Let's talk about hubs (baby)

Posted by Jerry Chabot on

Let's talk about hubs, baby. Let's talk about you and me. Let's talk a-bouuuut hubs!

One of the hardest parts of running this business is communicating, in a clear and concise way, the hubs and options we build around. As an "engineeringy" custom wheel shop with a niche in complicated hub standards and unicorn builds for OEM bad ideas, we can be a pretty technical, complicated transaction to conduct via the web. It would be a lot easier if we just sold wheels built on DT hubs shipped direct from Asia and ran a warehouse here in the US. Alas, not the case here. Sigh.

So let's talk about hubs (baby). I love a good remix.

I think my previous, extensive, exhausting bloggery vis a vis Specialized SCS stands up.

TL:DR

  • We don't sell conversion kits.
  • We don't do cassette machining.
  • We do adapt DT 350, DT 240, and Industry 9 hubs to work on any SCS bike and they are fully adaptable back to 12x142 with a second set of end caps.
  • We have wheels that will work for SCS filtered in the navigation.
  • We even have SCS listed as an axle option when you configure a pair of wheels. Just click the button and wheels will be on their way to you. Why is this still so hard? 

Colors: We LOVE LOVE LOVE colors. Love 'em. We embrace the emerging trend of more interestingly painted factory bikes in #notblack. We think that customizing your bike like when you were a kid putting stickers on your skateboard and swapping out wheels and trucks is still cool. We want to help. 

We rebuilt the website this winter to make this a bit easier, or at least more polished. You now select a hub and then select a color. Once the hub is selected you will see the long list of colors but some will be grey'd out in the menu list. If you pick those the price will change to "Unavailable". That is because they are not available.

 

 

 

 

 

If they are grey'd out, they are not available on that hub brand. OK? Don't over think this.

 

 

 

 

Addressing our hub options at a high level (not technical) in order of price:

  1. NEXT rim brake hubs only come in black. This is our price point entry and it is a really nice hub, and we really want to keep the price down and offer a great value wheelset. Part of that means buying A LOT of them. Also, of all the bikes that are stuck in the "murdered out" camp, rim brake road bikes are the most common. We still sell a lot of black hubs. For those that want a nice upgrade, we stock Kogel ceramic bearings for them.
  2. NEXT disc brake hubs come in several colors: Black, Silver, Blue and Red. Because AMERICA. And Black Panther. And peace on earth in our time. They are all centerlock only. They are convertible between axle sizes. We stock Kogel ceramic bearing upgrades for them.
  3. Hope: While we like Hope, our volume with them has lead us to drop them as a standard option. As with most anything, email us, we can still do it (or most anything). We do love their fat bike hubs though, as they are a great quality hub at a great price, so we retain that option on the NEXT:FAT wheels.
  4. Industry 9 is currently our preferred hub. We can get them in 11 great colors. We can convert them to SCS, and they end cap convert to all the axle sizes we need, in addition to having a Cannondale Lefty hub. They are made right in Ashville, NC and are great to work with. +1 would buy again. 
  5. DT Swiss comes in two flavors: 350 and 240. This is the topic of another blog post, but we have dropped DT rim brake hubs. We just hate the way they build up for tension, and we are very picky about our build specs, and so we choose not to offer them anymore. I just don't like the flange geometry and the resultant non-drive side tensions. Sorry. We still love their straight pull disc brake hubs. We do not stock the J bend versions because we have lots of other J bend spoked options. Lastly, they come in black, or if you want, they also come in black. 
  6. Project 321 is our favorite disc hub. They are disc only at this time. They fully support all things Lefty. Personally, I find the P321 freehub with magnetic pawls to be the best out there when you balance all the various freehub metrics. Yes, there are freehub metrics. P321 are made in Bend, the owner Jake answers the phone when you call. He can keep up with me technically, which is sort of scary, and I really like working with them. The hubshells are freaking amazing. Best in the business in my opinion. The flanges are angled aggressively and the spoke holes are back cut in a very unique way. As a result, the spokes are aligned with the flanges and the J bend hub builds up like a straight pull hub with very little bed in, etc. No other J bend hub we have touched builds up like that. They come in all the colors Industry 9 comes in. They are currently 6 bolt only and MTB or CX hubs only. Centerlock and road hubs are in the works, though. 
  7. Chris King! We just added King as a hub option. This is pretty exciting for us. For road disc, we use their centerlock hubs only. For MTB, their Iso hub is only 6 bolt, no centerlock available. Everyone knows about the quality of King products. They come with great bearings. They have a unique freehub drive mechanism. They do not have end cap swaps, it is a little more involved and more money as you swap the whole axle. They require some special tools. It is a Chris King hub. The biggest complication for us is the colors. They come in a lot of unique colors and even matte finishes. They use different names for the same colors that I9 and P321 have. We try to use King names in some cases but in others where we feel it is not confusing, we don't bother. What all that means is there are a lot of colors in our list and a lot of them will be grey'd out
      • POP QUIZ: Grey'd out means what?
      • ANSWER: Unavailable. Don't over think it. 

Summary:

  • NEXT road hubs are slick. If you like black. Kogel bearing spin nice.
  • NEXT disc hubs are centerlock and come in the color of #MURICA!
  • Industry 9 has lots of colors! Pick one. Hey these are also SCS compatible!
  • DT Swiss only comes in black. Those Swiss, they are not too exciting, eh? Hashtag SCS! 
  • Project 321 are disc only and 6 bolt only. All the colors plus MAGNETS! 
  • Chris King are FANCY and do things their own way and make websites hard.
  • Grey'd out means YOU CAN'T HAZ.
  • Don't see what you want? Email us.  

Older Post