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  1. #1
    Mr. Cellophane RainmanP's Avatar
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    Nipple pulled through rim!

    I developed a wobble in my rear wheel a few days ago. Since there was no broken spoke and I didn't have time to true it up right away I just opened the brakes up and rode it with the wobble. On the way home yesterday I decided to stop by the LBS and get my favorite wrench to true it up since I knew it would be a few days before I got time. Within minutes he came out into the shop to tell me he couldn't help me then showed me where the nipple had pulled through the rim! It hadn't simple popped through; an area of the rim about 2 cm in diameter was bulged with cracks radiating from the spoke hole. The wheel was true and, as far as I could tell, consistently tensioned. The mechanic plucked several spokes and said they certainly didn't seem over-tightened to him.

    Has anyone ever experienced this? Is there any chance of getting a new rim from Mavic? This is a 36-hole Mavic MA3, drive side spoke. I wouldn't really expect Mavic to replace it since there are so many bad things that can be done to a wheel. On the other hand, if there is a possibility I am not above asking.
    If it ain't broke, mess with it anyway!

  2. #2
    cycle-powered nathank's Avatar
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    never had that happen although i've cracked rims a few times (they were old). i don't think you have much chance of getting it warrantied from Mavic unless it's new - say less than 6 months old or something. to me it doesn't seem to extraordinary that that would happen -- i mean rims are super thin and light-weight and they take a beating!

    a new rim's not so expensive - $20-50. just rebuild the wheel using the old hub, the old spokes and a new rim.

    P.S. anyone know why/when you should NOT use the old spokes? (obviously if they're really old or corroded, but if they aren't too old and look fine is there any other reason to replace?)
    why drive when you can ride?
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  3. #3
    Gravity Is Yer Friend dirtbikedude's Avatar
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    P.S. anyone know why/when you should NOT use the old spokes? (obviously if they're really old or corroded, but if they aren't too old and look fine is there any other reason to replace?)
    Since I do a lot of dh/fr I always replace my spokes when I have to rebuild a wheel. It is mainly for my own piece of mind.
    If I was only riding light trails and road I would take into consideration how long ago the spokes were replaced and why I needed to rebuild the wheel.

    Slainte

  4. #4
    Breaker of Spokes P. B. Walker's Avatar
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    Spokes are cheap in my opinion. Unless they are less than 6 months old, why not just replace them for the piece of mind. The spokes go thru a lot too and get stressed alot. Plus, I have a feeling that once they've been on one wheel they get "broken in" a certain way. I would think you'd just be asking for problems by re-using the old spokes.

    That is amazing that the nipple pulled thru the rim. I can hardly imagine that. Never ever heard of that. That kind of failure has to be very rare. Can't hurt to at least email or write Mavic about it. See what they say. At the very least you let them know about it. Heck they might just spring for a new rim out of generosity (but I doubt it).

    On the plus side... it'll be sweet to have a newly built wheel...

    PBW

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    This has been a problem on some Mavic rims, most notably the 517.

    I've seen many 517s with this problem, including one in my garage.

    A

  6. #6
    Mr. Cellophane RainmanP's Avatar
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    NathanK,
    Regarding reuse of spokes, by now you may have seen my post on the thread about how difficult is it to build a wheel. I quote Barnett's reasoning and have read much the same in other references on wheel building/rebuilding. Basically, the spokes already have some fatigue on them. More so if the wheel has been ridden a lot. Why go to the time and trouble of building a wheel with worn parts that are not expensive to begin with?
    FWIW,
    Raymond
    If it ain't broke, mess with it anyway!

  7. #7
    Ich bin ein Lowlander! toolfreak's Avatar
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    Rainman,

    About a month ago, my LBS showed me some tiny fractures at the spoke nipples.

    The plan was to build a new hub, on my old rim (Mavic 521), but at least 20 of the 36 nipples had these fractures.
    The LBS told me it was the second rim they changed with this problem, and they planned to contact Mavic and claim warranty.

    Hope i get some free goodies on my next visit but i doubt, the rim was 2 years old.
    Mark







    Dancevalley 2th of august 2003 -> JXL, Laidback luke, Sasha, John Digweed, Monica Krusse.....and on!

  8. #8
    Breaker of Spokes P. B. Walker's Avatar
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    I guess it's more common than I thought... that sucks.. cus this summer I had a wheel built from scratch for me... ultegra hub with a Mavic T519 rim. I hope this doesn't happen to me.

    Guess it's something to check during my regular cleanings.

    PBW

  9. #9
    Senior Member bikerider's Avatar
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    If you're not convinced that this is commonplace, do a search for 'rim', 'crack' and 'eyelet' on Google groups - you'll see this failure described going back 10 years. Make a note of which company comes up most often.
    Last edited by bikerider; 12-05-02 at 06:10 PM.

  10. #10
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    Had a Ritchey Aero OCR rim develop cracks around most of the nipples, got it warranteed since it came with my bike. After that I didn't trust the wheel, new or not.I ordered a rear wheel from Performance. Mavic MA3 CD(which is anodized) 32 hole with a Dura-Ace hub. On Tuesday I had been checking the true of my wheels and noticed the MA3 was out of whack. Upon further inspection I found that Two spokes had pulled part of the rim apart, just a 1 inch section of the rim. There were longitudinal cracks on each side of the nipples. I weigh around 173 lbs. and don't jump curbs. This wheel had ~1375 miles. Did a search on the newsgroups and found some damning info on anodized rims. Seems the anodizing process make a thin layer of the aluminum brittle. Don't know if that's my problem for sure but my next wheel will not be anodized. Funny, I have an old pair of MA40's(which are also anodized) and have put tons of miles on them without a hitch.
    All right partner, keep on rollin' baby, you know what time it is....

  11. #11
    Career Cyclist threadend's Avatar
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    Ouch, that has got to hurt a lot

    Oh, spoke nipple thru the rim you say :confused: , I see now. Yes I have an old Rigida rim that happend to, but not until after over 2500 miles of not so delicate trail use by a clysdale.

    Unfortunately, there is no keeping a wheel true after this happens.

    Darn it Singlespeeder, I replaced my Rigidas with 517's and NOW you tell me!
    2003 Iceman Challenge - 2:34:55 - 897 / 2,000*
    2002 Iceman Challenge - 2:39:23 - 1093 / 2,186
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  12. #12
    8speed DinoSORAs Ed Holland's Avatar
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    Rainman,

    The same problem occurred on the rear wheel of my older bike. The rim was a Rigida model, with eylets, and had only lasted about a year (max 2000 miles). Cracks appeared around some spoke holes, but in one particular position a drive-side spoke had almost pulled a section of the rim out! Maybe this was bad luck, but the wheels were relatively inexpensive (60 for the set) built with cheap self destructing hubs and galvanised spokes, so I suppose "you get what you pay for". I had a new wheelset built with Mavic CXP33 rims, DT stainless spokes and better Shimano hubs which I hope will last a while longer (cost approx 200).

    Seems like there are others with similar experiences out there.

    Cheers,

    Ed
    Get a bicycle. You will certainly not regret it, if you live.

  13. #13
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    Why to not re-use spokes? Two reasons; one is that metal fatigues, spokes go through one stretching when a wheel is built and ridden, and de and retensioning to get a second use out of them will use up more of their ability to tolerate fatigue. The second reason is that spokes stretch and the 32 or 36 in a wheel won't all stretch evenly. That means you are building the wheel back up with several minutely different length spokes--sound like fun?

  14. #14
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    Originally posted by nathank
    a new rim's not so expensive - $20-50. just rebuild the wheel using the old hub, the old spokes and a new rim.
    I wouldn't have thunk it, but as Bikerider pointed out in the "how hard is it to build a wheel" thread, J. Brandt thinks it's okay if the spokes aren't kinked or physically damaged.

    Excerpt from "Replacing a rim" in The Bicycle Wheel:
    Lay the new rim on top of the old one so that the valve stem holes lie side-by-side. Adjacent spoke holes in the rims must be offset to the same side. Spoke hole location takes precedence over the stem hole location.
    Unscrew nipples one at a time and transfer each spoke to the new rim. etc.

  15. #15
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Paige
    I ordered a rear wheel from Performance. Mavic MA3 CD(which is anodized) 32 hole with a Dura-Ace hub. On Tuesday I had been checking the true of my wheels and noticed the MA3 was out of whack. Upon further inspection I found that Two spokes had pulled part of the rim apart, just a 1 inch section of the rim. There were longitudinal cracks on each side of the nipples. I weigh around 173 lbs. and don't jump curbs. This wheel had ~1375 miles.
    I don't have any experience with MA3s, but I'll bet you dollars-to-dogbiscuits the wheel was machine built, and the spokes were over-tensioned.

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