Touring - radial spokes?
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10-01-07, 08:21 PM
I have a set of 40h maxi-cars and plan to do some light touring, Ive heard allot of things regarding radial spoke patterns.... I would not mind it being stiffer up front, and in theory you only need the classic spoke pattern to deal with pedaling torque for the back, however I wanted to hear what peoples experiences were if they chose radial. I will be using butted spokes as well.
3 cross is the classic un-improvable pattern, for the average combo.
Jalon Hawk makes dished wheels where one side is radial, and they are supposed to be uber strong, however the tension is so high he had to use special hubs.
Butted spokes are oversold, all spokes are strong enough when properly installed. Straight spokes are pottentially stronger in situations where junk gets in your wheels. Like sticks or S-hooks.
Radial spoking would give you a somewhat stiffer front wheel. The problem that can arise is that the hub would be under greater stress, due to the fact that the radial pattern leaves less metal being "pulled" over the spoke hole. Not all hubs are designed for this stress, and will not be under warranty if they fail.
Regarding butted spokes, I've seen good explanations for why the make a stronger wheel (basically they spread out the weight on more spokes). If the spoke breaks, it's not gonna be in the butted part anyway. The stress is highest on the ends, so I don't really buy the argument of unbutted being stronger.
One of the main benefits of butted spokes is their elasticity. With a thinner middle section, the wheel is free to flex, rather than just have spokes snap.
10-03-07, 07:27 PM
I would stay away from butted spokes if you want a stiffer wheel. The elastic qualities of butted spokes - that allegedly reduce breakage - will add to the flexible feel of a wheel. Butted spokes and radial lacing are counter to what most want and need for loaded and touring use, more common on racing bikes. Sooner or later radial lacing will pull apart the hub shell unless it's a hub designed to carry that force (+ 1 to finnen).
I don't claim to understand the intricacies of spokes, what I have observed is that some of the more expensive and outre rides out there in the touring field specify straight spokes, which comes as a surprise given the near universal belief that butted is best, based on the technical literature of the last century.
The other thing that jogged me is info that spokes of all types likely outlast rims etc... Should not be changed when rims are changed, and that when spokes break this isn't evidence that there is something wrong, it is just an opportunity to sort out the odd underperformer (assuming great components and build quality). Basically all spokes are strong enough and straight spokes are stronger not relative to spingy DT spokes, but relative to other damage that can befall bikes like hooks or other garbage in the wheel.
I do wonder about the flexibility model since in general that would imply a lot of working in the metal that normally is not associated with long term durability. I do wonder whether the kinds of model often discussed are really relative to touring bikes, or some other more comon use from which false conclusions may be drawn.
10-04-07, 06:56 AM
Crossing the spokes adds lateral rigidity to a wheel, that is something you need on a touring bike. If you want to play with radial spoking on a touring wheel, consider the "crowfoot" pattern that was popular back in the 50's and early 60's , It is a cluster of three spokes. 1 radial with the spokes on either side of the radial crossing the radial spoke. the hub and rim holing has to be a multiple of "6" ( 24, 36, 48) I built up a 36 hole set once with the crosses wired and soldered. Very rigid and very unnecessary. they look cool as hell though.
If I am not mistaken, you need different length spokes for that pattern? It is cool though. There is an online site that shows how to build it, I think there are links from Sheldon's site.
Velonomad, feeling better I hope!
10-04-07, 10:36 AM
Not on this page but some where in this website there is info on crows foot lacing and how in genral to work out spoke length.
This is the one to go for below.
10-04-07, 10:38 AM
10-04-07, 12:52 PM
Velonomad, feeling better I hope!
Yeah I'm ok now, I went through some crazy medical stuff this past year but all is fixed and I'm riding again.
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