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Van Nicholas Mistral just arrive with different wheels...

SFTSFT Posts: 156
edited May 2012 in Road buying advice
I've just taken delivery of my new bike, and it looks great.

However the wheels that are fitted are Fulcrum Racing 7's rather than the Easton aero wheels that are specified. These bikes tend to come as a package so I ordered mine from Edinburgh Bike Coop ... al-apex-12

so my question is; are the Fulcrum 7's a better wheel, or sould I go back and demand the specified wheels?



  • majormantramajormantra Posts: 2,094
    If the quoted weights are accurate (I have my doubts) then the Eastons are quite a bit lighter at 1697g vs. 1964g. I'd complain.

    I suspect the Easton weight is really higher but all the same I wouldn't consider changing the wheel spec without notice acceptable.
  • godders1godders1 Posts: 750
    From their T&Cs:

    Our suppliers reserve the right to change specifications and prices without notice. Edinburgh Bicycle Cooperative will do all it can to maintain prices and specifications on this web site, however we do reserve the right to change specifications and prices without notice.

    As long as there's not a significant difference in retail value of the two wheelsets I'd probably keep what they've sent you.

    If you aren't happy you could return under distance selling regs anyway.
  • majormantramajormantra Posts: 2,094
    What's legal and what's good business practice aren't necessarily the same thing.
  • godders1godders1 Posts: 750
    Who said they were?

    What's "legal" is always useful to know.
  • majormantramajormantra Posts: 2,094
    Godders1 wrote:
    Who said they were?

    What's "legal" is always useful to know.

    True. In my experience EBC are pretty reasonable so as long as the OP approaches this diplomatically I wouldn't expect them to be difficult. That said, they are wheelsets of similar value as you pointed out so it may not be worth kicking up a fuss. The weight thing would bug me though.
  • SFTSFT Posts: 156
    To be honest I am more interested to understand peoples view of the Fulcrum Racing 7's.

    I've just looked at the VN website and the wheels on the Mistral is now stated as the Fulcrum rather than the Easton but I guess either the dealers have not been told of the spec change of they have not managed to update their web sites.

    I'm still pleased with the bike with either wheel though...
  • gabriel959gabriel959 Posts: 4,227
    The eastons are a better wheel set and more expensive as well so I would complain.
    Commuting / Winter rides - Jamis Renegade Expert
    Pootling / Offroad - All-City Macho Man Disc
    Fast rides Cannondale SuperSix Ultegra
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    Haven't tried the Eastons but I rate the F7s only as training (getting the miles in), commuting or winter wheels. Very good for that mind you. They will take a good hammering but feel relatively sluggish compared to wheels the next step up.
  • bmxboy10bmxboy10 Posts: 1,917
    Hi i had the same thing happen to me when i bought my Mistral 18 months ago. i complained to VN who said the Racings 7s were an equivilent wheel and they had supply problems with the eastons at the time. you will find on here a few people who complain about the eastons as spokes break and they go out of true easily. Basically VN would not budge and my issue was the eastons were lighter and look better. That said the Racing 7s were fine but i upgraded to handbuilts after a few months. I understand your point and think its a bit poor really seeing as every Mistral you see via the VN marketing has the eastons fitted as they make the bike look better. email VN direct and see what they say, you never know you might get a jersey or something as compensation. Oh and that reminds me make sure you becaome a VN fan on their website as you get decent freebies!

    BTW - You will love the bike - lets see some pictures then :D
  • I bought my Mistral back in Oct 10 and it came with the Easton Wheels. After about 8 months I was experiencing a 'cracking' or 'creaking' sound from the rear wheel. I though it was a spoke tension issue and took it back to the LBS retailer who said they had experienced the same problem on several Mistrals. It was not the spokes, but the quick release skewer not being sufficiently hard to cut into the titanium drop-out. They replaced the Eastons with Fulcrum 7 under warranty and the problem was fixed. My LBS said VN had modified the drop-outs in newer Mistrals, but my LBS had decided to supply the Mistral only with Fulcrums because of the problem. I haven't had any problems since and think the Fulcrums are better running wheels.

    The Eastons are OEM specials and not listed on the Easton website. I think they may be cut-price (lower quality) EA50. I suspect some of the components on the wheels are lower cost versions of EA50. If you look on the VN website at their other bikes the cost difference between specifying the Easton or Fulcrum wheels is only a Euro or two - with the Easton often being cheaper. I think a number of manufacturers are getting a good deal on them from Easton (they are fitted to some Ghost and Cube bikes) and label helps sell bikes.

    Yes the Fulcrums are slightly heavier, but they are higher quality than the Eastons. Personally, I'd be happy they've supplied the Fulcrum.

    The Mistral's a great bike - you'll enjoy it! :D
  • majormantramajormantra Posts: 2,094
    If they are a version of the EA50 then the weight given by EBC is wrong anyway, so you're probably just as well off with the Fulcrums.
  • Interestingly, I've just looked at the VN website and in the detailed specification for the Mistral only the Fulcrum 7 are listed. Same for the Euros bikes - no sign of the Eastons in the specification options. I wonder is there a supply issue or is the quality of the Easton causing still causing problems like I experienced (see previous post).
  • nathancomnathancom Posts: 1,567
    Would like to say how good I have found the Edinburgh bike Co-op compared to say Evans, if you have an issue just chat to them and I am sure they will explain etc.

    You've got a great bike though, I tested one myself and thought it was one of the best bikes they had in the shop.
  • maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    as said, the Racing7s are are a training/budget wheel. Save up for the next upgrade :wink:
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • SFTSFT Posts: 156
    Thanks folks, I think you are right that the Easton's were OEM special, and the Fulcrum Racing 7's seem to have very good reviews as training wheels so overall I think I have done ok.
    I will speak to the EBC, if only to give them a heads up so they can update the web site and explain to other customers.
    I like the idea of contacting VN directly to see if i can persuade them to give me a freebee!

    Overall I very pleased with the Mistral. It rides like a dream and it even smooths out the Edinburgh cobbles/sets compare with my carbon framed bike.
  • JamesBJamesB Posts: 1,184
    as said, the Racing7s are are a training/budget wheel. Save up for the next u

    surely a point here is that just out of courtesy / customer happiness EBC should have advsied OP that wheelset was different and maybe even given them choice of what to change to? Having spent a lot money on bike why should he now be 1. feeling a bit dissatisfied about wheels supplied and2. be in position of saving for a better set? :?:
  • nathancomnathancom Posts: 1,567
    The Mistral is sold as a package by Van N unlike the other bikes in their range, where the components can be individually selected. So it really comes down to VN in this case rather than the bikeshop.
  • cyclesensecyclesense Posts: 3
    Hi Guys

    Time to give you the definitive answer...

    Cyclesense has been selling Mistrals since their inception and these are the facts.The original press release on Bike Radar was supplied by Cyclesense!

    Originally specced with Easton Vistas - no problems at all

    Van Nicholas changed the spec to Easton Aero when the Vistas finished... simply a cheaper oe version - but then the problems started.
    The wheels would move in the frame when the rider got out of the saddle...spokes came loose...censored bearings
    Simply censored wheels.

    Despite our complaints , VN insisted that the wheels were ok but we insisted on having all of our orders supplied with Fulcrums because they simply work!
    We actually ended up replacing around 18 pairs of Eastons - loads of hassle which costs us time and money too

    At last VN has seen the light and is now speccing Fulcrum wheels again -

    At the least all of my complaining did do something in the end.

    Anybody who is blindly thinking that everything Easton makes is good quality needs to think again...

    We actually offer our own versions of the Mistral specced with Tiagra or 105 ....something else that VN do not offer.
    Shimano works and lasts so much better than the Sram Apex - and Shimano is very much more stylish too - just my opinion of course!
  • onlyonearrowonlyonearrow Posts: 157
    cyclesense wrote:
    We actually ended up replacing around 18 pairs of Eastons - loads of hassle which costs us time and money too

    Further to my previous posts - I must one of the 18. Cyclesense replaced my Eastons with the Fulcrums without question after I experienced the creaking from the wheels slipping in the drop-outs. Thanks guys!
    I've had the Fulcrums for about 9 months now and they perform very well - even on the less than perfect Yorkshire roads. If there is a weight difference I don't notice it.
  • bendertherobotbendertherobot Posts: 11,684
    That was a pretty good first post to be honest.

    Then you said Shimano was more stylish than SRAM and went and spoiled it :D
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  • SFTSFT Posts: 156
    Ok I am now even more happy that I have the Fulcrums!!!

    I did send a email to VN asking about the switch to Fulcrums and received the following...

    'We discussed this with the dealers. Easton wheels are temporarily out of stock, lead time of approx. 10 weeks.
    We offer a free upgrade to the FC 7, which are in our opinion better wheels, both in technical as in comfort.
    Hope this helps.'

    so if you want a Mistral with Fulcrums you best get your order in quick before the Eastons come back into stock!
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