handspun wheels from AEBike at the first of the year. Velocity Dyad 36h rims, DT Swiss spokes, LX hubs and skewers for $204 shipped. I have put about 5 or 6 hundred miles on them with no problems.
    I got the same as you (minus the front - only got a rear), also around the beginning of the year. No problems whatsoever w/ the wheel after shipping. It arrived intact, no dents, no scrathes, etc.

    I've got 1,500 commuting miles on the rear wheel. I weigh in close to the 300 mark, so I'm by no means an easy load for my wheels. It's held up admirably, and only required a very minor truing this past weekend. Even that I don't think was the wheel's fault. (It was most likely due to what I think was a less than gingerly moving of my bike in the downstairs bike parking area here in my office. I freelock my bike, and one day it was moved down the hall. I have a suspicion whoever moved it (maintenance staff) tried to just wheel it out of the way and the lock would have jammed up the spokes.)

    Point being, I'm also quite happy w/ my Handpsun wheels.

  23. #23
    ah.... sure. kayakdiver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrobertdavis View Post
    I strongly disagree with that statement. The front wheel is your main braking wheel and a large amount of weight shifts to the front wheel in a hard braking situation. That's also why you should never rotate a worn rear tire to the front. A loaded touring bike with front rack and front panniers is (should be) carrying a significant portion of your load in order to maintain balanced handling for the bike.
    Well we will agree to disagree and you are wrong.
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  24. #24
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    I'm an old-school wheel builder. All else being equal, the front wheel will always be stronger than the rear wheel because of the dishing at the rear wheel. The spoke tension on the non-drive is significantly lower than the right side. Plus the rear wheel gets the majority of the load during normal use (mass of rider, force to propel the bicycle).

    During emergency braking, the front tire MAY see 100% of the load. This does not cause the wheel to go out of round. Impact loading at high speed is much more damaging to the integrity of the wheel.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Ruffinit's Avatar
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    I have a couple questions here for the OP:

    Being '80s bikes, I'm going to assume that these are both shod with 27" wheels and have freewheels on them. Most of the folks here are speaking of 700c when talking of inexpensive wheels.

    1) Is there an issue with the wheels that are currently on the bikes?
    2) IF you are going to change the size of the wheels, will your brakes align?
    3) IF you do get new wheels (with cassettes) will your frames accomodate them?
    4) IF your bike is set up currently with indexed shifting (I think not) how will you work the new cassette's gearing? Friction?
    5) Are you currently looking for 27" or 700c?

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