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impossible wheel build?(5 posts)

impossible wheel build?bicycle268
Jan 10, 2003 3:42 PM
Hello all. I'm interested in building up a wheel using an old HED Jet 24h cl rim with a 24h American Classic ti hub (slotted). The last time I attempted this I left the parts with a local builder and after a month or so was told it was a no-go. It seems that the nipples required (8 sided and cylindrical) are not produced anymore (?) and that nothing could be done. I contacted HED and they sent me a bag of conventional nipples. again no luck. Is there any source for those 'special' nipples and does anyone know of a builder that could take care of this?

thanks in advance
re: impossible wheel build?Ye Olde Balde One
Jan 10, 2003 8:01 PM
The Jet uses a long nipple through the aluminum rim that is exposed for truing outside of the carbon section, or an internal nipple that needs a 5.5mm hex socket to true it? I forget, and it's been a while since I have seen one but I think it's one of those. Either style is available, but it may require a good LBS to gid some out.

If you could maybe post what nipples HED says you need, or remind me more about the rim and what it requires I might be able to help.
More detailscurlybike
Jan 12, 2003 6:07 PM
Were they the long(16)mm spline drive nipples? If so, I have some. Need more description of nipples, I am a machinist ans can possibly modify something. Let me know or send me your e-mail address.
more details on nipplesbicycle268
Jan 13, 2003 4:07 AM
the nipples were 6 sided, brass in color (and composition, i'm sure) and were longer than conventional nips. 16 mm sounds about right. They didn't have the flat head at the top but were cylindrical. I think they were 15g but i could be wrong (probably am).

any help would be appreciated

my e-mail is:

re: impossible wheel build?jw25
Jan 14, 2003 1:05 PM
Hmm-boy, that's a tricky one. If the Jet uses an aluminum rim inside the carbon structure, you should be able to use standard hex-head nipples, available through It doesn't sound like this is what HED sent you, so maybe they got confused, or somebody spaced out.
The nipples you describe, the 8-sided cylindrical ones, sound similar to Campy's hidden nut-plate system, but good luck getting 24 of those. I've only seen them in spoke replacement kits, and those come dearly.
If the rim has spoke-sized holes along the inner circumference - meaning 2mm or so, just big enough for a spoke, the rim'll use one of these methods. Both are good, but the nut-plate needs a few mm longer spoke to catch all the threads. The tool to tighten them may be different, too. The silver-rimmed Campy wheels use a 5.5mm driver, as do DT hex-head nipples, while the black-rimmed (and newer, I think) Campy wheels use a 5mm. The tools are cheap, though, so it might be worth it to buy both.
Good luck with the build, though, and don't be shy if you need more advice. I've rebuilt several wheelsets using the hidden nipples, and it's not that difficult, just different.