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Carbon Fiber spokes? Is this a thing?

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Carbon Fiber spokes? Is this a thing?

Old 04-14-20, 06:22 AM
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Sy Reene
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Carbon Fiber spokes? Is this a thing?

Happened to come across this newish listing on Hunt's site. What's the verdict on using spokes made with carbon fiber instead of pedestrian steel?

https://us.huntbikewheels.com/collec...spoke-wheelset
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Old 04-14-20, 07:20 AM
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I think CF spokes have been around for quite a while.
The fact that they haven't really hit the ground running tends to show, in my opinion, that they're not necessarily fixing anything that needed fixing, or not offering that much of an improvement over steel.
I'm also wary of Hunt's marketing, in general.
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Old 04-14-20, 07:51 AM
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Mavic used carbon spokes on some of their wheels. I am not sure if they still models using them.
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Old 04-14-20, 07:56 AM
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.lightweight meilenstein

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Old 04-14-20, 08:10 AM
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Most of the carbon-spoke wheels I know of (like the Lightweight brand that noodle soup mentioned) have the spokes baked into the hub and rim. You can never true them, but the idea is that they may never need to be trued.

The wheels in OP's post use a nipple setup, which is...something. I'd hate to be trueing one of those wheels and hear the sickening crack when the nipple rotates the spoke beyond it's malleability limits.
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Old 04-14-20, 08:30 AM
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How quickly we forget about Mavic R-SYS SLR wheels


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Old 04-14-20, 08:42 AM
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I had a pair of Mavic Cosmic Carbone SLRs that used carbon spokes. They were carbon bands that stretched across the hub, rather than connecting in to it. You could true those wheels. And I think Spinnergy or Toppolino had carbon spoked wheels 10 or 15 years ago.

But yes, the Mavic R-Sys with the round tube spokes had issues.
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Old 04-14-20, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
I had a pair of Mavic Cosmic Carbone SLRs that used carbon spokes. They were carbon bands that stretched across the hub, rather than connecting in to it. You could true those wheels. And I think Spinnergy or Toppolino had carbon spoked wheels 10 or 15 years ago.

But yes, the Mavic R-Sys with the round tube spokes had issues.
I remember Spinnergy wheels from the mid 90ís. I was at Jr. Nats at the crit. when this kid crashes and destroys his Spinnergy wheels. Dad was moaning that they had just bought those wheels. Back then, carbon wheels were $$$
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Old 04-14-20, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Cypress View Post
Most of the carbon-spoke wheels I know of (like the Lightweight brand that noodle soup mentioned) have the spokes baked into the hub and rim. You can never true them, but the idea is that they may never need to be trued.

The wheels in OP's post use a nipple setup, which is...something. I'd hate to be trueing one of those wheels and hear the sickening crack when the nipple rotates the spoke beyond it's malleability limits.
Yeah, I gather that apparently the use of nipples for these is somewhat new.

"UD CARBON SPOKES
Incredibly strong (achieving over 450kgf per spoke) TaperLock UD carbon spokes offering 30% increase in stiffness against steel ones. Only 2.7g per spoke. Due to the TaperLock technology, these spokes can be trued easily using a spoke key from within the rim bed."


closeup of a spoke but at the hub
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Old 04-14-20, 08:58 AM
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The Spinergy SPOX wheels used a kevlar spoke. I remember the rep showing me that he could tie one of the spokes in a knot. They never really caught on in the road market because of how aerodynamically infeasible they were. Turns out, 28 flexible 3.5mm-wide cylinders flying through the air (per wheel) caused a whole heck of a lot of drag. I raced with a guy back in the early 2000's that ran them and you could hear the spokes beating the air to death underneath him, and he claimed he could feel them "humming" at certain speeds, but especially in crosswinds.
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Old 04-14-20, 09:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Cypress View Post
The Spinergy SPOX wheels used a kevlar spoke. I remember the rep showing me that he could tie one of the spokes in a knot. They never really caught on in the road market because of how aerodynamically infeasible they were. Turns out, 28 flexible 3.5mm-wide cylinders flying through the air (per wheel) caused a whole heck of a lot of drag. I raced with a guy back in the early 2000's that ran them and you could hear the spokes beating the air to death underneath him, and he claimed he could feel them "humming" at certain speeds, but especially in crosswinds.
Yep. I definitely remember the sound of those Spinergys - LOL. Fat spokes never made sense to me. A friend of mine loved them for cyclocross.
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Old 04-14-20, 10:20 AM
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Scott makes a MTB wheel with carbon spokes. Though, as others have mentioned, unlike the Hunt wheels, the spokes are molded to the rims and hub shell. Still, Scott are putting these wheels under their World Cup XC racers, meaning they must think the carbon spokes will hold up to much harder riding than an average road wheel will ever encounter.

On the topic of wacky spoke ideas from the world of MTB, they are now building wheels with spokes made out of Dyneema thread. Somewhat surprised not to have seen this appear on road wheels yet, but assume that has to do with aero issues. Though it looks like they are pitching to the gravel crowd.
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Old 04-14-20, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
How quickly we forget about Mavic R-SYS SLR wheels

I bet his wrist and collar bone regret that fall. Sorry OT but that jumped out at me.as what not to do.
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Old 04-14-20, 10:41 AM
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Don't forget madfibers
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Old 04-14-20, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by GnipGnop View Post
Don't forget madfibers
Flexiest wheels I've ever ridden by a LONG shot. I demo'd a set and made it about a mile before handing them back and showing the rep the rubbed paint on my chainstays.
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Old 04-14-20, 11:34 AM
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To pile in on this, weíve also got Winspace, corima, cadex and partington, just to name a few. Bikeahead makes carbon monocoque wheels, but thatís not the same thing.

Cadex is a fairly big brand in that itís Giantís in house brand and their wheels will be OE on top end TCRs for the next gen. So I imagine they have the whole assploding thing figured out. I believe Cadex and Winspace, just like hunt, have independent replaceable spokes. Corima, just like the R-SYS, use pillar spokes a la wagon wheels. Partington uses baked-in spokes like LW.

My take on this is that people are totally right to be skeptical of these, and we may never figure out how to prevent these from failing suddenly and catastrophically (thatís just how carbon works) but from what I understand about carbon fiber, there is hardly a better application for it than tensioned spokes when it comes to performance.
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Old 04-14-20, 12:20 PM
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I have some Mavik R-SYS wheels, post redesign after they were strengthened to resist the kind of failure shown above.

The spokes are tubes that work in compression and tension.

Light and stiff, but just about the most un-aerodynamic wheels you could find, depend on proprietary little bits, and developed creaks.

Very Maviky.
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Old 04-14-20, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
and developed creaks.
The externally-threaded nipple was a neat idea, but you've gotta put linseed oil on them every few months to get rid of that damn creak. Same with where the spoke meets the hub.
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Old 04-14-20, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Cypress View Post
The externally-threaded nipple was a neat idea, but you've gotta put linseed oil on them every few months to get rid of that damn creak. Same with where the spoke meets the hub.

I used oil at the hub, which wiped out some little (paper?) washers in there & made the creaking worse.

The LBS said they could send them to Mavik to be rebuilt for a mere $1k.
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Old 04-14-20, 03:07 PM
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Don't forget Berd, now making spokes out of Dyneema
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Old 04-14-20, 03:10 PM
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I'd just like some more good options in the vein of the H3.
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Old 04-14-20, 03:14 PM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft View Post
I have some Mavik R-SYS wheels, post redesign after they were strengthened to resist the kind of failure shown above.

The spokes are tubes that work in compression and tension.

Light and stiff, but just about the most un-aerodynamic wheels you could find, depend on proprietary little bits, and developed creaks.

Very Maviky.
POTD.

I love Mavic shoes and clothing, but their wheels are a bad joke.
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Old 04-14-20, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by GnipGnop View Post
Don't forget madfibers
I actually saw a pair in the wild last year, for the first time ever.
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Old 04-15-20, 05:13 AM
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Those Hunts look pretty sweet. The spokes are a decent size, so no aero penalty by the look of it. The ends seem well done; I like the square bit to grab the spoke with to eliminate torsion. But the filament-wound rims seem just as impressive. These wheels could be pretty nifty, if they live up to the marketing. Although the weight doesn't seem too impressive; they'd want to be super stiff, or what's the point.
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Old 04-15-20, 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
Those Hunts look pretty sweet. The spokes are a decent size, so no aero penalty by the look of it. The ends seem well done; I like the square bit to grab the spoke with to eliminate torsion. But the filament-wound rims seem just as impressive. These wheels could be pretty nifty, if they live up to the marketing. Although the weight doesn't seem too impressive; they'd want to be super stiff, or what's the point.
sub 1300 gram isn't bad IMO. At their pricepoint I'd guess they're going up against eg. Campy Bora WTO 33s or Zipp 202NSWs, Enve 3.4s, etc.. all heavier, and in the case of at least the Zipps and Enves, a good amount more expensive.

EDIT: I don't want to come off as a shill for Hunt, but came across a couple things as well for those concerned with possible breakage and warranty service. Lifetime free crash replacement and servicing, and, Hunt now evidently has an office/service option in Boulder CO (so don't need to ship to the UK):
https://us.huntbikewheels.com/blogs/...sh-replacement
https://www.bicycleretailer.com/anno...r#.XpcLnshKjb0

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