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Best Hub and Rim Combo for Touring

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Best Hub and Rim Combo for Touring

Old 10-11-15, 08:04 AM
  #1  
sagacitoma
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Best Hub and Rim Combo for Touring

Hello All,
I am looking to build up a nice set of touring wheels, 700c by 32c Schwalbe Marathon tires, using DT spokes in a 3 cross pattern.
What would people recommend for a bomb proof hub and rim combo to go with this set-up.
Cheers,
Chad.
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Old 10-11-15, 09:12 AM
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I'm not sure there is a "best", but there a lot of good combinations. However, what hubs you can use depend on the size your rear dropouts, 130 or 135 mm.

Last edited by Doug64; 10-11-15 at 09:29 AM.
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Old 10-11-15, 09:43 AM
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Best indicates you have a lot to spend

I have used Mavic Mod 4 .. and Sun Rhyno (its not the Light version) are currently on my bike .

My Build 40f/48r spoke wheels .. and have freewheel hubs .. Phil Wood ..


Now where I live I see a lot of other people that have wheel problems and the Bike shop is in a small town

those who build with prestige parts , if the rim is damaged , The hub is shipped home .
as few want to stay in town for most Of a week to have the order cycle for a New Rim and custom rebuild .

So there is The pragmatic Good Enough.

the cassette is removed put on a modest priced Shimano hub machine built wheel and put back on the road .

Campag spares are not stocked at all .. here .. When parts are needed But still working the CoOp between here and another shop 2~3 days south is worked out on the Phone, and the special ordered Pieces get the overnight shipping.


Stock shimano Freehubs are good enough (Those with Steel axles better than the higher end aluminum) .

IDK about bombproof.. but Rider maybe is not IED survivable.

on to the personal shopping opinion hamster wheel ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-12-15 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 10-11-15, 10:14 AM
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My top current choices for a touring rim would be the velocity dyad and the mavic A719.

Insofar as hubs are concerned, there's a lot to be said for shimano's basic offerings like a deore XT or even a deore hub. That's a proven design.

Still I prefer sealed cartridge bearing hubs. They're available but can be very pricey. Phil wood makes some very famous sealed cartridge bearing hubs but I think the cost for a pair will be in the neighborhood of $600.

Suzue sealed cartridge hubs are available and will cost considerably less (probably closer to $300).

There are other quality sealed cartridge hubs available if you search. But that is my first choice when it comes to hubs.

Edit: velocity builds some pretty nice wheels; I'd check out their touring offerings, http://www.velocityusa.com/product/w...uring-wheelset

Last edited by bikemig; 10-11-15 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 10-11-15, 10:20 AM
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Recently built a set with White hubs and Velocity Aileron rims. Good balance between weight, strength and price.
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Old 10-11-15, 10:25 AM
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All my bikes use the Shimano XT hub. Never had a failure. They're awesome.

A lot of the tourists at my shop are going with the H + Son Archetypes. They also make a sweet box-section rim. I use the H + Son rims, they have a nice wide profile for Schwalbe Marathons and they're really solid.
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Old 10-11-15, 11:10 AM
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Not what you are planning (in terms of wheel size), but 10 years ago I had a touring bike built from scratch - steel with S&S connectors. The 26" wheels have PW 48 spoke hubs and Sun Rhyno Lyte rims. Lacing is 4X.

I tour in outback Australia exclusively, and half the distance has so far been on dirt roads. Recently I rode from Perth to Peterborough (2700 km) in a month on pavement. The wheels should now be checked for spoke tension etc seeing they have not had anything done to them in the last 10 years. Still going strong. Schwalbe Marathon tyres at 65 psi works well ...
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Old 10-11-15, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by tmac100 View Post
Not what you are planning (in terms of wheel size), but 10 years ago I had a touring bike built from scratch - steel with S&S connectors. The 26" wheels have PW 48 spoke hubs and Sun Rhyno Lyte rims. Lacing is 4X.

I tour in outback Australia exclusively, and half the distance has so far been on dirt roads. Recently I rode from Perth to Peterborough (2700 km) in a month on pavement. The wheels should now be checked for spoke tension etc seeing they have not had anything done to them in the last 10 years. Still going strong. Schwalbe Marathon tyres at 65 psi works well ...
I consider wheels as being 10,000 mile consumables, since our winters wear out the brake tracks long before I can kill a 36-spoke wheel. Kelley was acually riding her Kona when the rim blew out. She didn't crash, just told me she had a weird thumping noise when she braked!

Luckily, I only run Disc now.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:01 PM
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I'm 270, I tend to tear hubs to shreds, I've tried many brands in various types of cycling, and the best touring hub I've found is DT Swiss.

Their mechanism is simple, robust as hell, easily serviced by most mechanics, and has hauled my fat ass with gear up 12k meters of climbing last month. They're also cheap - way cheaper than King.

I use King for MTB and Road because those bikes are blingy, but DTSwiss for touring.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:23 PM
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If you really want bombproof and you really want to use DT spokes, I would go for DT hubs. Easily one of the best hubs out there, and maybe the only loose bearing hub to offer an upgrade over the Shimano/Campy option. The main reason for cartridge bearings is that anyone with a lathe can make a hub for them, but hardened races and all that jazz take some scale.

Otherwise I would go either White, or Phil Wood hubs., wheelsmith spokes and velocity rims. Phil Wood is only maker with real touring options, and I really like the freewheel hubs he offers as a great weight, cost, durability option, but most riders these days have either drunk the Shimano Koolaid, or don't even know what a freewheel is.

My current wheels are all made on White hubs (I kinda wonder how that happened when I am really a Phil guy. It had to do with some parts I was building up for a Rohloff bike), wheelsmith butted spokes and brass nipples, and velocity, aeroheat rims (or whatever the 700c part is called, I have both 26 and 700 built on these parts)

Basic wheel myths are:

- butted spokes, don't need them, though at this build level I use them;

- good rims are hard to find. The real truth is they are impossible to find, but at the level of the crap on offer today there are lots of options. Alex rims are bombproof, Mavic, Velocity, and many other brands that just aren't broadly on offer over here. Don't know much about them, but probably DT rims are good. Since all rims are relatively crap, they all break, and they all get some bad net chat. That kind of thing is baked in, ignore it. Before I build I normally look on Peter White's site for what he offers a lifetime guarantee on.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:27 PM
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Dt Swiss hubs are not cheap. Some of the most expensive hubs out there.

I prefer Hope hubs since they are probably the simplest hubs out there. Full disassembly and assembly are pretty much tool free (although having a few special tools makes the job quicker)

For rims I've found the light with the DT Swiss TK540. It only comes with 36h drilling, but honestly a 36h well built wheel should be able to take pretty much anything you throw at it. 40 or 48h is really in the realm of overkill.
I've built quite a few mavics and a pair of TK540's and the differences were big enough for me to go to DT Swiss camp.
All of the Mavic rims were more or less wobbly out of the box and final truing/tensioning was a chore. a special hop at the weld seam seems like a specialty of mavic.
The TK540 was straight like laser, in every direction. And as a plus, the TK540 allows for 20kgf more spoke tension than any Mavic rim, which is a huge plus in terms of touring.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by schnee View Post
I'm 270, I tend to tear hubs to shreds, I've tried many brands in various types of cycling, and the best touring hub I've found is DT Swiss.
I weighed 270, and never broke LX hubs. Weight really isn't a big deal, dynos are a big deal. Take tandems, just two wheels, lots of weight, but taking lots of air on drops, crashing through curbs and potholes is probably less common.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:44 PM
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I've been using Sun Rhyno Lite rims for years. Very strong and robust. For hubs, basic Shimano work very well. I tend to us Deore level. Been riding for more than 25 years and Shimano hubs have always performed.
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Old 10-11-15, 12:44 PM
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More weight tends to also result in more dynamic strain on potholes and such. That's when/how wheels fail, especially with heavy gear loads. That's also why tandem wheels are so overbuilt.

I have also heard excellent, excellent things about DT Swiss Hubs.
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Old 10-11-15, 03:37 PM
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While one event doesn't mean much, when I weighed 270, I hit a grenade sized rock and split open a Schwalbe marathon slick tire. LX Hub, generic straight spokes Alex rim. Nothing broke, or even went out of true the thickness of a paper. I rode that bike on several other trips, and then sold it off to upgrade. Truly bombproof wheels are really for people who tour in either terrible conditions, or who roll non-stop 24-7. Or as in my case just like buying the best, even if I am unlikely to run it down.
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Old 10-11-15, 03:46 PM
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One thing to consider in the modern world is that a charging hub is no longer just for lights. A lot of folks want to use them to recharge electronics, and if that is what you want, and you want good, then the Son Hub is your only choice for the front hub. Kinda sneaky, because in the absence of some response from Phil or whatever, we are stuck with just one choice. Of course there are some Shimano hubs, but not at the level you are after. And with generator hubs, when they aren't up to snuff you are missing out on several performance parameters.
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Old 10-11-15, 07:25 PM
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the best? is there a budget limitation?

for my 700c touring bike i had phil hubs with 7spd megarange
freewheel, 48 DT straight spokes, 4x lacing, sun rhyno lite rims.

less pricey, deore or xt hubs with cr18 rims.
if you buy sun, try to find NOS made in the usa, do NOT buy
the crappy chinese potmetal "designed in usa" version.
also had good results with alex dh19 rims.

i've used the novatek (joytek/quando) cartridge bearing
hubs. taiwan production, but (here in chinaland) they're
delivered with crappy chinese mainland made bearings
which won't last more than a couple thousand kilometers
of lightly loaded touring. fortunately, novatek sized
cartridges can (often) be found in motorcycle supply shops.

unfortunately, is a pain on tour when the bearings go out.
assuming you can find replacements, you still have to build
a DIY press since the locals likely won't have a suitable tool.

in future, will be going back to loose BB's.
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Old 10-11-15, 08:55 PM
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Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
One thing to consider in the modern world is that a charging hub is no longer just for lights. A lot of folks want to use them to recharge electronics, and if that is what you want, and you want good, then the Son Hub is your only choice for the front hub. Kinda sneaky, because in the absence of some response from Phil or whatever, we are stuck with just one choice. Of course there are some Shimano hubs, but not at the level you are after. And with generator hubs, when they aren't up to snuff you are missing out on several performance parameters.

Dyno hubs seem like a nice addition to a touring bike both for charging phone etc + having light on demand, no worries about recharging batteries or toting spares. Many rechargeable-battery lights are equipped with lightweight low-capacity batteries that are fine for commuters that have limited & predictable night/evening riding distance. On tours one might need or want to ride in low-light conditions, stay at places w/o electrical hookup etc...dyno hub could be a big plus for convenience & safety. Decades ago I used a Union generator that worked off the tire, worked pretty well until snow killed it. Modern SON hubs are much better--with more efficient LED lights they seem worth the price.
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Old 10-11-15, 10:06 PM
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Here is what I am going for on my current touring bike:
Paul Components FHUB Disk 100mm and RHUB Disk Cassette 135mm (32h)
WTB Frequency CX (32h)
Sapim Strong Spokes
Sapim Polyax Nipples

If I didn't go for the slightly cheaper Paul Comp hubs I would have gone Phil Wood in a second. Also if I wanted dynamo which I am still debating I would probably go with a SON hub. Aside from all of that I probably wouldn't change much. I went through a lot of thinking and discussion about rims and spokes and I think I picked a good combo there.

I will say that the 135mm cassette hub is not in production and Paul wouldn't make me one (though I was told he had the hubshells) so I was lucky enough to find one through one of our distributors. They exist out there but are scarce but maybe with enough prodding he might bring them back.
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Old 10-12-15, 12:18 AM
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Rim or disk brake? Rim brake I like CSS for wear resistance/durability and extra stopping power. Look up reviews of rigida/ryde andra 30 css.
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Old 10-12-15, 02:18 AM
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The problem with Paul stuff is it's here, it's there it's gone. If I still had silly money to spend I would outfit a whole touring bike in Paul stuff, hubs dérailleurs, brakes, post, levers, etc... Just for the fun of having an american made groupo, but the stuff doesn't hang around. But in the practical world, he cuts stuff out too often.
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Old 10-12-15, 10:25 AM
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Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
One thing to consider in the modern world is that a charging hub is no longer just for lights. A lot of folks want to use them to recharge electronics, and if that is what you want, and you want good, then the Son Hub is your only choice for the front hub. Kinda sneaky, because in the absence of some response from Phil or whatever, we are stuck with just one choice. Of course there are some Shimano hubs, but not at the level you are after. And with generator hubs, when they aren't up to snuff you are missing out on several performance parameters.
Have you heard of Shutter Precision? I'm researching my dream front wheel build right now and I'm leaning towards their PD-8x over the SON28. if you're familiar with them and still think the SON hubs have no competition, i'd love to hear why. If you aren't, I'd strongly suggest checking them out.

On the rear wheel, XT hub 36 DT spokes to a Velocity Dyad (torn between Dyad and Mavic 719 but chose Dyad on wheelbuilder's rec) is (more than?) good enough for me.
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Old 10-12-15, 01:49 PM
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Rims: Velocity Dyad.
Spokes: Wheelsmith DB14 double butted spokes are not stronger than straight gauge, they are more compliant which allows better load sharing resulting in a stronger wheel.
Hubs: I am a fan of Wheelmaster "tandem" hubs, the rear is a copy of a Phil Wood, even comes apart with two 5mm hex keys for service.

For wider tires take a look at Velocity's Cliffhanger, Atlas and NoBS rims.
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Old 10-12-15, 03:34 PM
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Front Hub: Schmidt SON SL
Rear Hub: Rohloff Speedhub/ 36 spoke
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Old 10-12-15, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by iTrod View Post
Front Hub: Schmidt SON SL
Rear Hub: Rohloff Speedhub/ 36 spoke
+1

Getting the same as above on velocity cliffhanger rims, with Sapim race spokes and Sapim brass nipples.
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