Expensive hubs?

hubcap Posts: 163
edited February 2011 in Road buying advice
I'm thinking of having some wheels made up and am looking for some advice on hubs and what you get from spending more on the expensive ones.

Looking at PMP hubs they seem to come in around £200 more than Ultegra's, what does that extra cash get you? I don't believe that PMP are that light so are you paying for build quality and better rolling?


  • rake
    rake Posts: 3,204
    i dont really know, but i would expect lighter weight , i think ultegra hubs have steel freehubs which is good and strong but heavier. maybe serviceability as well, i know how people go on about cup and cone being serviceable but i find the cup goes as well and i dont know where you would get replacements. i suspect you will also pay a large premium for the small volume bespoke stuff.
  • markos1963
    markos1963 Posts: 3,724
    Tha sounds a big price difference. Wheelsmith charge about £130 more for PMP over Ultegra.
  • I've only ever used Campag Record, and I guess you are getting lighter weight and longevity. Never had to touch a Record hub in 25 years apart from injecting grease through the grease ports. A good hub will outlast not one rim, but potentially a whole load of rims.
  • Monty Dog
    Monty Dog Posts: 20,614
    PMP hubs are nice - 300 Euros/pr is mainly paying for the exclusivity of their name though. If you are looking for something strong and reliable, there's also DuraAce.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • Hoopdriver
    Hoopdriver Posts: 2,023
    I quite like Phil Woods myself - also expensive, but buttery smooth and they last forever. I have their touring hubs and I think it would be hard to find anything better. And if in the unlikely even you need to replace the bearings you can do the job in a few minutes with a couple of 5ml hex wrenches.
  • hubcap
    hubcap Posts: 163
    Cheers for the input guys.

    Monty, do you reckon DuraAce are better than PMP?

    Also, will the more expensive hubs be noticably better rolling or would you not really notice a difference?
  • Eddy S
    Eddy S Posts: 1,013
    When I had my wheels built last year, my hub choice was between PMP and Dura-Ace - they are probably equivalents in build quality etc.

    I went for the Dura-Ace 7900 hubs partially because I wanted a complete groupset match but also because high-end Shimano cup and cone hubs are some of the best there are out there.
    I’m a sprinter – I warmed up yesterday.
  • Wappygixer
    Wappygixer Posts: 1,396
    edited May 2011
    For similar money to Dure-ace I've just bought DT 240's.
    I was a bit iffy at first but now they are built I have to say they roll well.Bearings a so smooth.
  • I have PMP hubs on my tubs and to be honest ive never felt a smoother rolling hub.The axles are the stanard small sizes of old which in turn allow for bigger bearings with bigger balls hence why they spin so friction free.Yes they are not the lightest out there but you`ll have to look really hard to find a set of hubs that are this smooth.I also have TUNE hubs on my other wheels.
  • balthazar
    balthazar Posts: 1,565
    edited February 2011
    Hubcap wrote:
    Also, will the more expensive hubs be noticably better rolling or would you not really notice a difference?

    Functionally, it's meaningless. Bearing drag is practically no hindrance at all to your progress. It's about how they feel when you spin them in the hand (an aesthetic consideration); and - more importantly - how durable they are. I prefer cup and cone hubs, which if moderately well maintained will last indefinitely. However, cartridge bearings are fine, and have the advantage that a cheap hub can be turned into a fancy hub simply by replacing the bearings for more expensive ones from a general bearing supplier. Among boutique hub manufacturers, I think only Phil Wood commission their own bearings - the rest are commercially available (and probably no worse). It's senseless to favour one or other hub for bearing quality when the only thing the manufacturer is responsible for is the shell.
  • Hoopdriver wrote:
  • Hub manufacterers are responsible for the bearings as they choose the quality of bearings they buy in from a bearing manufacterer. Also the size and dimension of the bearings are the responsibiity of the Hub manufacterer as they actually design the hubs don`t they.The bigger the balls in the bearings generally mean they are smoother under load.Not just spinning them by hand.

    Please don`t waste your time telling me i can`t spell or my grammer is bad as i`m well aware of this fact.