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Wheelset advice: Campag or Fulcrum?

peperopepero Posts: 36
edited March 2013 in Road buying advice
Hey all,

Just took delivery of a Giant TCR Composite frameset and now deciding on components to build it up with. Put the bulk of my cash into the frame so keeping the rest of the spec fairly budget with a view to upgrading down the road. Seeing a lot of good things about Campag Centaur so pretty much set on that for the groupset, but now trying to decide between Fulcrum Racing 7's and Campag Khamsin for the wheelset. Both are coming in around the euro150 mark.

I'm not going to be doing any racing, just plenty of 100k+ spins on rough-ish roads. Any advice/recommendations very much appreciated.

Cheers

Posts

  • majormantramajormantra Posts: 2,094
    Both are entry level and not particularly light. Both come from the same stable since Fulcrum is a subset of Campag. Buy the one you like the looks of. FWIW, my Khamsins have seen a lot of miles and some censored weather and they've been faultless. They also have triplet rear lacing which has some theoretical advantages.
  • peperopepero Posts: 36
    Many thanks. Yeah, at this price point I wouldn't imagine there's much between them but it's always good to get a second opinion. Might just flip a coin :) Considering I'm on a tight enough budget I'll have to deal with relatively heavy wheels for the time being.
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    Not sure if an extra 30 quid is out of your budget but..
    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/w ... -2013.html

    I recently got some of these and have found them to be very good.
  • peperopepero Posts: 36
    Thanks. Just had a look and the Campag ones are out of stock. At least that stops me from being tempted to stretch the budget :)
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    pepero wrote:
    Thanks. Just had a look and the Campag ones are out of stock. At least that stops me from being tempted to stretch the budget :)

    Out of stock where? Commonly, they are cheapest at Ribble who have Khamsins in at £112 Campag fit. http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-t ... ampwhfr627
    Jon_1976 wrote:
    Not sure if an extra 30 quid is out of your budget but..
    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/w ... -2013.html

    I recently got some of these and have found them to be very good.

    I wouldn't bother. I'd assume those are the Fulcrum equivalent of the Campag Vento Reaction. I have both Vento and Khamsin and although the Ventos look a little better, the weight saving doesn't give a meaningful performance advantage. If £30 is worth the minor positive bling factor, then 5s or Ventos are worth a look but they aren't in a practical sense any better.

    But I will add that the many thousands of miles I've put under a pair of Khamsins have been absolutely trouble free aside from a possibly unneccessary regreasing of the hub pawls. They remain smooth, straight and true after probably some 8000 miles.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • peperopepero Posts: 36
    Right you are. Out of stock on Merlin but that's a great price on Ribble alright. Think they had 10% off basket price until a few days ago. Raging I missed out on that because I may end up getting the groupset from them too.

    Thanks for the advice
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    Rolf F wrote:
    pepero wrote:
    Thanks. Just had a look and the Campag ones are out of stock. At least that stops me from being tempted to stretch the budget :)

    Out of stock where? Commonly, they are cheapest at Ribble who have Khamsins in at £112 Campag fit. http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-t ... ampwhfr627
    Jon_1976 wrote:
    Not sure if an extra 30 quid is out of your budget but..
    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/w ... -2013.html

    I recently got some of these and have found them to be very good.

    I wouldn't bother. I'd assume those are the Fulcrum equivalent of the Campag Vento Reaction. I have both Vento and Khamsin and although the Ventos look a little better, the weight saving doesn't give a meaningful performance advantage. If £30 is worth the minor positive bling factor, then 5s or Ventos are worth a look but they aren't in a practical sense any better.

    But I will add that the many thousands of miles I've put under a pair of Khamsins have been absolutely trouble free aside from a possibly unneccessary regreasing of the hub pawls. They remain smooth, straight and true after probably some 8000 miles.

    The 5's I linked too are the cheapest price I've seen (Merlin).Ribble & Wiggle are about £20 more. But if they are out of stock thats £30 saved :lol: Got to admit, I did go for 5 mainly for the looks. They dont look like the Vento Reaction though. I've never seen that wheel before but they are nicer than the Racing 5.

    To the OP, maybe check out ribblecycles. Considering you have a Campag setup, they seem to be a bit cheaper than other places when it comes to Campag hubbed wheels. The Vento Reaction, Rolf mentioned fall in budget
    http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-t ... ampwhfr610
  • peperopepero Posts: 36
    I'm leaning towards the Khamsins at the moment. Seems like they get fairly positive reviews considering the price. For the sake of a few grammes I don't think it's worth paying the extra for the Ventos. Better off putting the money towards the rest of the spec and upgrade the wheels in the future. Looks like Ribble is the way to go alright.
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    pepero wrote:
    I'm leaning towards the Khamsins at the moment. Seems like they get fairly positive reviews considering the price. For the sake of a few grammes I don't think it's worth paying the extra for the Ventos. Better off putting the money towards the rest of the spec and upgrade the wheels in the future. Looks like Ribble is the way to go alright.

    Yeah, ribble are good. I live pretty close so I get a lot of my stuff from there. The only problems I've encountered is if they are out of stock it seems to take a while for them to get new stock, and for some reason, they dont stock shoes bigger than 46.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Jon_1976 wrote:
    The 5's I linked too are the cheapest price I've seen (Merlin).Ribble & Wiggle are about £20 more. But if they are out of stock thats £30 saved :lol: Got to admit, I did go for 5 mainly for the looks. They dont look like the Vento Reaction though. I've never seen that wheel before but they are nicer than the Racing 5.

    To the OP, maybe check out ribblecycles. Considering you have a Campag setup, they seem to be a bit cheaper than other places when it comes to Campag hubbed wheels. The Vento Reaction, Rolf mentioned fall in budget
    http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-t ... ampwhfr610

    TBH, I think you buy Campag/Fulcrum wheels by the weight! There's not much between Fulcrum 7, 5 and Campag Khamsin, Vento and Scirocco. They all hover around the 1800g mark - buy whichever appeals most in terms of looks and cost. But an extra £100 (at Ribble - £279) on the Sciroccos gets a Zonda wheelset which only weighs about 1550g and that's an upgrade worth considering. You tend to pay a fair bit more for the Fulcrum 3 equivalent.

    FWIW, I paid about £100 from Ribble for my Ventos which was a 'silly not to' price.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    Rolf F wrote:
    Jon_1976 wrote:
    The 5's I linked too are the cheapest price I've seen (Merlin).Ribble & Wiggle are about £20 more. But if they are out of stock thats £30 saved :lol: Got to admit, I did go for 5 mainly for the looks. They dont look like the Vento Reaction though. I've never seen that wheel before but they are nicer than the Racing 5.

    To the OP, maybe check out ribblecycles. Considering you have a Campag setup, they seem to be a bit cheaper than other places when it comes to Campag hubbed wheels. The Vento Reaction, Rolf mentioned fall in budget
    http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-t ... ampwhfr610

    TBH, I think you buy Campag/Fulcrum wheels by the weight! There's not much between Fulcrum 7, 5 and Campag Khamsin, Vento and Scirocco. They all hover around the 1800g mark - buy whichever appeals most in terms of looks and cost. But an extra £100 (at Ribble - £279) on the Sciroccos gets a Zonda wheelset which only weighs about 1550g and that's an upgrade worth considering. You tend to pay a fair bit more for the Fulcrum 3 equivalent.

    FWIW, I paid about £100 from Ribble for my Ventos which was a 'silly not to' price.

    £100 was a great price, the current £140 odd is still good too. Agreed about the wieght, I mainly wanted new wheels for the aesthetics and after considering the Scirroccos 35 decided to save 40 odd quid and get the Racing 5, similar weight and I (now) prefer less aero styled wheels.
    At the end of the day, its an entry level £500 bike and the stock DT axis were made of granite. The racing 5 wheelset was only 450g lighter (weighted both) but they spin smoother and look good so I'm happy. I got £50 on ebay for the stock wheels so it seemed a good move.

    I'm sure when I get a second bike in the future, I'll invest in something better/lighter but for the mean time, I can stand losing some body weight :lol:
  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    Good luck with any aftersales you may need with Fulcrum. 70 quid minimum if you break a spoke (and you probably will). Campags are basically the same thing, but no experience with them. Save a few more pennies an buy Aksiums instead.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • Jon_1976Jon_1976 Posts: 690
    i was feeling relatively happy before reading that lol. Good info to know though..cheers
  • I've had Fulcrum 5's and 7's, both decent quality, bomb proof wheels, i've never had any issues with either set, for supposedly entry level wheels 7's are a quality wheelset and get good reviews in their price range.
  • Tom DeanTom Dean Posts: 1,723
    Zondas for £279 is the bargain of the century.
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Grill wrote:
    Good luck with any aftersales you may need with Fulcrum. 70 quid minimum if you break a spoke (and you probably will). Campags are basically the same thing, but no experience with them. Save a few more pennies an buy Aksiums instead.

    Why would you probably break a spoke? As well as the Khamsin and Vento wheelsets, I've also got Neutrons. No spoke breakages in probably 12000 miles or so. 4 Khamsin spokes costs £12 so I can't see it costing almost £60 to fit one.

    Not sure recommending a Mavic wheel on the basis of potentially expensive repairs on another brand is exactly sensible either! Mavic are hardly the most repair friendly company going.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    I'm referring to Fulcrums rather than Campags. They shear at the nipple. It's gotten to the point where my LBS refuses to carry them because they're such a ballache.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • ajb72ajb72 Posts: 1,178
    Grill wrote:
    I'm referring to Fulcrums rather than Campags. They shear at the nipple. It's gotten to the point where my LBS refuses to carry them because they're such a ballache.

    I ran Fulcrum 7's for 2 years before selling them on. In that time I used them for winter and wet riding and hit some truly terrible pot holes, one so large it knocked the rear wheel partially out of the dropout. Despite that, they never went out of true and had zero spoke issues. During this period I was a heavier 14st too, so hardly a mountain goat!

    This 'they probably will' (break spokes) is nonsense, sounds like you just had bad luck. My best wheels are Fulcrum zeros - surprise surprise they also stay true, have zero spoke issues and the hubs are honey-smooth!

    Going back to the OP - Fulcrum 7's do a great job for the money. The weight means they are not exactly a spritely ride, but they are stiff enough not to have brake rub issues and they will survive the worst of British B roads and weather.
  • andyohandyoh Posts: 115
    Grill wrote:
    Good luck with any aftersales you may need with Fulcrum. 70 quid minimum if you break a spoke (and you probably will). Campags are basically the same thing, but no experience with them. Save a few more pennies an buy Aksiums instead.

    I don't know where you get your figures from, but that is not the price of spokes for Fulcrum 7's or 5's. I broke a spoke on a Fulcrum 3, had to buy a spoke kit, which had five different spokes in the pack which cost me £25 and had the spoke fitted and wheel trued for nothing as i know the guys very well in my LBS, otherwise it would have cost £20 for spoke fitting and wheel truing. That equates to £45.

    Your figure of £70 I can believe for replacement spokes for Fulcrum Zero's, but not 7's.
  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    Never had Fulcrums, and never will as I trust my LBS and am a Reynolds man.

    As you say you can't buy individual spokes as they come in packs and you on top of that you can't buy the packs- you have to buy the kit. £70 was what the Fulcrum rep told the manager of my LBS for said kit for a Fulcrum 4 yesterday. This is the smaller of the two shops as the other (which is very large) had already stopped selling Fulcrum due to quality issues.

    Some people get lucky. I'm an absolute brute with my kit so I make sure to buy things that last.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • Tom DeanTom Dean Posts: 1,723
    Campag/Fulcrum wheels generally have an excellent reputation for durability.

    Take the word of your LBS with a pinch of salt.
  • northpolenorthpole Posts: 1,499
    My fulcrum zeros have had zero problems in three years use. They still run true as a dye and the rims have proven very robust to wear. The spokes are fine. A pal advised me against them due to problems he had experienced with spoke failure on zeros - he varied between 17 - 18 stone and is a bit of a brute - I feel sorry for any wheelset carrying his bulk. For the record I'm a bit over 13 1/2 stone.

    Peter
  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    Tom Dean wrote:
    Campag/Fulcrum wheels generally have an excellent reputation for durability.

    Take the word of your LBS with a pinch of salt.

    These are friends of mine who I ride with all the time. Not to mention I was in the shop when he called about replacement spokes (wheel is there minus spoke sheared at the nipple). They've never steered me wrong and have yet to let me down.

    Weight is an issue on any wheelset as I've seen most brands crushed, but the owner of said wheel was about 12 stone and doesn't ride that much. Disappointing to say the least.

    Not to say it affects them all, but when neither shop will stock said brand as they're tired of dealing with issues and unhappy customers, it seems reasonable to avoid in order to eliminate risk. Seeing as the whole point of the OP's question was to garner opinions for a potential purchase, mine is as valid as anyone else's. He can take it with a pinch of salt, but at least the info is out there.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • I have racing 7's for commuting and they have been superb. They have just been through their 2nd winter and still as true and smooth as the day i got them. I have recently bought another set ready for when they do go as £109.99 seemed like a great price!
    http://www.jejamescycles.co.uk/fulcrum-sp2.html
    Spoke kits also on here!
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