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Carbon wheels on a budget

lakesludditelakesluddite Posts: 1,337
edited November 2017 in Road buying advice
Yup, it's another one of those threads I'm afraid...

I have a budget of circa £600, and am after some 50mm deep carbon wheels for next year when I intend to do more triathlon (I know, Rule #42, A bike race shall never be preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run!), but hey, sod that. That means I would not be using them all year round, and probably only 8-12 times per year (if indeed I did just use them for Tri).

I have researched the following three options so far:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Carbonal-50m ... 25e34d966d

The pro's being a reputable UK based wheelbuilder, bang on budget if bought direct, plus all the components are laid out to see - eg Novatech hubs, Carbonal rims, spokes etc. Cons - can't see any.

http://www.zuus.co.uk/zuus-pro-xcr-carb ... lset-2017/

Pros - nice and lightweight, under budget, and they are based 4 miles away from my office - so a local dealer, good reviews on the website (not that they would put bad ones on there), 1 year warranty. Cons - unspecified components, eg hubs? I could go into their shop and have a look, although I'm not sure what this would achieve (apart from having a salesman soft-talk me into a purchase!)

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/prime-rr-50-car ... heelset-1/

Pros - established seller, nice n lightweight, look good, warranty etc. Cons - again components seem generic so not sure of quality.

I was also considering Farsports, but after looking at what has been written about Import duty, VAT etc, it seems a pair of £440 wheels with decent DT Swiss hubs would incur around another £150+ of costs if adding shipping, plus any warranty issues would require sending back to China.

So, basically, of the three options above, which would you consider the better? Or are there others that I have not found which would be as good or better?
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Posts

  • joey54321joey54321 Posts: 1,297
    I've got a pair of Reynolds Assult carbon wheels built on to superstar Volta EVO hubs laced with Sapim Spokes for sale at the moment.

    I've also got a pair of 24/29 Yoleo 55 (actually need to check, it may be a 50 front, 60 rear) and a pair of 24/28 DCR hubs (https://dcrwheels.co.uk/products/hubs/road-hubs/) that I intended to build up but never got round to it so it's all brand new stuff. Take them to a LBS or lace them yourself you've got a great pair of wheels.

    Edit: if interested drop me a PM as i'll get an email.
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,826
    I've got a set of Malcolm's BORG50C carbon tubeless wheels with Miche hubs and IRC roadlite tyres https://thecycleclinic.co.uk/collection ... 6-5mm-wide

    Was less than £750 when I bought them but if you can stretch your budget a bit, I can recommend these. And not just for the quality of the wheels, you have Malcolm there for support/back up should you have any issues. Personally I would not spend any less since I would question the quality.
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
    Find me on Strava
  • 964cup964cup Posts: 1,362
    Buy used. Wheels (apart for some reason Enve) don't hold their value. Especially tubs.

    Or build them. I built some 38mm carbon tubeless around Chinese rims (they had 50s as well), with Novatec hubs and Pillar spokes. Came out around £400 all-in including duty, and they work very nicely. The rims probably came out of the same mould as the Foxenhole and Zuus rims - Ali is full of U-section basalt-braking 700/800 mix rims, I just picked a vendor with good feedback who offered UD carbon and tubeless-compatibility.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Get a disc cover for the rear.
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,380
    Planet X have got loads of that sort of stuff - worth a quick look?
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,380
    Carbonzone off the 'Bay as well.
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • 964Cup wrote:
    Buy used. Wheels (apart for some reason Enve) don't hold their value. Especially tubs.

    This^

    A quick scan of eBay shows something like Reynolds assault or strikes for around £5/600

    A quality wide rim, straight pull hubs and tubeless.
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • g00seg00se Posts: 2,221
    I've got the Primes and they're great. Being Chain Reaction, the followup should be fine.
    Malcolm Borg's wheels are great.
    I would put those two before Zuus as the tech seems a bit more advanced ( tubeless, etc).

    Also, with any of these you'll get a decent warranty which you won't with second-hand and can be problematic when buying from China.

    I almost went with these guys, but needed the wheels very quickly. If I had had another week to wait then: http://www.stayercycles.com/wheels.html
  • g00se wrote:
    I've got the Primes and they're great. Being Chain Reaction, the followup should be fine.
    Malcolm Borg's wheels are great.
    I would put those two before Zuus as the tech seems a bit more advanced ( tubeless, etc).

    Also, with any of these you'll get a decent warranty which you won't with second-hand and can be problematic when buying from China.

    I almost went with these guys, but needed the wheels very quickly. If I had had another week to wait then: http://www.stayercycles.com/wheels.html

    Thanks for the replies peeps, much food for thought. As g00se says, I think I would prefer to have a decent warranty than better second hand wheels, and the convenience of a UK seller, even if there is a premium for that.

    I did see the Stayer website, and they have some great looking wheelsets on there - slightly above budget, but hey, who needs food! Carbon wheels AND weight loss. Win/win!
  • meesterbondmeesterbond Posts: 1,240
    I've got a pair of Campag Bora 50mm tubs on the classifieds which are well within budget!
  • Planet X have got loads of that sort of stuff - worth a quick look?

    A good point well made
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • Planet X have got loads of that sort of stuff - worth a quick look?

    A good point well made

    True, though I really don't like the look of the Selcof decals - a bit Marmite I suppose, and the Planet X branded rims only come in tubs, which is not what I'm looking for (unless I'm searching on the wrong pages) - looking to go clincher with the option to go tubeless in future.

    The Bax look good - and censored has given these a good review in the past. Bit weighty though, and as I'm around the 60kg-wet-through mark, I think I'd feel that extra bulk more than others (although could be completely wrong on that).
  • g00se wrote:

    Also, with any of these you'll get a decent warranty which you won't with second-hand and can be problematic when buying from China.

    What are you expecting a warranty to cover on wheels?
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • looking to go clincher with the option to go tubeless in future.

    The limiting factor with road tubeless was the choice of tyre available, with much better tyres available now i'm not sure why you would buy standard clinchers
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • looking to go clincher with the option to go tubeless in future.

    The limiting factor with road tubeless was the choice of tyre available, with much better tyres available now i'm not sure why you would buy standard clinchers

    TBH by the time I have these (if!) then I will probably try and set them up tubeless. I have a colleague where I work who has gone down the same route (on a CX set-up) and recommends doing so, and I can always get advice from him.
  • g00seg00se Posts: 2,221
    g00se wrote:

    Also, with any of these you'll get a decent warranty which you won't with second-hand and can be problematic when buying from China.

    What are you expecting a warranty to cover on wheels?


    Manufacturing defects and build faults (though that won't be the case for second hand). A colleague had some Mavics develop cracks around a spoke hole a few months after buying them. He got the wheelset replaced by the shop.
  • I bought some 50mm ones from cscbike on eBay. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/U-Shape-50mm-clincher-carbon-road-bike-wheels-20-5mm-23mm-25mm-27-5mm-rim-width/251984287579?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=550850178288&_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649
    I've now done 10,000 miles on them are still perfect with minimal wear or damage to the braking surface. I've had couple of spokes break but thats normal for the milage.
    I work with carbon fibre so I know what to look for in good or bad carbon and these are good and I have seen a lot worse wheels that cost 5 times the price.

    If you are going for rim brakes, the pads that come with them are ok but not brilliant, its worth spending the money on some Swiss Stop Black Princes.
  • Websta24Websta24 Posts: 162
    I've been running Bax Carbon 50mm on my Pinarello all summer. Love them. Well built, spin up really nicely and they look great!
  • protoproto Posts: 1,483
    'They spin up nicely' - what do you mean by this? (serious question)
  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    Any tubeless compatible/ready wheel can be used with clinchers. really though there is enough tubeless tyre choice. there already is the good bad and the ugly depending on your proirities.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • daniel_bdaniel_b Posts: 10,151
    Websta24 wrote:
    I've been running Bax Carbon 50mm on my Pinarello all summer. Love them. Well built, spin up really nicely and they look great!

    I very much like the look Bax wheels, especially with the yellow details (!) but the weight always puts me off.

    I have some superlight Mavic wheels on, and everytime I look at the Bax wheels, I can't see how adding 400g to the wheel weight is going to be beneficial.
    In hindsight, I likely should have gone for a cheaper set of hoops to start with!
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
    Marin Palisades Trail 91 and 06
    Scott CR1 SL 12
    Cannondale Synapse Adventure 15 & 16 Di2
    Scott Foil 18
  • mrb123mrb123 Posts: 3,725
    The OP wants them for triathlon so shouldn't be too concerned about 100g or so here and there.
  • mfinmfin Posts: 6,726
    proto wrote:
    'They spin up nicely' - what do you mean by this? (serious question)

    It means nothing, same as people who say their new wheels "roll well", ignore it.
  • Campag Bullet 50s are £600 at the moment. Not light but aero and will run and run. Added bonus of alu brake track.
  • MrB123 wrote:
    The OP wants them for triathlon so shouldn't be too concerned about 100g or so here and there.

    True, although weight is not such an issue, I would prefer not to go too hefty. I would probably use them for good weather dry rides as well, and given I live in Cumbria you can never go too far without coming across a knee-shredder or two.

    Thanks for all the pointers, far more options than I thought there would be. The shortlist has just become less short! :?
  • https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Carbonal-50m ... 25e34d966d

    The pro's being a reputable UK based wheelbuilder, bang on budget if bought direct, plus all the components are laid out to see - eg Novatech hubs, Carbonal rims, spokes etc. Cons - can't see any.

    great wheels from Mark and can't complain with the price. have them a year and they are my go to race and TT wheels.
  • jollygiant wrote:
    I bought some 50mm ones from cscbike on eBay. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/U-Shape-50mm-clincher-carbon-road-bike-wheels-20-5mm-23mm-25mm-27-5mm-rim-width/251984287579?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=550850178288&_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649
    I've now done 10,000 miles on them are still perfect with minimal wear or damage to the braking surface. I've had couple of spokes break but thats normal for the milage.
    I work with carbon fibre so I know what to look for in good or bad carbon and these are good and I have seen a lot worse wheels that cost 5 times the price.

    If you are going for rim brakes, the pads that come with them are ok but not brilliant, its worth spending the money on some Swiss Stop Black Princes.

    whats the braking like in the wet with the swiss stop pads?
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,380
    heavy_rat wrote:
    jollygiant wrote:
    I bought some 50mm ones from cscbike on eBay. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/U-Shape-50mm-clincher-carbon-road-bike-wheels-20-5mm-23mm-25mm-27-5mm-rim-width/251984287579?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=550850178288&_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649
    I've now done 10,000 miles on them are still perfect with minimal wear or damage to the braking surface. I've had couple of spokes break but thats normal for the milage.
    I work with carbon fibre so I know what to look for in good or bad carbon and these are good and I have seen a lot worse wheels that cost 5 times the price.

    If you are going for rim brakes, the pads that come with them are ok but not brilliant, its worth spending the money on some Swiss Stop Black Princes.

    whats the braking like in the wet with the swiss stop pads?

    If they are the same rims as Carbonzone (they will be) then fine - obviously not as good as wet on ali tracks but nothing to poop yourself over0.

    I have yellow Swiss Stop and Black Prince and think the yellow are better. For cheaper the BBB for £9 or so from Wiggle that I run on two bikes are really good.
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
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