Pics in Hyperlinked Names
"Getting a quality, competition-ready wheel built to my exact specifications is
no easy task but Bob and the team at College Street Cycles always deliver.
His attention to detail and precision wheel building techniques always yield
exceptional wheels that can withstand my needs, abuse and busy riding schedule."
"I wouldn't trust my wheels to any other builder"
Not sure why but sometimes wheels can be a bit of a disappointment when buying
a high quality complete bike. This is why you need a skilled local mechanic - Bob,
to build you a set that will meet your requirements and, as it turned out in my case,
exceed expectations.I run 2 custom sets on my mountain bikes (including one with
Cannondale's proprietary FSi offset) and one on my road bike. The MTB sets went
through so much abuse while racing that I oftentimes wonder how it is physically
possible they are still not only in one piece, but also hold true and continue delivering
a stellar performance. The road set is just slick, light and fast; never had to do
anything with it since I put it on 4 seasons ago.This speaks to the quality of
craftsmanship that Bob delivers throughout the process, starting with advice on
components needed for the style of riding you do and ending on a top-notch
quality of the build.
Bob built me a set of tubular race wheels for cyclocross with White Industries
T11 hubs laced to Velocity Major Tom rims with a 28 spoke 3-cross pattern. It
is a durable, light, and handsome wheelset. I have subjected the wheels to
plenty of abuse over two cyclocross seasons, and Bob has provided great service
when they have needed a little love to get back to “race shape.” In my experience,
it doesn’t get any better than when the person who maintains your wheels is
also the person who built them.
-- Michael L.
“As a longtime racer, I have gone through more than my fair share of
wheels. Bob’s are, quite simply, the best I’ve ridden. I rode one set
through three years of the Battenkill Road Race -- which features rutted
off-road sections -- and they barely needed truing. True custom wheels
are harder and harder to find, but Bob shows it’s possible to get just the
wheel you need at a reasonable price, backed by his commitment to
ensuring it keeps rolling reliably for years to come.”
-- Jacob S. Hacker
The wheel set College Street Cycles built for my cyclocross bike are light but strong.
They have stood up to much punishment on the grueling dirt roads of
western Massachusetts and Vermont for many years.
Thanks Bob, -- George Critides
Being a New Haven native, College St. Cycles has always been there for the majority of my
wheel build needs. Bob has personally custom built several of my wheel sets for BMX street riding.
I've noticed, time over time, parts will diminish faster than his work due to my rough street style
riding. I am a daily rider who goes hard on my bike and I know I can trust his work, hasn't failed
me yet; for I still have wheel sets to this day that remain true just like new.
Getting back to riding six years ago, I needed a set of wheels that did
everything—measured power and could survive training and racing.
Bob built up a set of wheels that I am still using nearly daily. Never
out of true, no broken spokes, and light!
-- Michael S.
I knew there was a buzz about college street's abilities with high end builds
from the road cycling community, so I checked out if they would do anything
with 20 inch wheels. I got to talking with Bob about what type of riding
I was doing, and what I was looking to get out of a my wheels. Spoiler, Bob
planned and built me the most bomb proof, ever-true wheels the world has
ever known. The attention to detail and craftsmanship they put into them
was remarkable. From the use of custom spokes normally used in tandem
mountain bikes applications, to their pre and re-stressing during truing, to
the selection of quality nipples, and, the installation of an industrial rim lining
which he devised. When you go to college street, you're getting a true mechanic
that knows the field. It is really akin to white glove service. You brainstorm,
collaborate, and ultimately come away with something you will have confidence in.
-- Storm N.
They say you can’t reinvent the wheel but that sure doesn’t mean all wheels are equal - this is especially
true when it comes to bike wheels. Quality really matters, but that statement is not limited to just the
components of a wheel – how a wheel is built is JUST as important. Think if it this way, top dollar
components don’t know how to put themselves together. Give it to someone who knows nothing about
making wheels and ultimately you are going to walk away with some expensive junk. All this to say that
Bob Jacobson at College Street Cycles make ONE HELL of a good wheel.
As an owner of two different wheelsets made by College Street Cycles (mountain and road), I could talk
at length about a lot of different things. Both wheelsets have lasted a really long time; both have stayed
really true over the ages; but what I really want to point out is that the knowledge and experience of the
guys at College Street Cycles is evident from the very beginning. Right away these guys guide you
towards the best possible combination of components depending on your desired use (and this does not
mean the most expensive). This is followed up with great attention to detail and focus on the build and I
say this because the final product. I have put countless hours and endless miles on the wheels I had
built by College Street and they just keep on spinning true and smooth.
-- Will G
I can honestly say that the most important and under rated part of your bicycle is the quality
of the wheels, a well blended selection of spokes, rims, hubs and tires. Bob has built several
wheel sets for me and each one of them has never gone out of true, no broken spokes and
the wheel set feels right at home (ya know that sweet spot when you pedal) whether I'm
riding downhill or just hitting up my local trail.The downhill wheels see an unimaginable
amount of abuse during one 15 minute run from the top of the mountain until the bottom.
I have been running those wheels since the summer of 2010 and they have not bent
even when I experience a major crash. The wheels are fast and reliable which is exactly
what you want when you are riding downhill. I see people at the mountainwith broken wheels
all the time. My other wheels on my all mountain bike are lighter than the downhill wheels but also as reliable.
I run a tubeless set up on both wheelsets and they hold the tire well and maintain air pressure.
It's all done with a science of tensioning spokes and I only trust College Street Cycles to build me a
dope wheel set. Whenever I get a set of custom wheels I will always go to College Street Cycles because
they know how to service my hubs (with the right tools). Once I get a chance to eventually
wear out my rim or destroy it, I will only go to College Street Cycles to re-up.
What happens when you completely trash a rear wheel only a few days before a big race?
That is what I was faced with earlier this season. During my lunch break I stopped in to
see Bob at College Street Cycles and told him my dilemma. Right then and there he called
Velocity Wheels and cashed in a favor. He had a rim overnighted, pulled a hub and some
spokes from stock, and prepared to crank out a wheel for me. It was Tuesday. Early
Thursday morning I received a call that my wheel was built and the new tubular he glued
was drying. Later that day I swung in and picked up my newly laced Velocity Major Tom
laced to a Shimano XT 10 Spd Hub. Can't say enough about the guys over at College Street,
during the past three years of racing, they have always been there for me to bail me out of
the unique situations I find myself in.
-- Gary H. -Wallingford CT
When I upgraded my road bike from aluminum to carbon fiber I needed a
nice light set of race wheels that would help me float up hills. Bob built me three
wheels -- a front wheel, a rear race wheel, and a power-tap rear wheel for training -- with rims,
hubs, spokes, and even the tires customized to my needs. These super lightweight
clinchers give even some carbon fiber aero wheels a run for their money,despite the extra
spokes Bob added in to accommodate my tendency to hit every pothole on the road.
I road them at the Collegiate Nationals in Utah and they let me climb with ease and
kept me rubber side down in the high winds. I'm still riding them today and have
never had so much as a broken spoke. The thought and care that Bob took in
designing wheels that would meet my performance needs as well as my financial
limitations, made a potentially intimidating and experience easy.
-- M Brown
I own several pairs of hand built wheels from Bob. Each set was built specifically for me,
my weight, my riding style and each set serving a different purpose. I have light weight wheels
for themountains and road and sexy deep section wheels for my fixed gear. They have remained
straight and true for hundreds of miles. A high standard of personalized service, precision
and knowledge is what you get from College Street Cycles, what more can you ask for!?
-- John K
Bob and the guys at College Street Cycles are great! I came to them with an idea to make my
commuter all season ready and they nailed it! Bob built a set of bomb proof wheels and spooned
on some grippy rubber. Bob even found a disc caliper that would work with my setup. I have been
riding this setup for months now and have even tackled the last couple snow storms worry free.
If these wheels can handle a loaded bike and my 220lbs sliding and jumping through snow I'm
sure they can take anything!
-- James G