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  1. #1
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    Purposely not dish a wheel for someone who beaks a ton of spokes??

    I am not sure if I am searching incorrectly, but I cannot find the negative or positive impacts of choosing to dish the rear wheel or not. I can find tons on how to properly dish a wheel, but nothing on what would be the downside (or upside) to NOT dishing (or centering on the hub flanges).

    Can you ride with a wheel that is centered (not dished) and therefore biased to the left (non-drive side)? When a wheel is dished, the drive side spokes are under twice the tension load as the non-drive side loads (source Brandt – The Bicycle Wheel). The drive side spokes are what I end up breaking all the time (see background below).

    So here is my thought that I am hoping a wheel expert can answer: What are the downsides to riding with a rear wheel that is not dished? This would be a wheel where the drive side and non-drive side spokes are under equal tension. Are there negative consequences I am not thinking of? The wheel would appear off center in the frame (visually disturbing). Would the bike not track as well because of that? Also, would the lateral stiffness be impacted in some way I do not understand? The moment due to the distance from the drive-side frame dropout to the wheel centerline would be increased; does this cause some negative impact?

    Does anybody ever PURPOSELY NOT dish their wheel? If so, why?

    Background:

    I am an experienced (20 year) Clydesdale rider (265lbs, 6’5”) with 29in Specialized Stumpjumper Comp Aluminum FSR 2012. It has at 142+ rear dropout. I have put about 1,500 miles mountain miles on it in the last 12 months. I ride almost every day on technical desert mountain trails.

    On this bike’s rear wheel alone, I have gone through 3 chains, 3 cassettes, 4 hubs, a freebody and 3 wheels. I have broken many spokes and actually ripped three out of the spoke bed in a minor wreck. I have cracked my Hope freebody and upgraded to a steel one. I am careful shifting.

    When I first got the bike, I broke the ‘stock’ hubs three times in the first two week (there had to be something wrong with them! – they were the Roval Specialized Hi-Low hubs). The LBS worked with specialized and replaced with a set of Roval Traverse 29 wheels with hubs that have straight pull DT Swiss 240 hubs. They were good for a few months and then I started busting drive side spokes. After about 15 spoke fails, replaces and re-trues, I decided to get another wheel set and have the spokes all replaced in this wheel and keep as a backup.

    The new wheels were Stan’s Flow with Hope Pro 2 hubs. Much better, but in a minor accident I ripped three spokes through the rim wall. I am hoping the Flow EX might have prevented that because I like these rim otherwise.

    The shop replaced that wheel with a Mavic 719. Just started riding that one. This is the one I am thinking about biasing to the left or centering on the hub center line with no dish, thus loading the spokes evenly.
    In the future I am thinking of building a Stan’s Flow EX with 36 spokes and a good hub (Hope, DT, Chris King, Industry…).

    If anyone has a better wheel, spoke and hub combo for a clyde with some power, let me know!

  2. #2
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    I have heard of people using a SS hub (with equal, or close to equal hub flange offset) and making a custom 5 or 6 speed cassette to fit it.

  3. #3
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    I was going to say that those components, in normal use, are way stronger than you are, so there must be some abuse going on - but nobody likes being told that despite the obvious strength of a chain etc.

    Other than that, your LBS shouldn't be replacing stock wheels with stock wheels. I had a similar problem on a Trek hybrid I had for commuting - despite assurances from the LBS, I used to flex the wheels when putting the power on. So, found a good local wheelbuilder and he made me the toughest commute wheels that never did a thing wrong.

    36 spokes, decent rim, half-decent hub (I'm not a Hope fanboy myself) and a decent build and you'll be fine. If they are a good wheelbuilder they can build a normal wheel that you (if you avoid 'minor accidents' that rip spokes out (WTF?)) can ride without worry. I had some custom 29er wheels that lasted me 6 years and a lot of lardcore riding on a HT because the wheelbuilder was a class act.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by TooTallUK View Post
    I was going to say that those components, in normal use, are way stronger than you are, so there must be some abuse going on - but nobody likes being told that despite the obvious strength of a chain etc.

    Other than that, your LBS shouldn't be replacing stock wheels with stock wheels. I had a similar problem on a Trek hybrid I had for commuting - despite assurances from the LBS, I used to flex the wheels when putting the power on. So, found a good local wheelbuilder and he made me the toughest commute wheels that never did a thing wrong.

    36 spokes, decent rim, half-decent hub (I'm not a Hope fanboy myself) and a decent build and you'll be fine. If they are a good wheelbuilder they can build a normal wheel that you (if you avoid 'minor accidents' that rip spokes out (WTF?)) can ride without worry. I had some custom 29er wheels that lasted me 6 years and a lot of lardcore riding on a HT because the wheelbuilder was a class act.
    So what would you say is abusing? I do not jump or anything like that. I just ride a lot. The accident mentioned was an endo over the bars and the spokes came out when the wheel landed out to the side (imagine me going up and over and then twisting sideways as I am going over and the wheel touching down in front of me, but off to the side on the trail). There must have been a high lateral load. I was not hurt at all, not even a scratch, just must have been the way the wheel landed. The Stan's Flow has just been redesigned to the Stan's Flow EX and there website talks about a thicker spoke bed to keep from having tear out problems, so it must have been an issue on the Flow. I would like to emphasize that I take great care of my bike (clean after every ride, preventive maintenance, etc...), I do not do any abuse beyond what anyone else my size and weight would do riding on technical mountain terrain in the rocky desert would also do. I ride a lot. I ride half-way fast and I climb a lot. When my wife and myself used to ride the same model bike the same distances, I went though everything 4 or 5 times faster (tires, chains, rear cartridges, even pedals). There is very much a power-law for weight vs. wear going on with mountain bikes.

  5. #5
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    So you've had your wheels rebuilt completely and they are still breaking. I think your issues lie elsewhere.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by R+P+K View Post
    So you've had your wheels rebuilt completely and they are still breaking. I think your issues lie elsewhere.
    Could it be the builds? They were done by the LBS. Any thoughts would be appreciated. On my old 26 mavics I never broke spokes or needed to true. Several of the guys I ride with have broken a few spokes too, and they are lighter individuals than me.

  7. #7
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    Custom framebuilders can offset the rear triangle to allow for equal spoke lengths on both sides of the hub. Helps with chainline on modern drivetrains as well since external cranks and BBs keep pushing the front chainline farther out.

    Is your wheelbuilder using butted spokes or straight gauge? Butted spokes cost more and last longer as they have more give in them. This give also is why they are sometimes looked over when building wheels for hard riding as straight gauge spokes are stiffer. More spokes also helps if you're riding hard; maybe run a 36 spoke rim in the back. Modern rims are a lot stronger than in the past but there is no strength replacement for extra spokes.

    Having the rim off center will make the bike track funny but more importantly, your tire will probably start rubbing the frame if you center the rim over the hub flanges.

    Not to be a jerk but you're doing something wrong if you're burning through 3 cassettes and 3 chains in 1500 miles. If you watch your chain wear you should be able to use one cassette over at least 2-3 chains and if you take care of your chain it'll last longer without stretching.

    How is your suspension setup and tire pressure? Seems like the duallie should be a lot easier on wheels than a hardtail or rigid bike.

  8. #8
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    Firstly, your dishing question. I think thats a dead end. You should be able to find a standard setup rear wheel from a good builder that will hold up.

    As an even bigger clyde than you, I ride a little under 1000 miles a year. I usually go through two chains a year (I replace at 1% stretch) and a casssette every two years. Since you are riding more than me, I'm not too suprised at your chain/cassette consumption. I've only ever broken a chain during a bad shift.

    I would be suspicious of your bike shop wheel builder. You might try getting a wheel built by a professional wheel builder. I have used Mike Curiak in the past and his wheels hold up. (Lace Mine 29 - Big Bicycle Wheels) He has a great reputation and endless experience with 29er and even wheels for big guys.

    From my experience, a 36 hole MTX33 rim, DT Swiss Alpine spokes, and a DT Swiss 440 rear hub has been flawless for a rear wheel. I too had problems with breaking spokes and freehubs. No longer. Its a tough pill to swallow to drop $700-$1000 on a wheelset, but something super burly is well worth the money. A good wheelset is worth its weight in gold.

  9. #9
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    Sounds like the wheels dont have enough tension on them for your setup. I am 6'4 and weigh between 200-210 (on bad days). I have never broken a spoke, and my rims rarely need to be retrued. As for the other parts, sounds like neglect!

  10. #10
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    Thanks all. I am coming to a realization (I believe) that I thought I was getting a 'professional build' from my LBS, but from the comments above, I am guessing they are not tensioning them correctly. All of my spoke failures were classic high cycle fatigue - they mostly failed riding flat ground and I would just hear a ping and sure enough a spoke had failed. This leads me to think that they were not under enough pre-tension. The Stan's flow with DT hub was much better, but I think something bullet proof like the MTX33 mentioned above would be good.

    Thanks for the recommendation for Lace Mine 29. After I posted this last night, I saw a ton of threads where he is recommended. I spent some time on his web site too.

    I will have to look if my spokes were butted or straight. Not sure.

    As for my cassettes and chain, to be fair, one of those was from a derailleur idler (lower) pulley failure and a subsequent ripping off of the derailleur and twisting of the chain and bending of a few cassette cogs. I am thinking about going with metal pulleys. Anyone have experience on this?
    I regularly clean and lube my chain. I check it with a wear gage to determine when to replace.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by GTscoob View Post
    How is your suspension setup and tire pressure? Seems like the duallie should be a lot easier on wheels than a hardtail or rigid bike.
    This is a full suspension bike. Tire pressure between 35 and 40. Check every ride as I thought that might have been part of the issue when I had my first failure.

    I do own a 2008 Stumpy 29 HT, I have failed two spokes on that rear wheel. Both drive side. I ride that bike much less though.

  12. #12
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    Flows do have low max spoke tension. Might want to look at something eyeletted. It's possible that the builders tensioned as tight as they could while keeping the wheel true and round.

  13. #13
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    I can highly recommend Velocity Blunt rims, mine have been bulletproof. As for eyeletted rims, I dont feel as if they are as strong as non-eyeletted, but just my opinion. I like to use DT Swiss Comp spokes with brass nipples, and Sapim HM washers under the head of each nipple (Washers | Sapim). I went to the washers under the nipples when I started showing stress cracks at the nipple hole on the rim. Velocity warrantied the rims after several years of use (way to go Velocity), and suggested I use the washers. This current setup has been rock solid for about 2 years now, and the rims are still true as the day I built them. Cant complain!

  14. #14
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    Keeping a Flow true and round should not be a problem. More likely the wheel builder was afraid to bring the spokes up to required tension, especially considering the weight of the rider.

    Forget having an off-center wheel. With the correct parts and good build you'll get wheels that last.

  15. #15
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    like everyone said, it sounds like a very bad wheel builder is causing all your probs. A dishless rear wheel with a cassette hub won't fit in the frame, and if it did the bike would crab all over the place.

    But if you want a dishless rear wheel which is bombproof and which you'll never have to worry about derailleurs and things like that try a Rohloff hub and lace it up to a strong rim, I built this for another bike of mine and it is I've also got a dishless rear wheel on my ss with phil hubs, that's ultra strong too.
    Last edited by markymark; 02-19-2013 at 03:41 AM.

  16. #16
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    For component selection I'd rather look at an asymmetric wheel (if one is available) and consider a different spoke choice or lacing for the non-drive side. As funny as it sounds, using asymmetric parts and different components on either side could help balance the forces in the wheel.

    One extreme example is the Surly Moonlander: the rear hub is offset by 28 mm and the spoke bed is offset by 20 mm on the rim, but laced to a regular cassette hub the spokes form an even triangle and the tensions are equal on both sides.

  17. #17
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    Markymark, before you edited, you mentioned a chris king heavy duty 36 spoke hub. I went to the Chris King site... I cannot find reference to a heavy duty hub (or stronger hub). Are you considering it heavy duty because it is 36 spoke? or was that actually a hub they don't make anymore or one I am missing. Thanks!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikestok View Post
    Markymark, before you edited, you mentioned a chris king heavy duty 36 spoke hub. I went to the Chris King site... I cannot find reference to a heavy duty hub (or stronger hub). Are you considering it heavy duty because it is 36 spoke? or was that actually a hub they don't make anymore or one I am missing. Thanks!
    yeah, i dunno why i edited that out, spose I didn't want to sound like the hub whore that I am

    yeah the chris king heavy duty is, as stated in their website:

    Heavy duty option: For those riders who want the additional stiffness and holding power of a bolt on axle and stainless steel driveshell. The bolt on axle allows the use of either the FunBolts™ or the QR adapters for maximum versatility.

    I've been running the same set of 36 h ck hubs on my mtb's for about 8 years, been through 4 bikes. Never had a problem. Love them. If you got them and laced them up to a flow or something similar you'd be set for a very long time. Get a good builder to do it, there's heaps of places online too that do it. Having said that I'm a pretty crap wheel builder, but did them myself anyway and they are still perfect. You should learn to build wheels, then you'll appreciate the art and science behind it.

  19. #19
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    just a quick note - colorado cyclist wheel builds are especially bomb-proof - usually have fair prices as well (no screaming deals - but OK). i am 6'6" 230 and i kicked the tar out of a pair of cc built CRESTS on a hard tail before i realized those are not the best choice for clydes - still as true as the day i got them....

  20. #20
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    + on the wheel build. The components you have listed are not the problem with spokes breaking. You are in PHX? Ask in the AZ forum for wheel builder suggestions.

    I have been up to 300lbs using 32 spoke wheels with no problems until I have many, many miles on them. 36s may help with some flex and strength, but a well built 32s wheel with good components will be fine. If you are using these wheels on South Mountain, not certain a 719 is sufficient (though it is a great XC+ rim). If Mavic, the 721, at least in the back, will do better for you.

    And lots of good hubs to use inc. King, Hadley, Hope, DT Swiss. Hadley already comes with a tit driveshell, can get a steel one with King, and I think with Hope also.

  21. #21
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    Purposely not dish a wheel for someone who beaks a ton of spokes??

    ENVE AM 32h, DT 440 hub, Alpine III spokes.

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