Wednesday, November 17, 2010

New Hoops

I decided several months ago that some lighter wheels were in order for my XTC 29er. The standard Giant rims are just that. Giant! To their credit they are very stiff, but popping them on the scales reveals that they are porky as well. 2.41 kilograms(5.3 pounds) with tubeless rim strips! Another good reason to change the wheels is from an aesthetic point. There is just too much GIANT branding all over the bike.

I wanted a reasonably light wheel set, that could still handle an 85 kilogram rider "floating" over some rough terrain. After quite a bit of research I decided on a set of Stan's ZTR Crest rims rolling around a pair of Hope Pro II hubs, laced up with DT Swiss Competition spokes. The Crest rims have a recommended maximum rider weight of 80kg, hence my opting for the heavier gauge spokes than if I was going for an all out lightweight wheel.
Once all the parts arrived I had the wheels laced up by a reputable local bike shop. Then a friend introduced me to the finer points of wheel building by showing me how poorly tensioned my new wheels were! The old axiom, "If you want something done properly, do it yourself" came to the fore. So I now know how to tension and true a wheel. Pretty simple really! Thank you Chris for the assistance. I guess that means a truing stand and  tensiometer will be on my shopping list.
Set up with Stan's Yellow Tape it was time for the scales. A very pleasing 1.67kg (3.67 pounds) for the pair indicates the effort to source the parts and oversee the build myself were worthwhile.
Putting the finishing touches on I elected to use the current tyres I am running on the Giant rims. A Maxxis Ignitor front and a Crossmark rear. I have had all sorts of problems to get the Ignitors to seat on the Giant rims (I run tubeless) and just quietly I was dreading pumping these tyres up. To my delight they both beaded instantly, as though they were proper UST Tubeless tyres, not the folding bead bretheren that they are!

Now it is just up to me to shake the cold that I acquired at work last week and to get out on the trails. Stand by for the low down on the high end wheels.


  1. Nice looking hoops!!!

    Just don't stand on them like the young Dean0 does!!!

  2. No respect that lad!
    Yes, those wheels will take 30 minutes off my Epic time next year. ;)


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