The wheels on the bike go round and round

I've been waiting for today's question. For me, choosing wheels is as difficult as choosing a frame set. I look at smaller details like cassette ratio, bar tape, & saddle and think that even if I don't like the first choice, I can live with it until I can wear it out or replace it. Wheels on the other hand have gotten to be a very large commitment, at least in dollars. In some cases, they are more expensive than the frames themselves. What wheels will go with new bicycle build?

We could lead this and put a bunch of requirements or criteria. In the end, we'd only get the answer we are looking for. Instead, the only requirements are that we don't want to spend a couple grand on wheels and we don't want to work on them all the time.

So...What wheels? Post your suggestion in comments. I know what I want, but I'll wait until the end and if there is a tie I'll use my vote as the swing vote.

EDIT: Saddle choice is Fizik Aliante. Fizik garnered 34.5% of allowable votes.

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Jason Boucher

Growing up as a Minnesota farm boy, I developed an appreciation and love for land and open space. This appreciation has fostered two passions, cycling and photography. Both of these passions provide freedom, encourage me to explore and foster creativity. More importantly though, my journey with a bike and a camera reminds me that the world is big and I am small.


 Anonymous |

Here’s my new build:<BR>White Industries H2 hubs in silver; silver Open Pros with silver spokes. Three cross, of course. Light enough and readily serviced.

 BluesDawg |

Chris King hubs to match the headset, silver Open Pros, 32 DT db spokes per wheel, 3 cross.

 Butcher |

Soon.  We are busy here in Salsa land.  Look for more soon.  <BR><BR>Until then, keep those suggestions coming.

 Anonymous |

Could we please declare a winner on the wheels and move on to fork, seatpost, stem, bars, tires…

 Anonymous |

This virtual build is beginning to resemble a bit Rapha’s ‘Continental’ road bikes, which are being built by some of the best steel custom builders in the U.S.<BR><BR>That’s a good thing.<BR><BR>I’m picturing the color coordination between Salsa stem, skewers and seat clamps, and King headset, spacers and hubs.  Wow.<BR><BR>A real work of art, and at a fraction of the cost for a ‘Rapha’ bike.<BR><BR>One could’nt ask for more from Salsa.<BR><BR>?Adelante, amigos!

 Anonymous |

I hope this bike falls somewhere between the Primero and the La Raza…<BR><BR>The racy all-black prebuilt wheels lack style.

 bikeape |

ck vs. dt hubs is an all day battle. you can’t loose. But I’d probably go swiss. then swap out the open pro’s for hard annodized reflex rims. I’d tie and sodder the set for strength. Use Conti Competitions for group rides or use the Vittoria Pave EVO CG

 Anonymous |

Let me suggest King hubs laced to 28h ceramic Open Pros.  This combo gets you the best of ALL worlds for this virtual buildup: light weight, durability, color, prestige, timelessness.

 Head Honcho |

I say stay away from pre-builts, and that’s the way the votes look to be falling. I like the idea of DT 340 hubs laced to Open Pro’s. Classic, durable, functional.

 Anonymous |

The reviews on Roadbike Review generally say DT Swiss RR 1.1 rims are VERY tight, and it’s not easy to mount tires on them.  I also wonder if they fit 28c, which is a great width tire for ‘all day road riding’.  <BR><BR>Just throwing that out there.

 Anonymous |

This is neither here nor there (in that case, is it anywhere?), but now that it appears the winner of the wheels segment is a CK hub/DT Swiss rim combo, could we get a re-designed La Cruz for ‘09 with clearance for 45c Panaracer Fire Cross tires?

 Anonymous |

The prior posts brings up an important issue: what’s the expected tire clearance on the new virtual bike?  La Raza went as high as 28c…

 Anonymous |

I’d call Dave Thomas at Speed Dream Wheels.  He’d ask me a few questions, I’d give him a few answers and a week or two later I’d have a set of wheels light enough to race on and strong enough to train on and that would be that.  Until you you back over them with your truck.

 Guitar Ted |

I’m going to throw in a late vote for hand built Chris Hubs with the DT Swiss rims. I’m not schooled on roadie rims, but I’d say a nice box section rim that would have a great ride, be durable, and look classic.

 Elvis |

another vote for the DT Swiss wheels.<BR><BR>Standard spokes… you can’t go wrong there.

 Anonymous |

Fulcrum Racing3.  Love them.  Great feel and strong enough for everyday.

 Anonymous |

For this particular road build, which, as I understand it, is an all-day non-racing rig, I’d pick DT Swiss Champion RR1450 wheels.  They’re light, strong (28 spokes) and good looking.  Won’t require constant maintenance.  The also meet the cost criterium chosen by Salsa.

 chequamagon |

I still love the feel of 32 hand laced spokes and a nice high-end rim.  It is amazing that Open Pros are still so good after all these years.  So I would get a D/A hub, 32 spokes, some COLOR ANODIZED alloy nipples and some Mavic Open Pros, sit down for a date with my nipple driver, and make myself a wonderful ride.

 Joel |

Simple….HED Bastogne

 cmau |

ahhh building wheels, one of my favorite things in life….<BR><BR>For me a 32 spoke 3 cross wheel seems appropriate for most riders and this all-day reliable long day in the saddle bike.<BR><BR>My current wheelset idea in my head is:<BR><BR>Chris King Classic Hubset<BR>DT Swiss RR 1.1 Rims<BR>Wheelsmith DB 14 spokes with Brass Nipples<BR>Salsa Ti skewers

 Racerveza |

I’m with Chequamegon and cmau. Traditional, serviceable wheels are the way to go for anything but pro-level racing. For this build, I’d suggest:<BR><BR>Shimano Ultegra hubs<BR>SUNringl? Venus rims<BR>Wheelsmith XL14 spokes (lighter and livelier than DB14s)<BR>Wheelsmith alloy nipples (color!)<BR>32 holes, three-cross in the rear<BR>28 holes, two-cross in the front<BR>Built by Russel Jobs (SUNringl? master builder)

 Jason |

I also prefer traditional wheels. Ultegra/Open Pros would work fine, but if we’re going with Rival let’s just leave Shimano out of the picture all together. ;)<BR><BR>I’d go for this build (which I’ll be putting on my road bike later this fall):<BR><BR>DT Swiss 340 hubset<BR>DT Swiss RR 1.1 rims<BR>DT Swiss Revolution spokes with brass nipples<BR>Salsa skewers colour-matched to frame<BR><BR>I’d have to know what the frame colours are going to be to decide whether to go with black or silver rims/spokes/nipples . . . hint, hint.

 Smitty |

I'll second Jason above on the DT Swiss components & Salsa skewers.<BR>Except, is there any chance we could try the 190S Ceramic hubs or would that break the budget?  I don't know if that price limit was retail or wholesale…ha.

 Anonymous |

If you want to stick it to the <BR>Shi-MAN-o, then I’d go with 28h DT Swiss 190 ceramic hubs with DT Swiss RR 1.1 rims.

 Anonymous |

So, so far, our virtual bike has:<BR><BR>1.  Salsa (steel?) frame and fork <BR><BR>2.  2009 SRAM Rival compact crank<BR><BR>3.  Chris King color-coordinated headset<BR><BR>4.  Saddle?<BR><BR>Before I suggest wheels, I’m curious: what was the final decision made on the saddle?

 Anonymous |

Ok, so far, the virtual build has:<BR><BR>1.  Salsa (steel?) frame and fork<BR><BR>2.  Sram Rival 50/34 compact crankset<BR><BR>3.  Color-coordinated Chris King headset<BR><BR>4.  Was there an announcement made on the selection for saddle?

 Jason |

Now that I think about it, though, if it wouldn’t break the bank, why not go with a Chris King hubset to match the headset?

 spartacus_p |

For a ready built wheel for this build, I'd like to try Hed Ardennes. Otherwise, DT340 and Open Pro (CD or Ceramic), 32 f&r DT Comp spokes for stiffness, forget the stupidly skinny Revolutions. The 340 gets my vote over the 240 and 190 hubs for an all day bike, a few extra grams but stronger and way cheaper. |

How about doing a DT swiss 1450 wheel set? good hubs, rims, and spokes. thats my vote,

 Anonymous |

The saddle selected is a Fizik Aliante (spelling?).<BR><BR>I’d go with a handbuilt wheelset as well.  Get some Chris King hubs to match your other anodized bits 32 holes in back, 28 up front, DT Revolution stainless steel spokes in silver, brass nipples, and some Velocity rims in a color to match (or contrast) your hubs, headset, etc. (think bright blue with pink parts)

 Chris |

I’ve always enjoyed the classic Chris King/Mavic OP build, but this is a new bike with a new build- I say go new school.  Check a set of Industry Nine 1140 wheels, you can get them anodized to match- super stiff, super light.

 Anonymous |

My vote:<BR><BR>1.  DT Swiss RR 1.1 Rims with Chris King hubs that match the Chris King stem color (or maybe doing a rasta tri-color with stem, front hub and rear hub in red-yellow-green order?)<BR><BR>OR <BR><BR>2. DT Swiss RR1450 wheelset

 Anonymous |

I meant CK headset, not stem, above.  Sorry.

 Anonymous |

I love Chris King hubs and the idea of matching this to the headset.  Along with the SRAM Rival group, the message of the build is “quality where it counts.”<BR><BR>I’ve had a set of CK hubs for 10 years and their great.  Plenty light for racing/fast riding and durable to boot.  <BR><BR>The DT Swiss 340 hubset option is also a good one.  <BR><BR>What I would vote against, would be a low-spoke mediocre wheelset, something that looks light/fast but isn’t as trick as carbon tubulars, nor is it as durable as a high-spoke aluminum wheelset.

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