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FREE WHEELS!!!(13 posts)

FREE WHEELS!!!Lone Gunman
Oct 26, 2002 6:23 AM
For me. Took my Rolf Vector Comp rear wheel into the shop for a repair/repack after they got really wet and began making a popping/cracking noise for the second or third time this year. LBS stated they might be a warranty issue for Trek. The Trek rep was looking at the wheels and attempted to remove the freehub and something broke and the freehub could not be removed. Warranty for the wheels, new set of Bontrager Racelite wheels for me.

So what do I have? Are they(wheelset) any good or worth keeping? Since these are my only current wheelset, I guess I will ride them but from reading the reviews and classifieds, they have been compared to Ksyriums (lower model). Not sure I believe that comparison, just don't know what to think, having so little experience with Bontrager parts and a little skeptical being Bontrager is the Trek "house part". Opinions from those who have experience with these wheels and others like Ksyriums and DA 7701s please.
You have what you had,TJeanloz
Oct 26, 2002 6:32 AM
The Race Lite is effectively Trek's re-branded version of the Rolf Vector Comp. Trek's licensing agreement with Rolf was not renewed, but they continue to make wheels that are effectively identical, only they call them Bontragers instead of Rolfs.

As for your skepticism of Bontrager being a Trek "house part", Rolf was also a Trek "house part" and look at the quality that bought you.

The Race Lites, like the Vector Comps, are a decent, very strong wheel. Not especially aero, definitely not light, but a very solid, all-around wheel.
Rolf was not a Trek house branded partspookyload
Oct 26, 2002 9:01 AM
Icon was Trek's house brand. Cannondale uses a lot of Mavic wheels, but in no way does that make them a Cannondale house brand. Rolf was and independent wheel builder that contracted wheels with Trek. Bontrager if anything is a Gary Fischer house brand, but not exactly. Bontrager has been making frames and rims for a very long time. In fact they are one of the origional MTB companies.
Evil Empire LessonsTJeanloz
Oct 26, 2002 9:43 AM
Rolf wheels were always produced by Trek- they licensed Rolf Dietrich's patents, produced the rims on the Matrix line, bought the spokes, and laced them to hubs that were built by DT-Hugi (pro level) and Formula (others). Note this statement on the current Rolf Prima website: "Rolf Prima wheels are manufactured with different components and specification than wheels manufactured by Trek Bicycle Corporation under the Rolf name. Trek is servicing all warranties related to Rolf wheels manufactured through December 31, 2001."

Rolf is now independant, but prior to 2002, all "Rolf" wheels were built by Trek.

Bontrager, as a company, doesn't exist, and hasn't made a frame for a few years (since ~1999). Trek realized that the Icon brand had the reputation of being cheap crap, so they transitioned to calling all of their parts "Bontrager", leveraging a very well-regarded brand that they also own. They also own Gary Fisher, 100%, as well as Klein and LeMond.
What about bontrager MTB rims like the valiantspookyload
Oct 26, 2002 11:55 AM
Oct 26, 2002 12:16 PM
Trek either makes them on their line in Wisconson, or farms them out to Asia.
Rolf was not a Trek house branded partJambo
Oct 26, 2002 10:18 AM
Originally Rolf was not part of Trek, but I thought they were actually bought out by Trek. I guess Trek got tired of the name, so they made their own version of the wheels with the Bontrager name on it. That is why Rolf Dietrich had to leave and restart the company with a slightly different name, Rolf Prima. He does own all the patents for paired spokes, so everyone has to license the design from him.
Bontrager has now become just a parts brand for Trek. I don't think there are any Bontrager bikes being made anymore, just wheels and parts.
They kept hyping that USPostal was going to be riding the Bontragers in the Tour, but I wonder how many were actually used. All I remember seeing were Mavics and ADA's.
Should have no problems.TREKY
Oct 26, 2002 9:37 AM
What year and model bike did they come off of?Ken of Fresno
Oct 26, 2002 9:54 AM
Wondering if I might have the same issues, as those same wheels came stock on my Lemond Zurich.

Off a 1999 ZLone Gunman
Oct 26, 2002 10:28 AM
I am sort of happy about the whole deal, however if I were buying new wheels, Bontrager Racelite would not have made the short list. Can't complain about getting new wheels for a pair that had 10K miles on them though.

The paint peeled off the '99 Z like cheap tape and the warranty and word from Trek was S.O.L. I spent $315 for a new powder and paint job so it appears that the new wheelset is a fair trade-off for a poor quality factory paint job.

Actually, the Racelites already appear to be a better wheelset than the Rolf. The rim has a porthole to drain out the water, the rear hub is a cartridge and bearing design that has some seal properties to it to keep water out, and it has some sort of drive side no dish thing goin' on. Gonna ride them for 60 miles or so tomorrow, we shall see.
Trek BrandsDCP
Oct 26, 2002 11:10 AM
We clearly see one advantage of a Trek brand (be it Rolf before and Bontrager now, or whatever). Trek will stand behind its products with its warranty. I guess it helped that the rep broke your wheel, but they could still have blamed it on you if they wanted to.
I would have liked to know the reasoningLone Gunman
Oct 26, 2002 2:24 PM
for Trek denying responsibility for a poor paint job on a frame(Lemond) that had quick release paint after 18 months. The LBS told me before the Trek rep came to the shop that it depended upon how loudly they complained to Trek on the warranty for the wheels. The wheel warranty was completely unexpected on my part, I expected at the most to have the wheel repaired and buy a new set of wheels this spring. The manner in which the freehub was installed by the Shop wrench was "gentler" than the Trek rep, (Shop wrench went hand tight + 1/4 turn of the wrench, Trek cranked it down as tight as he could, a full revolution of the rim and the threads broke off or something like that) Since this was the third or fourth time this season it happened and there is an overall history of problems with this wheelset line, that helped the cause.
Reason? Warranty difference...TJeanloz
Oct 27, 2002 6:39 AM
Trek's warranty is lifetime on frames, 1 year on paint, and three years on parts. So the paint was out of warranty, but the wheels were within it.