Alternatives to Ksyrium SSL SC

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Aztec, May 13, 2004.

  1. cyclepath

    cyclepath New Member

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    Have a rear Orion wheel being repaired at Velomax right now. Spoke broke flush at the hub. Spoke to my LBS and they didn't want to deal with it even tho they ar a Velomax dealer. I was going down a very steep descent when the spoke broke. Luckily I didn't go over the cliff and into the Pacific Ocean. I was stranded about 15 miles from home and the wheel was unrideable. Couldn't get a cell signal so had to walk and carry my bike for awhile before a got a signal to call a friend pick me up.

    Well after Velomax inspected the wheel they told me that it usually does not brake flush at the spoke. They sounded so "surprised". They told me they a chain had dropped on the spoke and knicked four others. I find that surprising because I had never dropped the chain, esp on the rear cassette. I know that for a fact. Then I got another call stating that the bearings were shot. They were spinning fine before my ride so it must have happened when the spoke broke.

    So fine, I said fix it. Then after waiting about a week, I called them and asked them when should I expect my wheel back. They told me that the rim is not up to their specs and I had to replace that now. The costs were just adding up. I was pis***. I only use these rims on a bike that I use for weekend leisure rides and wanted a set of light wheels. Had them for about 2 years and less than 3k mi. I typically train and race with Ksyriums or Dura Ace 7701s on my other bike. Well, after I received them back I'm selling them and thinking of going with a set of American Classic 350s with DT Competition spokes for added strength and ease of replacement for my Giant TCR Composite. I used to be more impressed by Velomax than Mavic Ksyriums but now I know why people choose Ksyriums. They do seem to be solid set or wheels. This is just my experience with Velomax Orions.

    BTW, anyone have any stories about American Classic 350s or FSA 400s? The FSA are new so I figure feedback should be imminent.
     


  2. fushman

    fushman New Member

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    those reviews for are for the older versions of the clincher 404s, the newer ones are supposed to be solid

    did you say youre getting 28 spoke cxp33s, why get the heavier rim if youre only get 28 spokes
     
  3. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    Fushman, good question, but with a stupid reason... I just don't like the looks of the open pro. I may end up with them yet, but arrrggggg I wanted to avoid them.
     
  4. lokstah

    lokstah New Member

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    Go with something similar from Velocity or Ritchey -- lots of good-quality hoops out there, and they all look a bit different.

    Nothing wrong with caring about how your bike looks. You're spending lots of money on it; you may as well like it for as many reasons as possible.
     
  5. lokstah

    lokstah New Member

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    Hey, just go see Gravy. Make no final call until you've gone over some options there. You tell the guys at Gravy tha you want a wheel which does this, that, and looks cooler than an OpenPro build, they'll understand.
     
  6. crystal_tears_

    crystal_tears_ New Member

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    Best not to skimp on the spokes. Get the Sapim's instead. They're stronger than the DT's so are worth the extra dosh.

    You're a bit out on your maths i'm afraid. Believe it or not a CXP 33 only weighs 35 g more than an Open Pro.

    Zipp 303 clinchers are comparable in weight to the Eurus but the deeper carbon rims on the Zipps are much lighter than typical alloy deep section rims.
     
  7. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    Crystal-T, my bad on the math. Different weights are quoted in different places. Per Mavic (can ya trust the French? ;-)) are 470g vs. 425g. So we both have math issues! Interesting take on the spokes. The Sapim's are about $2 more/spoke (another reason for a low spoke count!) and thus about $120. Yow! But then again, one blown spoke in Bum F Egypt...

    Lokstah -- All the deep Velocity rims are bricks (mid-500g), but I'll check out the non-aero. Also, I did see Gravy (cool). They are Zipp-happy (~$1200) for the race wheels (tubs only -- they didn't dig the clincher idea), and are high on the ceramic Open Pro for the training wheels. They forgot, though, that my Power Tap is 28h, and ceramic OPros don't come in that.

    Anyway, back to the race wheels (or rather mostly-race wheels, some training). I have nixed the Rolf Vigors... those spokes are miles apart, and they can't be trued with the rubber on there. F that. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

    The American Classic 420s look like a bargain, relatively speaking. I'd get to stay with clinchers, have a rim no heavier than the OPros, use DT Revo spokes, and save about 4 fat bills vs. the Zipps. Of course, the Zipps are 200g lighter, and 25mm deeper, and really sexy...
     
  8. drewjc

    drewjc New Member

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    I know for a fact that the velocity rims in competition with open pros (razor and aerohead/shallow V) are both lighter than the mavics (not by much mind you 10-20g). Even though the deeper V rims are a tad heavy. I have a pair of the aero heads built with sapim CX-rays and they are very light and extremely stiff too. I love them and would recommend them with whatever hubs you decide to use. Record/Powertap sounds great!
     
  9. crystal_tears_

    crystal_tears_ New Member

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  10. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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  11. Kaboom

    Kaboom New Member

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    For crits? i thought they were close to two kg. U could go with Elites (what i have) for a third of the price and they are still lighter. I've BASHED mine and only minor truing required (once)
     
  12. crystal_tears_

    crystal_tears_ New Member

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    No need to get shirty dear boy.
     
  13. sd5500

    sd5500 New Member

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    Why not the Polf Prima Elan Areos, or the Velomax Ascent IIs? Both very light clinchers.
     
  14. lokstah

    lokstah New Member

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    A hundred grams doesn't make a difference in your average crit -- the Carbone is billed as stiff and aero, at a reasonable weight.

    It's both more aero and more stiff than the Ksyrium Elites.

    Not to bash the Ksyrium line (Equippes through SSC SLs); they're great wheels. They occupy a different niche than the Carbones, is all.
     
  15. splichty

    splichty New Member

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    ksyriums reliable? I'm ready to give up on them, just broke spoke #3, leaving me with a long walk home--again. I'm wondering if the frame (03 litespeed vortex) is out of whack somehow, no crashes and minimal rider weight (135 lbs). Before riding the SSL SCs, I rode for 25-plus years with zero wheel problems, including broken spokes. What gives?!
     
  16. mfhor

    mfhor New Member

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    Training on Carbones? Not even pros do that. Get yourself some heavy, slow (ish)wheels for training. Then watch as you exit the stratosphere on your fast wheels.

    M "resistance training" H
     
  17. Tuschinski

    Tuschinski New Member

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    me and my brother went with custom wheels:

    DT 240s Hubs (32 behind, 28 radial front)
    DT Aerolite spokes
    DT R1,1 Rims
    Prolock Alu Nipples.
    Chorus Cassette (I just couldn't justify Record)

    I have high hopes about the durability of this set (Especially considering I weigh about 65 kgs).
     
  18. need11@46

    [email protected] New Member

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    I have a set of SSL's (2004). They're nice, but a bit stiff for me. Also, in breezy conditions, you can feel the resistance against the flat spokes, which are quite wide (about 4mm?).

    I also have wheels built with:
    1. Zipp 95/220's/Sapim CX-Ray/DT Swiss R1.1's.
    2. AC/Sapim CX-Ray/DT Swiss R1.1 (1474g with 28 spoke rear, but I'm replacing with a 32 spoke rear - 28's are too light for 220lbs).
    3. DT 240s'/Sapim CX-Ray/DT Swiss R1.1's.
    4. Record 04/Sapim CX-Ray/DT Swiss R1.1's.

    All of my wheels are built by Gravy Wheels. Ask for Julia and tell her the demanding client from So. Cal. sent you. I like the Zipp and the DT set the best. All of these wheels ride smoother than the SSL's and I don't fight crosswinds as much with the thinner, but still aero, spokes. The rear hubs are quieter too. There is nothing wrong with the SSL's. I'm sure everyone will have a preference. Good luck.
     
  19. tafi

    tafi Member

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    Ksyrium SSC are made with Aluminium spokes which are prone to fatigue over time. I have heard that a set of race only wheels will last only a year or so before they at least begin to go sloppy. Spoke breakages can also be common when this happens.

    They do have an advantage of being a fairly light set of wheels but the idea that the minimal number of heavily bladed spokes gives a huge aerodynamic advantage is not quite so true. Aerodynamic studies have shown that a deep rim with more spokes is measurably more aerodynamic than a lower profile rim with few spokes. Granted, spokes do travel through the air as well but they are partially sheltered by the rim itself (at the point where they travel fastest) and so altering their profile/number won't have as great an aerodynamic effect.

    Something else to take into account is that we generally test our wheels in training first. most of us live in cities where we need to travel through stop start traffic before finding a nice place to ride. Sprinting away from lights is usually the place where we notice the weight of the wheel (or rim more precisely). Once the speed is wound up inertia effects make no difference at all. In fact added inertia can be advantageous in certain circumstances like a flywheel used to store energy from the downstroke to help make the upstroke easier. The time we spend accelerating is very small compared to the total ride time.
    As well as this the the fact that though they may accelerate a bit slower, they also take a bit longer to decelerate perhaps makeing them a better choice on races with shorter sharper pinches.
    In fact depending on climbing speeds a 4km 5% climb is faster on a pair of Cosmic Carbones than on a pair of Campag Neutrons.

    These are some thoughts that I have picked up. An interesting link is www.analyticcycling.com but it's not the only one.

    Cheers
     
  20. Aztec

    Aztec New Member

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    I ended up going with Gravy to build my wheels, around a Powertap hub. I went with the same DT 1.1 rims (I'm glad to see you did -- it validates for me what I thought was a better product than the Mavics, even though I just learned about them and had seen none). The front is Record '04, and spokes are CX-ray, 28h radial fr and 2x rr. They ride smoothly, and are definitely stiffer laterally than the Velocity Spartacus Pro wheels that I swapped onto my other bike. When climbing hard, especially out of the saddle, they feel nice and tight. The Spartacus wheels would 'tink' and 'creak' sometimes.
     
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