Real Wheels

I just got my new Mavic Open Pro rims in the mail the other day. These feature the Couche Dure micro hardening process for more durability and better brake wear. I've been on my original Open Pro's for close to ten years now without a hitch. I hand-built them myself, paired with Chris King's Classic hubs and DT Swiss double butted spokes with alloy nipples.

It's been so long since I've built up a pair of wheels, even though this is a simple rim swap. I own a truing stand, but it's Park's Home Mechanic economy model. I don't own a dishing tool or a tensiometer, but I think I'll get by. Luckily one of my neighbors has a plethora of tools I can borrow.

I also got some new tires, tubes and brake pads.

The Open Pros have a gorgeous machined sidewall.

Reinforced spoke eyelets.

Gatorskin tires from Continental are made in Germany, and are supposed to be really durable. My Michelin Pros are tried and true, but just don't hold up to the nasty streets of New York.

I don't know when I'll be able to build these up. We're heading out-of-town for the holidays, and I'm bringing my bike with me along with my trainer. I'd rather risk riding my old wheels for just a week more than have no wheels at all. I'll let you know how it goes.