Ask the Bike Doc: 12. "Hand built wheels vs factory built wheels"

Words by Aaron Scott

on 29/08/2013 17:52:00


HP: Can you explain what the benefits are of having a set of handbuilt road wheels compared to buying a factory built set (thinking Mavic Ksyrium)?

Bike Doc: HP Once upon a time if you wanted a quality set of wheels - you had to have them hand built. This gives the customer complete control over every last detail. I.e. Hub choice, spoke pattern, spoke type, spoke holing, nipple colour, nipple material etc...
For hub options such as Chris King - hand built is the only way to go. In the 2013 market though, quality wheel sets such as the Ksyriums are so well built and look absolutely great meaning that the choice is no longer an easy one. Factory built wheels can be less expensive than hand built wheels and the quality is very good due to the specific technologies that companies like Mavic use such as straight pull spokes and machined rims. If your budget allows, go for premium, factory built wheel set but if you what that extra bit of detail and originality added then choose a hand built set of wheels.'


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