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  1. #1
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    WTB LaserDisc XC wheels from BWW

    http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com...m/prod_88.html

    Anyone try these?

    It looks like a pretty great deal, if the rims will last. Reviews are mixed, but it seems like a lot of people got them OEM, so I'm suspicious of the quality of the build.

    I'm 155 lb and would be using them for XC racing and trail riding on a short-travel hardtail that doesn't leave the ground much - no dirt jumping and only fairly small woodwork.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  2. #2
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    BWW builds some pretty nice wheels. I have 2 seasons on my lightweight custom BWW race wheels and have not even had to true them.

    For xc racing I would call and have them build up something lighter than what your are looking at. Light wheels and tires are the biggest upgrade you can make for xc racing.

    If your budget is minimal you might also consider these- not any lighter but decent xc hoops at a great price.

    http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com...c/prod_33.html
    Rocky Mountain Element
    Orbea Lobular CX

  3. #3
    Former Bike Wrench
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    Quote Originally Posted by tekkamaki
    BWW builds some pretty nice wheels. I have 2 seasons on my lightweight custom BWW race wheels and have not even had to true them.

    For xc racing I would call and have them build up something lighter than what your are looking at. Light wheels and tires are the biggest upgrade you can make for xc racing.

    If your budget is minimal you might also consider these- not any lighter but decent xc hoops at a great price.

    http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com...c/prod_33.html
    Very good rim, one of my XC favorites but those M475 hubs SUCK...here is the same rim on a XT
    http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com...c/prod_41.html

    Still the Laserdisc XC is a very good rim (and works tubeless quite well I might add) and frankly the option to get the SLX hubs would be quite appealing with their 32 point freehub body.

  4. #4
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    So I had a look at the Sun rims and threw the masses of the parts onto a spreadsheet. I figured out an approximation for rotating weight of spokes a while ago that I think is okay - each gram counts 1/3 as much as something that's all the way out at the rim, like the rim itself, nipples, a tire, etc.

    With the LaserDisc, I added up the weight of the rim, 1/3 of spokes, nipples, the tire I'm using on the rear, rim tape, and the tubes I'm using. Assuming DT Comp 14/15 ga spokes, it came out at 1188g. The DS1 rims didn't come with the option to use anything but Champions, so they came out at 1165g for a wheel. So the swing in weight is about 2% - kind of a wash, really.

    Having a hub with some more engagement is definitely appealing. I guess I need to think about how I feel about the Sun rims being narrower (maybe something to doodle while I'm supposed to be learning about materials science tomorrow) and whether I think a little quicker engagement is $55 better. For a 5% swing in weight as I'm counting it, I need to double my budget. At the moment, I think I'm leaning more toward the laser discs. mtnbiker, have you built with them?
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  5. #5
    lgh
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbiker72
    Very good rim, one of my XC favorites but those M475 hubs SUCK...here is the same rim on a XT
    http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com...c/prod_41.html

    Still the Laserdisc XC is a very good rim (and works tubeless quite well I might add) and frankly the option to get the SLX hubs would be quite appealing with their 32 point freehub body.
    Is the Laser Disc rim designed specifically to handle UST tires? I know the TCS rim is said to do so on the WTB site but it's not clear for the Laser Disc.

    Larry

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by lgh
    Is the Laser Disc rim designed specifically to handle UST tires? I know the TCS rim is said to do so on the WTB site but it's not clear for the Laser Disc.

    Larry
    No, the TCS thing is new this year and is only featured on the new rims specifically marked as TCS. The LaserDisc XC is a much older and well proven rim, just without that specific feature. You can always try converting it though

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by lgh
    Is the Laser Disc rim designed specifically to handle UST tires? I know the TCS rim is said to do so on the WTB site but it's not clear for the Laser Disc.

    Larry
    The Laserdisc is not a UST rim, however it has a very similar profile and the Global Bead System holds tires very tight. I ran SpeedDisc (same profile, just without the Unbendium Ridge) XC and AM rims tubeless for over two years very successfully. I liked using Gorilla Tape to seal the spoke holes, but they also work using the split tube method..

    To the OP, I have never personally built a Laserdisc rim. I have tensioned and trued wheels with both Laserdisc and SpeedDisc rims and they have been durable when used as intended. I have laced up a set of DS2 Rims (same as DS1 but pinned instead of welded) to ironically a set of Laserdisc Lite hubs and they were very easy to build true and evenly tensioned.

  8. #8
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    ^^^

    Thanks - the reviews can sometimes be pretty useless, without knowing anything about the provenance of the wheel or what they were doing to it. It sounds to me like if I don't do something stupid to them, both the LaserDisc and DS1 rims would give me good service.

    Tubeless is not really an issue for me at the moment. I'm pretty happy with my current setup. I'm not sure if the lightweight tube made a difference or not - I haven't tried my new rear tire with a generic. But the tube+tire weighs less than the tubeless version of the tire, and I suspect it'll be a while before tubeless tires start falling into my lap.

    So I'll pay some attention to the engagement thing next time I go mountain biking. I have a 475 hub now, which I think is comparable to an older XT, like on the nicer DS1 set. I think I'm leaning toward the LaserDisc set, though, because I think I'd enjoy having quicker engagement. Too bad BWW doesn't make the DS1 available with their full range of hubs.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  9. #9
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    The DS1 is discontinued, my guess is that they are already built up with the hubs they are also trying to get rid of.

  10. #10
    VENI VEDI BIKI
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    Quote Originally Posted by tekkamaki
    BWW builds some pretty nice wheels. I have 2 seasons on my lightweight custom BWW race wheels and have not even had to true them.
    I have had the exact opposite experience with 2 sets of BWW wheels. Good value, but both sets seem to constantly need truing.

  11. #11
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    So I find myself leaning more and more toward the DS1/XT set. There's also a DS1/DT 370 set available on their forum.

    Anyone know how the XT M756 compares to the DT 370?
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch
    So I find myself leaning more and more toward the DS1/XT set. There's also a DS1/DT 370 set available on their forum.

    Anyone know how the XT M756 compares to the DT 370?
    The DT370 is formerly the Onyx hub. It is a cartridge bearing hub but does not use DT's star ratchet. Instead it uses a similar FH body style as Shimano. It's a two pawl system, durable for most riders but people who destroy Shimano freehubs will probably destroy these too. Replacements are about the same price as Shimano as well.

  13. #13
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Sounds like durability and function are kind of a wash vs. XT?

    That's okay with me - they're lighter and a couple other aspects of the build are too. If that set is still available, I'll probably buy it. If only my roommate hadn't forgotten to pay water/sewer/gas for the last four months...
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  14. #14
    usually cranky
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    i read mark weir used the wtb tcs xc rim for downiville. pretty sure it is the same rime as the laser disc xc with a different bead hook. am i right about this? anyway if i am it should give you a good idea of the strength of them.

  15. #15
    Former Bike Wrench
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch
    Sounds like durability and function are kind of a wash vs. XT?
    Yes, but probably require a little less service (cartridge vs cup/cone bearings). I've owned Onyx hubs in the past and they were reliable in the wet PNW riding.

  16. #16
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    So I thought about it and decided that even with my team order coming up, the BWW DS1 set on their forum page - so with DT Comps instead of Champs, and the DT 370 hubs - is my best choice without spending a whole lot more. Some more expensive sets had lower rotating weight, and of course there are nicer hubs out there, but if I assume that I ride my mountain bike with tires, it was going to cost at least $200 more to cut rotating weight by enough to notice.

    I've managed not to destroy my M-475 rear hub in four years of riding, so I'm not too worried about the 370/Onyx freehub. Pics when I get 'em, of course, but this is a very "plain brown wrapper" wheel. I'm crossing my fingers that I'll get them before my next race; since these wheels are already built, I figure that's not too unlikely.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  17. #17
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    I finally got the wheels today. Apparently UPS didn't grasp the concept of whatever the original delivery options were - BWW confirmed my address when I called them, and it was right.

    Anyway, I had a very annoying day today and it was nice to come home and find a big cardboard box with their name on it.

    Spoke tensions all seemed about right, and I put the bare wheels on my frame and gave them a spin; didn't see any funkiness. I don't own a scale, but the new wheels definitely felt lighter to lift than my old ones when I compared them bare. I put my tires, rotors, cassette etc. on and went for a ride. It was convenient that BWW included their rim tape.

    I never noticed it before, but I've always had to put a little effort into leaning my bike. I'm sure I still do, but it didn't feel that way today. There are also a couple awkward root ledge sections on the ride I was doing today, that I got through better than I have been. But, I've been making an effort to ride off-road more and it's been a while since I rode that network. So I don't know if that has anything to do with the new wheels. Rear hub engagement felt a little more positive than I'm used to; not sure if it was any quicker. Certainly the freehub was a lot louder. I think manuals felt different, but it's a little hard for me to put my finger on how.

    They haven't made me turn into Steve Peat all of a sudden, but I think that having a little quicker handling and not having to fight the bike as much will facilitate me continuing to improve my handling skills. And it's nice to have the front and back wheel match each other again, no matter how little that effects performance. I think I'm done upgrading this bike - only thing left is the seat post anyway.


    bww wheels 006 by Andrew183, on Flickr
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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