Inside Industry Nine Components

Dec 18, 2014
by Matthew DeLorme  


There is something to be said for things that are still made by hand. So many of the components made in the bike industry are built and assembled by machine "somewhere else" these days. Ten years ago, Industry Nine came on to the scene and started producing rather beautiful hubs and wheel sets. They were unique in that they used thick one piece aluminum spokes. They also had amazing engagement and were built by hand down in Asheville, North Carolina. Today, Industry Nine has proven that their design wasn't just a flash in the pan. They have continued to improve the design of their hubs and drivers, and they still build their wheel sets by hand to spec. We took a tour of Industry Nine with Clint Spiegel and watched the whole construction process. To be honest, it was a little like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, rainbow colors and all. Just not edible.

Clint Spiegel the man behind Industry Nine out side the company s discrete Ashville North Carolina headquarters. It is now Industry Nine s tenth year building some of the best wheels in the business.
  Clint Spiegel, the man behind Industry Nine outside the company's discrete Asheville, North Carolina, headquarters. It is now Industry Nine's tenth year building some of the best wheels in the business.

Clint still has a very hands-on approach in the design of every product that comes out of Industry Nine.
  Clint still has a very hands-on approach in the design of every product that comes out of Industry Nine.

Industry Nine isn t a name without meaning. It is the ninth business born out of this machine shop in Ashville NC and the most successful to date.
  Industry Nine isn't a name without meaning. It is the ninth business born out of this machine shop in Asheville and the most successful to date.

This is how an Industry Nine hub starts out a twelve foot 7075 aluminum bar.
  This is how an Industry Nine hub starts out, with a twelve foot long bar of 7075 aluminum.

The aluminum bar is then cut to length according to what hub it will become.
  The aluminum bar is then cut to length according to what hub it will become.

The first and second turning processes. The blank is bored out and then a hub starts to take shape. The hubs go through three turning and two milling steps.
  The first and second turning processes. The blank is bored out, and then a hub starts to take shape. The hubs go through three turning and two milling steps.

More material is cut away in the second turning process.
  More material is cut away in the second turning process.

About sixty percent of the original blank has now been milled away. What we have now can be easily recognized as an Industry Nine hub.
  About sixty percent of the original blank has now been milled away. What we have now can be easily recognized as an Industry Nine hub.

After each step the hubs are measured to assure everything is on point for the next process.
  After each step, the hubs are measured to assure everything is on point for the next process.

Next spoke mount posts are milled out in a five axis milling machine.
  Next, spoke mount posts are milled out in a five axis milling machine.

Rotor mount holes are tapped.
  Rotor mount holes are tapped.

The hubs are nearing the completion of the milling process. When they are done here they will go onto polishing before they get their ano bath.
  The hubs are nearing the completion of the milling process. When they are done here, they will go onto polishing before they get their ano bath.

After the hubs are milled each one is polished by hand.
  After the hubs are milled, each one is polished by hand.

Polished and ready for the anodizing process.
  Polished and ready for the anodizing process.

The anodizing tanks. It s an electro-mechanical process that bonds color to the porous aluminum. Think of it as dipping aluminum easter eggs in dye.
  The anodizing tanks. It's an electro-chemical process that bonds color to the porous aluminum. Think of it as dipping aluminum Easter eggs in dye.

After polishing the hubs are then loaded onto these trees and lowered into the anodizing tanks for coloring and sealing.
  After polishing, the hubs are then loaded onto these trees and lowered into the anodizing tanks for coloring and sealing.

End caps coming out of a black anodizing bath. It typically takes about two hours to anodize hubs the longer they stay in the bath the deeper the color.
  End caps coming out of a black anodizing bath. It typically takes about two hours to anodize hubs; the longer they stay in the bath, the deeper the color.

In a process that is unique to Industry Nine the driver rings are hardened before the teeth are cut. This makes the steel strong and insures that the part will maintain its shape but makes cutting the teeth a bit more difficult. That s where EVM wire comes in.
  In a process that is unique to Industry Nine, the driver rings are hardened before the teeth are cut. This makes the steel strong and insures that the part will maintain its shape, but makes cutting the teeth a bit more difficult. That's where EDM wire comes in.

A spool of copper wire as thick as two strands of hair is electrified and cuts teeth into the hardened steel ring. The process takes longer about one every thirty minutes but the resulting part is much more durable. Industry Nine makes about 30 of these per day.
  A spool of copper wire as thick as two strands of hair is electrified, and cuts teeth into the hardened steel ring. The process takes longer, about one every thirty minutes, but the resulting part is much more durable. Each machine makes about thirty of these per day.

Spent EVM wire. It will be recycled turned back into copper wire and live to cut hardened steel another day.
  Spent EDM wire. It will be recycled, turned back into copper wire, and live to cut hardened steel another day.

Pawls are cut out of a solid hardened steel bar.
  Pawls are cut out of a solid hardened steel bar.

The assembled Torch driver body. There are always three points of engagement and the system can withstand over seven hundred foot pounds of torque.
  The assembled Torch driver body. There are always three points of engagement and the system can withstand over seven hundred foot pounds of torque.

Industry Nine is unique in that they use aluminum spokes. The spokes are thicker than steel and because of their thickness have a similar tensile strength. They also make for an overall stiffer wheel. These are spokes in their raw state 7075-T6 aluminum. The spokes are then loaded into the milling machines. Industry Nine has four machines dedicated to making spokes. They churn out roughly 2 000 spokes per day.
  Industry Nine is unique in that they use aluminum spokes. The spokes are thicker than steel and, because of their thickness, have a similar tensile strength. They also make for an overall stiffer wheel. These are spokes in their raw state, 7075-T6 aluminum. The spokes are then loaded into the milling machines. Industry Nine has four machines dedicated to making spokes. They churn out roughly 2,000 spokes per day.

From aluminum rod to spoke. One piece light and strong.
  From aluminum rod to spoke. One piece, light and strong.

The final step in spoke production laser etching Industry Nine into the spoke. Usually the tray is full and the spokes are all lined up correctly. This was only for photo purposes.
  The final step in spoke production, laser etching Industry Nine into the spoke. Usually the tray is full and the spokes are all lined up correctly. This was only for photo purposes.

Spokes of every size and color. Your imagination is the only limit to color combinations.
  Spokes of every size and color. Your imagination is the only limit to color combinations.

Every wheel set that comes out of Industry nine is bulit by hand. Some are built by a man with a rather impressive beard.
  Every wheel set that comes out of Industry Nine is built by hand. Some are built by a man with a rather impressive beard.

Taste the rainbow. Some incredible bling for your bike Industry Nine hubs are really quite beautiful to look at. They happen to work pretty well too.
  Taste the rainbow. Some incredible bling for your bike, Industry Nine hubs are really quite beautiful to look at. They happen to work pretty well, too.

Besides bearings rims are the only part of an Industry Nine wheel set that is outsourced.
  Besides bearings, rims are the only part of an Industry Nine wheel set that is outsourced.

For those of you into fat bikes Industry Nine is now building some ridiculously light fat bike wheels.
  For those of you into fat bikes, Industry Nine is now building some ridiculously light fat bike wheels.

Industry Nine employees have a pump track out back which is handy when they are on break. It s also handy for some quick light duty testing.
  Industry Nine employees have a pump track out back, which is handy when they are on break. It's also handy for some quick light duty testing.

All wheels are trued by hand and then stressed in-house before being boxed up and shipped out.
  All wheels are trued by hand and then stressed in-house before being boxed up and shipped out to happy customers.


MENTIONS @Industry-Nine




184 Comments

  • + 151
 I like these articles. Lots of photos. Hardly any writing. Big Grin
  • + 33
 Buts just enough to get the point across without boggling the mind
  • - 16
flag chyu (Dec 18, 2014 at 10:00) (Below Threshold)
 I didn't even read.
  • + 32
 What are reading
  • + 14
 I9 hubs sound the balls! Santa said I have been riding good this year so I should be receiving a brand new set of polished I9 wheelset? !!!!!!
  • - 6
flag GumptionZA (Dec 18, 2014 at 15:12) (Below Threshold)
 if you google chris hoy and the jag f type and click on the top gear link, it takes you to an interview where he talks about his max numbers, over 700nm of torque... he could trash an I9 hub, one of the bestest hubs in the industry!(see what i did there).

although i have a suspicion that high quality hubs with less engagements can handle more torque, and its not like its something I9 should be worrying about anyway, chris hoy has taken up racing for nismo nissan
  • + 5
 What a great article, what a great beard!
  • + 4
 700 mm = 515 ft/lbs..
  • + 1
 *nm. stupid autocorrect!
  • + 5
 whoops, my mistake, those hubs can handle Hoy easy peasy!
  • + 1
 It states 700 ft lb. Which is 950nm
  • + 1
 Why ?
  • + 56
 Thanks for the Kind words! We're extremely proud of the things we make. To address a few comments i see here, i'd like to reassure "birdman2447" that our 7075 spokes have the same tensile strength of a 14g stainless spoke... that is one of the engineering criteria that determined their diameters. the spokes enter the hub at a tangental angle from the opposing spoke to keep the wheel straight as possible if there is a break. With sticks, rocks and acts of god, a bent derailleur hanger causing the mech to shift into spokes is still the greatest nemesis to the system but chances are the wheel is fine while your hanger is not when this happens. We also offer classic versions of our hubs in many spoke counts for those who want to use traditional j-bend spokes.
Also for those who want their hub quieter you can remove the endcap, slide the freehub out (all by hand) and load up the drive ring and pawls with Dumonde Tech Freehub oil. The more oil, the quiter! we have a machinist who runs his BONE DRY to make them as loud as possible also. To each their own!
  • + 4
 Curious, but how quiet can they be made? I have been searching a long time for a lightweight, quick engagement, yet quiet hub. As much as I want to try a higher end product I end up just running Shimano XTs.
  • + 10
 More importantly, they partnered with a local brewery to make I9 beer, which as it turns out, makes their hubs sound even better. I've only been running their hubs and alum spokes for 6 months or so, but they're hands down the best hubs I've ever ridden. Rad products and equally rad people.
  • + 1
 Is that Dumonde Tech Freehub oil legit for the classic hubs too? Or just the Torch?
  • + 4
 I believe the only different between the two is that one set uses I9's spokes, while the other is made to use J-bend spokes. Internally they are the same.
  • + 2
 Great products you guys! I've been running your stuff down mountains for years without any problem at all. So dependable and easy to work on.
Keep up the great work.
Where can i get a tshirt???
  • + 2
 bone dry it is then!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!yewwww
  • + 1
 No, you want a drop of Oil on each pawl and spring. If you add a little grease to the pawls it can queit up a bit. But it the FH last longer with just a drop on each Pawl and Spring. I have been selling these for 4 years, worked on 100s. Rebuilding the hubs is a piece of cake, no special tools, just 4 rear bearings, replace as needed.... and springs and pawls to clean. Can be done in very short amount of time Smile
  • + 3
 Industry-Nine. Just what do you do with all of you milled out alu. waste? Do you send it somewhere to be recycled? 60% of the Alu. stock seems like a lot of waste.
  • + 2
 Yeah it gets recycled. They get money back from the recycler just like any machine shop. It's just part of the game.
  • + 30
 I purchased some flanged I9 hubs (non-proprietary spoke version) back in 2007 and they are still going strong. I had also great customer service from I9 - they sent me their new formula of grease, my OCD questions were answered in hours, they sent a blank blue hub to the guys anodizing my rims for NAHBS for colour matching, and when I finally met them at Sea Otter they gave me a a great quality t-shirt that I cherish to this day. These days I have to ride what comes OEM on my bike, but I wouldn't hesitate to get I9 hubs again - well, I don't really need to because my current hubs are on their third build. The new versions are even better and lighter than mine. Remember... if you want real bling, forget Chris King!
  • + 1
 Agree 100%. I have a wheelset that is about 4 years old now, the I9 EN set. Tons of mileage. I've got the end cap kits to convert to 142/15 mm from 135/20 mm just to keep these wheels for another frame. Easy service, quick engagement, light, stiff as hell and they have stayed dead true. I've had good customer service. What else do you want?
  • + 23
 Now I know why their wheel sets are so f***ing expensive. Looks like it would be worth the money tho.
  • + 7
 700 ft/lb of torque?! That's more than what most new high performance cars of today put out.
  • + 13
 Yea, but the average human can put more than 130ftlbs of toque on the freehub just by standing on the pedals. Bikes are pretty efficient, & humans are pretty amazing.
  • + 4
 Just did quick research about human power output. Not much HP but the amount of torque was rather surprising.
  • + 5
 yup. adding a 170mm lever & a high gear ratio really multiplies that as well, & chain cog systems aren't stealing very much of that output due to how efficient they are.
  • - 2
 Well horsepower is just torque over time, the equation is torque * RPM / 5252 and since most humans can't pedal at more than about 180 RPM they won't be able to apply the torque that much of the torque they make
  • + 9
 I'm thinking one of your torques is supposed to be horsepower, otherwise you make no sense.
  • + 2
 Sorry I meant they won't be able to apply that much torque relative to time thus the lower horsepower
  • + 2
 What about work done
  • + 3
 We've probably got a fa narrower powerband than an ICE as well. Not going to be generating a lot of torque even at 120 RPM probably. the amount of mass we need to move is considerably smaller though.
  • + 5
 @Karpiel073 Torque for cars is typically measured at the crank which is before the transmission and final drive. That would be similar to measuring the torque at the pedals, not at the rear hub. A typical 1st gear + final drive gear ratio for a car is 14:1 (engine crank spins 14 times for every wheel rotation) so 200 ft-lbs of torque at the crank would be 2800 ft-lbs at the wheel.
  • + 1
 Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't you lose power through the trans, driveshaft and rear end? Guess I may be confused by your statement, but when a car is dyno'd, that is true final torque.
  • + 1
 Yes, that is wheel horsepower. Most manufactures measure it at the crank, there is usually a 15% parasitic power loss via the drivetrain, and about 25% for AWD cars. I'd assume a bike would have less
  • + 0
 I've heard multiple times that the parasitic power loss is a huge problem that prevents gearbox bikes from becoming reality. I've heard numbers as high as 95% for chain/cog, but not from anyplace I would trust.
  • + 19
 most beautiful sound ever when they roll
  • + 8
 do they sound better than a chris king as ive never seen 1 before?
  • + 4
 They sound better than CK in my opinion....I own both CK and I9's. Really liking my I9's!
  • + 1
 AH COOL, WHAT IS THE PRICE OF A REAR HUB?
  • + 38
 Calm down Chris, no need to shout. They are $385.
  • + 4
 Yep. Lots of I9 wheels on my local trails, Eastern Tennessee. Definetly a sound of their own, different than King's. I still rep Hopes for the British crowd.
  • + 3
 they are amazing to look at, never seen any, anywhere though, and i've been riding a little while now ahem..... I was hoping to read lots of comments here from owners after reading the article, was hoping.
  • + 8
 i live in asheville, everyone owns i9 wheels here(including me). bent creek parking lots are a parade of weirdly colored spokes and hubs every afternoon. BTW, i also own a set of mavics-stiffness and reliability are near as makes no difference identical. the responsiveness of the i9 rear hub is superior.
  • + 3
 it wasn't a slur at the wheels, I am blown away by them, just never seen them over here.

just looked at the 29 "enduro" wheel - looks sick, black rim, red fat spokes, mmm mmm
  • + 5
 sorry patrick9-32, forgot to take caps lock off the computer
  • + 8
 When it comes to sound

Profile Elites > i9 > King > Hope
  • - 1
 ur saying profile are number 1? what about ringle?
  • + 3
 I have a ringle rear hub, and yes it's also very loud.
  • + 3
 and pretty good value for money
  • + 3
 It's not about what's loudest, It's about the overall sound. You just can't recreate those 203 points of engagement on the profiles. i9s are louder than profiles and ringles, but profiles are like a swarm of bees chasing you down the trail.
  • + 3
 I was wondering why they would be using a caliper. I would expect bearing bore tolerances to be in the .01" range as an absolute minimum and require a micrometer to check, as they are beyond the tolerance of a caliper. I love my digital calipers, but they are only accurate down to about .02" and that is when be careful and taking multiple measurements.
  • + 2
 @hatton I've been saying it sounds like someone constantly reeling out a line while fishing under my ass. Bees work too.
  • - 1
 I love my hopes as they're butter smooth and super quiet. They can take quite a beating also.
  • + 3
 Add some grease and the buzzing is reduced. Smile
  • - 6
flag fracasnoxteam (Dec 18, 2014 at 9:52) (Below Threshold)
 best hub sound, for me, is.. silence.
  • + 3
 Where do you put Hadley's?
  • + 4
 Good point speed10
  • + 2
 I think you mean .001;-)
  • + 8
 I was thinking the same unless @carym means mm. But not with those imperial marks and country! My calipers are accurate to .0005''/.01mm. They are probably checking less critical measurements and will have go/no-go gauges for the bores.
What calipers do you have?
  • + 1
 @hatton agree with the sound chart. Adding Extralite to the top.
  • + 8
 Love Industry Nine. I have owned several sets. I have logged over 3000 miles on my Singlespeed wheels and 1000's more on other sets. This is my current set with Purple hubs. Bombproof wheelset instagram.com/p/u8goUWRJqT
  • + 6
 Nice - that purple is the business. Love 'em. "Dear Santa...... I know I've been bad and am obsessed with bike-related trinkets..... but I'll be sooooo sooooo good if you just get me a purple anodized i9 wheelset. I'll even stop being mean to roadies, hipsters and casual riders with carbon wheelsets...."
  • + 7
 I've run I9 since 2008. If you ride a larger hoop bike then the stiffness of these are impossible to match until you start buying carbon rims or build something too heavy to ride. Spokes breaking hasn't been a problem. I've probably had 8 different pairs and only one broken spoke. If you let sticks get in there and tear them up then that's a riding issue. I've ridden with bent, scratched, and gouged spokes. I've definitely had to replace rims when I was running lightweight Stan's for XC racing but the new i9 rims seem to be solid.

Of the newest design I have a pair of 24h 27.5 Trail (120mm hardtail), 27.5 32h trail (Transition Bandit), and 29er 32h Enduro (Transition TransAM). Match your build to your riding style. I ride aggressively, weigh 150lbs and prefer to skip and gap my way down the trail. The 24h 27.5s handled a lot more than I thought, but I wouldn't put them on any bike I was trying to be overly aggressive with. The 32h ones on the Bandit have seen bike park time and a few Enduros. They have held up great and needed a couple twists of the spokes to find true again, and there are a couple good dents in the rim. I would do the enduro rims next time for that bike for added confidence. The Enduro 29er rims are ridiculously stout. I don't even think about them.

I have a pair of the original design with stans arch rims on my DJ bike and I'm happy enough to case the crap out of the rear and it still runs great. I could probably true it a little but the wheel was originally on my Blur LTc in 2011 and has been on the DJ since 2012. They are actually pretty easy to pull apart and service, especially the newer ones.

It used to seem like the price for a wheelset was steep, but considering the cost of carbon, and the price of other comparable quality wheels they are right where they should be. The price of spokes are no worse than Mavic, and you can call i9 up and their customer service is solid because they care!
  • + 5
 I love the way all manufacturing style articles always have to have a photo of a micrometer. This article was different from the norm though in that it wasn't being held by some 'engineering' looking bloke in a knowing way measuring something that doesn't need to be measured...
  • + 17
 Here in the states we call those calipers. Micrometers use threaded barrels and resemble a mini c-clamp. Anyway, who doesn't love measuring stuff? I had a pair at my desk at my last job. I measured everything. EVERYTHING.
  • + 12
 Caliper are used only when you don't need precision. Everytime someone use a caliper to check tolerances, god kills a kitten,
  • + 3
 yeah pretty strange to see a caliper in a photo about precision, kinda offputting to be honest
  • + 2
 @pteplitxky we call them calipers here as well
  • + 17
 We have an array of measuring tools in action throughout the manufacture process. The vernier calipers are for on-the-fly checking of things. We use air gauges for bearing bore measurements and micrometers for the axles after they are through-ground at the bearing saddles.
  • + 3
 Sorry Verniers. I have a set and use them regularly. Just making the point they always seem to crop up in manufacturing phots. If anyone ever did a photo shoot of my framebuilding, I'd like to eb shown looking serious and measuring something with my calipers!
  • + 2
 I use a caliper for 99% of my stuff. Every time someone calls them vernier, god kills a kitten.
  • + 5
 en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernier_scale

Wikipedia says Vernier is the correct term. God can't argue with Wiki...
  • + 7
 Vernier not for precision manufacturing!? Pffft.
Are you implying that +\- 0.001" (or less) isn't precise? Do you expect them to use a cmm for hubs? Come on.... And that shot is clearly of in process inspection.... Geeeeeeeeez
  • + 3
 Vernier calipers are a pain to use, you need to line up the little lines and it's just a terrible time. Digital calipers were shown and are great for most stuff within a thou. Tho i'm not sure what sort of units cmm is maybe they missed that in my engineering courses...
  • + 4
 I was referring to a digital caliper as shown in the picture being discussed. Look up cmm, not a unit of measurement.
  • + 1
 It's all about go/no go. Old school all the way! Seriously though, it totally depends. Using the word precision without backing it up with other words like "tolerance of:", standard deviation, blah blah blah doesn't really mean anything. Calipers are good enough to see if a part slipped in a clamp or something and a path is f***ed. Cmm as mentioned somewhere would take forever in the manufacturing world to check tolerances on each part on the line but maybe volumes are low enough here to warrant it. Lasers and jigs ftw if you want to do it quick
  • + 3
 @shitface3 I wouldn't trust digital calipers to .001" unless it's just prototype stuff or your max resolution can be greater than .005" Dunno about expensive calipers but even if they read out to ten thou it doesn't mean it's accurate. You can easily sway a reading from day to day by clamping a part too hard. But maybe some calipers have some sort of slip ring equivalent you see on micrometers to keep clamping force consistent. Even then, you're not guaranteed consistency. I9 clearly knows what they're doing, calipers for bearing interfaces would be absolutely terrible, especially on inner diameters where the calipers measure from a finite chord length and not tangent. But hey, that's enough pedantic lecturing from me. I've been traveling for 6 months and miss the s*** out of both biking an engineering... Only 15 more hours till I get home...
  • + 1
 I'm sure they use go/no go gauges for their work, for large volume repetive work they are great. You're totally right about needing to reference an actual value when talking about precision... But really how accurate does a hub need to be ? +/- 0.003" I'm sure is pretty good if not excessive. Bearing clearance tolerances for press fit will be less.

Don't under estimate a proper digital caliper for inspection. Keep in mind that the inspector's measurement skills are as important as the inspection tool. My company measures to the thou on diameters of an inch to 24" plus every day. This includes inside diameters. Look up mitutoyo, they are +\-0.001" accuracy and common in manufacturing.

For reference: I'm a p eng, in manufacturing for nine years specializing in engineering heavy/ lower volume precise parts for use in dangerous applications. Also with automation/assembly line design experience before my current job. I've spent a lot of time in the shop. Filthy coveralls.

There are fast cmm's, I've seen them... Also semi automated tracing type cmm's. Good for sample inspection.

Ps. I have i9's , they are great.
  • + 3
 not only an awesome industry component company, their major supporters of the mountain bike scene within North Carolina and sponsors in North Carolina's National Interscholastic Cycling Association pursuits...Hat's off to the crew there cranking out awesome products...www.NCMTB.org
  • + 3
 At the rate I trash rims on my dh bike. Especially during the race season I can't justify buying expensive wheels.
I would love to be ably to justify these custom wheels. I have owned Chris king (still do), tune (still do) and Hadley hubs. All overpriced for the normal day to day rider.
I have the chance of buying i9 wheels just now. But lack of spares and crazy prices 2nd hand put me off.
  • + 2
 If I lived in mountains and was able to pull 10 laps a week on DH bike on real tracks, I'd ride Mavics 325s, eventually 729s and wouldn't even bother to run reduced spokes...
  • + 3
 I am just old and case everything Smile
  • + 2
 I'm so particular about being smooth, being light/heavy on the trail bike over rough bits, pumping and popping, that if I bought a DH bike I wouldn't give a bloody damn anymore, I'd just get my torso over the bars and punch the bike into rocks, I'd indulge a hobby of hucking the bike into rock gardens. I'd probably even run 2.7" Maxxis Minions... I just bought 2005 888RC, that's a start...
  • + 2
 You bought a 888rc?. Can you say plush? On down hill Gnar its almost like cheating. The fork eats up every thing and feels very stable. I agree keep the chest low and drive the fork into the rock garden.
  • + 1
 Wait until you are old.... haha. 888 just too heavy and under damped for my weak frail body.
  • + 1
 Mnah, I run 2,5kg forks on my trail bikes. I am old already Big Grin
  • + 1
 2.5kg, I can bench press 2.5kg. You are 33, only just a Master. You are but a puppy. haha
  • + 5
 " Industry Nine is unique in that they use aluminum spokes"

Except no they're not, they have simply copied Mavic who has been using aluminum spokes for over a decade now.
  • + 7
 @deeeight

yup, it was Mavic who basically invented the "factory wheelset" (global system) with Cosmic in 1994 and later the use of aluminium alloy spokes (Zicral material), which many wheelbuilders had thought impossible
  • + 104
 Do you also write complaints to Coke because it says "natural flavors" on the bottle?
  • + 20
 but i9 have no nipples system,its unique,And i9 wheels have a excellent hubs,when mavic rear hubs is piece of sh*t.And yes,i9 wheels dont destroy in several weeks,like mavic rear wheels.
  • - 13
flag deeeight (Dec 18, 2014 at 1:10) (Below Threshold)
 And I9 is even less supported by dealers worldwide than Mavic is, and if you strip the threads for one of their spokes out of the flange, you can throw away that whole hub shell. As to "Zircral", that's a european trade name for 7075 aluminum alloy. In other words, not only did I9 copy Mavic's use of aluminum spokes, they copied the alloy used as well.
  • + 28
 I think you are hyperxaggerating... my Deemaxes and Crossmaxes withstood some good deal of abuse. And yes I needed to open and grease the free hub, oh boy how tired I was afterwards, almost as much as when I needed to make lower leg service on my Fox fork after 30 hours of riding. My Formula brakes started rubbing so I sold this sht and bought Shimano XT. Now I ride bike-ahead wheels, 2003 Marzocchi fork, single speed, 2008 Bullit frame with Shimano BB bearings and I don't need to service my bike at all for 5 years. It is such an effort otherwise.
  • + 32
 somebody should start screen capping waki's deeeight trolls and make a montage—pure gold
  • + 2
 ^^^^^^ ^^^^^^ LOL.....he says some funny shite!! Who ever said sarcasim wasnt an art form!
  • + 3
 Mavic hubs go bad because Morons don't know how or take the time to tighten them properly.....
  • + 1
 Waki is a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. Don't stop.
  • + 3
 deeeight have you ever seen one of the flanges get stripped from someone tightening a spoke too much? I would figure that a spoke would break way before the threads ripped out of a hub.
  • + 1
 Actually yes and its not from over tightening that threads usually strip its from letting the tension loosen off. That's the problem with disc wheels, people get lazy on wheel trueness/tension maintenance,
  • + 1
 Don't forget that CB has a "no nipple" system as well.
  • + 0
 Yep, and CB did it before I9 existed. For that matter, Cane Creek used straight pull spokes with the tensioning done at the hub flanges (albeit with nipples) even before disc brakes became common place. While Mavic is seen as popularizing factory built high-end boutique wheelsets, it was really early composite wheel makers like HED, TriSpoke and Aerospoke that did it first more than 20 years ago.
  • + 3
 YES all those other brands had unique spokes. I9 spoke is on solid piece, no seperate nipple. goes in the rim and threads into the hub flange. It is different than Mavic, CB, Etc. It is also, from personal experience, a better system and the spokes cost less than Mavic for example. And you'll never really worry about broken spokes and wheel truing. Say what you want about I9, Ride a set and you'll be forever changed! My humble opinion... instagram.com/p/u_I1nxRJkB
  • + 3
 Not only do these guys make the best wheels known to man- if you're on a set, you know- if you're not, go demo a set and you'll see- they go way beyond expectation in sponsoring and promoting biking events. I've been to three gatherings in the past few months where a set of I9s were raffled off and they stepped up to sponsor the World Cup at Windham this year as well. Great product made here in Asheville by a great bunch of guys, thanks!!
  • + 2
 I bought a new set of wheels for my 2013 V10 as I was building it up in the Spring of last year. I had always wanted I9 wheels and saw my new V10 build as an excuse to get some. I have the new Torch hubs matched with Enduro rims and the things are awesome! Have had no issues at all and have yet to even have to so much as tighten a single spoke after 18 months. When I first got the wheels I would check the spokes often, thinking something would have to loosen a bit at least while breaking in, but nothing. Perfectly true and the hub sound to me is pure music......really could not be more happy with a bike component purchase......kudos I9!
  • + 2
 M y friend blew out five aluminum spokes on her Industry nine rear wheel. The wheel kept true. I tied up the loose spokes. wheel lasted for the rest of the ride. Stiff wheels? Hell yes!
Im all about quality controll. The calipers beside the hub tells the story.
  • + 2
 ep1.pinkbike.org/p4pb9452439/p4pb9452439.jpg
OK it was six spokes and the wheel stayed true.
  • + 2
 I had a set, didn't like them. Spokes snapped easily. Also could never get proper rear disc rotor alignment and thought it was the bike. Changed calliper mount, rotor, tried a different brake. Ended up having to run washers to space it all out correctly and filling the back side of the calliper slightly. Then one day I borrowed a mates wheel and realised it was the I9 wheel which was out. Sold them and got some cheap superstars - far better for me.
  • - 1
 Seems to me that machining spokes and hob shells - parts that really should be forged - will lead to snappage. It's cool that they can make boutique gear in the US, but it means forging is probably unaffordable for them. The similar article about Novatec hubs last year convinced me that Taiwanese seems to be the most skilled component manufacturers capable of taping into these economies of scale.
  • + 0
 I keep hearing mixed things about Novatec stuff. Some people love their hubs, but others seem to have problems with the freehub body on some models. I do agree with you though, forging makes way more sense for the hub shell.
  • + 2
 I have some classic hubs on their way getting laced to dt swiss ex471. Hopefully this is the best wheel set I have owned. My fav set was an original Mavic deetraks set I bought around 2006 and died the beginning of this summer when an idiot hit me on my bike.
  • + 6
 RYAN DUNN IS ALIVE AND A WHEEL BUILDER???!!!
  • + 1
 I bought some industry 9 enduro wheels this year based on strong recommendations from other riders and people in the industry. I would consider myself as a beginner -intermediate if we look at my skill sets. I am 54, no pro, but I have had lots of years riding. I probably do 3000 to 5000 kms on all my bikes with a few 100 hours of riding on my mountain bike. Anyway, after about 15 rides and 45 hours of mountain biking , my I9s are crooked as &(**(&(*&(?à My 2012 Trance 2 wheels are still fine and my Trek VRX 300 (1999) rims are still straight so why, after investing 3 to 5 times more $ on wonderful wheels, are they giving out on me ? I will be taking them to the shop tomorrow, but helpful comments would be much appreciated.
  • + 1
 These are superb hubs, the ratchet pawl delay is practically 0. They are loud, but it's a unique sound and hikers/slower bikes will always look. When your'e fast it sounds like angry bees, and you're buds will always offer the lead because it's distracting... sweet no dust! My only complaint is the front hub axle spacers pop off too easy, I've almost lost them many times when fixing flats.
  • + 1
 I have owned at least 5 sets of their wheels. The new Torch hubs are awesome. I wish they would have gone into more detail on the "stressing" of the wheel before it is sent out. I am amazed that my wheels have needed almost zero attention since installing them 6 months ago. Truly amazing. I had a set of Crank Bros wheels that threaded in the middle of the spoke and they were wobbly loose in just a month. The tire was rubbing the rear triangle so badly I sent them back for tensioning then promptly sold them. I have the choice to run any wheel and I9 is without compromise the best IMO.
  • + 1
 Love my I9 wheels. They have stood up to two and a half full seasons of hard DH riding including racing and multiple week-long trips to Whistler and all I've had to do so far is replace one broken spoke. The bearings are going and will need to be done this winter, but I didn't expect them to last forever. Mine are the older style hubs and rims (bought in 2012) but I'd love to get a set of the new Torch wheels for my trailbike. The freehubs sound like a herd of angry chainsaws coming down the trail - pure awesome.
  • + 2
 So far perfect reliability from my I9 Trail 24, 29er wheels after two years of hard use. At 1435g for the set (I weighed them), they are lighter than my carbon Dura-Ace road wheel set!
  • + 3
 If only they would make a straight pull hub that use normal steel spokes... Sorry I9, your aluminium spokes is just too expensive.
  • + 4
 100% this. Though they do make J-bend hubs, so it's not all vinegar.
  • - 2
 At Reinforcer, WHAT? to expensive for a spoke? It is like $5 a spoke. And you can buy one at a time, if you ever need them. And a Wheelset comes shipped with 2 extra spokes. Mavic spokes. No extra with wheelset, Buy a pack of 12 for $60 bucks! Mindblown
  • + 1
 @MrDiamondDave At MrDiamondDave, WHAT? $5?! LOL!
  • + 3
 They are NOT $5 either. store.industrynine.net/p/torch-spokes/torch-small-parts?pp=25 $7 bucks a piece makes a set for a 32h hub $224. nice regular spokes are 1/4 that. Perfectly usable straight gauge ones are less than a buck a piece.
  • + 0
 I guessed, but close! lol and you'll not need them for a long time or a LOG goes into your wheel maybe
  • + 1
 but what about the initial cost of the wheel? you're essentially looking at a $700 wheelset costing $1200, & what you get for that is a fairly minimal weight savings, & some bling. I'm not opposed to either of those things, but $500 is a lot for what you get. Especially since you can get the exact same hubs with standard flanges: store.industrynine.net/p/torch-classic-hubsets/torch-classic-hubs?pp=25
  • + 5
 I9's thats how I roll!
  • + 0
 I had issues with my Enduro wheelset when they came from the factory. They had little to no grease in the free hub body, and the spokes weren't tension right. I had an awful creaking noise coming from the rear wheel, it took my bike shop 3 tries before they figured out it was the spoke tension. It was a a long process and took a lot of my time fortunately the wheel set is performing good now.
  • + 2
 It's expensive ? Yes it is but it's worth .
I have my pair for over 2 years without any issues , and their customer service is simple the Best.
  • + 2
 as someone who's ridden hard on a set of industry nine's for 3 years and just got a new bike... a new set will be the first upgrade. quick engagement FTW!!!!
  • + 2
 can only withstand seven hundred foot pounds of torque, not sure that could handle my aggressive xc super-torque horsepower wattage output
  • + 3
 Industry Nine rocks...!!! Only if you have, you know the flow and the durability !!!! Check my wheels Wink
  • + 2
 I wonder at which phase of the manufacturing process the spoke holes are drilled and tapped. Obviously this is done after anodizing. Does anyone know why?
  • + 1
 my main riding buddy has had the same set of industry nine's for like three years and he puts them through so much abuse. I would buy a set in a heartbeat if I could afford it.
  • + 2
 Wait, did I miss the part where they explained how the dude that originally came up with the idea got booted and had his idea exploited/stolen?
  • + 3
 he should be using his arm rest on his chair, gonna get some upper back and neckitis, otherwise great posture
  • + 2
 Had a set for 5 years, never trued them once absolutely perfect. Yes, I rode them lots Smile
  • + 1
 I wonder if there is a bottling plant nearby that gives them the broken glass they put into their freehubs to get that awesome crunching sound.
  • + 1
 Owned one set of these already and loved them! They put my current wheel sets to shame. Come the future all of my bikes will be blinged out with these Big Grin
  • + 3
 $1200 doesnt seem so expensive now...
  • + 2
 It's crazy I would lay that down for a set, but compared to my complete 2006 specialized big hit 2 at the end of 2006 for only 1200 from the shop. It's now crazy to think about things like that. Once 1200 a complete bike now just sweet parts
  • + 1
 Ive visited I9 and it might be the coolest place on the planet. The pump track is huge and very well done. I want to get a job there!
  • + 2
 Even with the benefits of anodising they really should sell a raw hub just because it looks amazing!
  • + 2
 But it won't look amazing long if they are row. For a durable "polished" look, you need a coat of Ni or something like that.
  • + 0
 I guess I9 hasn't heard of clear anodizing yet.
  • + 1
 The Polished hubs are super sexy. I have a set and Love them. over 3000 miles and never broke a spoke
  • + 6
 RatHunter83 our silver hubs and the endcaps/freehub on our road system are certainly clear anodized but the process does dull the polish.
  • + 2
 So polishing is purely for looks or does it remove the surface imperfections of machining as well? I'm just a curious CNC operator.
  • + 3
 polishing deburrs the sharp edges, gets rid of lather and mill lines and prepares the surface for anodizing. a polished surface is way brighter after ano than a "mill finish" even if it does dull it a bit.
  • + 3
 I9 Wheels are the stuff of dreams! If only I could get my hands on some!
  • + 1
 Anyone want to guess how much a twelve foot x 3" diameter bar of 7075 aluminum might cost?
  • + 1
 Love my I9 wheels and will get some for my trail bike in the future for sure.
  • + 1
 Have drank beer with these guys about an hour before closing on a couple occasions....rad place. Rad guys.
  • + 1
 Have had the I9 classic hubs laced to Mavic 729's since 09. Still rockin! Love these things.
  • + 3
 Best wheels ever.
  • + 1
 Those fatbike wheels look pretty awesome. If only I had money and room for a fatbike.....
  • + 1
 I Love My I9's. I need to get another set, so I have a excuse to get another frame
  • + 1
 how do I get those fat bike rims in the picture? They aren't on the website!
  • - 1
 "Besides bearings, rims are the only part of an Industry Nine wheel set that is outsourced."

What a stupid comment... so really they make part of the hubs and the spokes? That's fine, just an idiotic way to word it.
  • + 2
 Burke is so hott right now!
  • + 1
 These are great wheels and sound awesome! I'm running them and the build quality is second to none
  • + 2
 Cheese sandwiches!
  • + 1
 How do you do an article on I9 and miss the rim tree photo?
  • + 1
 Great article. Great wheels. i9 forever
  • + 1
 these things sound good when rolling too. A desirable feature I confess.
  • + 5
 After running Hope pro hubs on Orange bikes for 7 + years, I find I now like quiet wheels
  • + 1
 The new Torch hub design sounds a bit different than of old. Not a swarm of bees chasing you anymore, maybe just two chubby ones now. Not as high pitched.
  • + 1
 not sure why but I like the noisy hubs. kind of like an engine revving maybe. plus it keeps bears away
  • + 1
 Great products and Great people what more could you ask for.?
  • + 9
 For the same beard as the guy who build wheels.
  • + 1
 I used to go through a lot of hubs, then I got i9's and never looked back.
  • + 1
 The only thing I've made with my edm is a bottle opener
  • + 1
 "THAT'S" why they're so expensive!
  • + 1
 Anodize! Anodize everything! I better not see a hint of grey anywhere!
  • + 1
 Seems odd to have coverage of i9 and not see Shanna's smiling face!
  • + 1
 NIIIICEEEE!
  • + 1
 nice picts
  • + 1
 Beautiful pieces...
  • + 1
 Love Mine I9 4 Life
  • + 1
 Good job ! !
  • + 1
 lol that methlab
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