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  1. #1
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    Wheel Building spoke material question

    I've converted one of my bicycles to have an electric assist function using a small 24 volt hub motor and conversion kit. Don't worry I still have 5 other normal bicycles!..

    Anyway I've checked the tension on this Suzhou Bafang hubed wheel and its very erratic after just 1000 kms. Using the Park Tool TM-1 Spoke Tension Meter the tension for this 36 spoke front wheel varies from 12 to 20 (on the meter).
    I've built a number of wheels and in this case my plan is to aim for good even tension, if it was made from double butted stainless steel I'd aim for 100kgf.

    But the trouble is I don't know what material the spokes are made from... From the attached picture and with this background info would anyone have any ideas? They dont seen to butted, I have a feeling it may be made from Titanium.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Senior Member vredstein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikefreakvinnie View Post
    I've converted one of my bicycles to have an electric assist function using a small 24 volt hub motor and conversion kit. Don't worry I still have 5 other normal bicycles!..

    Anyway I've checked the tension on this Suzhou Bafang hubed wheel and its very erratic after just 1000 kms. Using the Park Tool TM-1 Spoke Tension Meter the tension for this 36 spoke front wheel varies from 12 to 20 (on the meter).
    I've built a number of wheels and in this case my plan is to aim for good even tension, if it was made from double butted stainless steel I'd aim for 100kgf.

    But the trouble is I don't know what material the spokes are made from... From the attached picture and with this background info would anyone have any ideas? They dont seen to butted, I have a feeling it may be made from Titanium.
    Check it with a magnet will narrow down the possibilities.
    "See, it's not that getting wet is a big deal. Really, it's what you're getting wet with.
    Fenders....because it's probably urine."
    Bike Snob NYC

  3. #3
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikefreakvinnie View Post
    I've converted one of my bicycles to have an electric assist function using a small 24 volt hub motor and conversion kit. Don't worry I still have 5 other normal bicycles!..

    Anyway I've checked the tension on this Suzhou Bafang hubed wheel and its very erratic after just 1000 kms. Using the Park Tool TM-1 Spoke Tension Meter the tension for this 36 spoke front wheel varies from 12 to 20 (on the meter).
    I've built a number of wheels and in this case my plan is to aim for good even tension, if it was made from double butted stainless steel I'd aim for 100kgf.

    But the trouble is I don't know what material the spokes are made from... From the attached picture and with this background info would anyone have any ideas? They dont seen to butted, I have a feeling it may be made from Titanium.
    If you built a bunch of wheels your hands should roughly know whether something is much too high or much too low. Even if you don't know the absolute tension on the spokes, you can still use the TM-1 to balance the overal tension of spokes in the wheel.

    Once that is done, if the wheel still comes out of true you can up the tension.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

  4. #4
    Member
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    Thanks for that, the magnet does stick to it so i guess it must be steel!..

  5. #5
    Senior Member mrrabbit's Avatar
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    Cheap steel - plated with black treatment...

    I recommend building electric hubs with:

    1. 2.3/2.0 Stainless Steel in 1X or 2X config depending upon how big or small the hub is.

    OR

    2. If drilled for it - 2.6mm straight guage - (105 guage) in 1X or 2X.

    In some cases, interlacing will not be possible - that's okay though.

    Keep in mind as well...that a lot of older electric hubs are getting dumped on the market...cause wheel build wise they were bad designs with nasty asymetrical flange offsets that on rear models resulted in spokes on one side not getting anywhere near enough tension. The companies had engineers - but not engineers familiar with workable flange offsets and the like.

    Crystalite for example has addressed this in their latest disc brake and rear hub model line.

    =8-)
    4000+ wheels built since 1984...

    Disclaimer:

    1. I do not claim to be an expert in bicycle mechanics despite my experience.
    2. I like anyone will comment in other areas.
    3. I do not own the preexisting concepts of DISH and ERD.
    4. I will provide information as I always have to others that I believe will help them protect themselves from unscrupulous mechanics.
    5. My all time favorite book is:

    Kahane, Howard. Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric: The Use of Reason in Everyday Life

  6. #6
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    Thanks for that Mr Rabbit, thats disappointing considering the cost of the thing! That very valuable advice on the spokes for a re-build!

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