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New 26" wheelset - XT or 105 hubs for commuting....

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New 26" wheelset - XT or 105 hubs for commuting....

Old 06-29-10, 02:20 PM
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E_merlin
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New 26" wheelset - XT or 105 hubs for commuting....

Hi,

I was wondering what the overall opinion was about hubs for commuters. I am building a new wheel set and have been hearing the XT is the way to go because it is more robust and better sealed. I was wondering, in comparison to 105 hubs, if that was particularly true. I am looking to commute in all kinds of weather and conditions. No heavy duty off road riding here.

Opinions?

This is an older bike that was a touring type bike, that came standard with 128mm OLD in the rear end. I am told 130mm is no problem to fit. With regard to XT, I have read that you can move some washers around to gain the spacing you need taking it from 135 to 130. I am not sure if this is entirely true, perhaps someone can confirm.

TIA
TOm
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Old 06-29-10, 04:41 PM
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Ya, Im waiting to hear an answer to that question to. Good post, Thanks
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Old 06-30-10, 08:04 AM
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I'm having a heckuva time finding a set of xt756 hubs (36h, blk). Are they discontinued or something? The xt 775's seem to be available, but their reviews don't seem to be as good. I'm probably over thinking this.
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Old 06-30-10, 08:43 AM
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I've got some personal information for the OP to take with a grain of salt:

Unfortunately, I've never tried a wheelset with XT hubs, nor do I currently use a 26" rim on my commute bike. I'm currently using a set of 105 hubs laced to 700c open pro rims on my "everything" bike. I've also got a set of 35mm wide Schwalbes on the wheelset (keep in mind that Mavic recommends a max size of 28mm). I've used this wheelset for a year and a half (doing club rides, tons of commuting/utility biking, a handful of fire road jaunts, curb hopping, and general fooling around). In regards to the hubs--they're top notch and still spin smoothly and effortlessly. I'm a tad over 200 lbs, and put my bike through a lot of abuse. Given that, the hubs (and rims) seem to stand up really well to the rigors I put them through. Lastly, the road quality in LA is not the best, but these hubs seem to take the beating without any signs of wear.

I'm not sure what the OP's exact circumstances are, but I can easily recommend a set of 105 hubs because I think they're great.
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Old 06-30-10, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by E_merlin View Post
Hi,

I was wondering what the overall opinion was about hubs for commuters. I am building a new wheel set and have been hearing the XT is the way to go because it is more robust and better sealed. I was wondering, in comparison to 105 hubs, if that was particularly true. I am looking to commute in all kinds of weather and conditions. No heavy duty off road riding here.

Opinions?

This is an older bike that was a touring type bike, that came standard with 128mm OLD in the rear end. I am told 130mm is no problem to fit. With regard to XT, I have read that you can move some washers around to gain the spacing you need taking it from 135 to 130. I am not sure if this is entirely true, perhaps someone can confirm.

TIA
TOm
A 128mm OLD probably means that the bike was built to take either a 126mm OLD hub or a 130mm OLD hub. To use a 135mm OLD hub, you'll need to respace the frame. Not hard but the Shimano 105 hub will work without any of the hassle. Just go with it.
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Old 06-30-10, 09:15 AM
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128mm is your frame spacing. O.L.D. stands for Over Locknut Distance, which is a measurement on the hub itself. A 128mm frame spacing is from around the time manufacturers were switching from 7spd to 8spd;
6/7spd road hubs were 126mm o.l.d. and 7spd MTB or 8/9/10spd road hubs are 130mm. The 2mm difference from the frame spacing to either of those hub measurements gave people the option of using a wider range of hubs depending on the application. Similar to how Surly uses their "gnot rite spacing" of 132.5mm, allowing use of 130mm road or 135mm MTB hubs.

I'm not certain about the ability to fiddle with the spacing on the XT hubs. If they're similar to the 2008 Deore freehub, then there's not much room to either side of the hub shell and freehub body to allow for any narrower spacing without risking the chain rubbing the frame when it's on the smallest cog.
I would go with the 105 hub to assure the fit. Even in the worst of conditions, I've never had problems with my Ultegra hub on my randonneuring bike.
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Old 06-30-10, 09:34 AM
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Myself , I'd suggest a Phil Wood Freewheel hub, in the wheel build, you can use the frame as is , 126.
get a 6 0r 7 speed freewheel for the task .
Current XT [2010] uses an aluminum Axle [gram shaving] and folks have found them breaking..

Phil sealed bearing hubs have a strong axle , will not bend or break . and if you do choose to replace the frame with one
with a wider dropout width, Phil Co. Will have the few axle parts needed to make that change ..
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Old 06-30-10, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Myself , I'd suggest a Phil Wood Freewheel hub, in the wheel build, you can use the frame as is , 126.
get a 6 0r 7 speed freewheel for the task .
Current XT [2010] uses an aluminum Axle [gram shaving] and folks have found them breaking..

Phil sealed bearing hubs have a strong axle , will not bend or break . and if you do choose to replace the frame with one
with a wider dropout width, Phil Co. Will have the few axle parts needed to make that change ..
As is, the bike is made for a 126mm hub or a 130mm hub as pointed out by CliftonGK1 and myself. This was common for touring bikes near the point of technology changes. My T800 is a modern touring bike that is set up this way. It's OLD is 132.5mm so it can take 130mm hubs or 135mm hubs. E_merlin's bike is just an older version of the same idea.

Using Phil's is a good, albeit expensive, idea. However, I'd opt for a cassette rather than a freewheel. While still available, freewheels are harder to find and of rather low quality.
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Old 06-30-10, 10:29 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Phil sealed bearing hubs have a strong axle , will not bend or break .
I've beat the snot out of my Ultegra freehub (fh-6600 model) at 230 pounds and riding on some very rough roads (including gravel forestry roads); the axle is as straight as the day is long. There's no need to drop the coin for a Phil hub when the 105 will work just as well for less than half the price.

The cartridge bearings in the Phils make them a lower routine maintenance choice, but a pain when you finally do wear them out and need to replace them. The 105s just require an adjustable and a cone wrench to tear them down and fully service them. Not saying that one is better than the other; just a comparison... The 105s will require more frequent maintenance than the Phils, but it's easier to do. 6 of one, half dozen of the other.
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Old 06-30-10, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
I've beat the snot out of my Ultegra freehub (fh-6600 model) at 230 pounds and riding on some very rough roads (including gravel forestry roads); the axle is as straight as the day is long. There's no need to drop the coin for a Phil hub when the 105 will work just as well for less than half the price.

The cartridge bearings in the Phils make them a lower routine maintenance choice, but a pain when you finally do wear them out and need to replace them. The 105s just require an adjustable and a cone wrench to tear them down and fully service them. Not saying that one is better than the other; just a comparison... The 105s will require more frequent maintenance than the Phils, but it's easier to do. 6 of one, half dozen of the other.
The Phil Wood Field Serviceable hubs are much simplier to work on than you think. My rear hubs require two 5 mm wrenches to completely disassemble. Front hubs are a little more difficult but certainly not that hard to disassemble.

Cost is certainly a consideration but...Damn! They are purty If you got the cash and the desire...go with Phil. If you want something that will do the job, either will do.
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Old 06-30-10, 11:10 AM
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Clifton- You hit the nail right on the head, your advice is sound... Thank you to everyone for responding. I am going the 105 path and will enjoy them.

Thanks ALL!

Now onto rims... ugh. I like silver so there are not many choices. CR-18s are pretty and cheap - the Velocity Synergys are the way I am leaning. Any input welcome.

Best,
Tom





Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
128mm is your frame spacing. O.L.D. stands for Over Locknut Distance, which is a measurement on the hub itself. A 128mm frame spacing is from around the time manufacturers were switching from 7spd to 8spd;
6/7spd road hubs were 126mm o.l.d. and 7spd MTB or 8/9/10spd road hubs are 130mm. The 2mm difference from the frame spacing to either of those hub measurements gave people the option of using a wider range of hubs depending on the application. Similar to how Surly uses their "gnot rite spacing" of 132.5mm, allowing use of 130mm road or 135mm MTB hubs.

I'm not certain about the ability to fiddle with the spacing on the XT hubs. If they're similar to the 2008 Deore freehub, then there's not much room to either side of the hub shell and freehub body to allow for any narrower spacing without risking the chain rubbing the frame when it's on the smallest cog.
I would go with the 105 hub to assure the fit. Even in the worst of conditions, I've never had problems with my Ultegra hub on my randonneuring bike.
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