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  1. #1
    Old Punk
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    Best $500 29er wheelset?

    Just about bought a mavic tn719/shimano xt 36 hole wheelset today, but, I figured I should ask about them first. I'm replacing the stock set on my '09 rockhopper (21") that gets the holy hell ridden out of it at times, but mostly xc. I'm 6'3" 210lbs and don't really want to step up to a dh/am rim, too heavy for what I ride.
    What other combos in this pricerange should I be looking at? Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
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    Plenty of options in that price range, can't go wrong with the offerings from Stan's. Search around and compare weights/prices and check reviews, also check axle compatibility of front hubs.

  3. #3
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    Stans Crest or Arch with Revolution spokes and ZTR hubs. If I remember correctly they are $450 and are very light for the price too.

  4. #4
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    Stans Flow for your weight.
    Quote Originally Posted by Malibu412
    Cableb!tch: living, breathing proof you can be right and.still be a dick.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Cabletwitch
    Stans Flow for your weight.
    +1
    Flows with ZTR hubs are under $500 and are plenty durable and are easy to setup tubeless (if you are so inclined).

  6. #6
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    Orion Cycles is a great builder and cheap too. I'm not sure if he is still building but me and a friend both have a set and both are true. Very well build rims and a very low cost.

    I got white Stan's Flows around Hope Pro II Hubs with DT Comp spokes and alloy nipples, Rim tape, valve stems and sealant for $500 shipped.

  7. #7
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    FWIW .... I paid $500 shipped (new) for Mavic TN719 rims with DTSwiss 240 hubs. Aluminum nipples but black straight gauge spokes.


    Have not weighed them yet.

  8. #8
    davidcarson48
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    +1 on Orion. He is still building...just got my Flows this week. Prices are great but build times are long as he is very busy.

    I did Flows/Hopes/SuperComps/Alloy ProLocks, tape and valves for $540 shipped. Took about six weeks.

  9. #9
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    Flows +100
    I went budget on mine and had the shop build with x7 hubs for $400 but wish I'd spent more for the ztr hubs. Bombproof for me so far and I got at least 10 lbs on you.
    Hardrock 29er, Niner EMD9, Cannondale F29, Camber Expert, 650b Nickel all gone.
    2014 Giant Anthem 27.5 here.

  10. #10
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    Salsa Semi 29er 36h hand laced in a 4-cross pattern with DT competition spokes to whatever hub you care to spend the money on. I chose XT hubs, but will likely replace the rear hub in the future with either a Saint or a Hadley.

    I got mine hand built by Universal Cycles in Portland, OR, which is just downriver from me.
    http://www.universalcycles.com/wheelkit.php

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidcarson48
    +1 on Orion. He is still building...just got my Flows this week. Prices are great but build times are long as he is very busy.

    I did Flows/Hopes/SuperComps/Alloy ProLocks, tape and valves for $540 shipped. Took about six weeks.
    Yeah it took about 4 weeks a year ago. He takes a while but his build quality is 10/10 and it'll be hard to beat his prices.

  12. #12
    Never Satisfied...
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    Hope Pro 2 hubs
    DT Swiss Comp spokes
    DT Swiss nipples
    Stan's Flow rims

    Get this built up by a decent wheel builder, and you will have a tough wheelset for years.... I'm 225-230 lbs and have a set like this on my FS 29er and my HT SS 29er....

    Awesome set-up!!!

    Good luck!

  13. #13
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    Wow, thanks for all the responses! Sounds like flows/ztr or hope combo is what I need. Regardless, I've got some research to do.

  14. #14
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    i went from tn719/xt to hope/flows set up tubeless and difference was night and day hopes flows are out of commission right now and I got the Mavics fixed for cheap so am on those and am missing them greatly. tubeless set upo really worth it alone IMO.
    XC, Road, XXC, Endurance, Mtn, All-Mtn, Cross, Gravel, just go have fun on 2 wheels!

  15. #15
    Dickhouse
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    Orion Cycles! Just ordered a set of Stan's Crest from them and they were at my door a week later. I wanted some custom options, black spokes and nipples and the lighter gage spokes, which came to $540 on NoTubes.com, Orion did them for $410!! Great Deal. Also, dropped 2 lbs from my bike.
    Something with wheels and brakes.

    92Fifty' Race Team

  16. #16
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    Azonic are now offering the Outlaw wheelset in 9er for $350. Great set for the money, I have a set on a 26er bike. They are a little heavier but not that bad really and can take serious abuse.

  17. #17
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    I just picked up set of Sun Ringle Charger Pro's for 450 shipped. They have good reviews, and they tag them as XC/AM wheels, around 1800 grams, and comes with options for qr/15/20mm ta forks. They have straight pull spokes - which is good in some cases but not as easy to get.

    I've heard good things about sr hubs too, these I think have 72 engagement points which is pretty good for this price range. If there as good as the dirty flea hubs then they'll be mint.

  18. #18
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by dickt3030
    Orion Cycles! Just ordered a set of Stan's Crest from them and they were at my door a week later. I wanted some custom options, black spokes and nipples and the lighter gage spokes, which came to $540 on NoTubes.com, Orion did them for $410!! Great Deal. Also, dropped 2 lbs from my bike.
    Which hubs did you get?
    Last edited by davidcarson48; 03-09-2011 at 07:05 AM.

  19. #19
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    Yeah I have a set of Flows/DT Swiss Comp Spokes/DT Swiss Brass Nips/Shimano M629 hubs coming from him soon (hoping they will be here tomorrow) for my 29er... So stoked to get them and finish my bike!

  20. #20
    Dickhouse
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidcarson48
    Which hubs to you get?
    ZTR hubs. Nothing special but have heard good things.
    Something with wheels and brakes.

    92Fifty' Race Team

  21. #21
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by dickt3030
    ZTR hubs. Nothing special but have heard good things.
    That's an awesome price. I didn't know Orion Cycles could build with ZTR hubs. Maybe I'll have to grab a set for the SS...

  22. #22
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    I have WTB hubs (20mm front hub) with Stans ZTR 29er hoops and DT Swiss 14/15 spokes. I have about 150 miles on them and they have been solid. Good buy for under $500 and weighs about 1800 grams for the wheel set.

  23. #23
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    Orion Cycles! Just ordered a set of Stan's Crest from them and they were at my door a week later. I wanted some custom options, black spokes and nipples and the lighter gage spokes, which came to $540 on NoTubes.com, Orion did them for $410!! Great Deal.
    Great to here such good things about Orion Cycles. Just ordered a set of Flows w/ Red Hope 2 hubs black spokes and red nipples. Paid $560 inc. shipping. A Fantastic deal I can't wait to get them.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mailman953
    Great to here such good things about Orion Cycles. Just ordered a set of Flows w/ Red Hope 2 hubs black spokes and red nipples. Paid $560 inc. shipping. A Fantastic deal I can't wait to get them.
    at www.orioncycles.com? not much of a website. you have to contact them directly? where are they located?

  25. #25
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    He is on the site here and I am working with him on the site. He is located in central California.

  26. #26
    davidcarson48
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  27. #27
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    Just got my tracking # this evening and mine should be here tomorrow! So stoked and will be headed to the lbs to have the assembly done.

  28. #28
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by madsedan
    Flows +100
    I went budget on mine and had the shop build with x7 hubs for $400 but wish I'd spent more for the ztr hubs. Bombproof for me so far and I got at least 10 lbs on you.
    Why don't you like the X7 hubs?

  29. #29
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    Stan's.
    CyclingCentralVa.org

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattgVT
    I just picked up set of Sun Ringle Charger Pro's for 450 shipped. They have good reviews, and they tag them as XC/AM wheels, around 1800 grams, and comes with options for qr/15/20mm ta forks. They have straight pull spokes - which is good in some cases but not as easy to get.

    I've heard good things about sr hubs too, these I think have 72 engagement points which is pretty good for this price range. If there as good as the dirty flea hubs then they'll be mint.
    Taking a really hard look at these myself and with everything you need to get up and running included it's a very hard deal to beat. They look really cool as well

  31. #31
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    i'm also considering the charger pro 29er. read the reviews on twentynineinches.com, which are encouraging ... nice wide rim.

    however i would like to know what the engagement points on the rear hub are. and comments on the ease of rear hub servicing, # of pawls. Guitar Ted, any reason why you didn't include that information in the reviews?
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidcarson48
    Why don't you like the X7 hubs?
    A couple of reasons, most being the POE (points of engagement), but also the weight.
    I didn't know as much about the equipment as I do now but I would have looked for something with more POE so I don't have the "lag" when going from a coast to a pedal while banging the singletracks. I didn't notice it so much as I hadn't had anything nicer, first bike and all, but after riding a friends niner with a nice wheelset with Hope Pro II when I went back to mine it stuck out big time.
    The sie benefit is that the nicer hubs with more POE typically are lighter, have different options for being converted to 15 or 20 bolt through, etc. I can't do anything with the X7 hubs, they are what they are, a very reasonably priced sealed cartridge bearing quality hub for people on a budget.
    Hardrock 29er, Niner EMD9, Cannondale F29, Camber Expert, 650b Nickel all gone.
    2014 Giant Anthem 27.5 here.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mailman953
    Great to here such good things about Orion Cycles. Just ordered a set of Flows w/ Red Hope 2 hubs black spokes and red nipples. Paid $560 inc. shipping. A Fantastic deal I can't wait to get them.
    This is the combo I'm looking at now, with the white wheels, red hub, and black spokes/nipples. It seems like I can't go wrong, and damn do they look good!

  34. #34
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    never mind, found this info elsewhere on the Charger Pro:

    3 pawl alloy cassette body and 24 tooth ratchet ring, yielding 72 engagement points
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by frorider
    i'm also considering the charger pro 29er. read the reviews on twentynineinches.com, which are encouraging ... nice wide rim.

    however i would like to know what the engagement points on the rear hub are. and comments on the ease of rear hub servicing, # of pawls. Guitar Ted, any reason why you didn't include that information in the reviews?
    He did, in the "Out of the Box" post for these wheels.

    http://twentynineinches.com/2010/04/...ut-of-the-box/

    The hubs, as I mentioned, are red- really red! The rear features an 6061 alloy cassette body with three pawls, a 24 tooth ratchet ring which yeilds 72 engagement points, and a 7075 aluminum axle that runs on four “EZO” bearings. The rear hub is convertible to 135 X 12mm and 142 X 12mm through axle standard by purchasing an aftermarket axle end cap kit for $20.00 USD a pair. The front hub also features the 7075 aluminum alloy axle with two “EZO” bearings.
    Gotta get up to get down.
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  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by frorider
    never mind, found this info elsewhere on the Charger Pro:

    Quote:
    3 pawl alloy cassette body and 24 tooth ratchet ring, yielding 72 engagement points
    I hope thats not right, that would mean only one pawl engaging at a time.

  37. #37
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    The X7/X9 hubs are only like 18 POE hubs, for the same price (and actually some places even cheaper) you can find the M629 or new SLX 665 which are 32 POE hubs.. That is what I had put on mine. My bike should be done today so I will give some ride impressions on the hubs. Just spinning them freely they had a nice, quiet buzz to them and I could definitely hear the difference between them and the old LX hubs that are on my current bike (which I believe are 16 POE).

  38. #38
    davidcarson48
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    I can't get myself to do any Shimano hub. Too muddy and wet here to go without sealed ball bearings. I tried and they were a nightmare. Gritty and always in need of adjustments.

  39. #39
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    Huh... I want to say that the new SLX/M629 hubs are sealed but I could be wrong...Not really a worry here in the High Desert..

    EDIT: just checked their site and the SLX (m665) does say sealed mechanism..and "adjustable cup & cone bearing mechanism"

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by jager7
    I hope thats not right, that would mean only one pawl engaging at a time.
    I know, I had the very same thought. I'm wondering if the Sun Ringle claim had something lost in translation? Since the hubs appear to use standard asian freehub design, I would guess it's actually a 24 pt net engagement w/ 3 pawls in contact on each click.

    thanks Baecker for the link to the other 29inches article, which lists the mfger specs. I read the 'first look' and 'mid/long term review'...didn't know there was also an 'out of the box' post as well.

    has anyone held these and counted the clicks per revolution? One of GT's reviews made a qualitative statement along the lines of 'engagement seemed good enough'....

    I like the easy convertibility of the front and rear hubs. How's Sun Ringle for ordering small parts, like new pawls? I've avoided SR for years since their hubs had a bad reputation, and their rims tended not to work well with most tires, but now that they have Stan's rims and the hubs are supposedly better, i'm open to trying them....
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattgVT
    I just picked up set of Sun Ringle Charger Pro's for 450 shipped. They have good reviews, and they tag them as XC/AM wheels, around 1800 grams, and comes with options for qr/15/20mm ta forks. They have straight pull spokes - which is good in some cases but not as easy to get.

    I've heard good things about sr hubs too, these I think have 72 engagement points which is pretty good for this price range. If there as good as the dirty flea hubs then they'll be mint.
    1800 grams -- did you measure the weight? w/o skewers I assume? 29inches reports a spec (implying that it's mfg'er spec): Wheel weight: Front 920gm Rear 1010gm. Also I've found 884g/1037g front/rear claimed mfger spec elsewhere.
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  42. #42
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    Not sure if anyone has mentioned him yet, but I'd get in touch with Mike at lacemine29.com. I emailed him inquiring about a 29er wheelset and he is more than happy to bounce emails back and forth until you get what you want/need. My finances don't allow me to order yet, but as soon as I can, I'm pulling the trigger.

    FYI I'm not in any way associated with the website. Just a happy soon-to-be customer.

    Kyle
    '10 Rockhopper Comp Disc 29er - gonna ride it til I break it.

  43. #43
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregnash
    Huh... I want to say that the new SLX/M629 hubs are sealed but I could be wrong...Not really a worry here in the High Desert..

    EDIT: just checked their site and the SLX (m665) does say sealed mechanism..and "adjustable cup & cone bearing mechanism"
    Yes, the loose ball bearings have a seal around them. Far different from true sealed (cartridge) bearings.

  44. #44
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by madsedan
    A couple of reasons, most being the POE (points of engagement), but also the weight.
    I didn't know as much about the equipment as I do now but I would have looked for something with more POE so I don't have the "lag" when going from a coast to a pedal while banging the singletracks. I didn't notice it so much as I hadn't had anything nicer, first bike and all, but after riding a friends niner with a nice wheelset with Hope Pro II when I went back to mine it stuck out big time.
    The sie benefit is that the nicer hubs with more POE typically are lighter, have different options for being converted to 15 or 20 bolt through, etc. I can't do anything with the X7 hubs, they are what they are, a very reasonably priced sealed cartridge bearing quality hub for people on a budget.
    Yeah, I figured as much. They are slightly-better-than OE hubs. I guess the ZTRs with 30 POE and low weight are probably a better choice.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidcarson48
    Yes, the loose ball bearings have a seal around them. Far different from true sealed (cartridge) bearings.
    Not really, as that just depends on the quality of either seal design. You can make a really well sealed loose ball hub and you can make a terribly sealed cartridge bearing. The seal on a typical cartridge bearing isn't good enough to handle everything on its own either, so good hubs add additional seals to the hub to protect the bearings.

    Shimano uses a pretty decent seal, just not a super amazing seal design. Between their seals and packing them with good grease Shimano hubs will hold up quite well for most people.

  46. #46
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  47. #47
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    I just came to the forum myself looking for 29er build info. The wheelset I'm excited about is the Flow for $464 shipped which is well below your specified $500.

    http://www.bikewagon.com/Wheel-Goods...-p9504632.html

    I used a Stans tubeless setup on my cyclocross bike last fall and it was incredible so now I'm sold. Even as a clydesdale I never burped a tire (700C X34 at 36 psi!). Bikewagon helped me out extensively on that build so I'll gladly give them a shameless plug.

    I'm trying to decide between the Flow and Arch now since I'm a conflicted clydesdale that's a weight weenie at heart. At 214 lbs, the Arch is about as light as I'm willing to go.

  48. #48
    Rider and Wrench
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    I have had multiple sets of wheels from Orion, solid builder for sure-

    Hub wise the Hopes are very tough to beat for the money the rear can be converted from a std 9mm (aka ~5mm) skewer to a 10mm axle/Through bolt like a DT Swiss RWS etc. and the fronts can run a std skewer, a 9mm DT rws or the like, 15mm T/A and 20mm T/A with ease. The two sets I have had have been quite durable and fairly easy to work on as well, plus they come in nifty colors.

    The Stans are pretty versitile as well and are a bit lighter and less expensive than the Hopes, a very tempting option (but they are not sold seperately from what I am aware and only as wheelsets, I do not think Orion actually builds these like with the Hopes etc)

    For most riders the Crest is not a very wise choice as an everyday wheel- it is light but not nearly as durable as an Arch or Flow- let alone if your above the weight limit. If you don't plan on running anything bigger than a 2.1 the Arch's are not bad but the Flow adds strength and makes the most out of wider rubber-
    I Just wish I could ride more!


  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by frorider
    1800 grams -- did you measure the weight? w/o skewers I assume? 29inches reports a spec (implying that it's mfg'er spec): Wheel weight: Front 920gm Rear 1010gm. Also I've found 884g/1037g front/rear claimed mfger spec elsewhere.
    OK this weight question is getting ridiculous. Speedgoat quotes 1910 g as mfger's claimed weight. But Sun Ringle website lists 1799 g. Meanwhile, the 29inches.com review lists 1930 g and sort of implies that they are simply reporting the manufacturer's spec.

    I assume 29inches.com owns a scale, and can report a measured weight as well as noting whether that weight includes tape and valve (i assume yes) but not skewers.
    Originally posted by bucksaw87
    I still fail to see how mustaches, fixies, and PBR are ironic.

  50. #50
    davidcarson48
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn
    Not really, as that just depends on the quality of either seal design. You can make a really well sealed loose ball hub and you can make a terribly sealed cartridge bearing. The seal on a typical cartridge bearing isn't good enough to handle everything on its own either, so good hubs add additional seals to the hub to protect the bearings.

    Shimano uses a pretty decent seal, just not a super amazing seal design. Between their seals and packing them with good grease Shimano hubs will hold up quite well for most people.
    My experience has been different. To each his own, right??

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