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  1. #1
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    HED Big Deal/i9 Big Rig Wheels thoughts/reviews?

    Are you pleased with yours? Anything you dont like about them? Problems you've had? Pics? Thanks! Cheers!

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    From my experience with the i9 spokes I would not buy a set mated to the Hed rims. Hed pretty much only allows their builders or certified builders to build their wheels, my set and a few sets that I heard about had spokes severely loosen up during the break in period and i9 even warn of this. So who is going to retention these wheels after the break in period?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    From my experience with the i9 spokes I would not buy a set mated to the Hed rims. Hed pretty much only allows their builders or certified builders to build their wheels, my set and a few sets that I heard about had spokes severely loosen up during the break in period and i9 even warn of this. So who is going to retention these wheels after the break in period?
    Hmm, yeah, that's a big problem. You'd need to find someone who has a spoke wrench.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by SmooveP View Post
    Hmm, yeah, that's a big problem. You'd need to find someone who has a spoke wrench.
    From a wheelbuilding perspective, the I9 straight pull wheel thing has always perplexed me. Tension balance is THE most important aspect of building a durable, long lasting wheel, and wheels don't tension themselves--it takes time, patience, and a little bit of skill to get them there.

    So what, exactly, are you paying for with an I9 wheelset that detensions itself after a few rides?

  5. #5
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    The rims are outstanding. I have several thousand miles on mine with no issue and would buy another one. On the other hand, the HED build was not impressive. I had two spoke nipples break within the first 500 miles -- I have never had this happen on any other wheel in many, many thousands of miles on dozens of bikes over 30 years of bike riding. My build used conventional spokes and nipples, so maybe that wouldn't be an issue with the I9, but from Mike's post, it looks like there are other issues.

    I will say that I have rebuilt the wheels twice by myself without any issues. Once to replace the aforesaid defective nipples and another time to upgrade the hub.
    --Peace

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    As little as 2 months ago (give or take), I9 wasn't offering a "true" 150 spaced front hub, rather they were installing end caps to get to the 150 mark. For the kind of money they are charging for those wheels, I don't want longer end caps, I want a true 150 spaced hub. So unless that has been rectified, they are not on my wish list. Having said that, if I were in the market for a high end set of hoops, and they finally did offer that spacing, I don't see how I could refuse to buy a set with I9 hubs. I did get a set of BD's when I ordered my Borealis, and now find myself wishing I had laced the rims to better hubs. Borealis hubs are fine, if your bike cost a few G's give or take, but they aren't Onyx, I9, or DT, and that's putting it kindly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by litespeedaddict View Post
    As little as 2 months ago (give or take), I9 wasn't offering a "true" 150 spaced front hub, rather they were installing end caps to get to the 150 mark. For the kind of money they are charging for those wheels, I don't want longer end caps, I want a true 150 spaced hub. So unless that has been rectified, they are not on my wish list. Having said that, if I were in the market for a high end set of hoops, and they finally did offer that spacing, I don't see how I could refuse to buy a set. I did get a set when I ordered my Borealis, and now find myself wishing I had laced the rims to better hubs. Borealis hubs are fine, if your bike cost a few G's give or take, but they aren't Onyx, I9, or DT, and that's putting it kindly.
    Thanks for the reply fellas!

    @litespeedaddict I agree with you that if they cost that much they better be laced on better hubs.

    I currently have the i9 torch hugos and so far they have been great. Front is 142spaced. I have had several "spirited" rides and they seem to be ok still. My local dealer also knows how to work on these straight pull spokes and that gives me a little peace of mind.

    Im thinking of getting the i9's BigRig (HED) since they are wider (85mm) and lighter. And by thinking i mean saving also ha!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SmooveP View Post
    Hmm, yeah, that's a big problem. You'd need to find someone who has a spoke wrench.
    It's just not a loose spoke the whole wheel needs to be re-tensioned to the i9/hed correct specified tension. Your right it is not that big of deal but after paying what $2700 for a set a wheels you have to do this (or might)? I see no advantage to the i9 spokes, well not enough to warrant buying them for myself at least again anyways .

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    From my experience with the i9 spokes I would not buy a set mated to the Hed rims. Hed pretty much only allows their builders or certified builders to build their wheels, my set and a few sets that I heard about had spokes severely loosen up during the break in period and i9 even warn of this. So who is going to retention these wheels after the break in period?
    Which i9 did you have? Did you end up selling them or do you still have em?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by JRockF3 View Post
    Which i9 did you have? Did you end up selling them or do you still have em?
    Sorry these where a Stans arch set with the I9 straight pull spokes so not fat but the same system. Since then (fat and non fat) I have had 4 sets (still have 2 of them) of i9 Torch hubs laced to carbon rims (fat and not fat) with standard spokes and they have been flawless. I really like the i9's but I really like them laced with normal spokes their just not as pretty

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    Sorry these where a Stans arch set with the I9 straight pull spokes so not fat but the same system. Since then (fat and non fat) I have had 4 sets (still have 2 of them) of i9 Torch hubs laced to carbon rims (fat and not fat) with standard spokes and they have been flawless. I really like the i9's but I really like them laced with normal spokes their just not as pretty
    Nice! Yeah, I cant lie. I'm drawn by the pretty. Haha my riding skills can't justify the sciences of ANY wheel build. It's nice to ride something you like looking at. cheers!

    What carbon rims do you have?

    Either way, cabon rims + i9 is pricey so I have time to decide.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JRockF3 View Post
    Nice! Yeah, I cant lie. I'm drawn by the pretty. Haha my riding skills can't justify the sciences of ANY wheel build. It's nice to ride something you like looking at. cheers!

    What carbon rims do you have?

    Either way, cabon rims + i9 is pricey so I have time to decide.
    How much more is it for the I9 set compared to the i9 set directly from HED? Guessing round $300-400 more? I have a few sets of the Nextie carbon hoops that have been great with really no issues. That being said if I was going to do it all over again I would prolly just get one set of Heds laced to some i9's instead. Right now I have a set of 90's, 52's, and 35's for my skinny bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bdundee View Post
    How much more is it for the I9 set compared to the i9 set directly from HED? Guessing round $300-400 more? I have a few sets of the Nextie carbon hoops that have been great with really no issues. That being said if I was going to do it all over again I would prolly just get one set of Heds laced to some i9's instead. Right now I have a set of 90's, 52's, and 35's for my skinny bike.
    It will be $150 difference i was quoted between the torch from i9 and jbends from HED

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by JRockF3 View Post
    It will be $150 difference i was quoted between the torch from i9 and jbends from HED
    That would even temp me but I would have to fight the urge and go j bend. To me at least it's not worth the headaches that could develop ymmv. They sure are sexy though.

  15. #15
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    I just read that I9 have increased the thread pitch on their aluminum spokes to reduce the chance of nipples loosening.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    I just read that I9 have increased the thread pitch on their aluminum spokes to reduce the chance of nipples loosening.
    Good to know. Hope it helps.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    Good to know. Hope it helps.
    ++2

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    From a wheelbuilding perspective, the I9 straight pull wheel thing has always perplexed me. Tension balance is THE most important aspect of building a durable, long lasting wheel, and wheels don't tension themselves--it takes time, patience, and a little bit of skill to get them there.

    So what, exactly, are you paying for with an I9 wheelset that detensions itself after a few rides?
    You get the absolute lightest spokes and some bling factor, I guess. I mostly agree with what you're saying. Straight-pull spokes and the hubs with angled entry points make some sense on paper at least, by eliminating the J-bend and optimizing the spoke angle. In the real world, traditional hub flanges and j-bend spokes work fine when you're using steel spokes. Putting a j-bend in an aluminum spoke seems like asking for trouble, which is why i9 went with straight pull. But the downsides are real: expensive proprietary spokes, more frequent breakage, and having to remove the tire and rim tape to replace one. Also, when you break a spoke, the wheel goes seriously out of true. That said, I have a set of their super light wheels which I rode pretty hard from 2008-2011, and they've held up well despite my willful neglect. I've replaced a half dozen spokes and a few bearings, but never bothered re-tensioning the wheels and they still spin true.

    They DO work, though, and if you're willing and capable to stay on top of the maintenance, go for it. The economics are hard to justify personally. I built my Hope/Nextie wheels for under $1000, and they're within 100 grams or so of the Big Rigs.

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