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  1. #1
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    Advantges of singlespeed specific wheels

    Are there any advantages to ss specific wheels/hubs? Looking to build up a set and just in case I want to go 1x9/10 in the future, I was going to get a regular geared hub. I've got plenty of spacers, so that's not an issue. In fact, I think it's even better to be able to fine tune the chainline with spacers.

    Any reason why I should go SS specific?

  2. #2
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    No dish on the wheel - they say its stronger. They say that. I believe it.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ernesto_from_Wisconsin
    No dish on the wheel - they say its stronger. They say that. I believe it.
    It could be true, but most people with geared bikes don't complain about wheels not being strong enough. Or something. SS specific spokes on the other hand...

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by umarth
    It could be true, but most people with geared bikes don't complain about wheels not being strong enough. Or something. SS specific spokes on the other hand...
    that's what they say, see?

  5. #5
    Duckin' Fonuts.
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    you can't change your mind from good to evil so easily...

  6. #6
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    Good job!

    Quote Originally Posted by Nonracerrichie
    you can't change your mind from good to evil so easily...

    Yeah, that!

  7. #7
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    Quote Originally Posted by ernesto_from_Wisconsin
    that's what they say, see?
    What a wicked web.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nonracerrichie
    you can't change your mind from good to evil so easily...
    Don't you have that backwards? Technically speaking...

  9. #9
    playin hooky
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    Compromise

    I run a cheap old Ritchey offset rim - by chance not by design tho.

    Probly the advantage of SS-spec is no spacers looks better.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by struggleT
    I run a cheap old Ritchey offset rim - by chance not by design tho.

    Probly the advantage of SS-spec is no spacers looks better.
    And boy oh boy those spacer-less hubs sure make for a pretty hefty price tag sometimes!

    It's not like it's a 29er thing where you NEED to have the 29er wheels ..... if you have "the hubs" and "the spokes" then great. If you don't ..... then that's great, too.

    Upgrade your wheels for "the right reasons", like less weight or maybe upgrading to better design/bearings/freehub/wheel mechanism. You know, usefull ****.
    I ..... need ..... DIRT!!!!!

    ... and cookies.

  11. #11
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    SS cassette hubs are nice as they can also run as a geared configuration. Depending on cassette/hub combo can actually get up to 8, 6 easily...i have a 6 speed cassette hub for wheni want to run it geared

    i lost the 3 small cogs in doing so but i dont care about the tall gears anyway, i.e., its a 17-34t XT cassette basically

    having said that, i dont need the theoretical extra strength of a dishless wheel...i just HATE the way non SS hubs look on SSs...shallow, but true

  12. #12
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    Ok, so aesthetics aside, no benefits.

    Thanks all.

  13. #13
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    Other than what THEY say about a dishless rim being stronger. But I think if you are having a nice set of wheels built up, then the mechanic doing the build can build you a strong set of wheels whether they have dish or not.

    +1 on the SS specific hubs look nicer. Just cleaner imo. Red Kings rock but my Whites were considerably cheaper.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by p nut
    Ok, so aesthetics aside, no benefits.

    Thanks all.

    sorry... did you miss the repeated comments about "dishless" "stronger" etc?
    look, it's easy to figure out: even spoke length=even tension=higher spoke tension available over the entire wheel=stronger wheel.

    can't have the same spoke tension side to side whent he spoke angles and lengths are different.
    If steel is real then aluminium is supercallafragiliniun!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by p nut
    Ok, so aesthetics aside, no benefits.

    Thanks all.
    as others noted...more betterer/stronger wheel. having said that, whether the theoretically stronger wheel amounts to anything tangible for you on the trail is another matter but yeah, advantage in strength on paper.

    But of course if you want to run 9 or 10 gears out back then its an obvious disadvantage

    And don't discount the benefits from aesthetics. I got laid once in the past 2 years and am pretty sure it would be zero if i ran a geared cassette hub out back on the SS
    Last edited by FoShizzle; 06-16-2010 at 10:09 AM.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by byknuts
    sorry... did you miss the repeated comments about "dishless" "stronger" etc?
    look, it's easy to figure out: even spoke length=even tension=higher spoke tension available over the entire wheel=stronger wheel.

    can't have the same spoke tension side to side whent he spoke angles and lengths are different.
    sure, but theoretically stronger or noticeably stronger?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    as others noted...more betterer/stronger wheel. having said that, whether the theoretically stronger wheel amounts to anything tangible for you on the trail is another matter but yeah, advantage in strength on paper.

    But of course if you want to run 9 or 10 gears out back then its an obvious disadvantage

    And don't discount the benefits from aesthetics. I got laid once in the past 2 years and am pretty sure it would be zero if i ran a geared cassette hub out back on the SS


    well there you go.....men who prefer vaginas run the SS rear hub.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn
    sure, but theoretically stronger or noticeably stronger?
    noticeably for me. considerable difference.
    like the difference between riding a mavic 221 and a 321 you know?
    one works fine but the other just does everything a bit better.
    keeping the wheel in line in the chop is way easier, doesn't step out on me.
    power to the rear wheel? don't know how quantifiable the difference is, but there's definitely a stiffer feel there.
    like riding profiles versus square taper cranks. you DO feel it springs a bit quicker when you pedal.

    much like 2.5" tires, profiles, hydraulics over cable brakes... you won't miss it till you try it.
    not trying to sell you, I only have 2 dedicated ss hubs in use right now, but ridden more conversions than dedicated wheels in the last year.
    but if you like ss enough to buy dedicated frames, get a dedicated wheel.
    i've got a paul's/kris holm 29er
    woodman/atomlab 24"
    wtb sshub/wtb rim 29er
    and profile cassette on atomlab dhr 26er (actually being used as a 6 speed)

    also ridden in last year:
    xtr/618 conversion
    spinergy conversion
    mavic aksium conversion
    xt/321 conversion
    probably others...
    If steel is real then aluminium is supercallafragiliniun!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by byknuts
    noticeably for me. considerable difference.
    like the difference between riding a mavic 221 and a 321 you know?
    one works fine but the other just does everything a bit better.
    keeping the wheel in line in the chop is way easier, doesn't step out on me.
    power to the rear wheel? don't know how quantifiable the difference is, but there's definitely a stiffer feel there.
    like riding profiles versus square taper cranks. you DO feel it springs a bit quicker when you pedal.

    much like 2.5" tires, profiles, hydraulics over cable brakes... you won't miss it till you try it.
    not trying to sell you, I only have 2 dedicated ss hubs in use right now, but ridden more conversions than dedicated wheels in the last year.
    but if you like ss enough to buy dedicated frames, get a dedicated wheel.
    i've got a paul's/kris holm 29er
    woodman/atomlab 24"
    wtb sshub/wtb rim 29er
    and profile cassette on atomlab dhr 26er (actually being used as a 6 speed)

    also ridden in last year:
    xtr/618 conversion
    spinergy conversion
    mavic aksium conversion
    xt/321 conversion
    probably others...
    are you comparing wheels built with the same rims and spokes though?

  20. #20
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    Much of the idea that a SS specific hub is stronger is a misunderstanding of the difference between stock, geared hub wheels and custom built SS wheels. While there is a marginal decrease in the strength of a wheel dished for multiple gears, there is a huge difference in the strength of a wheel that is tensioned properly and the ones that are mass produced for stock wheelsets both on bikes and for sale individually. Most of the longevity and impact resistance of a wheel is created by even spoke tension. If there are no loose spokes and no overly tight ones, then the loads exerted on the wheel are evenly absorbed by the whole wheel whereas uneven tension can cause the rim to deform under the same loads. Spoke tension guages can be used to detect differences as small as a few pounds and though slight inconsistancies in rims will almost always lead to variances in each spoke's tension, a good mechanic can make a wheel that will last a very long time no matter the type of hub used.

    Back in the day before 8 speed mountain bikes, the trick was to take Ultegra 600 hubs (8 speed), put 135mm axles in them with appropriate spacers, a 7 speed 13-(your choice here) mountain cassett and a seperate 12 tooth cog on the freehub to make 8 speed mountain bike rear wheels. The 'ghost shift' after the last click on 7 speed thumb shifters was the eighth gear and viola 24 speed mountain bikes in the early 90s. I'm rambling, but the point is that some of these wheels are still out there though they have an even greater dish than modern MTB geared hubs entirely because they were built well!
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  21. #21
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    A SS specific hub is stronger & better.

    Stronger & better as I just had a wheelset built up with one.

    So know that regardless of which hub you choose, it will be the better & stronger of the two. It is the MTBR way.

    P

  22. #22
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    SS specific lets you run this...

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/31304119@N05/3368791093/" title="IMG_1047 by coachjon77, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3445/3368791093_fff9a3c155.jpg" width="489" height="500" alt="IMG_1047" /></a>

    someday i wouldnt mind having a geared bike also, but as long as i am going singlespeed it is gonna have a white ind. freewheel. i LOVE the trials 18t version. it is killer.

    wheel strength is nice too being a bigger guy
    Winter is coming.

  23. #23
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    I have a 26" single speed bikethat has a rear wheel built with an 8speed hub, one cog and lotsa spacers. I also have a 26" trials bike using a SS hub. They both have straight gague Wheelsmith 14g spokes (32). I am about 320lbs. Ihave been building wheels for almost 20 years, and yes; I built both of these wheels( I have built wheels for state champs, and nationally ranked riders, I was selected to be the Mech for a RAAM team, and spent a year as a sponsered NORBA racer, I have been a tech in a number of bike retailers coast to coast and have ran the service department for a few of them. I did try switching the wheels form one bike to the other to see if there was any difference.
    Simply put: the 8speed wheel (dished spokes) flexes considerably more than the SS wheel.
    On my mtn bike that I do trail riding with I do not mind the flex that much. On the trials bike I want as much precision control as possible so I run SS hub only.

    If you want to save money and have one wheel for multi speed riding and SS then go with dished spokes, otherwise a SS hub is the way to go.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by FirstChameleon
    I have a 26" single speed bikethat has a rear wheel built with an 8speed hub, one cog and lotsa spacers. I also have a 26" trials bike using a SS hub. They both have straight gague Wheelsmith 14g spokes (32). I am about 320lbs. Ihave been building wheels for almost 20 years, and yes; I built both of these wheels( I have built wheels for state champs, and nationally ranked riders, I was selected to be the Mech for a RAAM team, and spent a year as a sponsered NORBA racer, I have been a tech in a number of bike retailers coast to coast and have ran the service department for a few of them. I did try switching the wheels form one bike to the other to see if there was any difference.
    Simply put: the 8speed wheel (dished spokes) flexes considerably more than the SS wheel.
    On my mtn bike that I do trail riding with I do not mind the flex that much. On the trials bike I want as much precision control as possible so I run SS hub only.

    If you want to save money and have one wheel for multi speed riding and SS then go with dished spokes, otherwise a SS hub is the way to go.
    are they built with the same rim, because there can be large differences in stiffness from rims alone

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by boomn
    are they built with the same rim, because there can be large differences in stiffness from rims alone
    Yes, I had a deal form a supplier on a handfull of Mavic 117 SUP cd rims that I builts wheels with for 3 of my bikes and some for a friend as well. I like Mavic for teir use of eyelets on the spoke holes and I have not had a Mavic fail at the joint (not on my bikes anyways).

    Unfortunately being on the heavy side I tend to go thru wheels, I now have a SPIN wheel on the front of my SS mtn bike (retro steel stumpjumper, carbon fiber Judy, ChrisKing HS, Syncros stem/bar, vintage XTR crank, first generation XT linear-pull brakes with Ride-On cables.) and as for the trials bike, I sold those wheels and built a set with Echo Trials Rims and Surly SS hubs, 32 spokes 14g 3-cross (GU 26" trials frame, with - now - most copmponents made by Echo, except the Surly hubs, Salsa stem and Avid Code brakes).
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by coachjon
    SS specific lets you run this...

    <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/31304119@N05/3368791093/" title="IMG_1047 by coachjon77, on Flickr"><img src="https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3445/3368791093_fff9a3c155.jpg" width="489" height="500" alt="IMG_1047" /></a>
    Can I hammer one of those onto my King?
    BBI certified, 12+ years as mechanic

  27. #27
    smell the saddle...
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    Quote Originally Posted by djriddle
    Can I hammer one of those onto my King?
    Not unless your rear hub looks like this.

    Maybe I am just spoiled to the precision of WI ENO freewheels but I could never run a single-speed specific hub. Hope & King are nice, but I rather FW.

  28. #28
    Duckin' Fonuts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by p nut
    Don't you have that backwards? Technically speaking...

    SS=good Gears=evil At least in my head.

  29. #29
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    No, no, ss = dark side

  30. #30
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    Something, something, something dark side... It's a trap! Run Luke, run!

    Anywho, I have rebuilt both the WI and the Kings and must say the the King's design is more precise by a long shot. Not to say that the WI isn't way cool - lots of my friends use them and so have (will) I - but prawls vs Ring Drive is no contest. Nice thing about either one is that they can be rebuilt, though the King does require special tools.
    BBI certified, 12+ years as mechanic

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by djriddle
    ... Nice thing about either one is that they can be rebuilt, though the King does require special tools.
    Rebuildability was a factor in my selection for a SS hub. Using a White freehub means the rear hub is only a shell and 2 bearings, simplicity & reliability like a front hub. Any issues with the freewheel mean the issue is separate from the hub (& therefor no potential for requiring a wheel rebuild).

    I felt I could go a bit lighter on the wheel build in the rear with wider flanges but still keep the stiffness & long term strength.

    Here is a good write up on wheel stiffness testing:
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/rinard/wheel/index.htm

    P

  32. #32
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    Glad you provided the link. Loved that man and he will be missed....

    "A dished wheel might deflect slightly more due to loads applied from the flatter side than it does due to equivalent loads applied from the other, but it is unclear from this data whether this is really the case." -Sheldon Brown

    Note the words 'might', 'slightly' and 'unclear from this data' - I couldn't have said it better. If Sheldon Brown and the engineers of San Diego State couldn't detect a difference using their equipment then neither can a rider. A dished wheel built properly is equivalent to a non-dished wheel of the same spoke type, lacing and equivalent hub (geared King vs SS King for example) as long as the tension of the spokes are the same. The best reason I have ever used to justify a non-dished wheel for single speeds is having to buy only one box of spokes all the same length and the simpler dishing during the wheel build (which might lead to a stronger wheel with a less experienced mechanic).

    Concerning the WI vs the King I would point out that while both claim to have 72 points of engagement, the WI has only four prawls (actually 4 points of engagement) while the King has actually has 72 engagement teeth between the freehub and the hub shell. Prawls are inherently weaker, more likely to be affected by contamination and extreme cold and they wear more quickly. I can't make it anymore obvious that the King is a stronger system except to say that King states that their hub will fail at 800 foot-pounds of torque while WI does not list their torture testing data. No human can generate this amount of torque but it's worth considering in a strength/reliability debate.

    As to the simplicity factor I would say that save for the King's requirement for a spcecial tool there is no 'real world' difference in maintenance as both are designed to be rebuildable, are thoroughly supported with replacement parts by their manufacturers and neither system is serviceable at the side of the trail should the rider ignore the symptoms of impending doom before catastrophic failure. Why would you need to rebuild a wheel if the insides of the hub need service? I have never seen a King hub shell fail and the likelyhood that it should is no greater than any other quality hub that is (again) properly built.

    Ride what you like for your own reasons and so will I. Either one will get you up the hill.
    Last edited by djriddle; 06-20-2010 at 07:42 PM.
    BBI certified, 12+ years as mechanic

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