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Flange Grandi or Flange Piccole?

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Flange Grandi or Flange Piccole?

Old 11-15-17, 01:50 PM
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Flange Grandi or Flange Piccole?

I'm building a new set of wheels for my 1973 DeRosa. I bought some NOS Campagnolo Epsilon tubular rims (yes, I know, they're too new). Now I just need to decide what hubs to pair them with. I've got a set of low flange NR hubs in great condition that I could use. I also have a high flange NR front hub and I could probably find a rear to match it. So I'm seeking opinions.


Which would you use and how strong would your preference be?
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Old 11-15-17, 02:39 PM
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I'd build them to match the rims, ie Piccole.

That way when you decide to go period correct on the wheelset (rims included), you'll still have this complete wheelset to use on another frame.
[I kind of made the same decision on my '74 Italvega]
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Old 11-15-17, 03:40 PM
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That's an interesting thought on keeping the rims and hubs period-matched.

This bike is giving me all kinds of things to think about in terms of period-correctness versus my other matchy-matchy preferences. I've got a set of wheels with red label Fiamme rims that I think may be period correct for the frame, but their laced to Gipiemme hubs. The Gipiemme hubs look good and I'm sure they'd be functionally satisfactory, but I really wanted to move everything to Campy. The rims I bought are from the mid-80's but they've got an orange stripe that matches the paint on the bike perfectly.

I kind of feel like with this bike getting things period correct holds a bit more weight than usual (though for me "usual" is "almost none"). On the other hand, rims are a consumable, right? Decisions, decisions....
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Old 11-15-17, 03:47 PM
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Picolle - stylistic match.

As far as strength between the two goes, there are some who would argue vehemently for one vs the other. If there is a difference, it's so minor compared to so many other things as to be akin to religious dogma.
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Old 11-15-17, 08:32 PM
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Rims are a consumable but they're also hi-viz, so I always try to find something that matches visually even if it's not a vintage part.
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Old 11-16-17, 12:29 AM
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I was really expecting a lot more support for the high flange hubs. Going with the low flange certainly would be the easier option. Hmmm....
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Old 11-16-17, 09:09 AM
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Go with the setup that will make you want to ride them. Couple of years ago I built up a set of high flange hubs to new Pacenti wide polished box section rims. Great wheels. They have been run extensively on pavement as well as at L'Eroica CA and Cino Heroica. Nobody has ever mentioned the age disparity between the hubs and rims, in fact they'll gotten a lot of compliments.


I really dig the looks of the high flange hubs but wanted a super strong versatile freewheel wheelset that could take anything from 25's to 32's.
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Old 11-16-17, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I was really expecting a lot more support for the high flange hubs. Going with the low flange certainly would be the easier option. Hmmm....
OK. I logged in, which I rarely do anymore, just to give the high flange hubs some love. I much prefer the look of them, especially on a bike from that period.
But I have a set of low flange too, laced to Red Labels, and they're fine wheels.

How's that for non-commital? I sound like a politician....
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Old 11-16-17, 09:40 AM
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I vote high flange, Fiamme.
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Old 11-17-17, 03:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Bikerider007 View Post
I vote high flange, Fiamme.
High flange.
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Old 11-17-17, 05:25 AM
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
... Nobody has ever mentioned the age disparity between the hubs and rims, in fact they'll gotten a lot of compliments.
I suspect only us codgers ever notice details like that.

I'd have to see the bike and the hubs and rims. But I bet if you build them well strength won't be an issue.
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Old 11-17-17, 05:33 AM
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From a functional point of view, it really does not matter all that much, in my opinion. But I do love the look of high flange hubs and, given the choice, would go high flange every time, as is the case on most of my vintage steeds, including my PX10E...

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Old 11-17-17, 07:52 AM
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The Pro Peloton that year was mainly low flange.
It is a Pro Bike, low flange.

On bikes with half chrome forks and stays...High Flange. Styling.
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Old 11-17-17, 08:53 AM
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When I bought my first lightweight bike way back in the tail end of last millennium, before the 3/4ths point of last century, the affordable Peugeots were the UO-8 and the even more affordable AO-8. Their catalogs and every published thing I could find seemed to proclaim proudly that the UO-8 had the desirable high-flange hubs and the AO-8 had the desirable low-flange hubs. I never did sort out the difference other than one was high and the other low. Okay, those low-flange hubs had nutted axles, but it was a feature seemingly not related to the flange size.

I saw almost no high-performance bikes at the time. Years later and transplanted to a different city and region I began to see nicer bikes. They invariably had low-flange hubs so I associate(d) low-flange with performance. Not that it made any difference, but was just a visual association. Even later I began to see high-flange high-performance hubs, invariably on vintage'y 70's bikes. So I guess it's just as style thing, and perhaps temporal feature too.

So go with what looks right to you. If that doesn't settle the question, go with what looks good (which isn't necessarily the same was what looks right). If that doesn't settle the question, go with what you already or is least expensive.
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Old 11-17-17, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
Go with the setup that will make you want to ride them. Couple of years ago I built up a set of high flange hubs to new Pacenti wide polished box section rims. Great wheels. They have been run extensively on pavement as well as at L'Eroica CA and Cino Heroica. Nobody has ever mentioned the age disparity between the hubs and rims, in fact they'll gotten a lot of compliments.


I really dig the looks of the high flange hubs but wanted a super strong versatile freewheel wheelset that could take anything from 25's to 32's.
Pacenti thinks it's a good look, too.

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Old 11-17-17, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by jimmuller View Post
So go with what looks right to you. If that doesn't settle the question, go with what looks good (which isn't necessarily the same was what looks right). If that doesn't settle the question, go with what you already or is least expensive.
This is pretty solid advice. I thought just having the discussion would help me figure out what I actually wanted, like when you flip a coin and while it's in the air you realize which way you're hoping it will come down. Not this time, though. I think I've firmly decided which way I wanted to go four or five different times as I read through this thread. If I go with low flange I can save myself the trouble of hoping something I get on eBay is as good as it looks. That's today's decision. Maybe I should take measurements and order spokes before I change my mind again.
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Old 11-17-17, 05:53 PM
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Go low flange so that there are more high flanges for the rest of us.
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Old 11-17-17, 06:01 PM
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I'd go with low flange. They're appropriate for high grade, lightweight, road bicycles of all eras. High flange, on the other hand, has a narrower range of application.

However, I have been somewhat influenced on this matter. When I first became seriously involved in cycling, all the top models from the mass manufacturers came equipped with high flange hubs. Conversely, the first examples that I saw from small volume craftsmen like Colnago, Cinelli, De Rosa and Masi, all had low flange hubs. It left a subliminal impression at the time, that low flange hubs were just a little more prestigious.
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Old 11-17-17, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
I'd go with low flange. They're appropriate for high grade, lightweight, road bicycles of all eras. High flange, on the other hand, has a narrower range of application.

However, I have been somewhat influenced on this matter. When I first became seriously involved in cycling, all the top models from the mass manufacturers came equipped with high flange hubs. Conversely, the first examples that I saw from small volume craftsmen like Colnago, Cinelli, De Rosa and Masi, all had low flange hubs. It left a subliminal impression at the time, that low flange hubs were just a little more prestigious.
Yes, that was how it was. For a short period, Low flange hubs were less expensive in the 70's also…
My first road bike had Campagnolo Record High Flange, first race wheels also as I found a pair of hubs for $32.50, price won the day. Money was very dear. After I got a bike shop job, low flange for race wheels save for the track and a high flange pair of Nuovo Tipos I won in a race.
Then came 32 hole… felt like 36's with less weight and more cool factor.
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Old 11-17-17, 10:41 PM
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Split the difference.

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Old 11-18-17, 08:52 AM
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Why would you even consider low flange hubs, duh!! Honestly, I just love the look of the high flange hubs so I would probably do that every time, like @randyjawa for a classic steel frame bike.
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Old 11-18-17, 09:24 AM
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I would go with whichever hubs the bike came with. Rims are replaceable items, so if they aren't exactly a match, oh well. That being said, I run high flange on both of my vintage bikes, and love the look. Be careful, though. I got a wheelset from a friend when building my Super Course. After around 1200 miles, while cleaning, I found two cracks in the web between the holes on the flange on the rear. The bike rode fine, no wheel wobble, but I found a hub on ebay and had it respoked. All good now.
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Old 11-18-17, 11:19 AM
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Polished high flange!

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Old 11-18-17, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
Split the difference.

I have a 36 hole <C> High Lo wheel set I built in the mid 70's, 3 X to high, 4X to the low side.. Low flange 3X front..



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Old 11-18-17, 12:15 PM
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De Rosa + low flange ftw. On certain other bikes high flange look better to me.
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