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Wheel Advice?(2 posts)

Wheel Advice?mark_2811
Sep 11, 2002 11:19 AM
I just bought a Cannondale R700. The wheelset it comes with is Cannondale hubs with CXP 21 rims. The front is radially laced and the rear is cross-laced on the drive side and radially laced on the non-drive side.

I've had the bike for a couple of months and had the wheels trued twice already (and they need another one!). I'm 185lbs so I figure that is probably a factor. To try and improve strength, I was thinking of having my shop rebuild the wheel using a standard lacing pattern or maybe thicker gauge spokes. I'm not sure if this would make a difference though. Any suggestions?

re: Wheel Advice?Jofa
Sep 11, 2002 2:09 PM
The wheels' design and components are not the problem: the person trueing them is.

No ordinary wheels should lose spoke tension in use. The only element of these wheels you don't mention is the spoke guage (thickness); though as they are stock, I'm guessing they use 1.6/1.8 mm swaged spokes, about 28 or 32 per wheel. These or the next thickness up are perfectly good for riders twice your weight- there is certainly no need to replace them, or change the pattern, which is a cosmetic concern.

The chief reason for repeated tension loss is that the builder didn't relieve the residual twist in the spokes. As each is unloaded at the bottom of the wheel, it springs back - often with an audible 'ping'- undoing itself from the nipple and hence pushing the wheel out of true. There are other more subtle reasons, but they are a wheelbuilder's concern, not yours. The shop builder should fix them properly: don't accept any baloney about 'settling-in periods' and don't let them resort to threadlocking compounds- that only skirts the problem.

If they continue to loosen, take them elsewhere. Or, if you have a mechanical bent, buy a copy of "The Bicycle Wheel" and retrue them - finally- yourself.