Not too long ago I was in need of some new wheels for my street bike, a baby blue Tonic. I was looking for something on the strong side but reasonably priced at the same time. Enter Halo and their lineup of hubs and rims. Inside you'll find more info on the Combat rims, DJD single speed cassette hub, and their 20mm Spin Doctor front hub,as well as a great riding video.
A set of wheels is made up of 3 basic components. The first items are your hubs. Simply put the hub is what your wheel is rotating on. If this is junk, then you're off to a bad start. Second part to a solid wheelset is some good spokes. The spokes are what suspend the rim from the hub and keep everything rolling true, and straight. The final part is the rim itself which has to be able to withstand the impacts and stresses. If any of these 3 items is not sufficient to your riding abilities then you could be at risk of failure. As a step in the right direction I recently built up a set of super strong street wheels, so here is a break down of what I chose and why.
A good wheelset starts with a some proper hubs. I needed 20mm up front and the rear had to be a bolt-on unit. Quick release is a nice thing to have, however when riding street your wheel can be jarred out of place and I wanted to be sure my hub could be tightened down enough to not worry about it shifting in my drop outs. I chose to go with the combination of a Halo
Dirt Jump Single Speed specific cassette disc hub and their Spin Doctor front hub.
The Halo DJD SS hub
features a heat treated Cr-Mo axle, meaning it's super strong and stiff. The hub itself uses 5 sealed bearings; two in the hub shell and three for the cassette body. The cassette is driven by three double wide pawls, ensuring that your hub will engage when you hammer on it. The hubs are all wrapped up nicely inside a CNC finished alloy hub shell that's anodized purple. Color options also include a black or white version. The DJD hub uses a cassette driver that allows the use of a small 10 tooth cog, although the stock setup is an 11 tooth. You can also run a 12, 14, 15, and 16 tooth cogs to fine tune your speed. You have to choose between 10 mm and 14 mm axle options, both in MTB 135mm width. The Halo DJD SS hub has a claimed weight of 625 grams for my 10mm axle version, a bit portly but remember it is a bolt on hub. Halo DJD SS hub details:
• MTB Dirt Jump Single Speed specific rear cassette Disc hub
• 10 mm and 14 mm bolt on axle options
• Five sealed bearings
• Comes stock with 11 tooth cog
• 10, 12, 14, 15, 16 tooth cogs also available
• 36 or 48 hold options
• MSRP £59.99, roughly $100 CAD
To match the rear hub I chose to go with the Halo Spin Doctor front hub
. The Spin Doctor is quoted as "A hub for all reasons; light enough for Cross Country, rigid enough for Freeride, buff enough for DH and using new Stub Axle options; even suitable for BMX type forks". The hub spins on two 6804 Industrial cartridge bearings and runs on a 20mm internal aluminum tube axle. On top of using a 20mm axle, the hub also ships with threaded caps to convert it to 9 mm QR use. Options for nutted 3/8" and 14mm axles are also available. Machined from 6061 Alloy, it features a standard 6 bolt disc mount and comes in at 240 grams. The Spin Doctor front hub is a good buy not only for the quality level but for the fact that I can change it out to work with any of my future drop out systems.Halo Spin Doctor front hub details:
• Spins on two 6804 sealed bearings
• Ships with both 20mm and 9mm QR axle adapters
• Stub 3/8" and 14mm axle options also available
• Compatible with pegs (14 mm only)
• MSRP £55.99, roughly $90 CAD
The rims I chose to go with were the Halo Combats
in 24 inch. The Combat rims have a number of nice features. Designed to be as strong as possible, the Combat rim is double wall and has a box section shape, stainless steel spoke eyelets are added for reliability and the rim is joined together with a stainless steel screw-pin joint. Width is a wide 36 mm. The Combat rims are offered in powder coat white with ground v-brake surface for better grip, or just straight white for the disc version. Claimed weight is 615 grams, a respectable amount for a rim of the Combat's intention. Halo Combat rim details:
• 36 mm wide box section rim
• T-10 Special mix heat treated alloy
• Stainless Steel spoke eyelets
• Stainless Steel screw-pin joint
• Both disc and rim versions available
• MSRP £32.99 each, or roughly $54.99 CAD
The wheels were laced up using DT Swiss spokes. The swiss made DT spokes are nearly every wheel builders 'go to' spokes. And for good reason, they have proven themselves to be reliable and trouble free while still being cost effective. Have a closer look at the spokes used on a lot of high-end bikes and you'll usually find the name DT.
While this is not a test by any means, I have been running these wheels for four solid months now without a hint of a problem. I myself am not a very abusive street rider, so when something like this comes around that we want to show it can take a beating I hand my bike over to my room mate/close friend Byron. Byron is a BMX kid at heart but loves blasting on bigger bikes. As you can tell in the video he goes big!