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My First Wheelset Upgrade - Need Help

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My First Wheelset Upgrade - Need Help

Old 09-27-23, 07:50 AM
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My First Wheelset Upgrade - Need Help

hey "experts",

I need some some advice as I'm ignorant. I'm looking to upgrade my wheel set. I've been riding my stock wheels since 2006 which are Mavic Aksiums. I have an opportunity to get a set of HED RC4 Jets for $500 with skewers and Continental Gator Hardshell tires. Are these a good wheel set? Is the price fair?

Thanks for your help
peace
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Old 09-27-23, 07:58 AM
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$500 for a beat up wheelset with worn out tires and trashed bearings, is too much!

Only you can be the judge on seeing them.

Barry
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Old 09-27-23, 08:23 AM
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Used wheels can be sketchy. Are you looking for rim or disc brake? Without actually being able to physically check them, the value cannot be determined. I have bought a couple of used wheel sets, but from long term Forum members that have good reps, or from someone I actually know. Personally, I think you likely could do better with new wheels. One can get a very nice set for $500, or less. Campagnolo Zonda comes to mind as one example, available with Shimano or Campy freehub. And, they will be no longer produced. Do some research, shop around and ask questions. I do have a couple sets of Hed wheels, and they are outstanding wheels, so the used ones are worth checking out. If they are in VGC, that could be a good buy.
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Old 09-27-23, 08:37 AM
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That's good wheelset and, if they're still in halfway decent shape, a good price.

Plenty of secondhand wheels never saw much action -- particularly high-end race wheels -- and go on to provide many thousands of miles. And it's not that hard to judge a set of wheels from photos -- if they don't look worn out, they're probably not. And most wheel problems can be cured -- usually it's a spoke or bearing issue.

I doubt you'll be impressed with those tires, though, and on the first ride, that's what's going to speak loudest about how the wheels feel.
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Old 09-27-23, 09:16 AM
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Thanks for your input.

I just messaged the guy who is selling them. He said he bought them new last year $2200 and did the ride across Iowa, wheels are true, bearing are good. He's selling them because he bought a new bike.
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Old 09-27-23, 09:36 AM
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HED wheels are very nice, if in good shape.
how they 'ride' will depend on you, and very much the tire.
I find Conti Gators to be 'harsh' , for my likes, so a nice set of rubber will be a consideration for what you might like.
not sure if these are a 'tubless ready' design, but that can be done to most non-tubeless rims, with the right stuff & tires - if that's a consideration.
Think these are hybrid alu brake track - so for rim brake setup...
$500 would be a good price, for a nice set.
Ride On
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Old 09-27-23, 11:12 AM
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MSRP on these wheels is $1400. They are aluminum rims with a 40mm carbon aero fairing added. They have good braking performance due to the aluminum brake tracks, but are a fair bit heavier than comparably priced carbon aero wheels. The aero performance is the main benefit here. The hubs are a 5 pawl design with cartridge bearings, so there's not much to maintain. If the bearings are worn you can easily replace them. HED is a good brand and makes wheels here in the US. $500 seems like a good price assuming nothing is wrong with them.

I can't tell if these are tubeless ready rims or not, so if that's a factor you might want to look into it more.

Continental gatorskin tires are a heavy high-mileage commuter tire that prioritizes flat protection above all else. I would recommend replacing with something nicer like GP5000's.
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Old 09-27-23, 11:42 AM
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Hed wheels- the carbon fairing is a thin , soft carbon shell glued to the structural aluminum rim. The spokes anchor in the aluminum rim. This is good in that the aluminum rim provides a good braking surface. The down side is that the carbon fairing is soft and fragile. You need to be extra careful when you are pumping. If you stress the valve stem too much it will tear the carbon at the valve hole. The other thing is you cannot hang the wheel on a hook. So if you use that any type of bike rack that hooks to or clamps down on the rim, it is no good.
The other issue to note is that Hed wheels for whatever reasons have very narrow brake tracks. With my Hed wheels, I had to carefully shave down my Ultegra brake pads so it doesn't go beyond the brake track and rub against the carbon fairing or rub against the tire.
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Old 09-27-23, 11:49 AM
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I purchased and still ride a pair of RC5.5 quite some years ago for $500 lightly used. Likely have put 10,000 miles on them without issue. While I have been pleased with them, it should be noted that they are not full carbon wheels.

They are high quality aluminum wheels with a carbon faring on the inside to provide an aero profile. This means that they are heavy wheels compared to most carbon, however one keeps the aluminum braketrack which means no changing of breakpads, issues with performance when wet etc.

They were a nice step up from some Fulcrums, but I do keep looking at some lighter carbon wheels.
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Old 09-27-23, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by johnnylean
... I've been riding my stock wheels since 2006 which are Mavic Aksiums. I have an opportunity to get a set of HED RC4 Jets for $500 with skewers ...
Originally Posted by johnnylean
... I just messaged the guy who is selling them. He said he bought them new last year $2200 ...
The HED Jet RC4 wheels have an internal width of 21 mm, which are likely much wider than Mavic Aksium wheels circa 2006.

JET RC PERFORMANCE SERIES HED Cycling Products

Tires mounted on internally wider wheels will measure wider than the nominal width of the tires. Thus, tires mounted on the HED Jet RC4 wheels may not even fit within the bike on which the Mavic Aksium wheels are currently installed.
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Old 09-27-23, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
The HED Jet RC4 wheels have an internal width of 21 mm, which are likely much wider than Mavic Aksium wheels circa 2006.

JET RC PERFORMANCE SERIES HED Cycling Products

Tires mounted on internally wider wheels will measure wider than the nominal width of the tires. Thus, tires mounted on the HED Jet RC4 wheels may not even fit within the bike on which the Mavic Aksium wheels are currently installed.
Good point on the 21mm internal width - it'll stretch out tires a little more than the OP's current wheels (which I think are 17mm).
HED seems to indicate that 23mm tires are fine on these, but that seems awfully narrow to me on a 21mm rim, even with hooks. It looks like the external width is 24mm, so 23mm tires would be needed for optimal aero benefits. 25mm would be better IMO, even if it comes with a slight aero penalty, but the OP should definitely verify frame clearance first.
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Old 09-27-23, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la
Good point on the 21mm internal width - it'll stretch out tires a little more than the OP's current wheels (which I think are 17mm). ...
In 2017 I bought a bike that came with Mavic Aksium wheels and later upgraded to Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheels, all of which have an internal width of 17 mm. There were still a few 15 mm IW upgrade wheelsets available. So if OP's wheels are from 2006, they are likely to be narrower.
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Old 09-27-23, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la
Good point on the 21mm internal width - it'll stretch out tires a little more than the OP's current wheels (which I think are 17mm).
HED seems to indicate that 23mm tires are fine on these, but that seems awfully narrow to me on a 21mm rim, even with hooks. It looks like the external width is 24mm, so 23mm tires would be needed for optimal aero benefits. 25mm would be better IMO, even if it comes with a slight aero penalty, but the OP should definitely verify frame clearance first.
Whelp I got them and they're mint and most importantly they fit, even with 28c tires mounted on them! So stoked, thanks all for your input. Peace
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Old 09-27-23, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by johnnylean
Whelp I got them and they're mint and most importantly they fit, even with 28c tires mounted on them! So stoked, thanks all for your input. Peace
I'm pretty sure you're required by law to post pics.

Good luck with the wheels!
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Old 09-27-23, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la
I'm pretty sure you're required by law to post pics.

Good luck with the wheels!





Boom!
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Old 09-28-23, 10:42 AM
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Those wheels look awesome. Nice job!
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