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How to tighten a de-tensioned spoke on a true wheel?(7 posts)

How to tighten a de-tensioned spoke on a true wheel?PdxMark
Nov 20, 2002 8:40 AM
I have an open pro wheel with an odd problem. The wheel is true, or reasonably so, but one spoke has almost no tension on it. THe spoke isn't brooken. If I tighten the spoke to put tension on it, the wheel is pulled out of true.

Let's say it's a right-side spoke. The left-side spoke have about the same tension as the rest of the spokes on the wheel. If I tightened both the loose right-side spoke and the opposed left-side spokes it seems that I could put a flat spot into the rim (plus seriously tensioning those left-side spokes). So, if I tighten the loose right-side spoke, where to I make an adjustment to remove the wobble I'll be introducing into the wheel?

I realize I'll need to work the tension around and have ordered a truing stand for the project. I'm just not sure what the rule-of-thumb is in this situation.

Thanks for your thoughts.
re: How to tighten a de-tensioned spoke on a true wheel?HillRepeater
Nov 20, 2002 11:13 AM
Loosen both the left and right side spokes around the currently detensioned spoke and bring everything back up to tension and true.

How many spokes to loosen depends on how particular you are. If you want to get it as accurate as possible, loosen all spokes - essentially rebuilding the wheel. If you just want a quick fix, you could just loosen the 4 - 6 spokes closest to the detensioned spoke.

It seems strange that the wheel would be true if one spoke was way under tensioned while the others were ok. The rim may already be flat spotted or damaged in some way. I'd take a really close look at everything.
Thanks nmPdxMark
Nov 20, 2002 12:08 PM
re: How to tighten a de-tensioned spoke on a true wheel?Chen2
Nov 20, 2002 1:14 PM
I saw the same thing on an Open Pro once. The rim was damaged. But yours could be something else. If you've checked radial true with the tire and tube off you should see a flat spot if there is one. Check for cracks in the rim around the nipple and spoke hole. A flat spot can be hammered out. If the rim is cracked it's toast.
~Al
Thanks nmPdxMark
Nov 20, 2002 3:12 PM
Start over and hopeKerry
Nov 20, 2002 5:13 PM
The odds are not in your favor - one loose spoke in an otherwise true rim suggests a bent rim, but it could be that numerous truing "attempts" have drifted into uneven tension territory. At this point, loosen all the spokes so that the same number of threads are showing past the nipple on every spoke. You're doing the equivalent of rebuilding the wheel. If it is a rear wheel, tighten every drive side spoke 4 turns, and then do the usual routine for bringing up the wheel: left-right true, remove highs and lows, stress relieve, repeat. If it's a front wheel, skip the 4 turns routine. Keep the focus on even tension as you increase the overall tension. If you see that even tension is not possible, then you probably need a new rim. What you accept as "even tension" has to come with experience.
Thanks for the great details nmPdxMark
Nov 21, 2002 1:40 PM