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Thread: Novatec wheels

  1. #1
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    Novatec wheels

    Searching for reviews, I'm really surprised that I'm not finding much info out there on these wheels. My local bike shop has a set of the Novetec Dragon29er wheels and I was impressed with the hubs. They sound nice, and supposed to have 4 deg engagment? I think I may try out the 29er flow/trail wheelset when they come out. anyone else seen these before? anyone been riding on them? Sure Looks like good competion for Stans wheelsets.

    First Look: Novatec's Improved 2013 Wheel Lineup - Mountain Biking Pictures - Vital MTB

    oh yea, price was about $650 for the 29er XC wheelset on display.

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    Really high price for novatec stuff. They're light, but they're really narrow.

    That price will get you much nicer hope hubs, and lots of different rims. Kind of a hard sell for novatec.

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    Quote Originally Posted by One Pivot View Post
    Really high price for novatec stuff. They're light, but they're really narrow.

    That price will get you much nicer hope hubs, and lots of different rims. Kind of a hard sell for novatec.
    I agree but that was full retail list price. The XC dragon rims are really narrow at only 18mm. However, the trail wheels are 20mm and only just a tad heavier than the Dragon. I believe the trail wheelset weighs in less than the Stans arch wheelset. And, I really think the hubs are better with novatec than Stans. If they can get the price down just a bit to compete with Stans, I think they would be quite competitive. Spinning one in my hands and feeling the freehub was impressive. It was not super loud like Hopes but a nice light high pitch buzz. I'm not a fan of really loud hubs.

    I get a nice discount on them, so I may give them a try. The North American distrubitoroffice is right here in Temecula as well.

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    Most of Joytech/Novatec's business is to the OE market and re-brands (like Azonic, Superstar and Loaded), you probably know someone using a wheel set from them, it just won't be badged up as such.

    I think $650 would be a hard sell, even their best hub struggles a bit against DT and Hope units, especially when the inevitable happens and you need spares. Chop $200 off that price and they'd be spot on, unless it's an all new hub that hasn't been in the Joytech book yet.

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    Hub wise the top end Novatec hubs are easily as good or better than Stans (Chosen) hubs, so no issues there. The new hub sounds pretty cool and I like the steel insert like the AC hubs (though only one, it still should help). They use Sapim spokes and nipples so again, good quality.

    The unknown is the rims, but given Stans, Sun Ringle, AC, and WTB wheels all use China made rims and Taiwan hubs I do not see how they would be any less quality.

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    The stans hubs are hideously overpriced asian hubs too. What stans asks for their wheels is just as ridiculous. Stans rims built around much better hopes come out a good amount cheaper.

    Id certainly say they're much lower quality than hope hubs, and they're even more expensive. That just doesnt make sense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fix the Spade View Post
    Most of Joytech/Novatec's business is to the OE market and re-brands (like Azonic, Superstar and Loaded), you probably know someone using a wheel set from them, it just won't be badged up as such.
    Yep. I know Transition's hubs are Novatec. Not sure about the full wheelset though.

    I've got two seasons on a Transition/Novatec 4-in-1 hub. There are multiple versions of this hub ranging from an aluminum axle/freehub to steel axle/freehub and several permutations in between. The Transition hub I purchased originally came as a steel axle/aluminum free hub. The freehub lasted a season before cracking in half. Yes, the entire freehub cracked in half (10 miles into the woods). The cassette luckily held it together enough that I could pedal it out. Transition has since then changed to spec'ing out the "light weight steel" version of the freehub which is obviously quite a bit stronger. I know that Superstar Components spec's out the all aluminum version.

    Both my original freehub and the replacement steel one exhibited the same problem: the palls don't engage with the same timing. Meaning, if you slowly roll forward you can clearly hear the individual pawls ratcheting as opposed to them all going at once. I'm not talking about ultra fine movements of the wheel here either. I'm guessing this is what led to my first freehub's demise since this also means that only one of the palls is carrying the load at any given point in time.

    Overall, I like the hub's design: Good sealing, good bearings, easy assembly/disassembly and good engagement. I'd buy another one if I was looking for a good value in a hub. I'd happily give their wheelsets a try at ~$350. $650 though? Not a chance. I can get Hopes with Flows or Frequency rims hand built at that price.

  8. #8
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    $650 though? Not a chance. I can get Hopes with Flows or Frequency rims hand built at that price.
    Can someone tell me where? I keep hearing this and would love a set of Hopes with Arch EX, and DT champ spokes and alloy nipples. $600-$650 is this possible? 29" I'm searching and best price I have found is aboyt $700 from Rbikes.com

    Best I have found is Hopes / Pacenti deal for around $600 but I would really prefer the Arch rims.

    I'm interested in the Novatec set because I can get them around $550, but sounds like the freehub is a crapshoot.

    I
    Last edited by CarlS; 02-20-2013 at 12:07 PM.

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    The full retail price for a hope hub set, stans rims, and db spokes is around $550. Thats just average person prices. Any wheelbuilder should be able to set you up for $650 or less.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarlS View Post
    I'm interested in the Novatec set because I can get them around $550, but sounds like the freehub is a crapshoot.

    I
    The Transition hubs use the cheaper Novatec 3 pawl, 24 tooth system which I have found to be perfectly reliable but I don't beat of things either. The new wheels have a completely redesigned hub, nothing in common with the Transition hub. It sounds like the rims would be your one variable. But I've never had issues with pinned or sleeved rims even if the seam isn't very smooth.

    One more thing with Pacenti vs Stans rims. The Pacenti rims are designed to run Tubeless Ready tires. Mounting and seating tubeless ready tires will be a simple process. Stans rims are not designed for tubeless ready tires, instead they are designed to fit standard tires very tight and convert them to tubeless. Depending on which tires you choose to run, you may want either the Pacenti or the Stans rims.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CarlS View Post
    Can someone tell me where? I keep hearing this and would love a set of Hopes with Arch EX, and DT champ spokes and alloy nipples. $600-$650 is this possible? 29" I'm searching and best price I have found is aboyt $700 from Rbikes.com
    Universal Cycles has them built and in stock for ~$550.(EDIT: I made a mistake here since I was looking at the regular Arch wheels. It's $600 for the EX. Use the VIP15 discount code) You can also use their custom wheel builder and set them up in the exact color/spec you want.
    Hubs: $350
    Rims: $170
    Spokes: $70 (silver Competition. I'd really recommend these over straight gauge)
    Nipples: $18 (Brass)
    Total: $608

    I'd also recommend asking Mike at Lacemin29.com for a quote.


    Quote Originally Posted by Bike Whisperer View Post
    One more thing with Pacenti vs Stans rims. The Pacenti rims are designed to run Tubeless Ready tires. Mounting and seating tubeless ready tires will be a simple process. Stans rims are not designed for tubeless ready tires, instead they are designed to fit standard tires very tight and convert them to tubeless. Depending on which tires you choose to run, you may want either the Pacenti or the Stans rims.
    This is an important point that shouldn't be over looked. Decide now if you're using standard tires or TLR/UST. If standard, arch is the way to go. Otherwise, I'd also check out the WTB Frequency rims in addition to the Pacenti.
    Last edited by car_nut; 02-20-2013 at 04:33 PM.

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    Something like this?

    Car_nut:

    Any chance your failure looked like these photos? If only 2 (or 1?) pall was engaged I could totally see this at the logical result.

    Novatec wheels-13-4.jpgNovatec wheels-13-3.jpgNovatec wheels-13-2.jpgNovatec wheels-13-1.jpg

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    As best I can recall, mine looked sort of like that. I've since ditched this wheel/hub and moved to Hopes.

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