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A pair of wheels is the foundation on which a bike rolls, the primary contact between machine and earth. Totem believes that a bike is only as good as its wheelset, and subsequently the feel and performance of the ride, longevity of the components and overall enjoyment of the rider. With this in mind, we proudly offer custom wheels and take great care in tailoring the components and build to the specific needs of each individual rider and bicycle. Each wheel is treated as a work of functional art; a time-honored craft that is equal parts science and humanity, a ritual that owes as much to our forefathers as it does to current technology. Time is taken, because a strong wheel is timeless.

Totem’s wheel building station houses the heralded Phil Wood Spoke Cutting & Threading tool in order to produce precision spoke lengths according to the hubs and rims being used. Threads are rolled into the spoke, not cut, so there is no loss of material or strength. Spoke selection is paramount – a good spoke will flex enough in the right places to absorb impact, yet maintain rigidity and proper tension to create a bulletproof skeleton. Whether it’s straight gauge, single-butted, double-butted, bladed, superlight, heavy duty – we offer a wide range of spokes from Wheelsmith, Sapim and DT Swiss in order to fine tune the wheel to your application. Thread compound is used to minimize vibrational rotation over time, and tension is constantly checked and tweaked throughout the build using the precise DT Swiss analog tensiometer. Finally, a custom-built press is used to de-stress the wheel so that it is ready to ride.


  • Wheel build labor $60
  • Spokes starting at $1.10
  • Nipples $0.10 brass, $0.15 alloy colored
  • Hubs/Rims $ – $$$

*These are base prices; additional charges may incur for bladed spokes, internal nipples, high-spoke-count wheels, etc.







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