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  1. #1
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    double-wall ~80mm rims: options, worth the weight?

    I'm building a 2nd 26x80mm (26x5") wheelset for my fat-cargo bike (surly big fat dummy), which i use for kid-hauling and bike packing / remote trail building.

    I am trying to find a stronger rim. I don't mind it being slightly heavier, or a slightly more $$, IF it will be significantly stronger.

    Currently, I have a set of sun-ringle mulefats (80mm) with 4.8" tires, but am wondering if I should be concerned about those rims when riding rough terrain with a full load (or with a kid and gear on the back).

    I'm a 200# rider, and the bike is 55lb, so no one would accuse the build of weight-weenie I got the mulefats in a super-cheap wheelset from BikesDirect; I knew I'd be building up a fun bike for my wife at some point, so wouldn't be throwing away that cheap wheelset when i upgraded. About the only full double wall 80mm's i found are the Weinmann DHL80's; but I don't seem many reviews, and they seem focused on 'budget'

    What strong ~80mm rims rims would you recommend? Thanks!

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    nextie tri spoke..

  3. #3
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    Mulefuts are plenty strong. I'd just look at having them laced to quality hubs with nice spokes. 2 key things your BD.com wheelset is probably lacking. Contact Mikesee (lacemine29.com) and he'll get you set up right.
    Jason
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by av8or View Post
    nextie tri spoke..
    err thanks I think that is some combination of way-too-expensive | way-too-much-bling | just-hours-'till-they're-stolen for my tastes ...

    I guess I should add, about carbon rims: I have nothing against them, but from my (Not substantial) experience it seems the market for carbon rims is heavily weighted towards weight-savings, versus absolute strength.

    If there were an 80mm carbon rim that weight as much or more than an equivalent AL rim, my expectation is it _could_ be significantly more durable. I haven't seen any such rims. Also, once you get north of >> $250/ rim, it probably gets too rich for this build. It's possible i'd reconsider that max budget IF it were a long-lived company and a ~lifetime warranty (don't think that exists, either?)

  5. #5
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    Im 285 and my fat bike is on mulefuts, i beat the crap out of it.

    Biggest matter is simply adjust tire pressure for weight. I haul trail working stuff on it as well, plus backpack sometimes with more stuff. Putting me near 350lbs loaded. 0 problems.

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  6. #6
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    I've got a Mulefut 80mm wheel set and a Holy Rolling Daryl 80mm set. My Mulefut rear has two fairly significant flat spots from landings or rocks. The HRD's are still round. Not saying the HRD's are stronger, but that's my experience.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAKC Ind View Post
    on mulefuts ... Putting me near 350lbs loaded. 0 problems.
    good info, thanks. How old / how much use has your build seen?

    I found this thread:
    Fat Bike Rim Weights - 26"
    and googled the could heavier rims i hadn't heard of. It appears none are full double wall. The Jackelopes seem to have good reviews, but the spoke line down the center only seems weaker than offset, and they are single wall out on the corners versus the mulefats and surly rims have some double-wall profile at the extremities.

  8. #8
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    1.5 yrs. Includes a full winter of stomping. Wheel set has been flawless. 2011 mukluk and the frame will fail long before the wheels lol. I also built my wheels, BHS 135/170mm hubs.

    Thing with fat wheel builds is the are already stronger and stiffer laterally. Just fact of structural design there. Wider rim is automatically stronger laterally. And double walls are for the same purpose, to double up the "I" beam. Mulefuts are about as thick as what the walls in standard double wall rims are. Then 3-4× as wide. They arent a weight weenie rim by any stretch.

    Biggest thing is tires, I run 4.7 barbagazis. I just adjust my pressure by feel mostly. Ive ridden trails balls out, small jumps/drops (stuff i can easily roll). Ill go all out coming down decents with full load.

    All about tire pressure. And big tires means it takes more to even get close to tagging the rims.

    Honestly I worry about snapping my CF forks, cracking me frame etc, wheels are the bottom of my concerns. Mulefuts are REALLY well designed.

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by high_desert_mud View Post
    ...About the only full double wall 80mm's i found are the Weinmann DHL80's; but I don't seem many reviews, and they seem focused on 'budget'...
    I used them on my first fatbike. They're still going strong 7 years later. Haven't needed truing or acquired any dings.

    They are heavier than my carbon rims but I don't notice a significant difference once there's a set of heavy tyres on. Best place to save weight is by going tubeless IMO.

    Fatbikes taught me to modify my weight weenie ways.
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  10. #10
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    I noticed a weight drop from my fa shebas (even drilled) to my mulefuts. But tires were switched from old to new wheelset since they were practically new.

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Velobike View Post
    I used them on my first fatbike. They're still going strong 7 years later. Haven't needed truing or acquired any dings.

    They are heavier than my carbon rims but I don't notice a significant difference once there's a set of heavy tyres on. Best place to save weight is by going tubeless IMO.

    Fatbikes taught me to modify my weight weenie ways.
    Goping tubless is only a weight savings of 100 gm per wheel, assuming you've already gone to light tubes. A carbon 80 mm rim will be something like 700 gms lighter than a DHL 80. Going tubeless is certainly cheaper but not really a big weight saver.

    Fatbikes have not taught me to modify my weight weenie ways. It gave me a whole new playground.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sryanak View Post
    Goping tubless is only a weight savings of 100 gm per wheel, assuming you've already gone to light tubes. A carbon 80 mm rim will be something like 700 gms lighter than a DHL 80. Going tubeless is certainly cheaper but not really a big weight saver.

    Fatbikes have not taught me to modify my weight weenie ways. It gave me a whole new playground.
    Your tubeless set up for a fat bike is WAY too heavy then. A fat bike tube is heavy as hell. Going tubeless I saved over 400g PER WHEEL.

    And your not going to save 700g from something like a mulefut vs carbon. Much weight loss and rim isnt going to hold up to much. Especially the OPs requirements.

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAKC Ind View Post
    Your tubeless set up for a fat bike is WAY too heavy then. A fat bike tube is heavy as hell. Going tubeless I saved over 400g PER WHEEL.

    And your not going to save 700g from something like a mulefut vs carbon. Much weight loss and rim isnt going to hold up to much. Especially the OPs requirements.

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    Did you catch my qualifier about using light weight tubes? The most cost effective weight savings is probably going from 600 gm tubes to 200 gm tubes.

    In the same vein, you are correct re weight savings on carbon from a Mulefat. I was addressing the weight savings from the DHL80 which was under discussion earlier. As to durability it seems to me that the 550 to 600 gm carbons have been pretty good for people. Big guys doing big drops, maybe not so much, but they should not really be looking at weight as a primary consideration.
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  14. #14
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    Have you considered Surly My Other Brother Darryls? Bomber rim. Super easy tubeless.

    When I get my Big Fat Dummy, I plan on building MOB Darryls laced to Bike Hub Store hubs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NYrr496 View Post
    Have you considered Surly My Other Brother Darryls?
    It's odd, surly says the MOBD's are 'single wall' but they are single in the center, 'double' on either outer 1/3. Rims | Parts and Accessories | Surly Bikes. Same semi-double-wall for the clownshoe (100mm). The Rolling Darrly is full-single-wall.

    Any thoughts if this makes a difference?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAKC Ind View Post
    fat wheel builds is the are already stronger and stiffer laterally. Just fact of structural design there. Wider rim is automatically stronger laterally. And double walls are for the same purpose, to double up the "I" beam.
    I agree that the wider rim will be stronger in _some_ ways, but it doesn't seem so in the ways that matter:
    • rim strikes: the force is radial, oriented towards the hub; unlike a double wall rim there is no "i-beam" in this orientation, so less stiff, even if same total thickness of Alum.
    • fat-rim rim-to-neutral-axis (or spokes): greater lever arm for radial loads; this would imply weaker. I haven't found a good resource to help answer if the wide spoke offset counteracts this fully or not?
    • axial loads: the fat rim is taller (in the axial direction) so stronger, but whether this matters is unknown afaict (would bucking occur far before the extra stiffness could come into play)


    It seems to me that the single wall must be weaker on rim strikes; on the second point it seems too complex a problem to reason about without FEA or testing. Why the hell no one independently tests rims to some standard metric .... sigh.

  17. #17
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    I have Clownshoes and My Other Brother Darryls for my bike. I have zero problems with either one of them other than I hate the Clownshoes now that I have the Darryls. They're lighter and the tubeless is unbelievably easy.
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  18. #18
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    Mulefut rims are pretty strong. I was jumping 15 foot table tops on a full rigid with mine. I even over sent it one day and nosed in hard enough to tear the sidewall on my Minion FBF. Unfortunately that bent the rim a little, but the Novatech hub is fine. I'm sure I've put more stress on mine than you will.
    I weigh 265 with gear and these were BikesDirect wheels. I'm pretty sure they use DTSwiss straight gauge spokes. FYI

  19. #19
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    Your looking at fat bike rims the same as single walled rims of old. Big difference because they arent truly single walled. They have 2 squarish "tubes" that run around the outer side of the rims. This is also what makes up the bead seats. Old single wall was just channel bent into a circle.

    Most double wall rims have no I beam for radial loads. The I beam is usually created (if it exists, depends on the rim) by having a large center cavity with 2 small ones, one on each side formed where the bead seats are. The actual center "double wall" itself, its support is the same as the outer wall. The strength is not from the rim as it doesnt do much itself, totally useless without the spokes. Load at ground contact causes rim to press up towards the bike and rim wants to flex in the other directions. Spokes keep that from happening to a point. The walls of the rim and spokes together want to mantain shape. But that in itself is insanely flexible

    Add in the arch or v shape and sidewalls of rims. And any internal rim material that is in parallel with the radial forces. Now you have actual stiffness and strength against radial loads causing the rim to deform. Since the strength is both towards and away from the hub, the wheel wants to stay round more or less.

    axial loads is there the double wall really comes into play, creates a support "I beam" between the outer side walls of the rim. It in itself does little for radial loads, what it does do is allow for v or arch shaped outer wall (towards the spokes) greatly increasing the rims strength for radial loads.

    A single wall fat bike rim is basically 2 small double walled rims (out rings, mulefuts make this easy to see even with tire mounted) with a "I Beam" center to provide axial support between the 2 outer rings.

    since a rim strike is at the bead seats, those areas are double walled so they are well supported for axial and radial loads.

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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAKC Ind View Post
    arent truly single walled. They have 2 squarish "tubes" that run around the outer side of the rims.
    are you referring to the sides of the MOBD, Clownshoe, etc where there is literally a 'tube' / double-wall etc portion on the outside? If so, then this isn't universal to wide rims; see the rolling darryls; they are true single wall. If that's not what you mean, could you elaborate?

    I could not find a rim cutaway / profile for the mulefats. I have assumed via the visible profile they are single-wall the whole way just like the Roll

    RE: "I" beam:

    Quote Originally Posted by RAKC Ind View Post
    Most double wall rims have no I beam for radial loads. The I beam is usually created (if it exists, depends on the rim) by having a large center cavity with 2 small ones, one on each side formed where the bead seats are.
    Sorry, i wasn't meaning to be specific on the rim having a capital 'I' shape, rather that colloquially an "I" beam is a way to get a higher stiffness per mass (greater 2nd moment of area, to be specific from a mech engr perspective). Using 'I" also handily implies (at least to me) a directional component to the stiffness (versus say a round tube, which is equally stiff in all 360degrees). So re-phrased, i was trying to say that the double wall has greater stiffness (per mass) in the radial direction than a single wall because of that higher 2nd moment of area about the axis a (radial) impact would bend it.

    Of course, my issue with all those details is that this is a very complex system (as you point out regarding spokes). Greater compliance (eg less stiff) may well equal greater safety (safe defined as not taco'ing, etc, where you would fall hard). So it's an interesting discussion (and very relevant for my cargo-bike fat wheelset!) I just wish there was someone out there doing some quantitative comparison.

  21. #21
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    Heard back from sunringle, here is the rim profile for the mulefut 80sl

    https://imgur.com/a/PEodh
    double-wall ~80mm rims: options, worth the weight?-mulefut80_profile.pdf
    Last edited by high_desert_mud; 09-11-2017 at 01:10 PM.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by high_desert_mud View Post
    are you referring to the sides of the MOBD, Clownshoe, etc where there is literally a 'tube' / double-wall etc portion on the outside? If so, then this isn't universal to wide rims; see the rolling darryls; they are true single wall. If that's not what you mean, could you elaborate?

    I could not find a rim cutaway / profile for the mulefats. I have assumed via the visible profile they are single-wall the whole way just like the Roll

    RE: "I" beam:



    Sorry, i wasn't meaning to be specific on the rim having a capital 'I' shape, rather that colloquially an "I" beam is a way to get a higher stiffness per mass (greater 2nd moment of area, to be specific from a mech engr perspective). Using 'I" also handily implies (at least to me) a directional component to the stiffness (versus say a round tube, which is equally stiff in all 360degrees). So re-phrased, i was trying to say that the double wall has greater stiffness (per mass) in the radial direction than a single wall because of that higher 2nd moment of area about the axis a (radial) impact would bend it.

    Of course, my issue with all those details is that this is a very complex system (as you point out regarding spokes). Greater compliance (eg less stiff) may well equal greater safety (safe defined as not taco'ing, etc, where you would fall hard). So it's an interesting discussion (and very relevant for my cargo-bike fat wheelset!) I just wish there was someone out there doing some quantitative comparison.
    Ok that makes more sense, we were thinking on 2 different lines.

    And your right the tubes on the outer edges arent specific to "single walled" rims. I did try to clarify that because as you said, some rims have those and the center double wall instead of just the large empty space from side wall to sidewall.

    As for what I meant on that, exactly what you have a picture of. Versus true single walls that I didnt even thing existed except cheap stuff anymore, but seems darryls are.

    Now that you see the profile, it should ease yoyr concerns a bit. The only way your going to damage mulefuts is running flat tires across rough terrain or doing jumps and drops with too low of pressure. When my fat a$$ cant phase them doing small jumps, drops, generally beating the snot outta the bike, your not going to hurt them on a cargo bike. The loads are so widely dispersed that it would take more impact and load than a skinny tired bike by fat to do any damage.

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  23. #23
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    so it seems like there aren't many real double wall options. The best suggested so far are:

    - mulefut 80sl: 'semi' double-wall, 830g claimed
    - MOBD: 'semi' double wall (looks like a little more than the MuleFut) but 710g (claimed)
    - Weinmann DHL80: full double wall, 1040g (actual)

    If the weinmanns were focused on touring i would pay the weight penalty and go that route; however as best i can tell they are simply focused on 'cheap' .... so I will likely go MuleFut or MOBD. I'm torn on those.

  24. #24
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    The MOBD is right around 710g. I've built a couple of sets and I really like em.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by high_desert_mud View Post
    - Weinmann DHL80: full double wall, 1040g (actual)
    Thats from the thread mentioned above, by neons97. Looking again at the Weinmann page, i'm a little skeptical he doesn't have the 24" version, or something else wrong. Weinmann claims a full ~80z more than that, 1297g. Weinmann Metal Products Co., LTD

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