Posted by: audaxing | September 2, 2010

My best bike part2 : wheels

A good set of wheels is the difference between a run of the mill, standard, dull bike and a great, made for purpose, responsive bike.

The wheels on my best bike are handmade with 36 spoke at the back and 32 at the front. 36 at the back means if I have a breakage, I can keep on riding. With less spokes, a broken one means that the rim deforms more.

Both rims are Mavic Open Pro. Some cyclists don’t favour these as the eyelets do occasionally crack. I’ve only had this happen once in 5 years, hopefully it was just an anomaly. These rims are low profile, quite light

The front wheel was originally built by St John Street Cycles. They are keen on using non butted spokes on front wheels for some reason. I have rebuilt it since, when the hub was serviced. The hub is a 2005 Schmidt generator. Generator hubs are great. Lots of power for lights and they never run out or need recharging. Mind you I did wear it out after 30,000km and it had to go back to Germany for a service.

The rear hub is currently an Ambrosio Zenith with a Campagnolo carrier. The wheel was originally built by Ralph Colemans Cycles of Taunton. I rebuilt it when the previous Zenith hub needed replacing. I am not a fan of Zenith hubs. The weather proofing on them is not effective at all. After riding in light rain it is a good idea to remove the hub, strip it down and check the bearings. If the bike goes through floods or anything like that, the bearings will probably need replacing.

I do have a Royce hub to build a new rear wheel. I’ve had the hub months but some how I haven’t got around to doing it yet…and now the campag equipped bike is broken so the nice new wheel may never be used…

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