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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Rowland Hts, CA
    Posts
    473

    29er Carbon Wheelset...worth it?

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    My husband said that I can start looking into buying the Specialized Fate Expert 2013 (which has an alloy wheelset) that is on sale at a nearby LBS. Unfortunately, I would have to pay $900 to upgrade to the current 2014 Specialized Fate Expert's Carbon Wheelset.

    Is it worth it? Do the Carbon Wheelsets really ride that much better?
    2014 Liv Lust
    2013 Specialized Fate Expert with carbon wheelset (sold)
    2012 Specialized Amira Elite
    2010 Santa Cruz Juliana with R kit and Crampon pedals (sold)

    2011 Specialized Ariel Sport,suspension post,Serfas Rx Women's Microfiber saddle (sold)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,856
    Do you race?

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Rowland Hts, CA
    Posts
    473
    I do not race. But I do enjoy riding with a good bike (unfortunately, I can feel the difference between the intermediate level models and the basic models....and obviously the very expensive, out-of-my price range models). I also have to keep up with my very athletic husband, whose current mountain bike and my potential future mountain bike will be weighing exactly the same - 22pounds. I figure, I need all the help that I can get????
    2014 Liv Lust
    2013 Specialized Fate Expert with carbon wheelset (sold)
    2012 Specialized Amira Elite
    2010 Santa Cruz Juliana with R kit and Crampon pedals (sold)

    2011 Specialized Ariel Sport,suspension post,Serfas Rx Women's Microfiber saddle (sold)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    1,352
    This is the way I see it. Do you need them? No, but if you want them and can afford them there's no reason why you shouldn't have them.
    2012 Jamis Quest Brooks B17 Blue
    2012 Jamis Dakar XC Comp SI Ldy Gel
    2013 Electra Verse

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Columbia River Gorge
    Posts
    3,583
    I am generally not a fan of carbon wheels on mountain or cross bikes. The risk of damaging them out weighs the benefits IMHO.

    Having said that, I've looked into these wheels and they are quite light for the cost and carbon factor. So, if you want to go carbon, they seem like a good deal. They also claim to have reduced the likely hood of damage to the rim through some changes in how the rims are shaped.

    I'm pretty sure you could get a really good (and nearly as light) pair of wheels with alloy rims for less money if you had custom wheels built if you wanted to upgrade later.

    My 2 cents.
    Living life like there's no tomorrow.

    http://gorgebikefitter.com/


    2007 Look Dura Ace
    2010 Custom Tonic cross with discs, SRAM
    2012 Moots YBB 2 x 10 Shimano XTR
    2014 Soma B-Side SS

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Boise Idaho
    Posts
    1,192
    I am just curious about what style of riding this bike would be doing - I don't know enough to offer an opinion. If the terrain is extremely rocky would a carbon wheel be a detriment? If you ride more woods with softer trails than maybe not. I don't own anything that has carbon in it but then I am not a racer and the weight of my bike is not a factor for the style of riding I do.
    Sky King
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    Empowering the Bicycle Traveler
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    4,713
    Quote Originally Posted by Wahine View Post
    I am generally not a fan of carbon wheels on mountain or cross bikes. The risk of damaging them out weighs the benefits IMHO.

    Having said that, I've looked into these wheels and they are quite light for the cost and carbon factor. So, if you want to go carbon, they seem like a good deal. They also claim to have reduced the likely hood of damage to the rim through some changes in how the rims are shaped.

    I'm pretty sure you could get a really good (and nearly as light) pair of wheels with alloy rims for less money if you had custom wheels built if you wanted to upgrade later.

    My 2 cents.
    This. If you're not racing and counting every gram, I don't see the benefits of carbon rims. Too much risk of damaging them, IMHO.
    At least I don't leave slime trails.
    http://wholecog.wordpress.com/

    2009 Giant Avail 3 |Specialized Jett 143

    2013 Charge Filter Apex| Specialized Jett 143
    1996(?) Giant Iguana 630|Specialized Riva


    Saving for the next one...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Suburban MA and Western ME
    Posts
    1,822
    I have a set of Stan's alloy rims that are as light as some of the new carbon offerings that are coming out. They do have weight limits, as well as pressure limits. That said, I love them, and can't think of a reason, really, to switch to carbon (and I race, a lot). My entire bike weighs 22.5 lbs with these wheels and SPD pedals (it's a size L).

    You might want to look at some other options that may be less expensive than carbon. As others have said, depending on your terrain and riding style, the carbon rims could be more prone to damage. I dented an aluminum rim last year on a relatively innocuous gap I have ridden hundreds of times.

    SheFly
    "Well behaved women rarely make history." including me!
    http://twoadventures.blogspot.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,738
    Another vote for Stan's rims. I don't have the exact figures at hand, but my set of Stan's Crests (29er) with 32-hole XTR hubs, double-butted spokes, and brass nipples built up at ~1600 grams. They've done just fine in all sorts of terrain, including some pretty rocky stuff in Maryland and West Virginia, and they're easily repaired no matter where I am. I could have gotten them lighter, but weight wasn't my primary goal with these.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Rowland Hts, CA
    Posts
    473
    Thanks for all your opinions. I ended up buying the Roval Carbon Control 29er Wheelset because my LBS was willing to negotiate down to $600 to swap for the Alloy Rovals. It was just too good of a deal to pass up!

    I am probably a beginner to intermediate rider but not a racer.

    My gorgeous new bike will be posted shortly.
    2014 Liv Lust
    2013 Specialized Fate Expert with carbon wheelset (sold)
    2012 Specialized Amira Elite
    2010 Santa Cruz Juliana with R kit and Crampon pedals (sold)

    2011 Specialized Ariel Sport,suspension post,Serfas Rx Women's Microfiber saddle (sold)

 

 

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