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Wheel characteristics and components

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Wheel characteristics and components

Old 05-13-19, 11:15 PM
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armybikerider
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Wheel characteristics and components

Yesterday when cleaning my bike I discovered small cracks around a spoke hole on my Fulcrum Racing 5 rear wheel. I shouldn't surprised - they have 31,000 + miles on them.

So I'm beginning the search for new wheels. I ride on fairly rough chip seal roads in North Texas, on flat to rolling terrain. I'm not a weight weenie......and want to stay with AL clincher rims.

My question is....what specific characteristics or wheel components should I be looking for to give me a smoother ride over rough surfaces (chip seal roads - not gravel)?

Wider internal width??? Shorter rim height??? Straight pull versus j bend spokes? Does weight play a part in ride quality?

Or is the ride quality of a wheel largely determined by the tire, tire width and PSI?

I'm NOT looking for specific wheel recommendations, just want to get educated so I can select the best wheel for what I'm specifically looking for.
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Old 05-14-19, 10:58 AM
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"Ride quality" usually means comfort, be smoothing out bad pavement. Wheels themselves don't do that, if a wheel moved enough to act as a shock you couldn't ride it. But tires do, in a big way. Fat tires at medium inflation.
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Old 05-14-19, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by armybikerider View Post
I'm NOT looking for specific wheel recommendations, just want to get educated so I can select the best wheel for what I'm specifically looking for.
Ride quality is mostly due to tire- width, pressue, and material. This assumes different wheels are all properly trued and tensioned.
There is something to be said for a deeper section rim in terms of ride quality as a V shaped will will typically feel stiffer than a lower profile box sectioned rim.

Something that is 23mm wide and 17.5mm internal, 26-28mm deep, and welded will be a very good rim for overall general reliable use. It will be inherently stronger than a box rim and it wont be overly heavy
Traditional jbend spokes, when dobule butted, will be reliable and light weight. They will also be easy to replace when a freak incident happens.

As for riding chipseal- just use whatever the widest tire fits in your frame.
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Old 05-14-19, 12:10 PM
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What those guys said. Wheel choice only affects comfort in that it impacts available tire choice.
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Old 05-16-19, 06:13 PM
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Agree that it's 95% tire volume and suppleness. The other 5% I am not sensitive enough to feel.
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Old 05-16-19, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Agree that it's 95% tire volume and suppleness. The other 5% I am not sensitive enough to feel.
Thats because that 5% is really like 0.5%. Steel stretches a hell of a lot less than rubber bends or air compresses.
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Old 05-17-19, 05:30 AM
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If you got 31,000 from Fulcrum you have found your wheels.
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Old 05-17-19, 09:01 AM
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Lots of questions in @armybikerider's post.

Yes, tires are your key to comfort, grip, etc.

For 30K miles on a rear wheel, ridden pretty hard, look for a quality hub.
Durability points toward larger spoke count, 3X lacing, alloy nipples.
For 28mm (and larger) tires a slightly wider rim might be a good idea.

but @63rickert nailed it. Why change from a product that worked?
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Old 05-17-19, 09:37 AM
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Thanks for all the replies so far.

The reason I ask is because in searching for wheels I've seen "stiffness" claims based on spoke count, rim height, rim material, hub flange height etc etc. And I took "stiffness" to describe a specific ride quality akin to harshness. Maybe the ad copy refers to lateral stiffness and not so much vertical compliance....or maybe it's just marketing hype!

I've had 2 sets of Fulcrum 5's on my Lynskey. The rear wheel from the factory original wheelset from Lynskey lasted 28,000 miles and I replaced them with my current Fulcrum 5 wheelset with 31,000 miles.

I was/am looking to see if there might be something "better"....and just to get something different. I've looked at everything from Hunt, to Pacinti, to Blackset and everything in between. I could spent a couple of hundred dollars more and drop a couple of hundred grams - which I might or might not notice......But I agree.....these wheels have served me well.....why change from a good thing?
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Old 05-17-19, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by armybikerider View Post
Thanks for all the replies so far.

The reason I ask is because in searching for wheels I've seen "stiffness" claims based on spoke count, rim height, rim material, hub flange height etc etc. And I took "stiffness" to describe a specific ride quality akin to harshness. Maybe the ad copy refers to lateral stiffness and not so much vertical compliance....or maybe it's just marketing hype!

I've had 2 sets of Fulcrum 5's on my Lynskey. The rear wheel from the factory original wheelset from Lynskey lasted 28,000 miles and I replaced them with my current Fulcrum 5 wheelset with 31,000 miles.

I was/am looking to see if there might be something "better"....and just to get something different. I've looked at everything from Hunt, to Pacinti, to Blackset and everything in between. I could spent a couple of hundred dollars more and drop a couple of hundred grams - which I might or might not notice......But I agree.....these wheels have served me well.....why change from a good thing?
At least take a look at Psimet and Boyd who contribute here and build great wheels.
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Old 05-17-19, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by 63rickert View Post
If you got 31,000 from Fulcrum you have found your wheels.
I had a pair that came stock on my Tarmac called S-4's, which were either Racing 3 hubs and 5 rims, or the other way around. Either way, they have been great everyday wheels. Super solid, always true, not too heavy. Would recommend.
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