Monday, April 22, 2013

When did $1,100 become reasonable...

For $1,100 one could purchase a lot of things.  Heck, some families in the world make due with less than that to support themselves for the whole year.  According to VeloNews dot com, the new series of wheels from DT Swiss "hits a reasonable price point between $1,060 - $1,140."  Reasonable.  Maybe compared to the über expensive wheels that seem to be everywhere.  Eleven hundred dollars is still a lot of money.  I'm sure the wheels are very nice.  DT Swiss makes some great hubs and spokes and rims.  I use a lot of their parts.  Heck, a friend I've known for years works at DT Swiss in Switzerland.  

One thing I do like about these wheels is that it is essentially one wheelset that is offered in different sizes and widths.  They didn't try to reinvent the wheel for each option.  Three diameters, three widths.  About $1,100.  Reasonable.

Now, I'm going to let you in on a little secret.  For $852, I can build you a set of wheels with the excellent White Industries MI6 hubs, No Tubes ZTR rims (Crest, Arch EX, or Flow EX in 26", 27.5", or 29"), DT Swiss black Competition butted spokes with DT Swiss black brass nipples.  That's also complete with NoTubes yellow rim tape and valves.  Tubeless ready for $250 to $300 less than that DT wheelset and with a spoke system that can be serviced anywhere, unlike this one.  Heck, with that savings, you can get yourself set up with new tires, cassette and still have money left over for beer and burgers for all your friends post-ride.  

Okay, one thing you will need.  Depending on the way your wheel fits into your bike, you may need quick releases.  

Makings of a wheelset

(What's playing:   Pixies Hey)


grannygear said...

True, but would they come with all end caps (but 20mm) for front and rear compatibility going forward, the 36 point Star Ratchet system that can be serviced without any tools, a rim that can be run at a higher tension than a soft Stans, and a good chance of actually mounting all the tires on the market place onto the rims?

IIRC, all the spokes are the same length on the new Spline 1 wheels and the dished washer may well make for a better tensioned wheel. Worried about the nips? Toss a couple of nipples in your bag and tape a spoke or two on your frame somewhere and go into the wild.

Just saying. Oh, and the new 240 2 piece shell is darn light too. SO we need to compare wheel weights as well.

But yeah, the cost of stuff now is pretty scary...that I agree with.


Tim said...

I got a tour of the family-style White Ind factory in Petaluma, and it was really cool. No slackers in that crew. I was blown away by the size of the chunks of aluminum they have to start with to carve out parts. Think 'toothpick' from a log....all cuttings straight to recycling of course.

Oh, and when they say "hand-polished", they mean it.

Brian A said...

Hi Mike-

Do you know why Stans doesn't make the Race Gold rim available to wheel builders like yourself?


blackmountaincycles said...

Brian, not sure. It's not something I've asked.

Peter T said...

The good thing is that they are at least moving towards a system with options and user serviceable parts. Even though the options are with their own branded parts. It is still up to the user to make sure they have spare parts. You can be sure that when you break a spoke while on a road trip, that no shop will have any replacement parts in stock!

I will never understand what constitutes 'reasonable cost' when it comes to blingy bike toys. Santa Cruz and Ibis just announced the release of the Bronson and Ripley, and tons of people already put in their orders. I see so many new bike builds with Enve carbon rims. Lots of people also jumping into XX1, even with the high price point. What recession, right?

But I'm not one to talk. I blew my wad on custom titanium.