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Wheel Balance(8 posts)

Wheel BalanceVVS
Oct 31, 2002 6:05 AM
How important is wheel balance? I wouldn't drive a car without well balanced wheels but I'm not aware of it being considered important in the biking community.
re: Wheel BalanceLactate Junkie
Oct 31, 2002 12:06 PM
Not important at all. The wheels do not weigh enough and you cannot go fast enough for it to matter.
Balancing is not a factor on bike wheels.Uncle Tim
Oct 31, 2002 6:59 PM
Lactate Junkie is correct. Don't worry about it.

There are some excellent wheel related boards on the internet and there is lots of technical information to be found. If I recall correctly, the primary factor is that the bicycle tire is very firm due to the higher pressure and relatively low volume.

Bicycle tires have low volume at high pressure, while autos have high volume at low pressure.

If your wheels are wobbling as they roll, it is not because they need balancing.
Balancing is not a factor on bike wheels.VVS
Nov 1, 2002 5:43 AM
Thanks for your thoughts. My wheels run very true. When the bike hangs on the wall rack, you can clearly see how the front wheel has a heavy side. In fact, I placed my cyclocomputer magnet to offset that heavy side, but the offset is only partial. I suspect that the effect of wheel imbalance is small at higher speeds and is lost in the drama of wind, road vibration, weight shift and the death grip on the handlebars.
Wheel Imbalance is No FactorUncle Tim
Nov 1, 2002 7:18 AM
You may notice a difference in wheel imbalance when it is hanging free, but you you don't ride your bike under such conditions. Once you're on the bike, then you put major constraints on the wheel that overwhelm any possible wheel imbalance.

My source for this is the famous Jobst Brandt. If you do a Google search and take a little time to learn about wheels, you can find some good discussion of this very topic.

You can put your computer magnet anywhere you want because it will not matter.
Wheel Imbalance is No FactorVVS
Nov 1, 2002 8:40 AM
Thanks Uncle Tim. I'll look for the reference you gave me.
Balancing factor on bike wheels.Chen2
Nov 1, 2002 1:51 PM
I also use the computer magnet, valve stem locknut, and plastic cap, if needed, to help balance my wheels. On my deep section aero wheels the long valve stems make the valve side heavier so I leave the locknut and cap off. I also agree that this is probably all a waste of time but it makes me feel better.
Guess that means I'm anal.
re: Wheel BalanceMikeDee
Nov 8, 2002 12:25 PM
According to Jobst Brandt, wheel balance on a bicycle is not important. This is because of the high pressure in the tires which makes them quite stiff (as compared to low pressure car tires) so that you don't get a bounce from the imbalance.