When I went to Montano Velo to buy some spokes and a rim for a new wheel build, they sold me Phil Wood spokes. I bought double butted spokes, so it took a few minutes to prepare them on the spoke machine. I had always used DT spokes and I really didn’t notice that they weren’t DT spokes until I started threading them through the hub and saw “PHIL” embossed on the butted section near the spoke head. I used Damon Rinard’s free spoke length calculator, which is an Excel spreadsheet with macros, to calculate the length of spokes that I needed. After truing and dishing the wheel, the spoke length calculations proved correct.
I also used a Mavic Open Pro rim. The Mavic Open Pro rims have double eyelets, which hopefully distribute the stresses through the two sections of the rim. I considered the Mavic CXP33, which has more of a V-profile than the Open Pro. I guess I’m a traditionalist. I’m not interested in saving weight – I just need strong wheels that will hold up to someone who weighs 13.8571 stone and occasionally bunny hops on craggy Oakland streets. I have never had any problems with Mavic rims. In the past, I have used the G40, GP3, GP4, MA40 and MA3. On my first ride today, the wheel didn’t pretzel so I guess it’s working.