hwo hard is wheelbuilding

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  • hwo hard is wheelbuilding
  • clubber

    It's barely any harder than spelling "how" 🙂

    seriously it's not really difficult. Get a decent guide (sounds like you've already done this) and just set aside a couple of hours.

    Worst case (unlikely but…) take it all apart and give it to your LBS 🙂

    my advice would be take find some time where you will NOT be interrupted. take things one lacing at a time and check everything 3 times. the most important parts are the 1st spokes on both flanges. get this right and your wheel will be fine. get this wrong and you wont have a valve hole when you have finished.

    start at the valve hole and work clockwise
    1st spoke of opposite flange should lie flat when pointing down against 1st spoke and not crossed
    turn the hub the right way to tension before the 3rd & 4th lacings
    remember the old adage under, under, over

    dont panic!!!

    Its not hard, you just have to be methodical and patient.

    I tend to lace them up one evening, and true them another evening. Stops it becoming a chore. If you're practiced it dosn't take long, but I'm slow and steady 🙂

    Oh and plenty of tension relieving when trueing up will save you a lot of head scratching.

    Mister P

    As others have said as long as you have some peace and quiet to be able to concentrate it is pretty straight forward. Building wheels is a marathon not a sprint. I stick to quarter turns of the spoke key and check everything regularly.

    This is a fantastic book,well worth the money. Helped me build two wheels that have remained true for many, many miles.

    Seconded, Roger built my wheels and they got their first true in 10 years last week.

    Guy knows what he's up to.

    Seconded, Roger built my wheels and they got their first true in 10 years last week.

    Guy knows what he's up to.

    The roger book is quality. I am sure Sheldons guide is too.

    Sorry if i repeat what anyone else said, but for me, the important bits to make it easy are:

    A Nipple Driver
    Tape stuck to the desk to stick on the spoke you last were at when you got interuppted and always have a number one spoke with a bit of masking tape on it so you always know when you have gone round once
    Oil the threads

    Its easy


    Building wheels is a piece of piss. Building good wheels on the other hand is pretty difficult and not everybody can do it.


    About as hard as cleaning toilets going by crc's wages.

    So, I've taken the plunge and bought some stuff to build my new wheels.

    pro2 and 717s, I've got a jig from a mate, I've got sheldons guide, watched the youtube guides etc, and think I've got my head around it. I'm usually quite good at fiddly stuff like this, but never had a go at a wheel.

    any tips/wisdom/internet resources that I should look for?

    bits get delivered next week….

    Premier Icon oxym0r0n

    4th the Wheelsmith book ~ helped me build me first wheel (a rear) for my commuter which has done a few 000k and is still true.

    – oil nipples
    – take your time
    – Lots of cups of tea and snacks to hand
    – patience

    What spokes are you using? ~ the wheelsmith book has some good info about spoke twist on DB spokes, which I didn't know about before hand


    I read somewhere about using linseed oil on the spokes as it lubes as you build, then sets with time. I might try it next wheelbuild just because it smells nice 🙂


    Of the available texts, Roger Musson's Wheelpro book is the definitive guide – don't build wheels without it (although I note that the price has shot up!). It's got everything you need to know and nothing that you don't.

    I've read Gerd Schraner's book ("Art of Wheelbuilding", I think it's called) and it's shite, and Sheldon's guide is too vague (you get what you pay for). Not found Jobst Brandt's "The Bicycle Wheel" at a reasonable price yet.

    I haven't read any of the recced books, but I have built a lot of wheels. One tip that may not be in the book is that if you use alloy nipples, grease the spoke threads first.

    The first set of wheels I ever built got me less than five miles. Build 'em, ride 'em, and see how well you did.

    OK, so I just laced up the wheels after reading rogers bible.

    that was dead easy. trueing begins this weekend. rotors arrive either today or tomorrow.

    could be on shiny new hoops next week!

    Premier Icon scaredypants

    go out & buy some really thick gardening gloves for the spoke squeezing – it'll be the best underafiver you ever spend

    scaredy pants – done.


    Premier Icon younggeoff

    When truing it's important to get a basic even tension in the wheel, if you start with the spoke tensions all over the place you'll be fighting the wheel all the time. I check the base tension by ear plucking each spoke, you can easily tell which ones are tighter/looser than others. As well as oiling the nipples oil the eyelets, makes getting a decent tension in the wheel much easier. tension will differ from disk / non-disk and drive /non drive sides.

    Can't recommend the gardening glove tip enough, once yo get teh wheels tight it takes the pain out of relieving the spokes.

    Mister P

    "always have a number one spoke with a bit of masking tape on it so you always know when you have gone round once"

    Or start at the valve hole as there is no chance of that falling off.

    All done. really surprised how easy that was. first wheel took a bit longer. second wheel from bare hub to trued and on the bike in less than 2 hours. BEen for a spin and they are still round.

    WIll be keeping spoke key in camelbak for a little while longer though!


    Nice work – said it was easy 🙂

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