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  1. #1
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    Love'm - Hate'm Reynolds 29er Carbon Wheelset

    I experiencing a love - hate relationship with my Reynolds 29er wheel set. They are light, durable and very easy to set up tubeless but their customer service leaves an awful lot to be desired. I've been patiently waiting for nearly 6 weeks on a replacement rear spoke. Yeah- 5 weeks and 4 days. Incredible. I initially had my LBS order a replacement spoke for one that broke on my first ride . No sticks, no rocks, no hucking off of loading docks. Nothing more than a benign ride on a local rail trail. Really. Spoke pulled right out of the nipple. I figured no big deal. Wrong. Reynolds sent out 2 replacement spokes right away. Unfortunately they sent the wrong size. So my shop called Reynolds and Reynolds agreed to expedite the shipping on the correct spokes. The new replacement spokes arrived and not only did they send out a complete set of spokes but they sent out complete set of wrong sized spokes. Arrghhh. That burned about 2 weeks of time. The shop called Reynolds once again and after some wrangling Reynolds agreed to repair the wheel in house. The wheel was shipped back 2 weeks and 4 days ago via 2 day shipping and I'm still without a rear wheel.
    Just for the record the wheels were brand new and I am the original owner. The came as OEM equipment on a Scalpel 29er.
    Buyer Beware

  2. #2
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    Love'm - Hate'm Reynolds 29er Carbon Wheelset

    Too bad to hear about your experience. I would be pulling my hair out at this point. I've got the same wheels and they have been bombproof so far......

  3. #3
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    These came on my scalpel , love the light weight , look, build up is great. I raced them at Whiskey Offroad and in Sedona. I am 180-185 lbs and they need some work the front and esp. rear needs some truing. Im sure any damage occurred at the Whiskey. At my weight I wouldn't call these an everyday wheel set. I am going to get a stouter set for everyday and use these for racing mostly. I am a big fan of these for racing , the witch's hair spokes keep things crazy light, but not for daily pounding imo. I am a keep the wheels on the ground mostly kind of rider, smooth go fast, no hucking , back surgery stopped all that shtuf .

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RyderX View Post
    Buyer Beware
    sums it up pretty well.

    sell them and move on to something that doesn't require proprietary parts.
    Quote Originally Posted by pvd
    Time to stop believing the hype and start doing some science.
    29er Tire Weight Database

  5. #5
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    Two guys in SoCal that I know have raced them and had issues on their first few rides. One guy broke a spoke, the other had spokes coming undone during the Julian Death March.

    SO, if you do buy them. Have somebody go through them before you plan on racing them.

  6. #6
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    Im planning on rebuilding them ..... the rims are sick ! Time to spend more money

  7. #7
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    I returned two sets that the spokes in the rear detensioned on badly. I figured I just had some bad luck and returned them for a refund. Not good to hear others are experiencing the same as me.

  8. #8
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    I've been running the first version with the black hubs for almost 2 years and they've been fantastic. I'm 240 lbs geared up and regularly ride some of our BCXC trails in North Vancouver on them. They are the most durable wheels that I've ever used.
    Too bad the 15mm adapter on the front wheel wouldn't fit well on a Fox 34 fork though. Went with a Revelation and all is well.

    Maybe the newer versions aren't built as well.

    BTW, what is proprietary about the spokes? Look like standard straight pull spokes to e.
    Tallboy3 CC : Nomad3 CC: Highball2 CC : Stigmata2 CC

  9. #9
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    It boggles my mind that wheels this expensive would have this kind of trouble. I would expect, no, demand that they be perfect. I know I know, the actual percentage of satisfied customers is always higher in the real world but I would be seriously annoyed. I don't go for the uber $$$ stuff and stick with the mid price stuff and I'm rarely if ever disappointed.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by WildBill View Post
    At my weight I wouldn't call these an everyday wheel set.
    Hi WildBill, would you mind elaborating on why this is not a good set for your weight? I am considering buying this wheelset (Upgrade to Reynolds 29 Carbon wheels - Advice?) and I am about 10lbs heavier than you. I did some research and these wheels were generally rated pretty sturdy, I think somebody put them between the Enve XC and AM rims. I don't do races either...

    thanks
    grani

  11. #11
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    Grani, I am just getting way to much flex out of these wheels, I feel they, in an attempt to build these as light as possible, went to thin on the spoke gauge . super stiff rim with spokes made from doll hair. I have had these trued and tensioned and I cant keep them straight. I am not free riding on them no drops etc. I am riding how I would in any xcountry race, flying into a turn I feel the front flex, I really wish these were stiffer and more sure footed. If your not racing or pushing the bike super hard I'm sure these would be fine, but at speed and hard cornering I can feel them flex, and they have been in the true stand a little to often. I was 183lbs this morning.

  12. #12
    bog
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    WildBill, this is very odd so something must be wrong with your wheels.

    Mine have been very reliable and are bomber stiff compared to any wheels that I have ridden before and I've owned and ridden loads of wheels. I ride them very hard and find the build quality to be excellent so I'm guessing that you got a set of lemons.

    I do agree that the wheels would be better with DT Comp 14/15 instead of the DT Revs that they're using but these are XC wheels. The light gauge spokes don't hold up to user error like dropping the chain behind the cassette (bent hanger) and rock strikes. I broke a drive side spoke and the wheel was less than 2mm out of true which is amazing. The chain also damaged other spokes so I rebuilt the drive side with DT Comp spokes.
    Tallboy3 CC : Nomad3 CC: Highball2 CC : Stigmata2 CC

  13. #13
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    Or maybe I have have a set of lemons, or its just me ? My ex wife may agree....

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by meltingfeather View Post
    sums it up pretty well.

    sell them and move on to something that doesn't require proprietary parts.
    ^^^^This^^^^^
    I resolve to constantly assert my honest opinion on anything and everything - whether it is requested or not.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbikej View Post
    ^^^^Not This^^^^^
    FYP

    Again I ask which are proprietary parts? The spokes, nipples and bearings are very common.

    Unless there is something wrong with WildBills wheels he is feeling fork or frame flex. These wheels are among the stiffest out there.
    Tallboy3 CC : Nomad3 CC: Highball2 CC : Stigmata2 CC

  16. #16
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    I had a set of these & they worked great in the time that I used them ( less than 300 km ) They were stiffer than my Flow wheel sets but not by a lot IMO.

    The whole time I owned them I was a little worried about the low spoke count & I didn't like the low poi.

    I stopped using them when I got my XX1 Group & ordered the XD free hub that was going to be 3 months wait, I had someone offer me almost the same money as I paid for them, So I grabbed it.

    I did really like the rims, So I ordered a set of I9 Torch trail 32 Carbon wheels that use the Reynolds Carbon rims.

    Now I have the wheel set that I really wanted & they work great.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by WildBill View Post
    I am riding how I would in any xcountry race, flying into a turn I feel the front flex, I really wish these were stiffer and more sure footed.
    Quote Originally Posted by bog View Post
    Mine have been very reliable and are bomber stiff compared to any wheels that I have ridden before and I've owned and ridden loads of wheels.
    Oh dear...2 user experiences that couldn't be any more different. Well I guess the truth is somewhere in the middle.

    Does anybody know if the wheels that Reynolds sell directly are identical to those found on the Cannondales (F29 and Scalpel 29)? Spokes, Hubs...?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bog View Post
    FYP

    Again I ask which are proprietary parts? The spokes, nipples and bearings are very common.

    Unless there is something wrong with WildBills wheels he is feeling fork or frame flex. These wheels are among the stiffest out there.

    If they were very common parts, any shop would have them, and he wouldn't have to wait for the manufacturer to send the correct spokes....twice.
    I resolve to constantly assert my honest opinion on anything and everything - whether it is requested or not.
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  19. #19
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    not necessarily, all wheels do not use the same length spoke. Even the larger shops do not have a huge spoke inventory to cover every wheel they sell.

  20. #20
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    The wheels are factory, and spec'd on my Scalpel 1 ..... the rims are supper stiff (vertically, top to bottom) agreed .... Laterally(side to side) this wheelset moves ... I have re-tensioned them etc. I really dont know what else to say. I like them super light , but for my riding style I want a laterally stiffer wheel.

  21. #21
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    This is what I'm doing , I9's have done these rims right.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DukeNeverwinter View Post
    not necessarily, all wheels do not use the same length spoke. Even the larger shops do not have a huge spoke inventory to cover every wheel they sell.

    I am well aware of wheels and spokes.

    If you can only get the spokes you need for your wheel from the wheel manufactuerer, then it IS a proprietary part.

    Yes, the shop may not have a big selection/stock of spokes....but if it is a standard spike that can be ordered through any of the distributors....there is no reason to have to wait on the manufacturer to send the spokes out.
    I resolve to constantly assert my honest opinion on anything and everything - whether it is requested or not.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbikej View Post
    If you can only get the spokes you need for your wheel from the wheel manufactuerer, then it IS a proprietary part.
    Fair point by mtnbikej.

    Does anybody know the full story on this?

  24. #24
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    Love'm - Hate'm Reynolds 29er Carbon Wheelset

    Quote Originally Posted by grani13 View Post
    Fair point by mtnbikej.

    Does anybody know the full story on this?
    According to the website they use DT Swiss spokes and look to be standard straight pull. All you need to know is the diameter and length to find out if they can be sourced elsewhere.
    Quote Originally Posted by pvd
    Time to stop believing the hype and start doing some science.
    29er Tire Weight Database

  25. #25
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    Add another set bad from the factory (came with my Scalpel). I have one 50 mile ride on smooth single track. Three spokes are completely loose on the front and two in the rear. LBS attempted to tighten and re-true but have come to the conclusion that the both wheels require a complete re-tension on a stand. I'm bummed, another week without my bike. Sad that so many people are having issue's with factory built wheels since the rims are so highly regarded.

  26. #26
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    There's nothing proprietary about them, but the trick is in the warranty claim process. I always keep a few extra spokes around as replacements but I bought the LightBicycle rims, hubs and spokes and had them built up, so I have no warranty. The OP could easily keep a few spokes around, which I would recommend, but on the other hand, when paying money like that you'd expect the manufacturer to fix the issue in a timely manner. If the OP has the funds, I would highly recommend keeping a few replacement spokes handy, along with other wear items that might be under warranty and avoid the downtime. To each his own...

  27. #27
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    I too ride the 2011 black hub version of these... and they've been perfect. Done a couple of epic XC rides -- spokes tight, rims true. It seems like most of the wheels that are having issues were purchased with the Scalpel? Anyone purchase them differently and having spoke problems? Anyone having problems with the older black hub versions?

  28. #28
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    I have two of these wheelsets - each of which came stocked on my 2013 Cannondales (F29 Carbon 1 and Scalpel 29 Carbon 1). I've been experiencing identical problems with both. The spokes chronically detension, to the point where I lost some spokes mid-ride... simply backed out of the nipple and slid straight out of the hub shell, unnoticed until I went to load the bike on the car post-ride. Something not yet mentioned above, and perhaps my biggest problem, is around the freehub / engagement performance. Complete crap for wheels of this price. Both sets of wheels routinely emit a noticeable 'pop' in the hub upon any sign of acceleration. Making matters worse, I can physically feel the pawls slip at times. I received a replacement freehub from Reynolds but it didn't help. Reynolds since offered to rebuild each set, but I'm curious what difference that would make if they're using the same parts?? Seems like a design flaw to me. Has anyone else experienced this? I should mention that two teammates who are on the same wheels also had this problem. One guy actually had his freehub blow up inside the hub shell (pawls mangled). I sure hope they learn from their mistakes in 2014...

    I had similar problems to what others explained above... poor customer service for one (4x calls to Reynolds to finally get the correct size replacement spokes, 2x calls before receiving that freehub replacement). I've also felt a significant degree of lateral play. I weight 140, so no matter how hard I try, I'm not putting THAT much stress on the wheels! I've historically been a huge fan of Industry Nine wheels, having owned something like 4 or 5 sets in a row. These Reynolds wheels are nowhere near as stiff as I9s, in my experience at least. I'm not going to speak for everyone, so please take this as my humble opinion/experience. I'm planning on selling at least one of these Reynolds sets on eBay in hopes of partially funding one of the new I9 Torch sets. I'm sorry to hear about others dealing with the same headaches.

  29. #29
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    I had the free hub slip problem & just sold them & went I9 with Reynolds & love them.


    Quote Originally Posted by KlandMTB View Post
    I have two of these wheelsets - each of which came stocked on my 2013 Cannondales (F29 Carbon 1 and Scalpel 29 Carbon 1). I've been experiencing identical problems with both. The spokes chronically detension, to the point where I lost some spokes mid-ride... simply backed out of the nipple and slid straight out of the hub shell, unnoticed until I went to load the bike on the car post-ride. Something not yet mentioned above, and perhaps my biggest problem, is around the freehub / engagement performance. Complete crap for wheels of this price. Both sets of wheels routinely emit a noticeable 'pop' in the hub upon any sign of acceleration. Making matters worse, I can physically feel the pawls slip at times. I received a replacement freehub from Reynolds but it didn't help. Reynolds since offered to rebuild each set, but I'm curious what difference that would make if they're using the same parts?? Seems like a design flaw to me. Has anyone else experienced this? I should mention that two teammates who are on the same wheels also had this problem. One guy actually had his freehub blow up inside the hub shell (pawls mangled). I sure hope they learn from their mistakes in 2014...

    I had similar problems to what others explained above... poor customer service for one (4x calls to Reynolds to finally get the correct size replacement spokes, 2x calls before receiving that freehub replacement). I've also felt a significant degree of lateral play. I weight 140, so no matter how hard I try, I'm not putting THAT much stress on the wheels! I've historically been a huge fan of Industry Nine wheels, having owned something like 4 or 5 sets in a row. These Reynolds wheels are nowhere near as stiff as I9s, in my experience at least. I'm not going to speak for everyone, so please take this as my humble opinion/experience. I'm planning on selling at least one of these Reynolds sets on eBay in hopes of partially funding one of the new I9 Torch sets. I'm sorry to hear about others dealing with the same headaches.
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  30. #30
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    It looks like there's a straight split between those who bought wheels and those who acquired wheels with a bike purchase. I'm in the former group and I'm extremely happy with my purchase; at 190 I'm not the lightest guy out there and these wheels have survived multiple 8+ hour races (including Julian, LOL) with no issues besides a loose valve stem (not the wheel's fault). I would buy another pair without hesitation but I don't need to... yet.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by muzzanic View Post
    I had the free hub slip problem & just sold them & went I9 with Reynolds & love them.
    Did you go with their classic or straight pull hub which uses their aluminum straight pull spokes(proprietary)?
    Single Track Rules!

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by HouseNotes View Post
    Did you go with their classic or straight pull hub which uses their aluminum straight pull spokes(proprietary)?
    I went for full bling, I9 Torch , Sliver hubs, Silver Alloy straight pull spokes & Reynolds carbon rims 32 spoke.

    I have a friend with the I9 Torch trail 32 wheels & I tell you what for the money I would rate them as a better wheel over all than the std Reynolds carbon wheel.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by muzzanic View Post
    I went for full bling, I9 Torch , Sliver hubs, Silver Alloy straight pull spokes & Reynolds carbon rims 32 spoke.
    Hi Muzzanic,

    where are these wheels actually available? As far as I can see, i9 only has the alloy versions on their website.

    cheers
    grani

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by grani13 View Post
    Hi Muzzanic,

    where are these wheels actually available? As far as I can see, i9 only has the alloy versions on their website.

    cheers
    grani
    Anyone got a diagram on how the front hub comes apart.I got the older black hub models and noticed the bearings are squealing a bit.Need a bit of attention,
    Thanx,
    Max

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by grani13 View Post
    Hi Muzzanic,

    where are these wheels actually available? As far as I can see, i9 only has the alloy versions on their website.

    cheers
    grani

    Anyone know how these wheels come apart.I have the old black hub models and noticed the front hub is squeaking.It needs a bit of attention.
    Thanx,
    Max

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryderjin View Post
    I too ride the 2011 black hub version of these... and they've been perfect. Done a couple of epic XC rides -- spokes tight, rims true. It seems like most of the wheels that are having issues were purchased with the Scalpel? Anyone purchase them differently and having spoke problems? Anyone having problems with the older black hub versions?
    I purchased mine separately ( not from a scalpel) and went through two sets de-tensioning before getting a refund.

  37. #37
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    Another ride on my Reynolds last night, another spoke missing when I got back to the car. Two others that were finger-loose. I'm amazed how consistently unreliable these have been. I've never been picky about wheels (happily rode on all the Bontrager sets that came stocked on my past Treks without issue), but this is a joke. You would think that Reynolds would put some quality & care into products bearing their name, especially ones that run $2k retail! I just ordered a set of I9 Torch - red spokes, Crest rims (flimsy, I know, but they've been good to me in the past). The Reynolds are going on eBay as soon as they show up!

  38. #38
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    Why not get the torch's with the I9 Trail rims, They are much better than the crests,


    Quote Originally Posted by KlandMTB View Post
    Another ride on my Reynolds last night, another spoke missing when I got back to the car. Two others that were finger-loose. I'm amazed how consistently unreliable these have been. I've never been picky about wheels (happily rode on all the Bontrager sets that came stocked on my past Treks without issue), but this is a joke. You would think that Reynolds would put some quality & care into products bearing their name, especially ones that run $2k retail! I just ordered a set of I9 Torch - red spokes, Crest rims (flimsy, I know, but they've been good to me in the past). The Reynolds are going on eBay as soon as they show up!
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    I don't doubt it, but was thinking more about interchangeability in going with Crest. With my experiences riding on I9 wheels, the hubs/spokes have far outlasted rims, to where I usually rebuild on new rims every couple years (due to dents, dings, etc - nothing surprising after regular use during that time). The I9 trail rims have an ERD that limits what other rims I could rebuild the spokes on. I like the fact that Crest and Arch have a similar ERD, so I could always go with the more all-around Arch if I ever become less of a weight weenie. I've had nothing but good experiences with the Crest anyways. Not the most durable rim, but still reliable.

    Quote Originally Posted by muzzanic View Post
    Why not get the torch's with the I9 Trail rims, They are much better than the crests,

  40. #40
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    Reynolds Spoke Chart:
    http://www.reynoldscycling.com/uploa...chart-2013.pdf

    Lengths and spoke type of every wheel they make is on there. Yes, they should cover stuff that is under warranty, but at $1.00/spoke from wheelbuilder.com, it's definitely in your best interest to buy up some spares...especially if you're just waiting and waiting for them to help you out.

    Bob

  41. #41
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    Hello guys, I have also problems with the freehub on my Reynolds 29er Carbon wheelset that came with Cannondale F29 Carbon 1 bike, do you know if I can replace the freehub with another from other manufacturer ? Or if isn't possible, can I replace the whole hub with something that is compatible with the Reynolds rear rim ?
    Thank you

  42. #42
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    I don't think the freehub can be swapped between manufacturers. It uses a matching pawl / drive shell that probably means you're stuck with the existing hub / freehub combo. The issue with trying to change to a new hub is that the rims are 24h, and not many hubs out there use 24h (most are either 28, 32, and sometimes 36). Industry Nine is one of few manufacturers that build a 24h wheel, specifically for their Torch model (their "2:1" design), BUT they don't make these for Lefty front hubs. The I9 Lefty hubs are 32h only, so I9 isn't an option for rebuilding your rims. All of that said, Reynolds redesigned their hub for 2014 and have been offering to rebuild the 2013 wheelsets due to the overwhelming negative feedback from the current model. I got an email yesterday that both of my sets are in the mail on the way back to me - can't wait to see how the freehub design differs from last year (I sure hope it's different, in a good way!!) They also started using thicker gauge spokes which should eliminate the chronic loosening at the spoke/nipple interface. I'd recommend getting in touch with Reynolds. New hubs/spokes couldn't hurt...

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    Thanks for the reply, I already contacted Reynolds and they offered to send me a new freehub(hope they don't forget to do it..) . I didn't know about this 2013 recall, if I will have other problems with the wheels I'll ask them to change my hubs and spokes with the 2014 model.
    Please share your impressions when you receive the wheels.

    Sent from my GT-I9300 using Tapatalk 4 Beta

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    The first thing I'm going to do when they arrive is take a look at the internals. I'll post some pics and a review after I get a few good rides in. Fingers crossed that these are better.

  45. #45
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    Damn... I bought a 2012 Carbon 1 this year - the 2013 was also on the floor. The guys at the shop said, the '12 gets better component... the '13 gets carbon wheels - it's a toss up. These issues with the carbon wheels are making me a bit happier having to "slum it" with my DT Swiss wheelset... and no longer considering the upgrade.
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    I bought a set of these Reynolds carbon wheels, the older version with black hubs and conventional pull spokes. They went out of true very quickly and I'm only 150lbs. I put this down to the thin spokes; on 29er wheels I think they are simply too flimsy. I wasn't convinced with the quality of the hubs either, so replaced them with Tune. I am now running the 24H rims with a Cannonball front hub and Kong rear hub. So far they've been great, but I did go with heavier gauge DT Swiss spokes. I have also been running a set of the new I9 32H trail wheels with the same rims. As other in this thread mention, it seems I9 have got things right.

  47. #47
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    Love'm - Hate'm Reynolds 29er Carbon Wheelset

    Quote Originally Posted by mattwatkins View Post
    I bought a set of these Reynolds carbon wheels, the older version with black hubs and conventional pull spokes. They went out of true very quickly and I'm only 150lbs. I put this down to the thin spokes; on 29er wheels I think they are simply too flimsy.
    You misdiagnosed the problem. It was not the spoke gauge, but probably a poor build.
    Quote Originally Posted by pvd
    Time to stop believing the hype and start doing some science.
    29er Tire Weight Database

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by meltingfeather View Post
    You misdiagnosed the problem. It was not the spoke gauge, but probably a poor build.
    Agreed. As noted before I'm 240 lbs and have ridden and raced these wheels hard for over two years with no failures other than a bent derailleur hanger causing my chain to take out a couple of spokes. The hubs have held up also and I've destroyed Easton and Mavic hubs due to my weight and riding style.

    Along with these I'm now on a set with the red hubs so we'll see how well these last.
    Tallboy3 CC : Nomad3 CC: Highball2 CC : Stigmata2 CC

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    Could be... The rims seem to be well designed and high quality. But the weight saving of lightweight spokes probably doesn't make much sense in the context of a 24H 29er wheel. I've heard Reynolds' argue that cutting fewer fibres by drilling fewer holes makes for a stronger wheels overall, but I'm not buying it. The number of other people with similar problems would suggest there is at least some consistent problem with these wheels. Maybe Reynolds can't build them to a consistently high standard. Or maybe the design makes them particularly sensitive to build conditions. If the former is true, then there's really no reason why they shouldn't have sorted the problem out already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by meltingfeather View Post
    You misdiagnosed the problem. It was not the spoke gauge, but probably a poor build.
    This!

    A hamfisted builder who's winding up spokes can make a mess of a wheel, regardless of how high-quality, or appropriate to the build, the components are. Light gauge spokes are MUCH more prone to this, and if they're not treating the threads with some kind of locker that will just compound the problem.... you're just about guaranteed to see exactly what's described above.... spokes suddenly and completely detensioning, and the resulting flexy wheel feeling.

    A good post-build fix to untreated spoke threads is loctite 220... it's a "medium stength" wicking loctite. You won't find this stuff at home depot, you'll have to order it from an industrial supply place like R.S. Hughes. Get the problem wheel properly trued and tentioned, and then put a SMALL drop of this stuff on the spoke/nipple and watch it wick right in there. FAIR WARNING: I repeat.... "properly trued and tensioned" and "small amount". This stuff will lock those nipples really tight, so if you over-apply, let it setup, and then realize that your spoke tension is still 30kg low, you're not going to have fun with light gauge spokes trying to tension after the fact.

    But, done properly, this stuff will put an end to rapid detensioning once and for all, and it's great that you can use it post-build to correct somebody else's f'up.

    It's a shame that Reynolds is dropping the ball on the fundamentals of wheel building when they've got such a blingy product otherwise.

    Don't waste your time and money trying to use low strength wicking loctite 222...it's way too low stength and won't really help.

    BTW... this is based on personal experience after following recommendations of wheel guru and former mentor Ric Hjertberg..... get yur learn on at
    Wheel Fanatyk
    Last edited by doismellbacon; 08-04-2013 at 11:32 AM. Reason: added more info

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