# Bicycle Mechanics - Spoke Length Question

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View Full Version : Spoke Length Question

tomn
04-03-06, 04:46 PM
Hi Guys,

According to a few spoke length calculators on line I need:

Front left & right 261.3

Rear left & right 258.8

As you can see I have the rare opportunity to have one spoke length for all of my spokes. My question is what spokes should I order? 260; 261; 262.

Tom

04-03-06, 04:51 PM
Perhaps you can get by using one length but there's a very good chance you drive side spokes will bottom out with 262's.

tomn
04-03-06, 06:19 PM
There must be a lenght that works!!!

Perhaps you can get by using one length but there's a very good chance you drive side spokes will bottom out with 262's.

tomn
04-03-06, 06:23 PM
There must be a lenght that works!!!

Perhaps you can get by using one length but there's a very good chance you drive side spokes will bottom out with 262's.

Scooper
04-03-06, 06:52 PM
There must be a lenght that works!!!
Listen to The Fixer.

Spocalc said I needed 288 mm spokes front and rear, except 287 mm for the drive side of the rear wheel. The LBS mechanic said to go ahead and order all 288s and that would work fine. He was mistaken; the drive side nipples bottomed out at only 60 kgf. I had to order eighteen 287 mm spokes for the drive side, delaying my project by a week.

Al1943
04-03-06, 07:48 PM
Doesn't seem likely that both sides of the rear wheel would calculate the same. How many cogs do you have? Scooper makes a good point. Do not buy spokes long. I always buy the driveside rear 1 mm shorter than calculated. Nothing worse than running out of threads when reaching high tension.
Why do you think it is important to have the same length?

Al

04-03-06, 08:08 PM
I agree with Al1943. Unless your rear hub is symmetric (flip-flop???), there is no way that the spokes from both sides would calculate to within 0.1mm of each other, as you state. With a normal freehub configuration, the drive side spokes are just about always going to be 1-2mm shorter than the non-drive side spokes.

This is just a suggestion, but if you can supply the specifics about your hubs and rims, I'm sure that a couple of us would be happy to verify your numbers. Something seems wrong. Do you have a symmetric rear hub, or not?

tomn
04-03-06, 11:30 PM
Hi guys,

I guess I should have included more info. The rear hub is a Phill Wood 145mm Tandem symetrical. The front hub is a Hugi tandem w/tall flanges. I'll add the specifics tomorrow. I am interested in having the same spoke length because the wheels are for a touring bike, and carring one length seems like a good idea.
Thanks for the help,
Tom

Retro Grouch
04-04-06, 03:57 AM
Hi guys,

I am interested in having the same spoke length because the wheels are for a touring bike, and carring one length seems like a good idea.

I can understand your desire to have to carry only one size of spares, but I'd think that building the best, most reliable wheels that you can by using the optimum spoke lengths would be the bigger issue.

04-04-06, 10:17 AM
Oops.....I didn't initially read the OP's post carefully. Seems like he's running a fixed/singlespeed hub.
In that case, yes, you must use different length spokes for front and rear.....

EDIT: Oops again......upon reading further, OP's running a tandem hub which requires no dishing.
If you insist on using only length (perhaps for economic reasons) I'd go with 259's for both wheels.

tomn
04-04-06, 04:00 PM
Here are the specs on both wheels:

Front:

Hugi Tandem Hub:
Length 100 mm
Center of hub to center of flanges = 34.5 mm
Flange diameter at spoke hole centers = 60 mm
Diameter of each spoke hole = 2.8 mm
36 hole
Sun Rhyno Lite 26" 36 hole rim ERD = 548
3 cross

Rear:

Phil Wood Tandem cassette hub:
Length 145mm
Center of hub to center of flanges Left & Right = 25 mm
Flange diameter at spoke hole centers = 54.7 mm
Diameter of each spoke hole = 2.5 mm
40 hole
Sun Rhyno Lite 26" 40 hole rim ERD = 548
3 cross

I have to agree that having the same size spokes is a novelty, and not as important as building solid wheels. I also noticed that I was wrong about trying to force longer spoke length to make it work. Would a 258 spoke work for both?

Tom

spider-man
04-04-06, 04:07 PM
Why the aversion to carrying two spoke lengths as spares? They won't take up much space.

04-04-06, 04:09 PM
that's a lot of spokes. I buy my spokes in boxes of 36, so if you did the same, you could buy a box of 258s, and a box of 261s, and pick up the remaining loose ones, and wrap a piece of scotch tape around any spares with the length written on it.

Al1943
04-04-06, 04:50 PM
Since you don't have a big tension differential between the left and right sides of the rear wheel (apparently no differential) you could probably make do with 260's. Can't say for sure, never have worked on this type of wheel. I'm use to having a 1/3rd differential due to dish.

Al

Al1943
04-04-06, 04:58 PM
Since you don't have a big tension differential between the left and right sides of the rear wheel (apparently no differential) you could probably make do with 260's. Can't say for sure, never have worked on this type of wheel. I'm use to having a 1/3rd differential due to dish.

Al

tomn
04-04-06, 08:08 PM
Oops.....I didn't initially read the OP's post carefully. Seems like he's running a fixed/singlespeed hub.
In that case, yes, you must use different length spokes for front and rear.....

EDIT: Oops again......upon reading further, OP's running a tandem hub which requires no dishing.
If you insist on using only length (perhaps for economic reasons) I'd go with 259's for both wheels.

Thanks Fixer, unfortunately with shorter spokes they only have even lengths until after 270 or so. Would 258 work? If not I will go to two different lengths.
Tom