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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.

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Old 01-15-14, 09:05 PM   #1
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Race Day Wheelset for Clydes

Anyone here use a wheelset not recommended for their weight just for race days? Wheelsets for race day only would persist of sub-1500 gram clinchers and 1300 gram tubulars. Low spoke counts worry me at 240 pounds even just having to last <100 miles during the weekend. If money were no object i would pick up a set of the new Zipp 404s with 28 spokes in the rear. Been trying to track down a set of the old Clydesdale 404's but they are few and far between.

Since most wheelsets are designed with a 180 pound rider in mind i also contemplated building my own. Then comes the rim choice. Mavic Open Pro, Stans 340 and 400 were the short list of strong and relatively light or chinese carbon tubulars drilled for 28+ spokes. Other than that, just going with a light aluminum set of Ksyriums Elites or SL's or American Classic Sprint 350s.

Just looking for some feedback before making a decision. I am a somewhat competent employed bicycle mechanic that can build and maintain wheels so that is not a deterrence in the choices.
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Old 01-15-14, 09:48 PM   #2
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Most deep carbon rims are plenty stiff and if well built should be just fine for race day use even at lower spoke counts. If you are talking CX racing I would lean towards a few more spokes though.

If you want to go with alloy rims, check out the Velocity A23, comes in nearly every number of spokes out there and is pretty reasonably light and still strong, the fusion is another really good one. I weigh just above 200lbs and have ridden lots of singletrack on my CX bike with them and they are still going strong.
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Old 01-15-14, 10:43 PM   #3
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I'm north of you by about 20-lbs.

I race on some 50mm carbon tubulars off eBay. 32/28 spokes with Novatec hubs. Handbuilt by my local wheelbuilder (best in the business I've ever met).

I ride everyday on some 50mm clinchers off eBay. These are the new rage, wider 25mm's rims. 32/28 spokes with Novatec hubs. Again, handbuilt by my local builder. They've been perfectly true for 4 months.

Both sets cost me right about $600 each, a far cry from Zipp's wheels (and my main reason for purchase). The only draw backs are poor braking in wet weather and finding brake pads that don't squeal.

If you can get a quality wheelbuilder to build you up some, I highly recommend them.
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Old 01-15-14, 11:13 PM   #4
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I have three sets of Zipps (404's). Two for my single and one for my tandem. They are noticeably my fastest wheels (I also have Topolino, HED and DA wheels) I love em! If you are looking for a deal, Mkadam68's Asian wheels are hard to beat. I don't know if they are as "fast" as the Zipps but they probably aren't really far off.
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Old 01-15-14, 11:59 PM   #5
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avoid those AC Sprint 350's they are designed for sub 140# riders and are still NOODLES, the tubeless versions are even worse

Stans 340s are flexy, I have the 400s and Stan's addressed those issues from the 340s and they are nice, bit of flex but strong & FAST, 20/24 config on neuvation ceramic hubs, 1420ish grams. GREAT wheels, tubeless w/ 25c spesh roubaix tubeless tires. 6months w/ ZERO flat tires....more time riding, less time on the side of the road.

Also have a set of "limited" Planet X 50mm team tubulars, they have a 195# limit, but bought and rode them at 220# w/o flex off the saddle sprints. They were bought w/ the intention of crit racing and fast club rides. Been a great wheelset for me and had them for 2 yrs now w/o even having to true them yet, good number of centuries on them and MANY 50-60mile club rides. Plus I'd done a couple different 5000ft decents on them w/o too much of a problem (yellow swissStops works for me). They are 20/24 config w/ external spokes, Chozen hubs and CX ray spokes. Their more common internal nipple spokes are heavier and claimed stronger but I wanted light. They are about 1250gr w/ Conti Sprinter tires and 1oz stans in there too, zero flats on those as well.

I want to try those new 24-25mm wide 50mm carbon clinchers but need a disc brake model for my CXer
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Old 01-17-14, 08:29 PM   #6
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I'm guessing the OP is asking about wheels for road. I'm having a set of 32 spoke Major Toms built for me for CX racing. I went with 105 hubs due to cost being more important to me than weight. At my weight and Cat there really is no performance penalty by choosing price and durability over weight.
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Old 01-19-14, 07:03 PM   #7
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At 260 the Carbones by Mavic were bomb proof. Set is 1700g though.
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Old 01-19-14, 07:44 PM   #8
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If you're going to be crit racing, and you're after aluminium, then I'd say steer away from the A23s. I have a set in 32/32 and they're great until you push them hard in a tight corner, they get a bit skittish. I've just recently bought a 28/32 combo with the Kinlin XC279 rims and cxray spokes. They will be my go to race wheel because road is my second passion with track my first. I'm getting a set of 28/28 spoke Light Bicycle rims built for track as soon as the spokes arrive on our shores. I would have gone for 24/28 but I wanted to stick with DA track hubs. The Light Bicycle rims are 88mm and rated to 130kg. I'm 120kg FYI.

I also have a club mate racer that has a set of 404s. He tips the scales at 110kg and is STRONG. He absolutely loves them!

Last edited by brawlo; 01-19-14 at 07:47 PM. Reason: add info
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