Thursday, July 14, 2011

Ben's 29er wheels. Affordable go fast upgrade.

People who have spent any time reading this blog know that I'm all about wheels.  A wheel upgrade will make  more of a noticeable difference than any other part on your bike.   Ben bought an entry level 29er from us last fall and was looking to get into some nicer wheels to perk things up.  He rides standard trails at moderate paces.  He was looking for smoother rolling hubs, wider rims for increased tire volume, and in general strength and stiffness upgrades.  Sram's excellent X9 disc hubs laced to Stan's Flow tubeless rims with DT butted spokes fulfilled all of these requests.

Ben's bike uses mechanical disc brakes.  In addition to the wheels, we added a set of Ashima brake rotors to perk up the brake performance.  These rotors sell for under $20, and vastly improve braking with Shimano, Hayes, and Avid mechanical brakes.  They are available and in stock now in White, Red, Black or stainless.  The red looks really good on these wheels, and will look great on Ben's red Fisher.

This is a really great looking set up.  It will be spin up faster, roll easier, and work better than his current set up.  Aesthetically they will really set the bike apart, and functionally they will be a huge improvement.  

This set up as pictured costs right around $400 and offers a great performance value for the dollar.  I know Ben will be quite happy with these.

Happy Friday all.  Have a good one.


Guitar Ted said...

$400.00!!? Really....that's an amazing bang for the buck right there. Nice wheels that should work really, really well.

Ben said...

Yup, these wheels are $361.98. Rotors are $19.99 per. With tape and valves it brings you pretty close to $400 before tax.

It's a hell of a good value for the performance offered. All good things.

Vito said...

That's very fine looking wheelset. I really like the looks of those red Ashima rotors. They would look great on my Pugsley.

Cleaveland Mountaineering said...

would those rotors in 160 be up for 4,000+ foot Colorado descents on a ~50 lb loaded bikepacking rig?
currently running 185/160 stock rotors and BB7's

Ben said...


I would think they would be fine depending on how you are used to braking. If the 185 up front tickles your fancy now, I would suggest using the same with these rotors. Ashima is coming out with a 185mm rotor soon. They currently have a 180mm offering which works well with minor mods to the caliper hardware on a BB7.

As with any brake choice, what you plus the bike weighs is more important than what the bike weighs alone. If you are north of 185lbs, I might suggest the larger rotor up front. Under that and you'd probably be fine if not needing instant braking with that kind of load. If you plan on doing technical downhills with that set up, you may want to go up to 7" rotors front and rear.

What bar/brake lever set up are you running? I've found a want to go larger with certain flexier levers, mostly on drop bar bikes. On flat bars, with good cables and levers, 160 would probably be just fine.

Cleaveland Mountaineering said...

Ben, I'm 160-170 plus the 40-50 lb bike, after just riding 2 days on the CT, I'd go 185/160 still, with that much tech nasty rocky downhill, I want all the help I can get.
FR-5 levers on Easton EA70 riser bars

Ben said...


I would suggest staying with the bigger front if that is what you are comfortable with. I do think that these rotors really up the stopping power of BB7's, particularly if set up properly. I might suggest looking at a step up in brake levers. Even a jump up to a Avid Single Digit 7 set would make for a lot better feel than the FR-5's. Combine the rotors, new brake levers, and compression less cable housing with slick stainless cables and you'll be amazed at the difference. Shouldn't cost an arm and a leg, and it'll be a huge improvement.