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Stainless Steel MTB rims

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Stainless Steel MTB rims

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Old 02-13-18, 03:47 PM
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BTA
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Stainless Steel MTB rims

Greetings, I want to put together the toughest, simplest, most easily repairable MTB (MounTain Bike) wheel I can imagine to replace the wheel I have.I want stainless steel 26 inch rim with 36 spokes I can put my disk brake on, I want to know where I can find this rim.

I want to replace my SAS HALO, 26 inch wheel with 36 spokes. It uses cassette bearings. The bearings wore out in the middle of nowhere Illinois (years ago). I learned then how much of a challenge it is to replace cassette bearings. High quality ball bearings are easy to find.

Aluminum alloy rims are the most common rims available. Titanium, carbon fibre, steel and stainless steel rims also exist. Aluminum, titanium and carbon fibre are not repairable. Steel rims are not worth repairing. Stainless Steel rims are repairable (welding), durable and much stronger than aluminum.

I rode about 15,000 miles or 24,000 kilometers, mostly on a 1995 specialized Rockhopper with an Xtraacycle Free Radical rack over two years and it weighed 215 lbs or 100 kg and I weighed 200 lbs or 90kg. Together, my bike and I weighed 415 pounds or 190kg.

Go ahead, tell me aluminum alloy rims weigh much less than stainless steel rims.

I now ride a Vision R-40 recumbent with a T-Cycle Cargo Monster and the same rear wheel that I need to replace someday soon.

Last edited by BTA; 02-13-18 at 03:50 PM. Reason: edited out margin and spacing
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Old 02-13-18, 11:22 PM
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Maybe you should move this to the MTB forum or touring
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Old 02-14-18, 02:57 AM
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Originally Posted by BTA View Post
Greetings, I want to put together the toughest, simplest, most easily repairable MTB (MounTain Bike) wheel ....

Thing is, some of those requirements are likely to be mutually exclusive.
"Toughest" would probably be some adaptation of DH stuff, with a 142x12 axle.
There'll be a limited number of shops that have those parts sitting around.


"Simplest" is probably something along the department store variety. Solid axle, thread-on freewheel.
"Most repairable" is tricky and require clarification.
There's a difference between what can be done SOMEWHERE, and what can USUALLY be done.
Take your pick between "most replaceable parts" and "easiest accessible parts/tools/skills".


There's a HUGE number of shops that'll know how to deal with cup & cone hubs.
And unless you shatter a cup, pretty much any shop with a decent parts bin would be able to piece together a rideable wheel.


A hub with cartridge bearings is easier to repair than a hub with a busted cup, but not all shops are set up to deal with cartridge bearings.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
.. I want to put together the toughest, simplest, most easily repairable..wheel I can imagine

Can't help you there. It's YOUR imagination.
Me, I'd either go for a 6-speed FW, cartridge bearing hub with a high-quality axle or one of Shimano's best sellers. In slightly different ways, they'd both qualify for "easily repairable".


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
I want stainless steel 26 inch rim with 36 spokes I can put my disk brake on,

A disc brake hub doesn't care what rim it's laced to as long as you get the spokes right.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
I want to know where I can find this rim.
Can't help you there.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
I want to replace my SAS HALO, 26 inch wheel with 36 spokes. It uses cassette bearings. The bearings wore out in the middle of nowhere Illinois (years ago). I learned then how much of a challenge it is to replace cassette bearings. High quality ball bearings are easy to find.

Bicycles generally have the choice between cup & cone AKA loose ball bearings and cartridge bearings.
Both are types of ball bearings.


Cassette wrt bicycle wheels is something else entirely.


So I assume you wan't a cup & cone hub as opposed to a cartridge bearing hub.


I think your assumption is wrong here.
Loose balls are easy to come by, it's often possible to piece together a working combination of cones and axles as long as you accept seals not lining up quite as they should.
But cracked or pitted cups often means the hub is a write-off.
While often technically replaceable, I don't know of any shops that do it.
Outside the bicycle realm, cartridge bearings OTOH are well standardized and usually easy to come by from any industrial supply store.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
.. Stainless Steel rims are .. stronger than aluminum.

You need to differentiate material strength from component strength.
Yes, stainless as such is stronger than aluminium.
But all stainless rims I've seen have been single-wall.
The strength gained from the box section of a double-wall aluminium rim is more than the strength lost from the weaker material.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
Stainless Steel rims are repairable (welding).

What kind of damage do you expect to need to repair, cracking around the spoke nipples?
I'd think a a good, double-eyeletted aluminum rim would do better WRT that than a single-wall SS rim.
Who'd do the welding?
How?
If there are fatigue cracks in one spot, odds are the other nipples aren't far behind. Reworking the whole rim would mean an unlace. The welder would probably want to be payed for his effort.
At that point, the benefit of being able to repair as opposed to replace begins to look quite thin.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
Go ahead, tell me aluminum alloy rims weigh much less than stainless steel rims.
Nah, weight is only ONE consideration. There are others.
I've been kinda tempted to dig up some old 700C SS rims to build a hub-brake winter commuter.
Roads over here get salted.
But corrosion doesn't kill aluminium rims fast enough for there to be enough benefit from such an effort.


Originally Posted by BTA View Post
I now ride a Vision R-40 recumbent with a T-Cycle Cargo Monster and the same rear wheel that I need to replace someday soon.

While it's certainly nice to have stuff that lasts a long, long time, sometimes one really have to look at the bigger picture.
If the effort needed to avoid a future effort is bigger than the effort you're tryding to dodge, then you're better off simply dealing with the unavoidable.
When I started full-time bike commuting I used ceramic coated rims and rim brakes.
They lasted years and let me feel a bit smug about the nice bits I used.
But I worried about certain bike racks and potholes that could flake the ceramig off and cause grabby brakes.
When they finally wore out I started buying used generic wheels instead.
I lost a bit wet braking performance, a big chunk of worry, and it goes out about even in cost.
And since this approach generally meant I had another wheelset held as spares, I could simply swap it in and keep riding and do repairs later when something else happened.
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Old 02-14-18, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by BTA View Post
Greetings, I want to put together the toughest, simplest, most easily repairable MTB (MounTain Bike) wheel I can imagine to replace the wheel I have.
Thread moved from Europe forum to Mountain Biking forum.
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Old 02-14-18, 11:59 AM
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SS rim? Good luck with that. Go for a really beefy, double wall eyelet dh rim. And the widest rim/ tire combo that will fit. No one repairs a rim, except carbon fiber, replace wheel/rim when needed. I used a woodman hub for one of my builds. 600 grams, solid steel axle, beefy. Cartridge bearings pop in easy.
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Old 02-16-18, 12:57 PM
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SS Rim???? Ha ha!! Why?
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