new wheels = new bike

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by davek, Jun 10, 2004.

  1. davek

    davek Guest

    Well, last weekend I finally ditched the clunky old lumps of steel that were
    weighing my bike down and replaced them with my lovely new (well,
    secondhand) wheels - 32-hole MA3 rims on 105 hubs, fitted with Vittoria
    Rubinos. The verdict? Well, the short version would be: Wheeeeeeeeeee!

    My first proper ride was the Sunday morning club run. We did a fairly
    undulating route and the uppish bits seemed significantly less of a struggle
    than previously. Not surprising really - I tried to weigh the difference
    between the old and the new wheels and it seems I've suddenly dropped
    something in the order of 2kg off the overall weight of my bike. I've also
    gone from chunky 1 1/4" touring tyres to 23mm high-pressure slicks - the
    difference in rolling performance is such that on smooth tarmac it feels
    like I'm gliding with the new wheels, although less-than-smooth surfaces
    suddenly seem a lot harder than before...

    The wheels may be secondhand, but they have been well looked after. The hubs
    are a dream and I reckon there's plenty of life left in the rims - but even
    if there isn't and I need to replace the rims soon, £35 for a pair of 105
    hubs would still be a bargain.

    Today I was working up in the big town and decided to take my bike so that
    on the return journey I could get off the train a stop or two early and get
    a short ride in. And it was abso-bloody-lutely marvellous. This morning's
    rain had all disappeared and the afternoon sun had nicely dried up the
    roads, leaving a pleasantly mild evening - perfect cycling conditions, in
    fact, especially when you factor in the slight tailwind.

    I blasted through the 12.6 miles in a little over 38 minutes - an average
    speed of 19.6mph, which I'm sure is some kind of record for me. And it felt
    wonderful- even though I compensated for the lighter weight of the new
    wheels by having a backpack (containing all my day-in-the-office
    accoutrements), the difference in the way my bike feels with the new wheels
    meant that the route suddenly seemed somewhat flatter than before...

    Another big difference with the new wheels is the gearing. I've gone from
    having a five-speed 14-28 freewheel to an eight-speed 11-28 cassette, so
    I've now got two extra gears at the top end (11t and 12t) and one extra gear
    in the 14-28 range (only one, but it's enough to make a noticeable
    difference). I was a bit dubious about needing the 11t sprocket, but it's
    hard to find off-the-shelf cassettes that give a closer-spaced range
    combined with a lower top end, especially on my budget. And I do still
    appreciate having the 28t big sprocket (my small chainring is 42t, so my
    bottom gear is still not especially small, even by modern road bike
    standards - my calculations tell me 42*28 is the same as 39*26). Having
    ridden it, I'm glad to have the 11t sprocket - paired with the 52t
    chainring, that's a pretty big top gear I've got now (and a huge increase on
    my previous top gear), so I've only used it a couple of times, on the odd
    occasion when I've had a proper hill to go down, but those occasions have
    been almost obscenely good fun.

    Anyway, I am one very happy bunny. With recent upgrades to my brakes and now
    my wheels, I've breathed new life into my old bike (next job I'm saving up
    for is a respray) and further boosted my enthusiasm for cycling - of course
    it's not just the wheels, it's partly my rapidly improving fitness that's
    making the difference, but when your bike allows you to convert improved
    fitness into increased speed, rather than just sucking up your extra energy
    and wasting it, it does give you a lot of extra motivation.

    My club mentor (it's an ad hoc designation I've just come up with for want
    of better words) is talking about entering a local road race in September, a
    prospect that not so long ago would have scared me witless - but now it's
    something that I would relish. Roll on September!

    d.
     
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  2. Mark South

    Mark South Guest

    "davek" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Well, last weekend I finally ditched the clunky old lumps of steel that were
    > weighing my bike down and replaced them with my lovely new (well,
    > secondhand) wheels - 32-hole MA3 rims on 105 hubs, fitted with Vittoria
    > Rubinos. The verdict? Well, the short version would be: Wheeeeeeeeeee!


    MA3s, hmm? How many spokes have pulled through the rim so far? :)
    --
    Mark South: World Citizen, Net Denizen
     
  3. davek

    davek Guest

    Mark South:
    >MA3s, hmm? How many spokes have pulled through the rim so far? :)


    None yet, but I've done less than 70 miles on them so far. Give them
    a chance...

    How far back does this problem with MA3s go? ie when did they change the
    design so that spokes pulling through became a problem - or have they
    always been like that?

    Anyway, like I said, I paid a mere £35 for the pair and the hubs are in
    fine condition, so if I have to get new rims some time soon I won't be
    too upset (as long as they don't fail on me at an awkward moment) - I'll
    just have an excuse to fit fancy new rims.

    d.



    --
     
  4. Tony B

    Tony B Guest

    > (next job I'm saving up for is a respray)

    once I've drank me tea I'll be off to the local powder coating place to pick
    up my Raleigh frameset, the fixed cog project is moving on a pace... anyway,
    they have done it for £17.50!!! Bless... not seen it yet though, so it could
    be horrid...


    bfn,

    Tony B
     
  5. Simonb

    Simonb Guest

    davek wrote:
    > Mark South:
    >> MA3s, hmm? How many spokes have pulled through the rim so far? :)

    >
    > None yet, but I've done less than 70 miles on them so far. Give them
    > a chance...
    >
    > How far back does this problem with MA3s go? ie when did they change
    > the design so that spokes pulling through became a problem - or have
    > they always been like that?


    Like a lot of things, MA3s get mixed reviews, though mostly good. Don't know
    what Mark's talking about.

    Enjoy the new wheels. I couldn't believe the difference between my old OEM
    wheelset and a brand new pair of Open Pro/Ultegra. Felt like the bike could
    just roll forever.

    When you get a fancy set, it makes you conscious of the need to keep your
    bearings correctly adjusted.
     
  6. Mark South

    Mark South Guest

    "Simonb" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > davek wrote:
    > > Mark South:
    > >> MA3s, hmm? How many spokes have pulled through the rim so far? :)

    > >
    > > None yet, but I've done less than 70 miles on them so far. Give them
    > > a chance...


    It'll be good to hear how you get on with them.

    > > How far back does this problem with MA3s go? ie when did they change
    > > the design so that spokes pulling through became a problem - or have
    > > they always been like that?


    There have been a lot of reports of spokes pulling through when the wheels are
    correctly tensioned. This has been attributed to the eyelet design in these
    rims, which is a place where mavic has saved some cost and weight.

    It's less of a problem with undertensioned wheels, but i that case one can
    expect to start breaking spokes.

    > Like a lot of things, MA3s get mixed reviews, though mostly good. Don't know
    > what Mark's talking about.


    Mark's talking about hearing lots of reports of spokes pulling through MA3s.

    But I suspect you did know that.

    > Enjoy the new wheels. I couldn't believe the difference between my old OEM
    > wheelset and a brand new pair of Open Pro/Ultegra. Felt like the bike could
    > just roll forever.
    >
    > When you get a fancy set, it makes you conscious of the need to keep your
    > bearings correctly adjusted.


    Amen.
    --
    Mark South: World Citizen, Net Denizen
     
  7. Simonb

    Simonb Guest

    Mark South wrote:

    > Mark's talking about hearing lots of reports of spokes pulling
    > through MA3s.
    >
    > But I suspect you did know that.


    No, I didn't. That's why I'd no idea what you were talking about.
     
  8. Mark South

    Mark South Guest

    "Simonb" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Mark South wrote:
    >
    > > Mark's talking about hearing lots of reports of spokes pulling
    > > through MA3s.
    > >
    > > But I suspect you did know that.

    >
    > No, I didn't. That's why I'd no idea what you were talking about.


    It must have been clear from the context.

    Maybe I'm just one of those heathens....
    --
    Mark South: World Citizen, Net Denizen
     
  9. MartinM

    MartinM Guest

    "Mark South" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > "davek" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]
    > > Well, last weekend I finally ditched the clunky old lumps of steel that were
    > > weighing my bike down and replaced them with my lovely new (well,
    > > secondhand) wheels - 32-hole MA3 rims on 105 hubs, fitted with Vittoria
    > > Rubinos. The verdict? Well, the short version would be: Wheeeeeeeeeee!

    >
    > MA3s, hmm? How many spokes have pulled through the rim so far? :)


    I've had mine 18 months with no trouble whatsoever and done servile 2-400's on them
     
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