Blog: May, 2016

15 May 2016

Asymmetric rims

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This build used DT Competitions to lace Hope Pro4 hubs to WTB Asym rims, in this case a 650b (27.5″) wheelset. Asymmetric rims aren’t strictly new but the number and variety of models on the market is improving. The idea is simple — spokes land to one side of the rim instead of the centre. This counteracts the natural asymmetry in rear wheels, resulting in more even tension. I’m a fan.

01 May 2016

Straight gauge good

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There’s straight pull spokes, which are to be avoided, and there’s straight gauge. Not the same.

In my day I’ve said one or two negative things about straight gauge spokes. The main problem is they have less fatigue life than butted spokes. Does that really matter? If your rims last forever or you regularly break spokes or tour into the unknown, it might be a concern.

That said there’s a lot to like. Straight gauge spokes, my favourite being Sapim Leader, are especially economical for what you are getting. They are the easiest round spoke to build with bar none. Straight gauge spokes are stiffer than butted spokes, which can help if your rims are little soft or if you’re building with fewer spokes than you might want. A corollary is you can use straight gauge spokes to reduce your spoke count for fashion or aerodynamic reasons.

For the month of May, straight gauge spokes are 10% off. Get some while supplies last! If you want to be notified of sales and promotions, please follow me on Twitter. I post infrequently, mainly announcements and the occasional show of solidarity with bicycle advocates.