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Discussion Starter #1
I am look at getting a wheel set that is excelent for all round use. Where I can use it for training and also on the weekend race with it. What do people think about getting Mavic Ksyrium SL SSC or haveing someone bulid me a set of wheels that are just as light? please any thought appreciated.
 

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I've done both. I got a set of SL's in January on team discount. They came to ~$535, so I could not pass up the deal. They are the "best feeling" wheels I've ever owned--a very subjective judgment. K's are noted for being super stiff, but these soak up bumps like nobody's business. Spin very smoothly. Front hub came a little loose after 500 miles, but it tightened up fine. Still in true after 1,000 miles on crappy NYC roads. I might not be able to ride faster, but I can ride further in more comfort.

Again, comfort is subjective. But I've ridden SL's and my handbuilts with same tires, tubes, pressure on same bike and the SL's are more forgiving.

The Ks are now my everyday wheel, replacing a set of handbuilts (Mike Garcia: Velocity Aerohead rims, Speedcific hubs, 32 spokes). Probably cost $200 less. Seem like very, very stiff wheels. I'll use them for racing.

Lots of objective factors to consider, too: If something goes wrong with my K's that I can't fix myself, I can take 'em back to where I bought them and they work on 'em for free. People say replacement Mavic parts are hard to get. I dunno. But I would imagine a good shop in NYC would stock Mavic parts. If something goes horribly wrong, the shop will deal with Mavic on my behalf, ship them back and forth, etc.

If something goes wrong with the handbuilts that I can't fix myself, the shop charges me for the work. If something goes horribly wrong, I've got to send them back to the builder and take the time, trouble and expense to box them up. I've had to do this twice--a pain the arse.

If you've got a generous, trusting friend, see if you can find a pair of SL's to test. I'd be curiuos what you discover.

Clark said:
I am look at getting a wheel set that is excelent for all round use. Where I can use it for training and also on the weekend race with it. What do people think about getting Mavic Ksyrium SL SSC or haveing someone bulid me a set of wheels that are just as light? please any thought appreciated.
 

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The difference

Clark said:
I am look at getting a wheel set that is excelent for all round use. Where I can use it for training and also on the weekend race with it. What do people think about getting Mavic Ksyrium SL SSC or haveing someone bulid me a set of wheels that are just as light? please any thought appreciated.
The primary difference will be that the Kysriums will be a few $100 more for the equivalent performance. Oh yeah, and the bling, the bling! :)
 

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Perception vs. reality

team_sheepshead said:
I've done both. I got a set of SL's in January on team discount. They came to ~$535, so I could not pass up the deal. They are the "best feeling" wheels I've ever owned--a very subjective judgment. K's are noted for being super stiff, but these soak up bumps like nobody's business. Spin very smoothly. Front hub came a little loose after 500 miles, but it tightened up fine. Still in true after 1,000 miles on crappy NYC roads. I might not be able to ride faster, but I can ride further in more comfort..
I think this is a matter of perception, not a matter of objective reality. Contrary to what you say, Ksyriums are not known for super stiffness, nor do they even have ordinary stiffness. Take a look at Damon Rinards wheel stiffness test data and you can see that Ksyriums have about 70% of the lateral stiffness of the ubiquitious 32 spoke Open Pro/Dura-Ace wheels. (Rhetorical question: Why do people still keep claiming Ksyriums are stiff wheels, even though every time the statement is made actual data is produced showing that this is not the case?)

In terms of vertical stiffness of the wheel, don't worry about it. All tension spoke wheels are so very stiff vertically, they might as well be absolutely rigid. There is some data on wheel vertical stiffness in Francois Grignon's study and in Bob Bundy's test of vertical stiffness of various bicycle components in the Rec.Bicycles.Tech FAQ. As can be seen, the vertical stiffness of bicycle wheels is in the range of 10,000 - 20,000 lb/in. This about two orders of magnitude stiffer than the tires. Any flex in the wheels is swamped by the total vertical flex of tires, fork, saddle, handlebars, stem, etc. It is highly unlikely that anyone could actually detect the difference in vertical flex between two different wheels.

team_sheepshead said:
Again, comfort is subjective. But I've ridden SL's and my handbuilts with same tires, tubes, pressure on same bike and the SL's are more forgiving.
Please explain what you mean by "more forgiving". More forgiving of what?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I figured that the Ksyrium are not as stiff as a wheel compared to 32hole wheel. being that I am 195, I would want a stiff wheel. Ok how would a custom wheel with sapim cx-ray of DT revolutions be in tuerms of stiffness? His charts all have DT 2.0 spokes.
 

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Advice

team_sheepshead said:
Front hub came a little loose after 500 miles, but it tightened up fine.
I noticed after my ride today that my front hub is loose too, and I've got about 1,000 miles on the K's. Where you able to fix it yourself? If so, how?
 

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tmanley said:
I noticed after my ride today that my front hub is loose too, and I've got about 1,000 miles on the K's. Where you able to fix it yourself? If so, how?
They should've come with a plastic wrench if you bought them new in the box. It has pins that fit into the hub cover. You stick a 5mm hex wrench in the other side and tighten or loosen as necessary. Pretty easy. If you don't have that wrench you may want to check with your LBS or try an adjustable pin spanner.
 

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I use my Ksyriums everyday and for races. I have one set that's really been through a lot...why just earlier today some kid ran into them with a skateboard. The valve stem got sheared off and it was knocked a bit out of true, but a quick adjustment and it was straight as an arrow. The front wheel has been crashed to hell and it's still going!

The honest truth is, the only reason I run them is because I think they look cool. Otherwise I would go with a custom built pair.
 
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