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help please. my wheels keep falling apart.(8 posts)

help please. my wheels keep falling apart.arc
Nov 12, 2002 10:18 AM
i just built up a set of wheels for the first time. the rear wheel spokes keep loosening up so much when i ride uphill for 5-6 miles that some nipples actually unscrew all the way and fall into the semi aero rim. i can't tell if they unscrew or the spokes pull off the nipples. the wheel seems tight and true when i start but after standing up on some uphills, the wheel starts to shimmy and rub on the brakes, and i notice that a lot of the spokes are
very loose. it's happened on two rides now. the wheel has been fine riding on the flats.
i used dt alloy nipples, and dt revolution spokes. the rear wheel is 3 cross with 14/15 gauge on the drive side and 14/17 on the non drive. the nipples are 14 g. i put linseed oil on as a prep.
the spoke threads look fine after the nipple is off. does this make sense to anyone? is this a lack of spoke prep? anyu thoughts apreciated
You sure you have the spokes on the right sides - right handed on the drive side and left handed on the non?Winona Rider
Nov 12, 2002 10:35 AM
Just kiddin.

What tension are you cranking them up to on each side?
You sure you have the spokes on the right sides - right handed on the drive side and left handed on the non?arc
Nov 12, 2002 10:45 AM
i don't have a tensionometer so i try to judge by the note it sounds when struck. i compared them to another wheel. it seems similar but maybe they're not tight enough? istill don't see how a nipple could completely come off a spoke. there were two or three like that after my wobbly ride home today. and many very loose ones. despite having trued and tensioned it after this happened the previous ride.
How soon did you ride on them?Spoke Wrench
Nov 12, 2002 1:20 PM
My experience with using linseed oil on spokes is that, after you finish building and trueing them, you have to let them "age" awhile for the linseed oil to set up. Otherwise, the result is exactly what you are experiencing. In cool weather, I don't think that ageing for a week is too long at all.

I havn't had that problem since I started using Wheelsmith Spoke Prep, but it's expensive if you only build a wheel now and then.
How soon did you ride on them?arc
Nov 12, 2002 3:15 PM
thanks. i let them age about three hours before i rode on them. i guess they just unwound themselves from all the stress of riding. i'll start over and let them age this time. thanks
Not enough tensionKerry
Nov 12, 2002 5:13 PM
When wheels loosen while riding, it is due to insufficient tension. Linseed oil, Loctite, spoke prep, etc. is backup technology for properly tensioned wheels. With insufficient tension, the spokes go slack on each revolution, and the nipples unscrew. Just guessing here, but I would suggest retensioning the wheel to where you had it before, and then tighten each spoke one full turn. Just a starting point.
And if you are checking tension by comparing tone. . .czardonic
Nov 12, 2002 6:32 PM
. . .remember to account for the guage of the spoke and the distance between the hub and the rim. If any of these factors differ from the wheel you are comparing to, equalling the tones won't equal the tension.
And if you are checking tension by comparing tone. . .arc
Nov 13, 2002 9:22 AM
thanks much. i'll redo the wheel and tighten them up more. i'll have a shop check the tension. thanks