Beargrease Wheelset -Pisgah NC- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Beargrease Wheelset -Pisgah NC

    I live in western NC and have a 2017 Salsa Beargrease (Carbon). The bike is a lower level, stock build, and I just recently bought a used Bluto (had it rebuilt) and the bike is great for the local rocks, roots, moisture, etc. For the past two years, living in the midwest, the bike was primarily used for winter riding, ice, rivers, etc.

    I've been thinking more about upgrading the wheels to something lighter but strong enough for year round here in western NC. I'm tallish (6-2) and 220 lbs. and ride mostly trail stuff. I ride fairly fast, but don't really abuse or break stuff. FWIW, I have Hope4 hubs laced to Stans Flow MK3 on my Santa Cruz TB3 and they've held up great.

    The stock wheels are Surly My Other Brother Darrel laced to Salsa OEM hubs. I've been having great luck with the stock 4.0 Husker Du's (although the back one is pretty much toast).

    Any recommendations out there for a good wheelset which will cut (significant) weight and still be strong enough?

    I'd say my budget is $7-800. Industry Nine (local and sweet) feels high @ $1300. Maybe, someday for my FS, but not for my fatbike.

    Any thoughts or recommendations would be greatly appreciated. thx!
    Maah Daah Hey

  2. #2
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    I actually have a VERY slightly used wheelset from my Beargrease that was custom built by a bikeshop owned by a friend. Black Industry Nine Torch hubs laced to DT Swiss BR710 rims with Wheelsmith double butted spokes. They have about 50-60 miles total. Rear is 170/177mm and front is 150mm. Looking for $600 shipped to your door. If you are interested PM me and I can send pics!

  3. #3
    since 4/10/2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by arctic slalom View Post
    I live in western NC and have a 2017 Salsa Beargrease (Carbon). The bike is a lower level, stock build, and I just recently bought a used Bluto (had it rebuilt) and the bike is great for the local rocks, roots, moisture, etc. For the past two years, living in the midwest, the bike was primarily used for winter riding, ice, rivers, etc.

    I've been thinking more about upgrading the wheels to something lighter but strong enough for year round here in western NC. I'm tallish (6-2) and 220 lbs. and ride mostly trail stuff. I ride fairly fast, but don't really abuse or break stuff. FWIW, I have Hope4 hubs laced to Stans Flow MK3 on my Santa Cruz TB3 and they've held up great.

    The stock wheels are Surly My Other Brother Darrel laced to Salsa OEM hubs. I've been having great luck with the stock 4.0 Husker Du's (although the back one is pretty much toast).

    Any recommendations out there for a good wheelset which will cut (significant) weight and still be strong enough?

    I'd say my budget is $7-800. Industry Nine (local and sweet) feels high @ $1300. Maybe, someday for my FS, but not for my fatbike.

    Any thoughts or recommendations would be greatly appreciated. thx!
    We've chatted a bit on the trails about this, but I'll put this out there.

    I say keep those stock wheels and set 'em up with a decent snow tire, and possibly even something studded. It'll clearly get limited use, but we do get the occasional big snow dump as well as the occasional ice storm (we've been lucky so far this year with the ice, imo). A studded tire with big, widely spaced knobs for a decent snowfall will give you some flexibility for winter conditions when almost nobody else will be able to ride.

    And if you want a good wheelset for year-round use, I'd look at 50mm rims or so (to use with 3-4" tires and round them out for good "trail" use) or even bump up wheel diameter and go plus with an even narrower 40-45mm rim and 3" tires. FWIW, I'm on 65mm rims with 4" tires and I would never go wider for summer wheels - and would prefer narrower if they were summer-only wheels.

    For the hardtail I'm building, I looked at I9 wheelsets, and just couldn't justify that. That said, I'm still doing I9 wheels. Just with Torch Classic hubs and I'm building them up myself on some good quality DT Swiss rims. Parts are going to put me close to your $800 number. Taking a wheelbuilding class locally in March for the assembly (it's my first wheelset).

  4. #4
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    I've spent a good bit of time in Dupont and Pisgah on various fat tire combos. My favorite has been 27.5x50mm rims with 27.5x3.8 tires, which should fit fine on the Beargrease. These retain some of the fat tire cush/traction, while rolling way faster and providing excellent rim protection as well.


    If you prefer to stay 26" fat.... I agree with Harold, stay at 65-70mm external rim width max for 4" tires (80mm is okay for 4.4-4.8"). IF that's your flavor, check out these build options here - https://www.speedgearbike.com/439078...lithic-26-27-5
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  5. #5
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    Your other Brother Darryls are excellent rims. Keep em as a second wheelset.

    For your warm weather wheelset, check out the new Lithic 27.5x 70mm rim. Lace it to the hub of your liking and pick out a nice 4" tire. It'll be killer.
    I like turtles

  6. #6
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    I have a set of LB 65mm rims that I like for summer and commuting, they are nice because the rim stays more out of the way, so you don't grind the edges of it like you might with a wider rim. Doublewall, so they are pretty strong. Something like the DT swiss 710 would be the opposite, a very flexy aluminum that would be good for softer riding in the winter, but it's so light it has very little material left to add structural rigidity.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  7. #7
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    thanks for all the insight everyone! The speedgear website has SO many options with weights, rim widths, etc. etc.! Thanks for sending that along!

    I think I need to do some more experimenting with plus sizes. Seems to me the narrower carbon stuff (27.5 x 50-70 mm)? with a narrower tire would be a sweet summer and fall set-up. lighter to climb with but still some cush for our local roots and rocks.

    I like the idea of keeping the OEM wheelset (with beefier rubber) as a winter go-to.

    i really do love the carbon beargrease as a trail bike. so fun to stand and hammer on the hardtail.
    Maah Daah Hey

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