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Sourcing a 40 hole cassette rear hub

Old 05-12-22, 06:30 PM
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Sourcing a 40 hole cassette rear hub

I know this is the touring forum

I'm a big lad. I have killed several sets of 36 hole narrow tubular rears. There was nothing quite as fun as walking 5-10 miles on a hot day pushing a bike because no one could come and rescue me. I like the tubular ride and want a couple of good sets that will last. I will be using them on my PT-4500 tourer for small local tours and also my road bikes for local rides.

I have sourced two (2) NOS 40 hole Mavic GP4 rims. I am still seeking two NOS 36 hole GP4s to match as fronts. I have a set of Mavic 700 hubs, rear is 40 and front is 36. Freewheel is french threaded which may one day cause heartache.

I would like a cassette hub (preferably 6,7 or 8 speed). If I move to a 9/10 or 11 speed, then I'd have to buy a complete drive train to go with it as all my stuff is 6 and 8 speed. Further, all my bikes are rim brakes.

Can anyone point me towards a source for such a hub. I don't believe Phil Woods has any for sale right now. I am watching the eBay and CL ads like a hawk but only ones I'd seen were a used no-name set, some new Atomic Novatecs for $56USD for front and rear, new Wheel Master MT-1110 MTB Hubs for $75USD and some Quandos for $70USD which have really bad write ups. The Atomics and the Wheel Masters had ok write ups but are both about a sixth of the cost Phil Woods so I question their longevity.
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Old 05-12-22, 06:50 PM
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I can't answer your question, but if I was looking for a 40 hole hub, I would look at tandem suppliers. That might give you an axle that is too long, so keep that in mind when your are researching it.

I am running an 8 speed cassette on my light touring bike, that hub was sold as a 9/10 speed hub (Shimano XT M756A), but that is 32 or 36 hole. I only mention this because if you find a 40 hole hub that is listed as a 10 speed hub, it might work for 8 speed cassette.
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Old 05-12-22, 06:52 PM
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What is your dropout spacing?
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Old 05-12-22, 07:08 PM
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@Tourist in MSN - was there any tandem suppliers you can suggest?
@Doug64 The Peugeot has 135mm dropout and my plan is that the Panasonic (PT-4500 will as well).
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Old 05-12-22, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
@Tourist in MSN - was there any tandem suppliers you can suggest?
@Doug64 The Peugeot has 135mm dropout and my plan is that the Panasonic (PT-4500 will as well).
I can't suggest any. I cited tandem bikes because they often have 40 or 48 spoke wheels, so you might be looking for a tandem hub. But as I noted, they sometimes have longer axles, as some tandems have 145 mm dropout spacing. And I think one brand has wider than that.

I have never owned a tandem, but after you read enough of these forum posts over the years, you learn some things. On a bike tour I recall one guy had a Co-Motion Americano, that is a solo touring bike but his bike was fitted with 40 hole tandem wheels, I believe that his rear hub was 145mm, as it was undished.

Years ago I bought a cheap wheel on line, it was a 135mm wheel. But it had a 5mm spacer I could remove if I wanted to have a 130 mm wheel, but that conversion would have required cutting down the axle and adjusting every spoke to change the dish.
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Old 05-12-22, 07:51 PM
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I'd give R&E Cycles in Seattle a telephone call. That's where I sourced my 40 hole Phil hub from. When I got it, it was covered in dust & the mechanic said it'd been there in a box under the work bench as long as he'd worked there.

Awesome NOS hub. 135, 140, 145mm all by threading on different axle length spacers. Arai drum brake compatible, stainless 8,9,10 speed freehub body. $400 (+tax) for just the hub alone was a tough pill to swallow at the time. I now feel it was worth every penny.

If anyone is to have what you are looking for in stock, it'll be those guys.

Tubulars? Psimet2001 will be your guy. He posts here on the board regularly. If anyone has a lead on something current that has 40 holes, it would be him. Though unless you have a specific reason why you need tubulars & nothing else will do, like CX racing or whatever, then going tubeless may very well be a more readily accessible option in the higher spoke count arena.

If it were me, I'd run wide tubeless rims on symmetrical flanged hubs with Alpine III or CX ray spokes. If running 8,9,10 speed, I'd still have the same requirements but also make sure the spoke bed on the rear was off-center to better evenly place the spoke bed over the offset hub flanges. This has the effect of minimizing the differential in spoke tension to better share the drive-side/non-drive-side loads.
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Old 05-12-22, 08:03 PM
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@Tourist in MSN - I am looking at a tandem hub (I don't think any other hubs exist with 40 holes). Would a shorter axle work, or do you think I'd have to cold set for 145mm
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Old 05-12-22, 10:29 PM
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Velocity ATB. 135mm OLD, 40ļ, Shimano pattern cassette for 8-11 cogs.

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Old 05-13-22, 02:33 AM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
....I am watching the eBay and CL ads like a hawk but only ones I'd seen were a used no-name set, some new Atomic Novatecs for $56USD for front and rear, new Wheel Master MT-1110 MTB Hubs for $75USD and some Quandos for $70USD which have really bad write ups. The Atomics and the Wheel Masters had ok write ups but are both about a sixth of the cost Phil Woods so I question their longevity.
the novateks aren't no name, they're a well-known, established manufacturer from taiwan. they make zillions of hubs every year, often being rebranded/relabeled. not the quality of phil wood, but good enough for medium-duty touring.

a lot of this stuff is relabeled........ebay has origin8 40H hubs that i believe are rebadged 'formula' hubs.

i've been using novateks for a while for moderate touring.....bike+me (185 lbs)+ about 25-30 pounds of gear. lots of bad weather (monsoons), lots of dirt roads and mud, but nothing extremely technical.

tens of thousands of miles on novateks, had one rear cartridge go out. do carry a spare set of quality cartridge bearings, although not roadside replaceable. you'll need a shop with tools, or make a press with a bit of threaded rod.

for the cassette version, check that the ones you order have the steel freehub body, not the aluminium.
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Old 05-13-22, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
@Tourist in MSN - I am looking at a tandem hub (I don't think any other hubs exist with 40 holes). Would a shorter axle work, or do you think I'd have to cold set for 145mm
If it is a cup and cone quick release hub and if there is a 10mm spacer that you can remove from the left side, you should be able to remove the spacer and with a hacksaw and file shorten your axle (remove axle from wheel, put in vice, etc.).

It is very hard to talk generics here when some hubs are cup and cone, some have cartridge bearings, all we really know about your situation is that you said it is 135mm so it is not through axle.

If your frame is steel, you might be able to squeeze a 145mm hub in a 135mm frame, but a 10mm difference is a big difference. My rando bike was built for 130 and I am running 135mm hub with no issue. And I have a vintage Columbus tubing frame that is 120mm, I run a 126mm hub in that frame. I have never tried a 10mm difference. In my case I tried to cold set the Columbus frame but that steel was just toooo good, gave up trying to permanently change the frame to 126mm, instead I just use some extra muscle to put my 126mm hub in a 120mm frame. My rando bike is a softer steel, I did not try to cold set that one at all, it is quite easy to muscle in a 135mm hub on a 130mm frame.

***

How did your wheels fail in the past? Are you really sure that a 40 hole wheel will fix things?

I have never used DT Alpine spokes, but one person on this forum often cites them as an ideal spoke for heavy duty use, if I recall correctly they are 2.3mm instead of 2.0 at the head. If your wheels failed at the spoke heads, maybe you need Alpine spokes on a 36 spoke wheel. I have always toured on 36 spoke wheels, sometimes with a heavy load without breaking a spoke. I am content to stay with 36.

I do not know why you prefer tubulars, but I will call that personal preference. The last time I had a flat on a tubular was in the 90s and I have not ridden those wheels since.
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Old 05-13-22, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
@Tourist in MSN - was there any tandem suppliers you can suggest?
@Doug64 The Peugeot has 135mm dropout and my plan is that the Panasonic (PT-4500 will as well).
Tandems East (https://tandemseast.com/) should have some 40 hole hubs.
I have a White Industries 40 hole hub. It was spaced for the 140 OLD of my tandem but I wanted to rebuild it for a single with a 135 OLD. An email to White Industries netted me new, easily swapped, axle ends for 135 and 145 OLD. I swapped in the 135 end and re-laced the hub to a 40 hole Velocity Major Tom tubular rim. Should I want to put the wheel back in the tandem, I can easily put the 140 axle end back on and re-dish the wheel.
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Old 05-13-22, 08:35 AM
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@saddlesores I didn't mean that the Novatecs or the Wheel Masters were no name brands. For those two I simply wondered about longevity. Based on your experience, I can see they are a good alternative to spending big bucks.
FWIW, no one defends the Quandos!
@Tourist in MSN How did your wheels fail in the past?

I kept having the spokes de-tension. Back I would go to the wheel builder whose patience was wearing thin. His diagnosis was that I was using rims that were too light and too flexible (and used). Another issue is the general deterioration of roads around here and in at least one instance, hitting a bump hard enough was enough to total a wheel. He suggested a stronger and new rim (such as GP4's if I wanted tubular) and when the 40 holes popped up they seemed the correct way to go. In retrospect, a good set of used Tandem rims might have been cheaper.

As for tubulars, it is a preference. Probably tubeless would be a smarter way to go but I'm almost 60 so let's blame it on an old man who is set in his ways
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Old 05-13-22, 08:44 AM
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Check out Phil Wood hubs. You can order directly from them I think. Pricey but nice. You could even go 48* if you want for an even stronger wheel.
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Old 05-13-22, 09:05 AM
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My son is moving to the US for two years at Niagara University. $37,580 for tuition + books! What do you mean $2,600 for medical per year? Just getting used to US education pricing and now $400 + for hubs. I'll have to spread my spending out!
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Old 05-13-22, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by John N View Post
Check out Phil Wood hubs. You can order directly from them I think.
"Sold Out" as in order books are full, 6+ month lead time for best customers, individual orders first of Never.
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Old 05-13-22, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
I know this is the touring forum

I'm a big lad. I have killed several sets of 36 hole narrow tubular rears. There was nothing quite as fun as walking 5-10 miles on a hot day pushing a bike because no one could come and rescue me. I like the tubular ride and want a couple of good sets that will last. I will be using them on my PT-4500 tourer for small local tours and also my road bikes for local rides.

I have sourced two (2) NOS 40 hole Mavic GP4 rims. I am still seeking two NOS 36 hole GP4s to match as fronts. I have a set of Mavic 700 hubs, rear is 40 and front is 36. Freewheel is french threaded which may one day cause heartache.

I would like a cassette hub (preferably 6,7 or 8 speed). If I move to a 9/10 or 11 speed, then I'd have to buy a complete drive train to go with it as all my stuff is 6 and 8 speed. Further, all my bikes are rim brakes.

Can anyone point me towards a source for such a hub. I don't believe Phil Woods has any for sale right now. I am watching the eBay and CL ads like a hawk but only ones I'd seen were a used no-name set, some new Atomic Novatecs for $56USD for front and rear, new Wheel Master MT-1110 MTB Hubs for $75USD and some Quandos for $70USD which have really bad write ups. The Atomics and the Wheel Masters had ok write ups but are both about a sixth of the cost Phil Woods so I question their longevity.
Velocity sells a road hub (130mm OLD) in 40 hole drilling for $150. White Industries sells 40 hole drillings in both 130 and 135mm OLD for about $350. Modern Bike lists 3 for less than the Velocity hubs. And Novatech hubs arenít bad hubs either. You donít need to go to a tandem hub.

While all these are 8-10 speed hubs, they can also be used with a 7 speed cassette by adding a spacer behind the cassette. This is standard practice.

Finally, I donít think your problem is with rims that are too light but with spokes that are too weak. This article details why using a stronger spoke leads to more durable wheels. Iíve been building my own wheels for more than 20 years now with these kinds of spokes with excellent results. I use the lightest rims I can find and never have wheel issues even on my mountain bike (and mountain bike touring bike).
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Old 05-13-22, 10:13 AM
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Thank you all for the advice and direction to find hubs.

@cyccommute You are correct and my wheel builder also suggested I refrain from light, racing spokes. He will be using heavy duty ones.

Much as I'd like to say I built my own wheely, after spending what I will be to do this I'll pay him once and be done!
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Old 05-13-22, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by WGB View Post
@saddlesores...
... His diagnosis was that I was using rims that were too light and too flexible (and used). Another issue is the general deterioration of roads around here and in at least one instance, hitting a bump hard enough was enough to total a wheel. He suggested a stronger and new rim (such as GP4's if I wanted tubular) and when the 40 holes popped up they seemed the correct way to go. In retrospect, a good set of used Tandem rims might have been cheaper.

As for tubulars, it is a preference. Probably tubeless would be a smarter way to go but I'm almost 60 so let's blame it on an old man who is set in his ways
So far your investment is for two rims, maybe you only need one hub? To get a complete set of wheels, a set of tandem wheels may be the cheapest at this point. But if part of the problem is rough roads, instead of trying to make a skinny high pressure tire work on a rough road, I would give in and use a wider clincher if your frame will take a wider one. For one thing, that would be more comfortable for you the rider.

Whether it be tubeless or not, I call that personal preference too, I am 68 and I am sticking to tubes, set in my ways. I have never had a snake bite flat, but I rarely ride on anything narrower than 32mm. My road bike is 28mm but that does not get many miles.
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Old 05-22-22, 11:59 AM
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700c back wheel - Shimano cassette - 48 spoke, disc or rim brake

https://www.bikeforums.net/touring-bikes-gear-marketplace/1250566-700c-back-wheel-shimano-cassette-48-spoke-disc-rim-brake.html#post22481926
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Old 05-23-22, 02:14 AM
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If you're willing to spend boutique money the White Industries MI5 is a great hub and is available in 40 hole.
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