Nick from London was after a set of wheels that could be used for a number of purposes: audax, light touring and faster club runs, and budget was flexible. After my recommendation we went with best alloy rims available, HED Belgium Plus, laced to DT Swiss 240s rear hub and a SON 28 front hub with Sapim CX-Ray spokes and brass nipples in a 32/32 3X configuration. Total weight was under 2kg – ideal for a dynamo-based wheelset.
Toby from London asked me to rebuild his Campagnolo Record hubs onto a set of HED Belgium Plus rims. I gave the hubs a complete strip-down and re-build along with a replacement of the freehub due to bearings wear, then built the wheels up using Sapim Race spokes and brass nipples. Total weight came to 1757g.
Claudio from Wales was after a reliable high performance alloy wheelset and I suggested one of my favourite American-slanted builds: HED Ardennes Plus (also known as the Belgium Plus) laced to White Industries T11 hubs. They were laced up in 24/28 configuration with Sapim CX-Ray spokes and brass nipples. Total weight was 1606g.
David from Kent sent me two sets of hubs to have some wheels built – one a set of Hope Pro III’s for building onto a set of Farsport 38mm carbon rims and the other, a set of Chris King R45 hubs for building onto HED Belgium Plus rims. They were both laced up with Sapim CX-Ray black spokes and brass nipples and weighed in at 1565g for the Hope / carbon wheels and 1499g for the Chris King / HED wheels.
David used the HED wheels for a trip in the USA – a multi day ride in the Rocky Mountains and thought they were ‘smooth as silk’.
Alex from Denmark went for a serious audax build designed for functionality, low weight and longevity, picking high quality parts that will cope with the rigours of a season of randoneering including the Trans Continental Race from Belgium to Greece over the summer.
The build consisted of a set of HED Belgium Plus disc rims in a 32/32 Sapim CX-Ray spoke configuration with brass nipples laced to a SON Delux 12 thru-axle dynamo hub and a White Industries CLD 142 x 12 rear thru axle hub with 11-speed road freehub. Total weight came to 1983g which is low for a robust high spoke count disc-brake build with dynamo hub.
Last week I built a set of all-rounder wheels for Paul in Aston-on-Trent. They were HED Ardennes + rims (same as Belgium +) with a 20.6mm internal width, laced to DT Swiss 240s hubs 24/28 using Sapim CX-Ray spokes. Total weight before fitting tyres was 1570g.
I also fitted a set of Vittoria Corsa Speed tubeless tyres using Stan’s NoTubes sealant and valves.