Wheel Building - Advice, Tips, etc

These look fantastic! I really liked my (aluminium) Duke rims, and those hubs look great!

I’m hoping my BTLOS rims go the distance. They’re crazy light!! You can really feel the weight of the Onyx rear hub, the front is not so crazy that it’s noticable.

I love the shot through the valve hole of the logo. I wish I’d taken the time to get that shot. It was very satisfying getting it all lined up “pro” :sweat_smile:.

I used the Ali Jackson guide this time and it was such a good video to follow. It has lots of lacing patterns too. Almost made me try do a mix of patterns just for the sake of it since he made it sound so easy.



lacing with straight pull is very ease, just put the spokes in and they all point in the right direction, you can just visually line up the vale hole and start connecting the spokes to the rim.

ow, and I forgot the weight: 1338 for the set

item weight in grams
rear hub 215
front hub 103
spokes 305
nipples 60
rear rim 316
front rim 336

(yes, that’s 3 grams less, i don’t know, maybe something with the scale :slight_smile: )


very very very nice

Starting my wheel building journey. These showed up in the mail today:

I’ll be building a new set of XC wheels. Next month I’ll probably order the rims - Velocity Blunt SS in silver, and once I receive those and do some measuring I’ll get the spokes… thinking Sapim Lasers. I really want gold nipples but I’m unsure if alloy is the way to go on my first build.

I’ve got all off season to get them done so no hurry on ordering or building.


Very nice! I was very close to going XTR for the near silent freehub. I ended up opting out due to the higher maintenance requirements, but they sure are lovely!

If you get the nipples with the spokes they should be Sapim double square, which are far better than standard alloy nipples for a few reasons. I’d recommend them. Never broke one even when ripping the nipple through the rim bed with a particularly violent impact!


That brings back some memories. I caught the tail end of that era though sadly I never went on a Jobst ride or met him. I did build a bunch of wheels using his book - standard 32 hole Mavic/Campagnolo wheels. Those wheels performed as well as any pro built wheel I ever had. I did the tensioning using his plucking method!

One of his many photos was used on Palo Alto Cycles catalog from back in the day.

A kickstarter just released a book of Jobst’s European trips. My copy arrived last week, just need to set aside some time to sit down and read it.

As part of the kickstarter they also reprinted the 3rd edition of the wheel book. I’ve given away some copies, but still have 4 copies.

I need to build a new wheel, so hopefully crack it open this week and try my first 24 spoke 2 cross front disc wheel.

I’ve been intimidated to lace a modern deep profile carbon rim but I hear it’s actually easier. It also hasn’t seemed worth it because you can usually buy the whole wheel cheaper than parts.

2 of the 3 sets I’ve built in the last 10 years were deep carbons, but it was probably 15 years since the last ones I built (working at a bike shop in HS/college, built my first set at 14) so I can’t really say if they were easier but really they aren’t hard. The non deep ones were about 8 years ago so I don’t recall, flo 30 rims I wanted to build up custom for the lady.

As for a price, its been a few years, but pretty sure my 90mm (88??) build cost me more than the similar wheels I sold to build them. But I went with a DT front hub, cheapy rear since its under a cover, and sapim CX ray spokes. So I ended up with something better at least not just a waste of time.

I hadn’t built anything in a while but back in 2016 I bought the rims below, then got laid off, then moved, then started a business so they have been sitting. We were moving again and I got the hubs last year as a gift so it was time to build these up so I wasn’t moving parts, again. They are a 50?60?mm. DT swiss spokes and nipples this time, bartered LBS to fix AC on one of his cars. So I’m actually only in these for the cost of the wheels.

The one thing I can think of that you need to be mindful of with the deep stuff is that they tension up fast since the spokes are short, at least that is what it seems like to me. I wasn’t quite paying attention to the actual numbers doing the rear wheel just that they were close and all of a sudden I’m 50% kgf over the max on the sticker on the rim and had to detension the whole wheel and true up again more carefully.

Not sure if she was helping or distracting me here… She liked to help spin the wheel but then would run off with the tools.

Haven’t actually ridden the rear yet, few rides on the front.

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Where would one even buy deep carbon rims? I’ve searched and they are hard to find outside of Aliexpress. Bikehubstore has nothing much. Wheelbuilder.com has very expensive Zipp, Enve, and Hed rims.

I’ve had great luck with Farsports wheels but it just doesn’t seem worth it to order just rims from China when I could get a whole wheelset for not much more money.

The only use case for my old wheelbuilding skills I can see if a repair/replacement on an existing wheelset.

I’m actually in need of a moderately/budget priced disc wheelset and I want a wider rim. It’s not easy to find. I’m thinking of the Cannondale Hollowgram 45s. They are $1000 and I can get them for $900 on sale. And include a 2 year crash warranty and a lifetime warranty. Hard to beat.

The rims above are from ebay ( I think… its been a while)

The value thing is tough. I’m the kind of guy who has literally installed superchargers on R8s and then told someone else to go test drive it because my enjoyment comes from the building part not the driving (I’d also driven a bunch). I make my own pizza which saves virtually no money and wastes so much time. I have built car parts that cost more in materials than I could have just bought ready to bolt on. I don’t think I really saved much at all on any wheels I built. I do all these things because I like the process. I get calls at my shop all the time about building custom exhausts, nearly all of them I point them in the direction of something we can buy to bolt on for less money. I’ll always direct a customer towards what makes the best financial sense for them unless they just want to know it was custom (they always chose to save money). But I will almost always chose custom/hand built myself even if it is a worse value.

Neither is right or wrong we all value things differently.