Wheel/Tire questions



beison

New Member
Feb 18, 2008
52
0
0
So I'm getting pumped for the start of the collegiate road season this weekend in Ohio state, and since this is my first season racing, I got a couple questions about wheels and tires.

Now a mechanic/ex cat 3 racer I really respect, gave me some very opinionated advice concerning wheels. He said that there are really very few benefits to low spoke count wheelsets, and I should stick to no lower than a 32 spoke. He also really pushed me to get quality racing tires in the 700x25c variety, instead of 23's. I'm on the heavier side at 180, but I got 8% body fat, so the most I'd drop is 5 lbs to race at 175 for the season.
So I guess I was wondering if low spoke count/bladed spokes makes a big difference for heavy sprinters? Also, how 'bout those tires? I mean, all I ever see the protour guys riding are 23's... does it really make a big difference?
 

[email protected]

New Member
Dec 30, 2007
2,111
4
0
beison said:
So I'm getting pumped for the start of the collegiate road season this weekend in Ohio state, and since this is my first season racing, I got a couple questions about wheels and tires.

Now a mechanic/ex cat 3 racer I really respect, gave me some very opinionated advice concerning wheels. He said that there are really very few benefits to low spoke count wheelsets, and I should stick to no lower than a 32 spoke. He also really pushed me to get quality racing tires in the 700x25c variety, instead of 23's. I'm on the heavier side at 180, but I got 8% body fat, so the most I'd drop is 5 lbs to race at 175 for the season.
So I guess I was wondering if low spoke count/bladed spokes makes a big difference for heavy sprinters? Also, how 'bout those tires? I mean, all I ever see the protour guys riding are 23's... does it really make a big difference?

The only way a wheel will make a 'significant' difference is if it fails. Conventional wheels, built well is the way to go. Have a good wheelbuilder design and build a wheelset specifically for you and your needs.

25c tires give a bit more 'cushion' and will help to prevent pinch flats. Remember all the 'protour guys' have a legion of wrenches and a van full of spares PLUS neutral support. I wouldn't put a lot of credence in anything those guys use and abuse.
 

buckybux

New Member
Jul 14, 2005
227
0
0
I am 160 lbs, and ride a 23mm tire and have 24 spokes on the rear wheel. After 5000 miles, I have not had any problems.
 

kdelong

Well-Known Member
Dec 14, 2006
3,477
67
48
The only way a wheel will make a 'significant' difference is if it fails. Conventional wheels, built well is the way to go. Have a good wheelbuilder design and build a wheelset specifically for you and your needs.

25c tires give a bit more 'cushion' and will help to prevent pinch flats. Remember all the 'protour guys' have a legion of wrenches and a van full of spares PLUS neutral support. I wouldn't put a lot of credence in anything those guys use and abuse.
+1. Just remember that there are not many of those protour guys who weigh 180 lbs. Take the advice of your mechanic. He knows you and your riding style better than we do so he is in a much better position to advise you than we are.
 

geraldatwork

New Member
Dec 13, 2006
21
0
0
I am a recreratonal rider not a racer but at 210 lbs and a masher I can put some hurt into my wheels and tires. I agree with the high spoke count verses thicker spokes and a lower count. I had wheels built with 32 in the rear and 28 in the front and after about 5000 miles haven't had any problems. Also due to using (expensive)light weight but strong Sapim CX-Ray spokes the wheels come in under 1600 grams, fairly light for a guy my size at a reasonable cost of $400. As far as the tires I only ride on 23 cm tires at a relatively low 170/108 lbs and haven't had a flat, pinch or otherwise for about the last 3000-4000 miles.