Help me choose between handbuilts or Neutrons.

whyamihere
whyamihere Posts: 7,702
edited September 2010 in Road buying advice
Having just got a new job, I'm looking at buying some new wheels for my road bike.

On there currently is an unmatched Campagnolo pair, a Khamsin on the back and a Proton on the front. What I've been looking at are Campagnolo Neutron clinchers from Ribble, or a handbuilt set from wheelsmith.co.uk, of Record hubs with IRD Cadence rims, ACI DB spokes. Both of these options cost around £350. Both will drop about half a kilo from the bike, and due to the weight being in the wheels, that will be an even more noticeable difference. I do slightly prefer the look of the Neutrons, but there's not a lot in it. The handbuilts would be more easily serviceable by me, but again there's not a lot of difference.

I like to think of myself as a climber, despite being too tall for it really, so I'm fairly light, want the wheels to be fairly light, and I'm not hugely concerned about aero (though obviously better aero is always nice). I think the only thing that can help the decision is any horror stories, so come on, lay into my choices as aggressively as possible to help me decide between them. Alternatively, just for the hell of it, make the decision even harder with other suggestions. Must have a Campagnolo pattern freehub available, be around or under £350 and weigh roughly 1500g.

Cheers.

Comments

  • The Neutrons aren't exactly climbing wheels but they're a good weight (actual for my Neutron Ultras was 1526g), aero, comfortable (steel spokes and a higher spoke count) and very solidly built. You'll read some stories of broken spokes - I never had any in maybe 7-10,000km and was about 80kg when I was riding them - so worth having a spare or two on hand just in case if you don't have another wheelset to fall back on.

    Congrats on the job. Perhaps you can now safely up the budget for the carbon-hubbed Neutron Ultras?!

    PS Thank you if that was a moderator tidying up this topic! Or maybe a benevolent forum gremlin. Who knows.
  • calvjones
    calvjones Posts: 3,850
    whyamihere wrote:
    Having just got a new job, I'm looking at buying some new wheels for my road bike.

    On there currently is an unmatched Campagnolo pair, a Khamsin on the back and a Proton on the front. What I've been looking at are Campagnolo Neutron clinchers from Ribble, or a handbuilt set from wheelsmith.co.uk, of Record hubs with IRD Cadence rims, ACI DB spokes. Both of these options cost around £350. Both will drop about half a kilo from the bike, and due to the weight being in the wheels, that will be an even more noticeable difference. I do slightly prefer the look of the Neutrons, but there's not a lot in it. The handbuilts would be more easily serviceable by me, but again there's not a lot of difference.

    I like to think of myself as a climber, despite being too tall for it really, so I'm fairly light, want the wheels to be fairly light, and I'm not hugely concerned about aero (though obviously better aero is always nice). I think the only thing that can help the decision is any horror stories, so come on, lay into my choices as aggressively as possible to help me decide between them. Alternatively, just for the hell of it, make the decision even harder with other suggestions. Must have a Campagnolo pattern freehub available, be around or under £350 and weigh roughly 1500g.

    Cheers.

    The Ambrosio hubs & rims on my bike look very nice and come in at budget if you like silver although weigh a bit more I think.You won't go wrong with the Neutrons tho
    ___________________

    Strava is not Zen.
  • hugo15
    hugo15 Posts: 1,101
    I got a set of Neutrons from Ribble a couple of months ago. They replace a set of handbuilt Open Pros on Centaur hubs.

    Think the main differeces I have noticed is that the Neutrons seem a lot more comfortable with less road buzz felt. They also are stiff and the little bit of brake block rub I got on very steep out of the saddle climbs has been eliminated. They look pretty good too.
  • Find out how much it cost to re-rim both types then decide.

    My mavics cost £100 per rim
    Racing is rubbish you can\'t relax and enjoy it- because some bugger is always trying to get past.
  • whyamihere
    whyamihere Posts: 7,702
    Find out how much it cost to re-rim both types then decide.

    My mavics cost £100 per rim
    It costs exactly the same for each.

    What you're getting at is that the Neutrons will be more difficult/costly to get Neutron rims for. However, there's nothing to stop me rebuilding the hubs with different rims. If I damage them, then I'll probably change them for something different (I don't race on the road, so won't break them in a racing situation, if I get hit by a car my wheels are probably going to be the least of my worries).