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zipp 303's vs. am classics 38mm ???(12 posts)

zipp 303's vs. am classics 38mm ???rrjc5488
Apr 17, 2003 8:21 AM
Hi, I'm debating on getting the zipp 303's or the am classics 38mm carbons. I hear they are made out of the same factory. My local bike shop said to get the zipp 303's but the classics are substantially cheaper, and im on a budget. Im 130 lbs (15 years old) and I'm doing tri's and crits, because im on the lighter side I didnt want the deep section winds for me to get blown away in the crosswinds. I have a trek 5200(with dura ace cranks, bottom bracket, and rear derailer) with clip on aero bars as a set up. Any advice on which wheels, and also tubular tires if you have any experience with them. Thanks alot
Get the cheaper...alansutton
Apr 17, 2003 8:27 AM
The Zipps aren't any faster.
Also consider the am classic 420 wheels.
re: zipp 303's vs. am classics 38mm ???purplepaul
Apr 17, 2003 9:17 AM
There have been complaints about the AmClassics hubs.

For around $400-500 you should be able to get Zipps on the classified section here or on Ebay. I think that's how I'd go. I have heard from disparate sources that the AC hubs are a problem. Take that for what you will.

Also consider Nimble ( carbon wheels. They're really inexpensive for what they are and very light. I have no experience with them. The 303's will have almost no aerodynamic advantage, so you might want to think about those flyweight Nimbles (less than $500 new, about 1200 grams).
re: Am Classic hands downVelo Man
Apr 17, 2003 9:28 AM
Am Classic are lighter, both the AC & Zipp 303 share the same rim, but the Am Classic use there hubs, and this is where the weight saving comes in. A lot less $$$$ Go with the Tufo tires, these are light and strong plus they are a true tubless so you can add Tufo latex and get less flats (it works)I sold my Zipp 303 and got the American Classic, so far it's the second season on them no problems.
Apr 17, 2003 10:32 AM
Am-Classic recently updated their hubs. Reviews indicated that they had durability issues in the past. Some of those old problems shouldn't exist any more.

I'd highly recommend getting the Am-Classic wheels. The rims are identical. There is a significant cost savings with AC.

At the end you ask for advise on tubulars. Have you decided to go with tubies? The AC 420 wheelset is very similar to the carbon (weight and profile) for even less money. They are clincher wheels so you can save more money and hassle in the long run.

I own a set of 303 tubulars. If I were making a purchase now, I be debating between the AC Carbons and the 420. The cost saving is to much to ignore.
From someone who has ridden both wheelsetsCARBON110
Apr 17, 2003 1:05 PM
I have owned both, only the american classics briefly though. I found the zipps to be a better wheel. They are more impressive looking and have faster acceleration. The classics are very nice, quiet and smooth. The custom sopke options are very smart and advisable. However, I found the brake surface not quite as responsive contrasted to a regular brake surface due to the paint and undisguishable between brake surface and rim. Also, they are skinny and the zipps are a regular size wheel. It may just take some getting used to, but they do not react the same and I would be cautioned about using them in rain. On the other hand if you are light, the zips wont go out of true ever. I like them better but consider both wheels to be of good value. However the zipps are noticably nicer.
The above for clinchers only " nm "CARBON110
Apr 17, 2003 1:09 PM
Get the 420's.russw19
Apr 17, 2003 2:07 PM
I would tell you to get the American Classics. The hub issue is no longer.. they redesigned the hubs and haven't had any complaints since from what I hear. (Although the source of that comes into play... but I have a friend at American Classic who I doubt would lie to me just to make the company look better, as he told me last year to wait on buying their wheels because of the hubs...)

But if you want to save money, go with the American Classics. They are said to be lighter too, but I haven't personally weighed them on a postal scale, so I don't know if that's a fact or speculation.

Get the 420's and have them build them to your specs. They are clinchers by the way.. run Conti Supersonics as your race day tires with light tubes and rim tape and they will be as good as 90% of the tubulars on the market and easier to use too. (I am of the opinion that unless you are a top pro and have wheel support for flats and mechanicals, you really won't benefit much from tubulars)But have the 420's built with bladed spokes and they are more aero and stronger too. That way you can save weight and use less spokes. You will be able to use less spokes with a deep dish aluminum rim over a carbon rim too, so that will make back up the weight savings of the carbon rim.

American Classic has a toll free phone number on their website, I would say at least call them and talk to them first. It's their nickle, so you are out nothing but time to do so. Might as well see what they have to say.

But I have a set of 420's and I love them.

But, see my post below. I'll give them another chance, Ibill
Apr 17, 2003 2:49 PM
suppose, but it was a bad start.
But, see my post below. I'll give them another chance, Irussw19
Apr 17, 2003 6:27 PM
I read that after I posted the above.. and I have to say I was surprised by your story. I would just have to guess that the lock nut on the axle was not tight enough. It can happen, but that doesn't mean it should have. Was there any damage to your bike? Or was it just that the freehub body disengaged from the hub body? Like I said, without seeing it, I would guess the locknut wasn't torqued down enough.

Regardless, give them a call and tell them what happened.. I bet they send you a pair of socks if you ask them to.

Best of luck,
No damage to the bike. Some damage to my feet. You thinkbill
Apr 17, 2003 7:12 PM
that's all it is - a locknut? It would be a lot easier fooling around with a locknut than with sending the bike back. Because the whole thing is sealed up, I'm leary about getting into it, but I could take it somewhere.
Nothing is visibly disengaged from anything. The freehub is just very . . . free. No pawl engagement.
or get the rolf vigor...slomo
Apr 17, 2003 3:18 PM
just got mine in and they are a sweet looking and riding set of wheels. im hoping they're anything like the previous generation vector pros, 4 years without any problems/truing.

the vigor uses the same rim and hubset as AC 420 but made specifically for rolfs paired spoking. they have bladed spokes 14front,16 rear

yes they are slightly more expensive than the 420's.