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Im getting ready to start lightweight wheelbuild project. This will be my first wheelbuild and I plan to take it slow, ive worked in bike shops for a few years now and feel its about damn time i built a set. Im going to start with a Mavic Gel 280 32hole rimset that i scored brand new matted to AmClassic road hubs. I think im going to order Dt Revolution 2.0/1.5/2.0 spokes with aluminum nipples in blue. My question is how do you think i should lace them? I weigh 135lbs on average (sometimes 128 for racing sometimes 140 in offseason) and will only use these for road and uphill events. Radial or two cross up front? Three cross rear drive? Im open to suggestions. I hope i can get the weight to around 1100 grams. Ti spokes are out of the question, to expensive.
 

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If it helps at all..

I have worn through two sets of rims already using Revolution Spokes with radial lacing on the front, and 3X on th e rear of my Mountainbike. This setup has lasted for years under hard use.
Last year I built up a set of radial laced front and 3X rear wheels for cross that held up well.

The Gel rims are very lightweight, but with 32 spokes you should be fine.
 

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3x both ends. The GEL280 is a WAY light rim.

I had issues with some GL330s laced onto 9sp hubs. The rim just wasn't strong enough to withstand the dish for very long.

Good luck!

M
 

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at 135 pounds I would do the front radially, rear non-drive radially, and rear drive 2X. Fine true them after each of your first 3-5 rides depending. In other words GO FOR IT!!!

Having said that I weigh about 165 lbs and dont have experience building (or riding)32 hole super lightweight wheels. I've built some 36 campy victory cronos (about 350 grams) some 36 hole Fiamme Red Labels (super old school,about 350 grams) and some 36 hole MA-40's. All were built with 3X or 4X and all are holding up quite well. I had a top of the line park truing stand and a prebuilt wheel to look at. Fun stuff.
 

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Hi. Can someone tell me what is the Mavic Gel 280? I went to Maivic's website but couldnt find it. Also, where can I look for light rims to lace to standard hubs? Thanks.
 

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miketrackman said:
Im getting ready to start lightweight wheelbuild project. This will be my first wheelbuild and I plan to take it slow, ive worked in bike shops for a few years now and feel its about damn time i built a set. Im going to start with a Mavic Gel 280 32hole rimset that i scored brand new matted to AmClassic road hubs. I think im going to order Dt Revolution 2.0/1.5/2.0 spokes with aluminum nipples in blue. My question is how do you think i should lace them? I weigh 135lbs on average (sometimes 128 for racing sometimes 140 in offseason) and will only use these for road and uphill events. Radial or two cross up front? Three cross rear drive? Im open to suggestions. I hope i can get the weight to around 1100 grams. Ti spokes are out of the question, to expensive.
Is this your first wheel build?

If so, you may find it problematic as GEL 280s were very soft and hard to build for all but experienced builders. Your front wheel may be OK, but the rear will be a pig to build and keep straight & round.

When I was racing in the 80's GEL 280's were at the cutting edge but only suitable for the best surfaces. People were wary of them then!

Try building something a little heavier and more importantly modern. The main reason is that the rim will be drilled with modern hubs in mind, ie the soke holes will be canted a slightly different angle which will help with the more extreme dish you get on modern hubs.

My GEL280 on Dura Ace, built 6 years ago with 32 3X Competitions fron and rear were great to ride but if I'd had to pay my builder would have bankrupted me. They just wouldn't stay true. The rims ended up cracking on the drive side spoke holes. 3 other pairs of whells built by the same builder before and after are still going strong. I commute on Ambrosio Crono's which at 350g are the lightest alloy rims available today.
 

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NOS rim

MAVIC Gel 280 is a superlight rim that is only available NOS (new old stock). I believe they were discontinued in the 80s or early 90s. They weren't really that light (280 gm) and were brought out as competitors to the Fiamme Ergal (formerly Fiamme Yellow Label) tubular rim, which really was that light.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
My first build, but ive trued 100s of wheels.

Im enjoying all of the critiques and delighted that so many people have experience with this rim or similiar ones like it. I am looking at the Ambrosio Crono's but I can find anyplace to score a set. The shop that I work for in the summer (I dont work during the school year) cant get them and ive searched a bit online to. Im not to worried about breaking or cracking of the 280 rims. I got these NOS for 40 dollars and if they dont work out for me I may just go with the Ambrosio's. And yes i know they dont weight EXACTLY 280 grams, i checked weightweenies and it seems they ranged from 300-315, which is still about as light as your standard intermediat depth carbon rims from zipp. I'll keep everyone posted on how it goes, my hubs should be here in about a week.
 
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