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Rim weight - does it matter?(7 posts)

Rim weight - does it matter?laffeaux
Jan 7, 2004 12:12 PM
I'm looking at buying a new fixed gear rear wheel and trying to decide between an Open Pro and a MA3 rim (otherwise the same build). The Open Pro is 80g lighter (according to Mavic), and about $25 more expensive.

If this were for a geared bike, I'd certainly go with the Open Pro, and I'm kind of leaning that way anyway. Do you think a lighter rim is as big a deal on a fixie as it is on a geared bike?
same effectDougSloan
Jan 7, 2004 2:34 PM
I think it matters just the same, or doesn't matter just the same.

You could argue that it matters more, as it will naturally be harder to accellerate and climb on the fixed, with the relatively taller gearing under those conditions.

However, most people don't race fixed gear bikes (except track, of course) and don't take them to extreme conditions, like steep hills. Also, fixed bikes typically are steel and not exactly outfitted with all the latest weight weenie parts, anyway. So over all, I'd say it matters less.

I'm with you - it matters less. (nm)jtferraro
Jan 7, 2004 8:16 PM
Second thatDad Man Walking
Jan 7, 2004 10:34 PM
I generally avoid hills and dales on my fixed gear...the riding is more about maintaining high rpms at medium-to-high power outputs for long periods of time. Light wheels are all about sudden acceleration, not steady state. When I do tackle the occasional hill that is so rude as to place itself between me and home, it's a grunt anyway and a little extra weight on the rear wheel is irrelevant.

I have also heard it said that road riding on a fixed gear might be a bit tougher on the rear wheel since it is harder to jump, post, or otherwise ease the impact the rear wheel absorbs on the occasional RR track or pothole. Obviously this depends a lot on where you ride and your technique, since most of what is possible on a road bike is also possible, albeit a bit more challenging, on the fixed gear.
momentumwooden legs
Jan 8, 2004 1:01 AM
if you're doing a lot of city riding in traffic it might be worth it to shed the rotational weight on a rear wheel especially, it can noticably affect your stopping and starting speed when using your legs as the brakes.
Try tubulars...rcmann
Jan 8, 2004 8:30 AM
You can run lighter rims (330-380g) with 36 light spokes (use Sapim Lasers or DT Revolution) for strength/resilience, and tough but light tires (I use Tufo Elite Road, 23mm/240g) and save a lot of rotating weight while having a combination that's as shock resistant and bulletproof as clincher setups weighing several hundred grams more. It costs more, but is well worth the expense.
thanks alllaffeaux
Jan 9, 2004 11:35 AM
I decided to go with the Open Pro even though it's probably not necessary.