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Exchange wheels and try again-definition of insanity?

Old 05-28-13, 08:03 AM
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Exchange wheels and try again-definition of insanity?

I have a set of Reynolds Solitude SE wheels which I bought around a year ago.
Reynolds sets no rider weight limit on these wheels, and I currently weigh 230#
I have less than 1000 miles on them.

Yesterday I broke a rear drive side spoke at the base of the threads. It wahooed so badly
that the tire was rubbing the chainstay. So, I called my wife to gimme a ride home.

Bummer.

Question is: should I hope that the quality of this wheel was a less than standard?
The seller has a lifetime warranty on everything they sell. If I exchange them for a new set,
should I expect anything other than the same result??

They are DT spokes, so I can't fault the materials.
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Old 05-28-13, 08:07 AM
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Either the wheel was not tensioned properly or you "lucked' into a defective spoke. I'd replace them under warranty and give them another chance. If a second set breaks, then I'd assume it was an inherent defect.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:15 AM
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I would obtain a replacement and have either the seller or a competent third party ensure that the new one is properly tensioned.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:26 AM
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If the wheels are under warranty, I'd submit a claim and have them repaired. But don't expect miracles. These are low spoke count wheels, and not suited to high loads. The math is easy, remove 25% of the spokes, and the load on the remaining ones goes up proportionately.

Also, spoke failure at the threads is comparatively rare. It usually happens when the nipples are misaligned with the spokes, and held rigidly by the rim so they can't move along with spoke flex. That creates movement at the first thread which eventually fatigues.

Of course, this could be a fluke, but my money is that it's an omen of more to come. At 230#s, I'd opt for a well built pair of wheels of classic 32 or 36h 3x spoke count. You can go lighter up front because it barely matters, but you're definitely pushing the envelop if you reduce the spoke count on the rear, no matter whose wheels you ride.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:31 AM
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I would return them to Performance and get something more appropriate for my weight.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:40 AM
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I'd give them another shot. I'm at your weight and rode low spoke count wheels (20F/24R) of much lower quality than those (Alex ALX 320 Comp) for thousands of miles with no issues.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:45 AM
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suspect the spokes were fine, just you used a design that had too few of them.

took Fashion over Function.

Like FB go 36 spoke 3 cross, may be able to use a 32 spoke front,
given 60/40 weight balance of that 230# on the bike.

the aero wing rim , low spoke count wheels really were a special event , day of race, wheel.
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Old 05-28-13, 09:46 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv
I would return them to Performance and get something more appropriate for my weight.
I doubt that's an option. The OP might be entitled to a repair under warranty, but I doubt he's entitled to an exchange.
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Old 05-28-13, 10:14 AM
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OP; I think you are asking way too much out of a pair of wheels. So get your warrantee if you can and then sell off the wheels. Your total bike weight plus geared up rider weight plus road conditions plus riding style plus riders budget plus riders tolerance for failures = better wheel choices. Of course, if the wheels are not tensioned properly, it is all wasted money anyway as they will not hold up.

Hope that helps

/K
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Old 05-28-13, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv
I would return them to Performance and get something more appropriate for my weight.
Originally Posted by FBinNY
I doubt that's an option. The OP might be entitled to a repair under warranty, but I doubt he's entitled to an exchange.
Actually that IS the option.
Performance guarantees everything they sell for lifetime!
1 year money back, after that exchange or store credit at the current price. (even without the original receipt.)
At least, that is what the website states.
I have talked to the retail store and was told"No problem."

I have always had concerns as to my weight vs. spoke count, but Reynolds also says "No problem."
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Old 05-28-13, 11:04 AM
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OK since you have options, then ask the folks at performance, for a suggestion as to what may be more suited to your needs. I know Reynolds says OK, and you can let this become their problem until they give up.

Weight alone isn't a controlling factor in wheel life. Years ago I used to ride with a ballerina (danced with NYC ballet co.) and a gorilla, (not actually, but weighed about what you did, and could have played linebacker in Pro football). Guess who constantly trashed wheels. Yes, the ballerina rode like a gorilla, and the gorilla rode like a ballerina, using light wheels that lasted forever.

The problem isn't only weight, but as I said in my first post, flex. Specifically flex at the nipple. With heavy or hard riders the wheel will see some horizontal flex, If the nipples do not float with the spokes, this works the spoke at the first thread and causes breakage. I haven't seen the wheels, and it could be a fluke but, based on experience, a failure this soon is an omen.
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Old 05-28-13, 11:14 AM
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Actually I had originally ordered some Easton EC90 wheels, but feared for their durability.
The manager at the Performance Store pointed me to the Solitudes, extolling then as "Bulletproof."

So, I may go back to my tried and true Open Pro's or Ritchey Aero's and just take a refund or store credit.
It is unfortunate that Performance does not sell rims anymore.
I'll have to wait and see.
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Old 05-28-13, 11:21 AM
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Performance Inc. employee et.al. said it was bulletproof , have them bite that bullet .



Still have wheels I built 30 years ago .. round and true..

36 spoke, etc..

Last edited by fietsbob; 05-28-13 at 11:25 AM.
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