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Domane SLR 7 Disc: Tires first (tubeless?) w/stock rims, HED Belgium+, or other?

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Domane SLR 7 Disc: Tires first (tubeless?) w/stock rims, HED Belgium+, or other?

Old 10-31-16, 12:46 PM
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eyeheartny
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Domane SLR 7 Disc: Tires first (tubeless?) w/stock rims, HED Belgium+, or other?

I just got a Trek Domane SLR 7 Disc last week and love it so far. The stock wheels are pretty lackluster. I'm intending to upgrade to better wheels before long, but I did just throw down a lot of cash on this bike, and so I'm debating whether to first get some better tires than the pretty awful Bontrager R3s that came with the bike before I do anything else.

Here are the options I'm considering:
  1. Good set of "open tubular" soft clincher tires, like some from Specialized, Challenge, Vittoria, etc and run them with tubes
  2. Convert these rims to tubeless and run a good tubeless tire on them
  3. Order a handbuilt set of HED Belgium Plus rims with White Industries hubs (approx $890 shipped through November) and run them either tubed or tubeless

Questions:
  • Standard tubed setup or convert to tubeless with these rims? I don't have a compressor at home but do have a good floor pump.
  • Do I just suck up the monetary pain and get the new wheels built up right away?
  • Other wheel options I should consider at no more than $1k? Or do I keep the stock wheels and save until I can afford some more aero carbon wheels (and be fast enough to warrant them )
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Old 10-31-16, 12:56 PM
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Sub-200 gram, 120TPI tires don't sound that awful to me.

Converting the rim to tubeless doesn't sound like a good idea to me.

You've already decided you'll be spending big money on wheels. No point in spending twice, get what you want as soon as you can afford it.
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Old 10-31-16, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by PepeM View Post
Sub-200 gram, 120TPI tires don't sound that awful to me.

Converting the rim to tubeless doesn't sound like a good idea to me.

You've already decided you'll be spending big money on wheels. No point in spending twice, get what you want as soon as you can afford it.
I should be more specific: there's no conversion required, they are tubeless ready rims. I just need to add the tape, tires, and sealant.
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Old 10-31-16, 01:04 PM
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Ah yes, should've known as all Bontrager wheels come that way. I don't know, some people like tubeless, others don't. Seem more trouble than it's worth to me but if I got punctures more frequently maybe I would consider it.
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Old 10-31-16, 01:06 PM
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Nice tires are always a good upgrade. With that said, I run some pretty horrible tires in the winter (my current rear is a Bontrager T1) and to be honest I can't say it makes much of a difference when doing four hours of z2.
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Old 10-31-16, 03:17 PM
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If the wheels are lackluster, why would converting them to tubeless make them better?

I'm all for upgrades, but what is your reason for upgrading? I'm a big fan of tubeless, but if you don't like the wheelset, will converting them to tubeless really make you happy in the end.
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Old 10-31-16, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by eyeheartny View Post
Order a handbuilt set of HED Belgium Plus rims with White Industries hubs (approx $890 shipped through November) and run them either tubed or tubeless
I have these from November. I run them tubed (with Clement XPLOR MSO 40s, fwiw). November Dave puts the same rim tape in either way. But you don't need the valves (saves $4). Excellent wheels (even if they are my backup wheels). My others are CK hubs with the same rims (built by CK).
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Old 10-31-16, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
I have these from November. I run them tubed (with Clement XPLOR MSO 40s, fwiw). November Dave puts the same rim tape in either way. But you don't need the valves (saves $4). Excellent wheels (even if they are my backup wheels). My others are CK hubs with the same rims (built by CK).
Nice! I just pulled the trigger on them. Can't wait for them to arrive. I'm not sure whether to run the new wheels tubeless or tubed, whether to keep the stock wheels as a backup, sell them, or get a new cassette/rotors for the new wheels and have two wheelsets ready to go. Decisions, decisions!
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Old 10-31-16, 03:43 PM
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Appropriate tires are always very high on the list of priorities for me. They can make or break bicycle characteristics and performance, just about as much as appropriate posture and appropriate gearing can. They're also relatively cheap as far as up-front cost for changes go.

If I wanted a tire upgrade, I'd definitely hop right into it before I was ready to make the wheel change, unless maybe if the new wheels were going to merit a different tire for some reason or another. i.e. I probably wouldn't buy new fancy-schmancy clinchers if I was going to make a total switch to tubulars in the next couple weeks.

That said...
Originally Posted by eyeheartny View Post
the pretty awful Bontrager R3s that came with the bike before I do anything else.
...what's so bad about R3s? I'm running 23mm R3s on one bike, they seem to roll pretty well, and they're very lightweight.

I could just be biased because I like the color options, though.

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Old 10-31-16, 03:45 PM
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Why Road Tubeless is Here to Stay - ENVE Composites
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Old 10-31-16, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by eyeheartny View Post
Nice! I just pulled the trigger on them. Can't wait for them to arrive. I'm not sure whether to run the new wheels tubeless or tubed, whether to keep the stock wheels as a backup, sell them, or get a new cassette/rotors for the new wheels and have two wheelsets ready to go. Decisions, decisions!
It is always a good idea to have a backup wheelset. Keep them, I'd say.
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Old 10-31-16, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by eyeheartny View Post
Nice! I just pulled the trigger on them. Can't wait for them to arrive. I'm not sure whether to run the new wheels tubeless or tubed, whether to keep the stock wheels as a backup, sell them, or get a new cassette/rotors for the new wheels and have two wheelsets ready to go. Decisions, decisions!
Congrats!

I bought two cassettes, because I frequently switch between these and my nearly identical (28 vs. 32) CK wheels, basically to save the trouble of switching between on-road and on/off road tires. But if the stock wheels are inferior, I would save at least the back wheel as a spare in case the other needs repair. (It is easy enough to move the cassette and rotors. The WI are centerlock, FWIW. If your others are six-bolt, then you have to pop for new rotors (artscycle has them for a decent price). If your other ones are centerlock, they will be very easy to move around. (You need a BB tool for the front lockring for WI hubs. Be forewarned.)
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Old 10-31-16, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by wgscott View Post
Congrats!

I bought two cassettes, because I frequently switch between these and my nearly identical (28 vs. 32) CK wheels, basically to save the trouble of switching between on-road and on/off road tires. But if the stock wheels are inferior, I would save at least the back wheel as a spare in case the other needs repair. (It is easy enough to move the cassette and rotors. The WI are centerlock, FWIW. If your others are six-bolt, then you have to pop for new rotors (artscycle has them for a decent price). If your other ones are centerlock, they will be very easy to move around. (You need a BB tool for the front lockring for WI hubs. Be forewarned.)
Thanks!

I think for now 99% of my riding is on-road, but with my new bike I may explore off-road a little more. Thinking I'll keep the stock wheels but take the rotors and cassette off for now, have one wheelset ready to go, and set up the stock set if I want to later on.

The stock Bontragers came on an Ultegra Di2 build so I'm good to go with centerlock rotors. I may just go to my LBS to have them swap the parts. I need a Stages crank installed as well so it'll make sense to have them do a few things for me.

Big question now is tires.
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Old 10-31-16, 04:28 PM
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My Clement 28mm slick tires are a major struggle to get on these rims. (My wider ones go on easily).
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Old 10-31-16, 04:47 PM
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Those wheels honestly aren't that bad. If you want something a bit lighter, I would see if the dealer you bought the bike from would take back the wheels on the bike, and get you some paradigm elite wheels, and you pay the difference.

If not, I would just get the tubeless rim strips for those wheels, and run 28mm Schwalbe Pro Ones on them set up tubeless. It's totally worth it.
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Old 11-01-16, 10:12 PM
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My Project One build SLR 7 came with Paradigm Elite's. Very nice and light. If you can swap for them...

I've put about 700 miles on my R3's so far and find them pretty good. Switching to Conti GP4000S II's shortly to try them out.
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