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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As I said in the another post, I'm looking for a $500 wheelset. I seem to spend most of my road time climbing and descending ( I like the descending way more)

I'm 175 lbs. In mtb, the CX rays are strong and light. You beat the piss out of your rims in mtb. So, it's nice to have something that will hold up and not weight too much on the climbs.

Are the CX rays worth it on road?

They are lighter, but is the extra stiffness helpful? (Especially with a lot of radial laced front wheels)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Zen Cyclery said:
Although I think Cxrays are great spokes, they aren't going to help keep your budget below $500. If your willing to spend a bit more, go for it. However if your absolute max is $500, double butted would save you a few bucks.
but would spending more on the cx rays give me any real benefits?

Better hill acceleration because of lower rotating mass?

Stiffer later wheel to help on the fast turns or out of the saddle efforts?

I have had good luck with mtb especially when branch goes in the wheel. It's nice to see the branch cut, not your spoke broken. I can't say my front wheel faired so well with it's Mavic Al spokes (ST front) in that situation.
 

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Heck if you want light weight why not DT Revolution spokes instead CX Rays? Their about 18 grms less then CX for 64 spokes, so if you have low spoke count wheels then the margin becomes less. But I wouldn't use Revolutions on the rear. I use the Revolution on the front and Competition on the rear. I've heard nothing but good reports on the CX's but you do have to use their polyax nipples.

Aero wise the bladed spoke is a tad better BUT only if there is zero side wind, if there is any side wind you lose all benefits and actually lose ground over a round spoke. A round spoke always presents the same small profile to the air stream, whether the angle of attack is head on or from the side. When you consider the wind direction, speed of the bicycle, and rotational speed of the wheel, it becomes apparent that there is an alphabet soup of aerodynamic considerations happening throughout the course of the ride. For this reason, I believe that butted round spokes present the best real-world aerodynamic profile.

IMO, I would save your money, and get DT Rev's for the front and the Comp's for rear.
 

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Physics?

ziscwg said:
Better hill acceleration because of lower rotating mass?
Do you mean better acceleration when you change speed, or are you thinking that rotating mass somehow applies differently when you are climbing hills (a common misconception).

Acceleration is acceleration whether you are on a hill or on the flats. Lower rotating mass means that you expend less energy to spin the wheels up, but then you lose speed faster when you quit pedaling. However, since this is a very small energy savings in the first place, the spoke weight savings is closer to the hub, and you are not going that fast uphill, the difference due to lower spoke weight would be tiny (compared to the same weight loss from anywhere else on the bike or rider). IOW, dumping out a little water from your bottle would have about the same effect as lighter spokes when climbing.
 

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CX-Rays have an aero benefit on the road... and that is one of their best features. They are the same stiffness as Lasers, XL14s, and Revolutions... which means they are less stiff than heavier spokes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Kerry Irons said:
Do you mean better acceleration when you change speed, or are you thinking that rotating mass somehow applies differently when you are climbing hills (a common misconception).

Acceleration is acceleration whether you are on a hill or on the flats. Lower rotating mass means that you expend less energy to spin the wheels up, but then you lose speed faster when you quit pedaling. However, since this is a very small energy savings in the first place, the spoke weight savings is closer to the hub, and you are not going that fast uphill, the difference due to lower spoke weight would be tiny (compared to the same weight loss from anywhere else on the bike or rider). IOW, dumping out a little water from your bottle would have about the same effect as lighter spokes when climbing.
I actually was interested in how it is changing speed. My biggest weakness are the long climbs at a good pace. I can however go at a more moderate pace with a number of 10-30 sec bursts to keep up. (I guess I'm good at over/unders, not steady state efforts) So, less effort to accelerate is helpful.
 

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2.0/1.8/2.0mm spokes
DT Competitions
Sapim Race

2.0/1.7/2.0mm spokes
Wheelsmith DB14

2.0/1.5/2.0mm spokes
Sapim Laser
Sapim CX-Ray
DT Revolution spokes
DT Aerolites

The thickness of the spokes will determine their stiffness and weight. Bladed spokes are more aero, but rim shape and depth are much bigger determining factors.

-Eric
 

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rruff said:
CX-Rays have an aero benefit on the road... and that is one of their best features. They are the same stiffness as Lasers, XL14s, and Revolutions... which means they are less stiff than heavier spokes.
The aero effect on the road is nonsense. Only time you will have an aero advantage if it's completely windless day, or the wind is either going directly straight at you or from directly behind otherwise you will be at a disadvantage, read my earlier post to find out why. Problem is the wind changes directions and so does your bike.
 

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froze said:
The aero effect on the road is nonsense. Only time you will have an aero advantage if it's completely windless day, or the wind is either going directly straight at you or from directly behind otherwise you will be at a disadvantage, read my earlier post to find out why. Problem is the wind changes directions and so does your bike.
It is obvious that you lack any real world experience whatsoever. I have been riding Cxrays on every single bike that I own (ranging from 29ers to a P2) and I have never ever ever felt negative due to crosswinds simply due to spokes. The rim that your running has a much bigger effect than spokes. But you really think that Cxrays aren't going to give you an advantage in a vicious headwind? Sounds to me like someone didn't do their homework.
 

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froze said:
I've heard nothing but good reports on the CX's but you do have to use their polyax nipples.
Then there's us; lots of us, that have much personal experience with CX-Rays (building, using) and have never used Polyax nipples. Nor have we suffered from not using them. So you've just heard we have to use Polyax nipples right?
 

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froze said:
The aero effect on the road is nonsense. Only time you will have an aero advantage if it's completely windless day, or the wind is either going directly straight at you or from directly behind otherwise you will be at a disadvantage, read my earlier post to find out why. Problem is the wind changes directions and so does your bike.
CX-rays are more aerodynamic from 0 to 30 degrees than either bladed or round spokes.
 

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rruff said:
CX-Rays have an aero benefit on the road... and that is one of their best features. They are the same stiffness as Lasers, XL14s, and Revolutions... which means they are less stiff than heavier spokes.
Correct. I don't know how people get the impression that CX-Rays are stiffer than any other spokes. When it comes to modulus of elasticity, steel is steel, therefore, cross-sectional area (weight) equals stiffness. The actual weight is about 2% more than same-length Revolutions, and about 26% less than same-length DT Comps.
 

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Mike T. said:
Then there's us; lots of us, that have much personal experience with CX-Rays (building, using) and have never used Polyax nipples. Nor have we suffered from not using them. So you've just heard we have to use Polyax nipples right?
I don't use CX Rays, true, but I knew several people who have, and the ones that didn't not use the Polyax nipples had problems that occured after about 15,000 miles (was the lowest mileage) with spoke breakage, and Sapim blamed the lack of use of their Polyax nips caused premature fatigue due to poor seat angle from using competitors nips. The riders I knew that did use the Polyax nips had no long term issues. So I only went by not only what I heard but also experiences of others I knew.
 

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froze said:
I don't use CX Rays, true, but I knew several people who have, and the ones that didn't not use the Polyax nipples had problems that occured after about 15,000 miles (was the lowest mileage) with spoke breakage, and Sapim blamed the lack of use of their Polyax nips caused premature fatigue due to poor seat angle from using competitors nips. The riders I knew that did use the Polyax nips had no long term issues. So I only went by not only what I heard but also experiences of others I knew.
I've been using CX-Rays since 1999 on home-built wheels on both mountain and road bikes and have never broken one and, of course, I haven't used their nipples.

Plus, I get them from a N.American Sapim importer and he also provides the aluminum nipples - generic ones. He's never said that I must use Polyax nipples. He's never even mentioned them.
 

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stevesbike said:
CX-rays are more aerodynamic from 0 to 30 degrees than either bladed or round spokes.
Here's a interesting discussion that occured here back on 3/23/04: Thoughts on Sapim CX-Ray vs. WS AE15/XE14

And here's an unbias research done on wheels and spokes: http://www.soton.ac.uk/~aijf197/Wheels.pdf

Why not the less expensive Wheelsmith AE15 spokes?
 

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Coasting

ziscwg said:
I actually was interested in how it is changing speed. My biggest weakness are the long climbs at a good pace. I can however go at a more moderate pace with a number of 10-30 sec bursts to keep up. (I guess I'm good at over/unders, not steady state efforts) So, less effort to accelerate is helpful.
Sure, but since you are then going to slow down, you get essentially all of that energy back. The only place where reduced rotating weight is different from any other weight is when you are using your brakes to scrub off the extra speed and so losing all of the kinetic energy of the rotating wheel to heat in the brake pads. Otherwise, you spend a bit more energy to spin the wheel up to the new speed, and you get it back when you slow back down. Simple conservation of energy.
 
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