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mercurial masters of wheelbuilding please advise. LONG(10 posts)

mercurial masters of wheelbuilding please advise. LONGnaff geezer
Jan 25, 2002 12:50 AM
d-day has arrived and its time for all my parts to become two round (hopefully) and strong wheels?

looking for any final words and have a few questions before i start:

my ingredients already amassed:

2 x mavic ma3 rims (36h)

pair of highflange suzue track hubs (cheapo)

dt 14g and brass nipples. (ordered 40 each for 3x rear and radial front - the extras are for my first time and for spares

park spoke tool

phillips head screw bit with two edges cut off for a nipple driver

cheapo truing stand (upside down bicycle)

zinn's road book and what articles are on the web by mssr's sheldon brown and j. pabst. any other sites i should look at?

phil wood grease, boesheild, campy spray lube and olive oil are my options for slipperiness and lube - which is best for nipples and threads?

luckily i will require no dish as its for a fixed/free.

as i dont have a similar wheel to refer to for tension (shamal) what is a good way for me to figure out how much tension i should aim for (yes i am too cheap to buy a tensionometer)? having read a few articles on "taco effect" i dont think my tension will be that high but as i weigh close to my max heart rate (probably higher) am i correct in my thinking that i will need a good amount of tension? i know what a properly tensioned high spoke wheel feels like and this is what i will be using as a guide but as i wont have one at hand can anyone offer suggestions?

i sort of recall reading somewhere that i needn't grease threads and nipples if spoking them radial. something about spokes loosening themselves? is this true? if yes why? speaking of radially i am planning to have all the spokes running up the inside of the flanges - that is the spoke head will be on the outside flange - correct? do i need a higher tension for radial spoking?

how much consideration should i allow for the fact that i already have high flanges? i figure with shorter spokes that with a given weight along a shorter distance should result in higher stress. if the hub flanges don't absorb this then its either the spoke or the nipple or the rim.

and what method of de-tensioning is better or does it matter? ive read of spanners levering, garden gloves and a strong hand squeezing neighbours, laying the wheel on the ground and pushing down with two hands. it actually started to get me excited.

any tips before i try to test ride it?

and a question on bolts for the axles. i plan to add a washer to stop the serations on the bolts eating up my cheap but chromed gippieme dropouts. is there a minimum thickness i need to be aware of as id hate for it to fail or for me to think about?

regarding using my bike any tips for attaching guides? pegs, taped peices of cardboard? im pretty shure that my chainstays and fork is straight but i will check.

am i too ambitious in my equipment? im pretty good at feeling things with my hands and as my father was a mechanical engineer i inherited a little of his pragmatism when thinking of things?

i just needed a good set of cheap wheels and wanted to build them myself and understnd the wheel thing a bit better. im pretty sure i can do it. and it will have cost me about $150 including tires, tubes, tape and spoke tool. im such a tight ass but love spending money (does that make sense?).

thanks for any input even if it is negative. it will probably help.
Just do it!nee Spoke Wrench
Jan 25, 2002 6:38 AM
Take your time and you'll be fine.

It sounds to me like you've already gotten advice from too many conflicting sources.
re: Wheel BuildingChen2
Jan 25, 2002 7:11 AM
Unless I missed something I didn't see two basic ingredients: A Park TS-2 truing stand and "The Bicycle Wheel" by Jobst Brandt. Is there a chance that you could borrow or buy these?
This truing stand will take care of dishing (centering), truing, and rounding the wheel. It's also something you will use as long as you ride a bike.
Short answerNessism
Jan 25, 2002 7:47 AM
I'm not an expert so take this with a grain of salt.

Why radial front? Your component choices are very conservative so why the "trendy" but not as strong pattern?

To stress relieve the spokes, push down on the rim with the axle supported on the floor as you indicated above.

Lube the spokes and nipples with grease or heavy oil. Doesn't matter which. Even the cooking oil will work.

Make sure to bend the spokes as they push through the hub to straighten out the angle.

Do not use washers on the end of the axle. The serations on the nuts are designed to bite into the drop out so the axle will not slip. Live with the chrome damage.

Check dish by flipping the wheel over in the DO and looking to see if the wheel is offset to one side.

Don't make the spokes too tight. Just bring them up to tension until they feel taught. No real reason to go full tight on a 36 spoke wheel. Check some other bike to get some idea of tension in general.

Lastly, keep all alcohol away during this project. Saver the moment when they are finished by tilting your favorite beverage, not during the actual work.

just a quick couple-a notesohio
Jan 25, 2002 9:48 AM
I'd still use anti-sieze on the radial front.
I'd run the spokes on the outside of the flange up front - makes for a laterally stiffer and vertically more compliant wheel.
You're bike will work just fine as a truing stand, juts make sure the axle is completely seated in the dropouts when testing for trueness. I've never built one from scratch using this method but I've redished from geared to single using just the bike and it worked fine...
Don't add flat washers to the axle bolts. Unless the bike has vert drops, you NEED those serrations to keep the wheel in place while you crank up a steep hill. Good track nuts have a serrated washer, so it'll bite but not spin and rip up the chrome.

And be meticulous about counting spokes as you build. I keep a piece of blue masking tape to mark the spoke I started on, and another to mark where I am if I drop the spoke wrench and need to pick it up.

That's about it. Enjoy.
Another commentNessism
Jan 25, 2002 11:28 AM
I always try to turn each spoke the exact same amount as I work around the wheel bringing up tension. Don't worry about how true the wheel is during the tensioning process. You can watch to see how far the spoke is pushing through the nipple or how many threads are showing. When you are satisified that the spokes are all tight (and tightened the same amount), then start to true the wheel.
Yet another commentdzrider
Jan 25, 2002 12:51 PM
The earlier in the process I start checking the wheel for roundness the less trouble I've had. Now I start looking for roundness as soon as I think the spokes could possibly move the rim and each time I get back to the valve hole I check for roundness again.
Yet another commentNessism
Jan 25, 2002 1:06 PM
The reason I try to get the tension up first is so I don't get some spokes tighter than some others. I've found that if I'm careful to tension evenly, the wheel is fairly close to true when I start the straightening process. I've also found (found out the hard way) that if I worry too much about roundness early in the tensioning process it's easy to skip a spoke or two.

That said, your recommendation to check the roundness earlier in the process can't hurt. Just be careful.
re: mercurial masters of wheelbuilding please advise. LONGfeathers mcgraw
Jan 25, 2002 1:12 PM
Read and re-read everything you can 'til it makes perfect sense. Brandt's book is good, so is Gerd Schraner's. I find that Sheldon Brown's explanation of lacing to be the clearest (available on line). I use normal acrylic paint as spoke prep. It lubes as you build and then holds the nipple when it dries. Same as linseed oil or Wheelsmith spoke prep, just more readily available. De-tension and re-true until the popping noises stop. Sheldon Brown has links to sites where you can estimate spoke tension by plucking it for musical pitch. Brandt says you should increase tension until de-tensioning effectively tacoes the rim slightly. Then back off a half turn on all the nipples. (This sounds scary to me). Get a hold of a truing stand if possible. The frame thing is ok, but not nearly as accurate. A dish stick would be nice, too, just in case your frame isn't perfectly aligned. The only reason to radially lace with spokes heads out is aesthetics or clearance issues on mountain bike forks. Not sure your hubs are meant for radial lacing anyway. Definitely go three cross if you can exchange the spokes. Have fun. Just be aware that this can be addictive and you'll find yourself making up reasons why you need to build yourself another wheelset.
Radial spoking on a High-flange hub:DAC
Jan 26, 2002 1:44 PM
If this hub has cutouts below the spoke holes, DO NOT SPOKE IT RADIALLY!! In fact, don't radial spoke it if it has more than 32 spokes-you will probably tear-out the flange.
How much thickness is there to the flange? Radial spoking concentrates stress on the shortest distance availabe-the line straight from the spoke hole to the edge-there's got to be enough metal there, or else the spoke will rip through.