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Old 02-01-12, 08:48 PM   #1
hoyc
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Wheel Rattling?

I ride a 80's Fuji road bike with an updated/modern wheelset.

When I lift the front wheel up and sort of bounce it off the ground it makes a rattling noise. I noticed however this doesn't happen when the brake is applied, which leads me to believe it is something in the rim rattling? My rear wheel does not rattle at all.

I've checked all the spokes and nipples and nothing seems loose. I've even checked the tube valve to no avail. Is this just the front fork vibrating and is completely normal?

I've had his wheelset for a year now and I only noticed this a week ago, although It could've been happening for longer without me really noticing until now.
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Old 02-01-12, 08:55 PM   #2
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Some skewers rattle....have you checked the lever end of the skewer?
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Old 02-01-12, 08:58 PM   #3
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Also....you mentioned that it doesn't rattle when the front brake is applied. Maybe some part of the front brake is rattling when the brake calipers aren't squeezing the rim?
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Old 02-01-12, 09:55 PM   #4
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Step one, take the wheel off and bounce it or shake it in your hand. If it doesn't rattle you need to look elsewhere. Possibly part of the brake, or maybe it's headset related.

If it is the wheel, and has hollow rims there's a good chance that a small chip from when the rim was drilled is trapped inside the rim. This is fairly common and can make you crazy if you care. It won't rattle when the wheel spins at riding speeds because it's forced against the outside of the rim. If it bothers you, you might be able to shake it down to the valve hole. Otherwise, just put it out of your mind until next year.
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Old 02-01-12, 11:20 PM   #5
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Wheel bearings way too loose?
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Old 02-02-12, 07:30 AM   #6
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So this morning before my commute I pumped up my tires to ~120psi which is about the middle area of the recommended tire pressure and voila! the frontwheel stopped rattling. I suppose it's been a while since they were last filled and the tire pressure is now stabilizing the rim?

I'm not sure if this if my problem is necessarily solved, or if there is still some other underlying issue. When the weather is nicer I'll take off the tire to check if anything's loose.

Thanks all for your help though!
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Old 02-02-12, 08:34 AM   #7
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I have a Mavic CXP-33 rim that has a metal chip or something trapped in the rim and the rattle is noticable when the whell is spun by hand on a repair stand but disappears completely while riding. I've removed the rim strip looking for it but the double spoke eyelets keep me from seeing and removing it.
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