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HEY! Wheelbuilders!(3 posts)

HEY! Wheelbuilders!mtbrjon
Feb 8, 2004 3:47 AM
When building wheels 3X I have no trouble installing the nipples on the first 16 spokes of a 32 spoke wheel. I install trailing spokes first. However when I begin the leading spokes and begin to "lace" those I have trouble getting the nipples started exspecially on thicker dual wall rims. I am constantly loosing the nipples between the rim halves. Does anyone have a trick for getting these nipples started. I've tried using a scribe to stick up through the spoke hole to slide the nipple down on but this takes a lot of time.
Yeah waddyawant?Mike Tea
Feb 8, 2004 8:09 AM
Get yourself a 4" piece of an old spoke and screw a nipple on upside down for 2-4 threads. Now poke this down into the hole. Sure it's slower than fingers but much quicker than fishing a nipple out of the rim.

I use this type of setup for greasing the nipple seats too. Just dip the nipple in the grease and lube a nipple seat. Repeat.
even better....slide
Feb 8, 2004 3:43 PM
ok, take and old spoke. On the head end, bend it into a little loop, or square or whatever.....just something to form a handle that can be turned a little. On the other end, thread a nipple onto the spoke all the way, and then, using a spoke wrench keep going until there is 2-3 threads sticking out the end of the nipple. Now, you put the nipple you want to install onto your wheel onto this new tool. Put it on upside down on those 2-3 exposed threads so it buts up against the nipple already on there. This will allow you to place the nipple into the rim and start to thread it onto the spoke. Once you get it a turn or two on the spoke you just start to unscrew your tool. It will end up leaving the nipple where you want it since the spoke laced in your wheel will have some spoke prep on it which will hold the nipple in place. This works really slick for lacing wheels. One of the guys at the shop I work for used to work for Wheelsmith and he learned this there.