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Wheel Noises(10 posts)

Wheel Noisesbike_guy
Apr 30, 2002 9:56 AM
I have a new wheelset with about 150 miles on them. On my last ride they started to pop and ping. They were only doing this when I come up out of the saddle, usually on a hill. I am not sure if the noise is from both wheels or just one. It seems like I can recreate the noise when off of the bike by plucking the rear spokes. The noise seems to be coming from where the spokes cross. Anyone know what this could be. These are Velocity Aeroheads, Am. Classic hubs, 15/15/14 spokes, and al. nipples.
re: Wheel Noisescurlybike
Apr 30, 2002 11:06 AM
THe spokes may have been wound up from building. Is the wheel still true? Are the spokes on the non drive evenly tensioned. Check them by plucking the spokes and comparing the sounds. I am terrible at notes but even I can tell the difference between titer and looser this way. If there are big differences, take the wheel back to the builder.
I agree with CurlySpoke Wrench
May 1, 2002 4:55 AM
"Pinging" sounds from a new wheelset is usually due to wound up spokes unwinding themselves.
I agree with Curlybike_guy
May 1, 2002 5:16 AM
Thanks for the help. I guess I will just take them to my local shop and let them take a look. The wheels were not built locally so it would cost more to ship them back to the builder than to have the local shop check them.
One more questionbike_guy
May 1, 2002 5:22 AM
If the spokes are really unwinding and/or losing tension, shouldn't the wheel be out of true. The front wheel is perfectly true, the rear has only a very tiny wobble.
Not always...Mike Prince
May 1, 2002 5:54 AM
A little bit of twist and a lot of twist make very similar noises. Your spokes may only be unwinding a little bit, especially if the wheels are not out of true.

If the wheels are not out of true more than a mm or two, I would check the relative tension of the spokes on your own by feel/sound. You can pluck the spokes as described elsewhere. If they all feel/sound about the same I would not be alarmed given that the wheels are not going wildly out of true. Just trying to save you a few bucks at the LBS. Personally, I would ride a few more times to let the spokes unwind fully and see how out of true the wheel was before I broke out a spoke wrench or ran to the LBS. A lot of newly built wheels will ping a bit and need some touch up after a few rides, especially if the builder did not minimize the spoke wind-up as part of final truing.

You can also do some "stress relieving" off of the bike by grabbing same-side spokes in pairs (they will appear to be close to parallel in relation to each other) and gently squeezing them together. This will help to accelerate the unwinding process a bit. If the wheel goes out of true after this (or if this sounds confusing), go to the shop.

Keep in mind that even after an "expert" works on the wheels, you should expect a few pings (esp. on the rear wheel) when you get back on the bike. Ususally in the first few forceful revolutions of the pedals. This is normal.

Hope this helps. Sorry for rambling but the morning coffee is kicking in...
Spoke crossingsKerry
Apr 30, 2002 5:17 PM
To find out if it really is the spoke crossings, put a little wax lube at each crossing and see if the sound goes away. You can use candle wax, WL, or anything that leaves a solid residue (to avoid crud buildup from dust collection). Another likely noise source could be the BB, if it wasn't greased and properly torqued on installation. Beyond that, there are many possible noise sources including pedals, cleats, cranks, chainring bolts, QR skewers, saddle, seat post, bar, and stem.
Spoke crossingsbike_guy
May 1, 2002 3:41 AM
I am still not sure which wheel it is coming from. After last nights ride it sounds like it may be from the front wheel. I will try putting lube on the spoke crossings though. I also may put the old wheels back on just so I can be sure that the noise is not coming from somewhere else.
re: Wheel Noiseswhirrr
May 1, 2002 7:08 AM
My wheels sometimes develop 'clicks' , when they do, I lube the nipples with a little chain lube and the clicks go away. The wheel is tru, and the spokes 'sound' like they have similiar tension.
Badly built wheels!!cyclequip
May 2, 2002 6:22 AM
Alloy nipples often cause this - the spokes wind up during tensioning and the builder never relieved the spokes properly. This is probably the start of a whole lot of wheel hassles for you. Simply put - there should be no stress-relieving taking place in your spokes after the wheels are built - this is the wheelbuilder's primary responsibility if he wants his wheels to 'stand'.