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Old 09-04-08, 08:15 PM   #1
sunstealth
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wheel trueing fiasco

on my commuter bike i had to true a wheel tonight (rear was really out of true like 3 mm outta it) all the single brass nipple i did turn (with the proper spoke wrench) rounded off, like if the metal was too soft :S
so now i have a rear pringle shaped wheel . I did my front wheel and it is on the spot, perfect, also did my dad MTB rear wheel (he had a accident last weekend) with no problem at all, no stripped nipples whats the problem there ?

btw the wheels are the original araya aluminium from 1976 in 27" (and it looked like the previous owner took a pair of visegrip pliers to the nipples before)

what is the approximative cost of having the nipples changed at a shop and then trueing the wheel?? the spokes are all sound!
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Old 09-04-08, 08:45 PM   #2
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Since you trued it yourself I'd just get some new nipples and replace it yourself one at a time if you have more than one, also next time get some penetrating oil and let is soak in before trying to turn those old spokes the ones that are still tight replace them.
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Old 09-04-08, 08:48 PM   #3
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When dealing with older wheels, wheels they have been in the weather (commuter bikes, winter bikes), or wheels that have been washed with the good old garden hose, you should always lube every nipple, at the thread and rim, and let it sit for a while. Once the oil penetrates they should spin relatively easily.

If it is an especially old wheel you will want to use something like WD-40 or triflow to loosen things up, then follow up with a light oil.

In your situation you are are going to need to follow all of the above steps, then remove each destroyed nipple replacing them with a nice new shiny one, one at a time.
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Old 09-04-08, 08:49 PM   #4
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Regarding truing old wheels: I strongly recommend removing the tires and tubes and dripping a lubricant onto the spoke nipples before truing.

In your case, it sounds like the nipples were damaged by the previous owner (hence your vice grip comment).

If you can somehow remove the nipples without ruining the spokes, you can easily replace the nipples your self. I would remove and replace them one at a time and bring the spoke up to tension before removing the next nipple. The other option would be to replace the spokes along with the nipples one at a time or remove all the spokes/nipples and rebuild the entire wheel...the latter case is a good excuse to upgrade your wheels should you desire.

Cheers,
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Old 09-04-08, 09:01 PM   #5
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what is the approximative cost of having the nipples changed at a shop and then trueing the wheel?? the spokes are all sound!
A shop will probably want to sell you a whole new wheel. It'll be as cheap as rebuilding the old wheel (which is what replacing all the nipples amounts to) and it's quicker for you and them.

Besides, there's some possibility that you won't be able to find nipples that fit your old spokes. If the bike's Japanese (you didn't say what kind of bike it is), I'll bet newer DT, Wheelsmith, or Sapim nipples won't fit perfectly. Ill-fitting spoke nipples are a recipe for trouble.
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Old 09-04-08, 09:45 PM   #6
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What kind of spoke-wrench did you use? Not one of those universal round things with 6-8 slots in it? Throw that thing in the trash right now! Get some spoke-wrenches that grip on all four sides of a nipple for slip & damage-free truing.



You'll probably find that a lot of those old nipples are corroded onto the spokes and will need to be gripped by pliers to move. They may even crumble before they turn loose. And in some cases, they'll be so corroded on that the spokes will snap as you're turning the nipples.

This would be a great learning opportunity in truing and building wheels. Just don't expect to revive that wheel without having to by all new nipples, some spokes and perhaps even a new rim.
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Old 09-04-08, 10:03 PM   #7
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the bike is a old nakamura from 1976 with araya wheels (aluminium) the problem is ive never built a wheel before and id need it by tuesday :S

id like to keep the original wheel thoo , i think i can achieve to raplace the nipples but the wheel is to far outta true for my experience

yeah i used a 4 size multi wrench
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Old 09-05-08, 10:56 AM   #8
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You can try replacing just the nipples, however I discovered myself that not all are threaded the same. You might try bringing a spoke into the LBS and test threading before buying a whole bunch. If they can't match the nipple to the spoke thread, you'd at least have a reference spoke to buy some replacement spokes.

Building a wheel isn't actually as difficult as it seems, although you might need to remove the cassette to get the spokes through the flanges without damaging them. If you can true a wheel, you'll already know the basics. Lace the spokes in place, tighten the tension as evenly as possible, then true the wheel. If you take your time you can still do it and get it right within an afternoon/evening.

As a side note, you could also bring a nipple into the LBS and see if it threads with a spoke there, then match the nipple that way - likely a bit more tedius of a proccess for the LBS but no worries about trying to extract a spoke from a completed wheel.
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Old 09-05-08, 12:03 PM   #9
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Old 09-05-08, 07:04 PM   #10
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the bike is a old nakamura from 1976 with araya wheels (aluminium) the problem is ive never built a wheel before and id need it by tuesday :S
Not much time... it that case, it's probably best that you hunt down a replacement wheel at a bike shop. 27" aluminum-rim wheels are fairly rare, but an older, established bike shop should have one. It'll be lots easier than trying to learn the art and science of wheel truing this weekend.
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Old 09-05-08, 07:23 PM   #11
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27" aluminum-rim wheels are fairly rare, .
No they're not. Any shop worth more than $2 will be able to source it from a variety of distributors. A 27" entry level wheel won't cost you more than $30-$50, depending on the quality and markup.
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Old 09-05-08, 10:28 PM   #12
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Heck, just buy a whole bike with 27" single-section Araya rims for $10 from a thrift-store or garage sale.
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Old 09-09-08, 09:04 AM   #13
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oh well, i did rebuild the wheel was a fun learning experience and i saw i had 3 of my old spoke twisted as hell, replaced them, grand total with 40 nipple and 4 spokes (bought a spare one) 9,58$
and i have stainless steel nipples

a new wheel would have been minimum 55$ (thats with checking the 7 LBS around here)

now the whel is dished perfectly, is perfectly straight and all in all it took me 4 hours of free time to disassemble and reassemble the wheel for a first time, i even refurbished the spokes (duplicolor silver wheel paint FTW)
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Old 09-09-08, 12:12 PM   #14
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If any of you are throwing out your round spoke wrenches with 6-8 slots in them please send them my way. About a decade (more?) ago they were amongst the more useable of spoke wrenches and I used them when I was building wheels like crazy. Built some of my best wheels using those! I would file them to fit and then color code them with a spot of paint
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