WHY HANDBUILT WHEELS?
Wheels are the most significant and immediately noticeable upgrade you can make to your bicycle. This is because they have the greatest impact on how the bike rides, as well as how fast it can roll safely. Your wheels directly affect vertical and horizontal flex, balance of weight and rider output, and aerodynamics.
At Urbane Wheels we believe that how a wheel is built, is as important as the components with which it is built. We build all of our wheels to exacting standards including spoke length, spoke tension, spoke-count and stress relieving.
Your custom wheel is unique to you because your wheel build begins with selection of the optimal hub, rim, spoke, nipple and lacing pattern to best suit your individual needs. This process is a consideration of your riding style, physique and your unique aesthetic taste. Even our signature road/cross wheels will be designed to suit several ranges of individual needs, and as much as possible, provide precisely what you are looking for. If the signature wheel-line doesn’t have exactly what you need, you are probably a great candidate for custom wheels.
On the technical side of things, our build process includes repetitive spoke stress relief, meticulous tension measurement/balancing, and truing tolerances of less than .5mm.
We stand behind every wheel we build and offer complimentary truing for 1 year on any wheel we build. If a spoke ever breaks that has not been obviously damaged by impact we will replace it free of charge.
Spoke Length is an important detail that is overlooked by too many wheel builders. The problem with imprecise spoke length is that if the spoke thread is not entirely engaged into the nipple, the load that should be distributed evenly across the length of the nipple is carried only by a small section of thread which is designed only to handle a portion of the load. In every case this will lead to premature failure of the nipple or the rim. All spokes used in Urbane Cyclist wheels are cut and rolled to length to insure exact spoke length.
BALANCED SPOKE TENSION
High spoke tension is the first defense against premature metal fatigue in spokes and nipples. But high tension on its own is not enough. A wheel built to high spoke tension that is not balanced is more likely to fail, and it will do so much sooner than one that is optimally balanced. As we repair and service many wheels made by other builders and manufacturers, we see large imbalances in spoke tension, as much as 60-70% and those wheels still spin true! A deceiving visual indeed. Making sure that spoke tension is balanced takes a bit more time but results in a wheel that will outlast and outperform most others.
- We have a huge selection of components to choose from. We offer hubs from Chris King, White Industries, Industry 9, Carbon Ti, Hope and many more! Rims from Boyd Cycling, ENVE, Knight Composites, Astral, Pacenti, H Plus Son, Velocity, Raceface, Easton, Mavic and many more. If we don't have it we can likely get it so PLEASE ASK!
- We stock all models of Sapim Spokes - CX-Ray, Laser, D-light for performance wheels, Race, Strong, Force for purpose built and heavy duty wheels. Others available by request.
- Alloy vs. Brass nipples: we offer only the highest quality nipples available and our alloy nipples are no exception. Our alloy nipples use 7075 aluminum and have additional strength added by the heat treatment T6. With these features alloy nipples are now stronger than brass. Our alloy nipples are dual stage anodized providing excellent corrosion resistance and we further coat the spoke threads with anti-seize to ensure galling doesn't occur. Alloy nipples are 1/3 the weight of brass and available in a plethora of colour options so if weight savings and/or adding a little pizzazz to the build are priotities let us know!
- We also offer ready to ride wheels and can install tires, cassette, rotors, QR skewers. Tubeless or tubular set up can be added, as well as ceramic bearing upgrades - please let us know if you need these.
- So whether you know what you want or need some guidance, our Professional DT Certified Wheel Builders will be happy to help you find exactly what will fit your needs.
STARTING THE PROCESS
- If you know exactly what you want, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org, and list the component specifics in the comments field and we'll review and confirm compatibility of the build and then contact you with a price quote and estimated delivery time.
- If you need some help selecting the right things, email email@example.com , and give us a clear idea of your physique/, and riding style. For instance: “highly-controlled high-output racer with Olympic ambitions”, or “avg. output with smooth and controlled pedal cadence”, or “pedal stomper/pothole smasher/has little regard for bike and components”. If possible, provide us with your body weight, bike and drivetrain, and whether the wheels will be mostly used for racing, training, commuting, ripping around the trails, or heavy lifting rim choice and spoke count/pattern will be directly affected by this number. We will give you some options that best suit your individual needs or requirements, and you then choose the option that appeals to you the most.
Labour to build a single wheel is $95, and $180 for a pair. Non-standard build rates apply for wheels with electric-assist/Bionx hubs, and surcharges sometimes apply for things such as disassembly of an old wheel to re-use your hub (that has been inspected and approved by us), and for installing brass spoke washers or nipple washers when needed.
YES WE CAN SHIP YOUR WHEELS - let us know where you're at and we'll calculate the shipping cost and provincial tax if applicable. International orders may incur duties and other fees.