Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)
Reload this Page >

Road Bikes: Wheel Strength Improved?

Notices
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

Road Bikes: Wheel Strength Improved?

Old 07-12-10, 05:50 PM
  #1  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Brunswick, ME
Posts: 5

Bikes: Trek 7300

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Road Bikes: Wheel Strength Improved?

Hi everybody
I'm a good sized fellow--6'2.5"; 215. I've been heavier. I've owned two bikes in my adult life--an ancient Schwinn World Sport(1987), and my current bike, a Trek 7300 (2002). I broke the (steel) frame on the Schwinn (the warranty bought me most of the Trek), and collapsed the stock rear wheels on both bikes. No serious crashes on either bike--just lots of potholes and hard riding, I guess.

I've just begun considering a road bike. Salespeople have consistently sought to assure me that wheel technology is VASTLY improved, and is fully up to the punishment I'm likely to inflict. (I suspect they're looking forward to doing the maintenance on my purchase!)

Are stock wheels in fact stronger than they used to be? I suspect this is not a good way to ask the question, since there are no doubt many variables.

Thanks for your thoughts on the matter
EasyDoesIt is offline  
Old 07-12-10, 06:49 PM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Wogster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Toronto (again) Ontario, Canada
Posts: 6,931

Bikes: Old Bike: 1975 Raleigh Delta, New Bike: 2004 Norco Bushpilot

Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by EasyDoesIt
Hi everybody
I'm a good sized fellow--6'2.5"; 215. I've been heavier. I've owned two bikes in my adult life--an ancient Schwinn World Sport(1987), and my current bike, a Trek 7300 (2002). I broke the (steel) frame on the Schwinn (the warranty bought me most of the Trek), and collapsed the stock rear wheels on both bikes. No serious crashes on either bike--just lots of potholes and hard riding, I guess.

I've just begun considering a road bike. Salespeople have consistently sought to assure me that wheel technology is VASTLY improved, and is fully up to the punishment I'm likely to inflict. (I suspect they're looking forward to doing the maintenance on my purchase!)

Are stock wheels in fact stronger than they used to be? I suspect this is not a good way to ask the question, since there are no doubt many variables.

Thanks for your thoughts on the matter
I think the mountain biking craze has led to a better understanding of why and how wheels fail, which has meant wheels can be designed better, it really comes down to three things:

1) Spoke tension, for larger riders, spoke tension is more important, especially with the lower spoke count wheels that are becoming more and more common. Most wheels are built on machines, while some late generation machines may be able to properly build a wheel it takes time, the machines are usually set up to prioritize quantity over quality. If the dealer has someone who knows how to hand build a good wheel, then they can take a machine built wheel and hand tension it to be clyde approved.
2) Rim strength, we now have double wall rims, which are much stronger then the old U shaped rims.
3) Ride style, this is a big one, if you set your butt hard on the saddle, and go over bumps and potholes, it puts a lot of stress on the wheels, especially the rear wheel, and that can cause even a strong wheel. to at least temporarily, deform slightly, which causes a loss of spoke tension. However if you lift your butt off the saddle when going over bumps you can't avoid, then this uses your legs as suspension and allows the bicycle to equalize the stress. Which means the wheel bounces over, rather then deforming.
Wogster is offline  
Old 07-12-10, 07:37 PM
  #3  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: NorCal
Posts: 1,695

Bikes: Kestrel Talon

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I'd say it depends. I bought a Kestrel a few years ago that had Shimano wheels. Nothing ever broke, but the wheels didn't stay true and made all kinds of interesting noises on climbs. To top it off, they were really heavy (I'm not a weight weenie, but these things weighed well over 2200 grams per the bike shop who tried to retension them for me). I replaced those with low cost Neuvation M28 aero wheels which have mostly been reliable (other than a couple of broken spokes, but the wheels lasted more than 10k miles before I had any issues with them). Still have those wheels and still use them, even though the Kestrel has been sold. FWIW a machine built clone of this wheelset is sold very inexpensively by Performance as the Forte Titan and I know some fairly large guys who use them without any issues. The spokes are apparently a bit different, but same rim and hub from what I've heard.

I wouldn't hesitate to trust Ksyriums or other Mavic wheels (I weigh about 220) - I used a set of Ksyriums for a year with no issues at all. And I put a lot of miles on my bikes (7 - 8k miles per year is typical). You start to see those on some bikes as prices climb over $3k - most wheels on bikes this expensive should be really good, but won't always be (lots of people pay more attention to the components than the wheels, so it's a tempting spot for manufacturers to save a few bucks). On my current bike I was able to spec out the entire build kit, so I was able to put on some handbuilt wheels with 28 spokes F and 32 spokes R, which seems to work very well. Don't be afraid to ask the shop if they'd substitute stronger wheels for the difference in cost - most shops will work with you on stuff like that.

JB
jonathanb715 is offline  
Old 07-12-10, 07:49 PM
  #4  
Banned.
 
Mr. Beanz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Upland Ca
Posts: 19,895

Bikes: Lemond Chambery/Cannondale R-900/Trek 8000 MTB/Burley Duet tandem

Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Since 2002, an imnprovement? Probably not much if any. But the wheels that have seen improvement cost much more than the complete bikes you mention. If you want quality, I don't think you'll see great wheels on a $400 bike.

What bike model were you considering?
Mr. Beanz is offline  
Old 07-13-10, 11:34 AM
  #5  
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Grid Reference, SK
Posts: 3,768

Bikes: I never learned to ride a bike. It is my deepest shame.

Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
You can make almost any wheels work well under a moderately sized clyde such as yourself... you just have to have the spokes properly tensioned, which is something most off-the-rack bikes do not have. May folks on here are much heavier than you and have learned how to avoid such problems with pretty ordinary wheels.

THe other things to do are (1)make sure your tires are always properly inflated. Bike tires lose air gradually, and if run too soft they leave your rim unprotected... it's ot the tire that helps, it is the AIR in the tire... (2)learn to 'ride light'... don't plow headlong into curbs and such. Learn to unweight the wheels before hitting an obstacle.
LarDasse74 is offline  
Old 07-13-10, 03:22 PM
  #6  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Brunswick, ME
Posts: 5

Bikes: Trek 7300

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Wogster, Jonathan, Beanz, LarDasse -- very helpful responses--nice array of perspectives. Wog, thanks for the quick overview of factors contributing to wheel integrity; Jonathan, thanks for the Kysrium recommendation; LD I appreciate your underscoring of the fundamentals (pun intended). To answer your question,Beanz, I'm going slow for once. THere are four or five different shops within a 25 mile radius (I live in Brunswick ME) and since none of them carry more than four or five lines I'm getting recommendations from each. AFter two shops, Trek, Specialized and Surly comprise the list: the Trek 7.2 FX and Madone; the Specialized TriCross Triple and Roubaix, and the Surley Long Haul Trucker. The Roubaix is pretty sweet! I also liked the TriCross, and the LHT would work well too. Have to say I'm very tempted by the Roubaix, but it's early yet.
EasyDoesIt is offline  
Old 07-13-10, 03:40 PM
  #7  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,595

Bikes: 8

Liked 1,361 Times in 867 Posts
Rohloff Hubs are Great ! by being an internally geared, hub's the spoke bracing angles are identical side to side ,
which makes for a strong wheel.

It's making room for those stacks of cogs on derailleur bikes that has a compromise made. have to tighten the right side spokes to push the Hub to the left, to re center the rim over the hub's axle ends..
some attempts to lessen this effect .. off-center drilled rims. but if you're wanting to run 23mm tires , that cannot be much, {4~ 5mm?}
Co Motion Americano Touring frames make a different attempt
by using tandem width hubs in the back . 140~145
wider axle allows the right side spoke tension to be lessened hub moves rightward, and so a bit more balanced spoke tension.

Last edited by fietsbob; 07-13-10 at 03:47 PM.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 07-13-10, 03:42 PM
  #8  
Banned.
 
Mr. Beanz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Upland Ca
Posts: 19,895

Bikes: Lemond Chambery/Cannondale R-900/Trek 8000 MTB/Burley Duet tandem

Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Sounds like you are looking at some good quality bikes!

One thing you should check into is the wheel guy from each shop. That's a BIG factor in your wheel's longevity/durability. None of the shop dudes where I bought my bikes were really TRUE wheel guys. None seemed to grasp the concept that as a big rider, the tension was a very improtant factor with my weight (230-245).

I found one wheel guy at the shop that could build a set of handbuilt wheels that lasted ovber 2,000 miles. He happened to be a Clyde himself and understood my needs as a rider over 140 lbs. He even taught me a littel about wheels so I started building my own and have had great results, like 20,000 plus on a rear wheel and still true after one minor touchup at 13,000 miles.

The thing you want to make clear to the shop is that after 200-300 miles, they NEED to RETENSION the spokes on your wheel. Get it in writing form the owner if necesary!

Don't let them get away with a simple truing of the wheel. Straight does not mean durable! If the tensionis to low, you will break spokes! If they say you don't need it, then find another shop. IF thy say they put loctite and fairy dust on the spokes so you should not need it, find another shop!

INSIST that they retension the wheel at tht point, that's what keeps the wheel together and prevents broken spokes!

IME. I don't rely on shop guys to maintain my wheel. I've bought new bikes that have gone out on the test ride. I've asked the OWNER to retension the wheel, he said bring it back in a month! I do the work myself then show up in the shop a few months later while he rambles on how about how he told me the wheel would hold blah blah blah! Just to humor him, I let him ramble knowing I adjusted it myself!

A good wheel guy will make the biggest difference!
Mr. Beanz is offline  
Old 07-14-10, 06:02 PM
  #9  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Brunswick, ME
Posts: 5

Bikes: Trek 7300

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz

A good wheel guy will make the biggest difference!
Good point. Thanks!
EasyDoesIt is offline  
Old 07-14-10, 08:00 PM
  #10  
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Grid Reference, SK
Posts: 3,768

Bikes: I never learned to ride a bike. It is my deepest shame.

Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Something I noticed about your choice of bikes... the Madone and the Rubaix are road racing bikes, the 7.2 is a hybrid (albeit a good one), the LHT is a touring bike and the Tricross is a CX/multi-purpose bike.

WHat type of riding are you planning on doing? Anything you can do on the Madone you can do on the Tricross, but not vice-versa.
LarDasse74 is offline  
Old 07-15-10, 06:26 PM
  #11  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Brunswick, ME
Posts: 5

Bikes: Trek 7300

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by LarDasse74
Something I noticed about your choice of bikes... the Madone and the Rubaix are road racing bikes, the 7.2 is a hybrid (albeit a good one), the LHT is a touring bike and the Tricross is a CX/multi-purpose bike.

WHat type of riding are you planning on doing? Anything you can do on the Madone you can do on the Tricross, but not vice-versa.
Good observation, LD. I may have mentioned that I moved recently from Northern Indiana to midcoast Maine. THere are a fair number of gravel/dirt roads where I used to live, and for that reason got the Trek 7300, which handled the variable surfaces well. Around here, nearly everything is paved (except my driveway). The Trek is reasonably fast, and I have no problem riding with the bike club in town--but since the pavement is more uniform, I'm leaning to road bikes. I'm including things like the Tricross and the 7.2 because 1) I want to get a good sense of what's available and 2) I suspect they may be more forgiving than a Madone or Roubaix if I were to get nudged off the road onto the shoulder.
EasyDoesIt is offline  
Old 07-15-10, 07:39 PM
  #12  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 2,146
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
the roubaix is pretty relaxed and the madone has a performance and pro fit (the performance being more relaxed)

Stock wheels are normally pretty crappy. Even on pretty ncie bikes, not reason to not ride them till they break though. With a retension they may last a while too. The good part is replacement wheels in the mere $300-500 range are very nice and durable, and once you buy them your old set is a great backup.
heckler is offline  
Old 07-16-10, 10:29 AM
  #13  
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Grid Reference, SK
Posts: 3,768

Bikes: I never learned to ride a bike. It is my deepest shame.

Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
If you have 23mm wide road tires on a CX or touring bike then it will be as fast as a road racing bike like the Madone.

However, the scenario as presented - an unexpected excursion into the gravel - will likely be as difficult on any bike set up for just road riding.

THe advantage of the CX, touring, and hybrid bikes is that have the option to use fatter or more aggressive tires designed for gravel roads, but then the bike won't be quite as fast as a road-racing bike.
LarDasse74 is offline  
Old 07-16-10, 11:44 AM
  #14  
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Brunswick, ME
Posts: 5

Bikes: Trek 7300

Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by LarDasse74
If you have 23mm wide road tires on a CX or touring bike then it will be as fast as a road racing bike like the Madone.

However, the scenario as presented - an unexpected excursion into the gravel - will likely be as difficult on any bike set up for just road riding.

THe advantage of the CX, touring, and hybrid bikes is that have the option to use fatter or more aggressive tires designed for gravel roads, but then the bike won't be quite as fast as a road-racing bike.
Thanks. That's helpful.
EasyDoesIt is offline  
Old 07-16-10, 12:25 PM
  #15  
Banned.
 
Mr. Beanz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Upland Ca
Posts: 19,895

Bikes: Lemond Chambery/Cannondale R-900/Trek 8000 MTB/Burley Duet tandem

Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 3 Posts
Originally Posted by LarDasse74
If you have 23mm wide road tires on a CX or touring bike then it will be as fast as a road racing bike like the Madone.
OK, so what are your thoughts on this? I'm asking cause I really don't know BUT!

Madone racing bike has certain dimensions (eg shorter wheel base, shorter chainstays). A CX bike has different dimensions. If the same rider was placed onto the same bike, some road course, some conditions, he woud be just as fast on the CX as he would on the road race bike?

I don't know but I would think that the difference in dimensions are for a reason. Yes, different in some for the CX bike, clearance issues while offroad but why would the roadrace bike's dimensions not be made the same if there was no difference in speed? Same with the touring dimensions, longer base for comfort etc, but why not make the race frame the same if the differenece in speed was nonexistent?

Like I said, I don't know, I don't design or engineer bikes but it just makes sense that there must be a difference in speed somewhere in the specs.


Any thoughts, anybody?



Madone, CX bike, same size, different dimensions



Mr. Beanz is offline  
Old 07-16-10, 12:42 PM
  #16  
Senior Member
 
Seattle Forrest's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 23,208
Liked 10,647 Times in 6,055 Posts
I test drove a couple of fancy high-end carbon bikes a few weeks ago: a time trial bike, and a pure road racer bike, while mine is a CX with drop bars and such. I'm on 28s, while the road bike had 25s or 23s ... I didn't ask. Both of the carbon bikes felt a little twitchy, with the TT one being much more so. I was talking to the Cervelo guy afterward, and he said this is mainly from the shorter wheel base. The bikes are more responsive, while the CX bike is a little more forgiving in this regard.

I don't know if that alone translates to speed. The TT bike had weird handlebars that looked like a model space ship, with aeros mounted to them, too. The frames had aerodynamic cuts. Et cetera, et cetera. I don't know anywhere near enough to itemize where the speed comes from ... but I do know the differences you mention amount to something.
Seattle Forrest is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Juan Foote
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)
13
05-21-13 11:59 AM
axolotl
Touring
20
09-12-12 09:15 PM
Mondo734
General Cycling Discussion
13
03-09-12 01:27 AM
Biggziff
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)
7
08-04-11 08:13 AM
cappuccino911
Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg)
9
10-07-10 04:02 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Your Privacy Choices -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.