Choose the Best Wheels for Your Bicycle
Nowadays, the greatest cost or improvement in your bicycle will be getting a good set of high-quality wheels. They will not just save you from any kind of damage but it has also its other benefits. It can be reduced on weight, greater aerodynamics, or if you think you are able to spend enough, then both of them.
Before, usually people used to get a high quality set of wheels that was built by a veteran mechanic at your local shop. Today, it is somehow completely different. Most wheels come prebuilt direct from the factory. So after you decide what kind of wheels to choose (as we will provide some tips below), then make sure to find a shop in your area with an experienced wheel builder, so any time you will need to get your wheels serviced, his experience will help you a lot.
Wheels for Climbing
Living in the area surrounded by mountains and hills, you will see that the local climbers will have lightweight wheels. If you want a set of lightweight wheels, you will get it for less than 1,000$, and that will be easier for you to accelerate it due to their very reduced rotating mass, so this will help you on climbs. Being the king in the sub-$1,000 market, aluminum rims are easier to service and they will not require brake shoes. 1,500 grams is the lowest required weight for a set of aftermarket wheels (with no cassette, tires or tubes).
Most engineers are saying that aerodynamics trumps weight a lot, while reduced weight is only apparent upon picking up a bike. Even though a deep rim will increase weight, it will more than offset that increase in weight by increasing the wheels’ aerodynamic efficiency; while we know that heavier is the wheel, it’s faster. However, a pair of deep aluminum rim wheels is the most cost-effective method to make your bike go faster, using them safely on group rides and centuries.
Tubular vs. Clinchers
We might say that the finest riding wheels and tires are sometimes tubular. Besides tires, they are also known as sew-ups, while they sew the tire casing into a tubular shape around the inner tube. Then they are glued into special tubular specific rims. When you combine special tire and special tube, this can cut noticeable weight from a set of wheels. The reason is that, the tires retain a circular profile with only a minimal distortion at the contact patch where the tire touches the ground, they corner in an exceedingly well way. Anyway, they are difficult to glue on and even more difficult to change them from the event of a flat. Somehow this is the reason why most riders, use them on wheels reserved for racing.
Rims of Carbon Fiber
Carbon fiber has been used to make rims, hubs and spokes in quest to reduce weight on the bicycle. These are available both in tubular and clincher designs, and they will shave 200 grams from an already lightweight set of wheels while offering a deep – section rim profile. When riders get to combine them both, this gives them a set of wheels with superior aerodynamics with a weight appealing to climbers: the best of both worlds. Usually a carbon fiber rim can melt from the heat generated by braking on a long descent. Wheels built with carbon fiber rims are expensive, so you should fairy expect spending more than 2,000$.
To get a set of wheels, you need to specify the type of the free hub that you need, which comes to be most of the time based on the components of your bicycle. Two types of that are made by Campagnolo and Shimano; SRAM made wheels use a Shimano style of free hub.