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  1. #1
    Senior Member Bledfor Days's Avatar
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    Spoke wear on Atom hub

    I'm overhauling an old Atom hub off my Motobecane. The cups and cones are great but the flanges have sizeable spoke grooves. Should I be concerned? It's my first wheel build and I'd like to use the original hubs.
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  2. #2
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    It's just a front wheel and 36 holes, so I would not worry too much about it. It's not always a simple matter to figure out how to lace so that the spokes go the same way, and if the rim is designed differently than the original it's not possible on both flanges.
    There's no such thing as a routine repair.

    Don't tell me what "should" be - either it is, it isn't, or do something about it.

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  3. #3
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    That's not wear. It's par for the course distortion of the soft shell material caused by the elbow. It happens almost immediately when the wheel is built and tightened, then might slowly settle deeper for a while before stabilizing. Once fully settled, it stays there forever.

    Lace following the same pattern so the spokes sit the same way and you'll be fine. You could rebuild 10 or more times and nothing will change.
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  4. #4
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    You could rebuild 10 or more times and nothing will change.
    Since the holes are bigger/stretched after first built, does it make sense that the same process will happen after each wheel build?
    It's the same quality/strength/thickness material from the hole, all the way to the outside, so there is nothing to stop that material from stretching even further.
    I wouldn't build another wheel based on an old hub, but it's just me. It doesn't mean it can't be done though.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Bledfor Days's Avatar
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    @FBinNY Thanks. That's good to know. The picture is of the non-drive side rear hub. The front hub is a high flange beauty. I hope the bottom bracket in as good of shape. I'm using the same rim (Rigida). The spokes were badly corroded.
    Last edited by Bledfor Days; 03-13-14 at 08:25 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Since the holes are bigger/stretched after first built, does it make sense that the same process will happen after each wheel build?
    It's the same quality/strength/thickness material from the hole, all the way to the outside, so there is nothing to stop that material from stretching even further.
    I wouldn't build another wheel based on an old hub, but it's just me. It doesn't mean it can't be done though.
    The material doesn't stretch. It distorts, and actually compresses slightly. Once it's settled in it matches the elbow, so the concentrated stress that drives the process is eliminated.

    So while you wouldn't rebuild, tens of thousands of experienced builders all over the world wouldn't give it a second thought.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    The material doesn't stretch. It distorts, and actually compresses slightly. Once it's settled in it matches the elbow, so the concentrated stress that drives the process is eliminated.

    So while you wouldn't rebuild, tens of thousands of experienced builders all over the world wouldn't give it a second thought.
    +1 Strengthen by cold working.

  8. #8
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    tens of thousands of experienced builders all over the world wouldn't give it a second thought.
    I tried to find experienced/good wheel builder in my area...not much luck reading reviews and talking to others. Why some of these tens of thousands experienced ones left my state? Is it weather? Is it me? ;-) Don't answer. I bet you didn't mean that high of a number.
    I will try to post pic of my older hub after 2 builds...Holes are as round as egg.
    Well, I have a question...If money were no issue, would wheel builder use old hub instead of the new one?

    I'm not trying to be an azz, but this: "The material doesn't stretch. It distorts, and actually compresses slightly" yells stretching lol Very handy definition of distortion says : Distortion (or warping) is the alteration of the original shape (or other characteristic) of something, such as an object, image, sound or waveform. Distortion is usually unwanted, and so engineers strive to eliminate distortion, or minimize it.

    Last edited by lopek77; 03-13-14 at 08:55 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    . . . Distortion is usually unwanted, and so engineers strive to eliminate distortion, or minimize it.
    There's a depiction of that in your avatar.

    ALL structures and materials distort under ANY load, no matter how small.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    I tried to find experienced/good wheel builder in my area...not much luck reading reviews and talking to others. Why some of these tens of thousands experienced ones left my state? Is it weather? Is it me? ;-) Don't answer. I bet you didn't mean that high of a number.
    It's a big world, and it's been many years since aluminum hub shells became commonplace. Tens of thousands may be slightly high, but not it's at least many many thousands.

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Well, I have a question...If money were no issue, would wheel builder use old hub instead of the new one?
    Times and cultures change, rims and spokes used to be much less expensive relative to hubs, so rebuilding was very common. These days we live in a replace rather than repair culture, but that wasn't always true. Not that long ago bike shops rarely bought wheels, and built the vast bulk of those they sold in house.

    In the typical mom and pop bike shop years ago, mom was the wheelbuilder, and where there were wheelbuilding contests at trade shows women took the prizes.
    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    I'm not trying to be an azz, but this: "The material doesn't stretch. It distorts, and actually compresses slightly" yells stretching lol Very handy definition of distortion says : Distortion (or warping) is the alteration of the original shape (or other characteristic) of something, such as an object, image, sound or waveform. Distortion is usually unwanted, and so engineers strive to eliminate distortion, or minimize it.

    Pulling out a quote is one thing. Actually understanding how stuff works is another. Everything deflects and distorts under load. But not all distortion is equal. Look at the shape of the spoke hole, the material moved and formed a buttress in a way analogous to how plowed snow builds up into an embankment that the plow can't move any farther.

    If this were a continuous process as you seem to believe, we'd see tons of old hubs where the hole elongated until it finally tore through. But we don't because after the initial settle the hub stays there. If the same spoke doesn't eventually pull through, why would you imagine that the replacement at the same tension would? It doesn't.
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  11. #11
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Itsnot wear, just a result of the spoke bedding into the softer aluminum hub flange

    it is unavoidable

    when you lace up a new rim the new spokes should lay in the same direction on that impression

  12. #12
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    That is what I'm worry about while using same hub over and over again http://pardo.net/bike/pic/fail-009/000.html
    hub failure.JPGhub2.JPGhub3.JPGhub4.JPGhub5.JPG
    Last edited by lopek77; 03-13-14 at 10:12 PM.
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  13. #13
    Old fart JohnDThompson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    That is what I'm worry about while using same hub over and over again http://pardo.net/bike/pic/fail-009/000.html
    hub failure.JPGhub2.JPGhub3.JPGhub4.JPGhub5.JPG
    Follow the previous spoke pattern, avoid radial spoking. You should be ok.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    That is what I'm worry about while using same hub over and over again
    Do flanges crack? Of course they do. Is it common? Yes, but not in any significant numbers if you consider the roughly 200,000,000 bicycle wheels put into service every year. Of course, many (most?) of those wheels had steel hubs, so let's just think about 30,000,000 wheels per year.

    Also consider that the flange is equally likely to fail on the original build than on some later one, since the question isn't the number of builds, but the number of tension change cycles that lead to fatigue.

    Lastly take a look at the extent of damage to that broken flange, probably including some corrosive damage where the spoke lays along the flange, and compare to the very clean appearance of the OP's hub.

    That's why experienced builders wouldn't blink at rebuilding.

    However, I'm nit trying to convince you. Instead, save those hubs you're afraid to rebuild and send them to me.
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    [QUOTE=lopek77;16576228]That is what I'm worry about while using same hub over and over again http://pardo.net/bike/pic/fail-009/000.htmlQUOTE]

    More of your old avatar. According to your link it was fatigue failure, not re-use.

  16. #16
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=AnkleWork;16576244]
    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    That is what I'm worry about while using same hub over and over again http://pardo.net/bike/pic/fail-009/000.htmlQUOTE]

    More of your old avatar. According to your link it was fatigue failure, not re-use.
    Hahahahhaaa , I'm sorry, but material fatigue is directly connected to using/reusing the product. There is no fatigue if you not using it. Thanks for both of your attacks, I'm sorry - comments. You clearly didn't understand the meaning of my old avatar...
    "The clear problem of the outlawing of insult is that too many things can be interpreted as such. Criticism, ridicule, sarcasm, merely stating an alternative point of view to the orthodoxy, can be interpreted as insult."
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    . . . I'm sorry, but material fatigue is directly connected to using/reusing the product. There is no fatigue if you not using it...
    Because you say so? A friendly suggestion: you might trouble yourself to learn the actual meaning of "material fatigue" and some of the other words you use.

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Since the holes are bigger/stretched after first built, does it make sense that the same process will happen after each wheel build?
    As has been explained to you, that's not fatigue. While you change your tune, I'll stand on your words.

  18. #18
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
    Because you say so? A friendly suggestion: you might trouble yourself to learn the actual meaning of "material fatigue" and some of the other words you use.

    As has been explained to you, that's not fatigue. While you change your tune, I'll stand on your words.
    I'm sorry, but I couldn't care less if you like it or not, or if you approve or not whatever I said so far.
    Educate yourself first and then you may catch a glimpse of a smile on my face. It's a pretty sight...I swear

    EDIT: to make it easier for you http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatigue_(material)
    Last edited by lopek77; 03-13-14 at 11:11 PM. Reason: added link for easy learning lol
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Hahahahhaaa , I'm sorry, but material fatigue is directly connected to using/reusing the product. There is no fatigue if you not using it. Thanks for both of your attacks, I'm sorry - comments. You clearly didn't understand the meaning of my old avatar...
    It's a shame that you already know everything, because otherwise you might learn something. You're ignoring a consensus of some very experienced people here on BF, including people like John D. Thomson. He's kind of like the E F Hutton here, when he talks people listen.

    Anyway, you posted 5 photos of flange failure. Only the first, which was of a very old well worn hub, was (possibly) a fatigue failure. The others were all clean structural failures from excess radial load resulting from a combination of excess tension and/or radial or near radial spoke angle. Fatigue is easy to rule out because of the overall condition of the hub, and the lack of evidence of progressive failure over time.

    But keep it up, and you'll be sure to know as much in 10 years as you do now.
    Last edited by FBinNY; 03-13-14 at 11:24 PM.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    I'm sorry, but I couldn't care less if you like it or not, or if you approve or not whatever I said so far.
    Educate yourself first and then you may catch a glimpse of a smile on my face. It's a pretty sight...I swear

    EDIT: to make it easier for you Fatigue (material) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Pope was right.
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  21. #21
    "LOGIC!" lopek77's Avatar
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    Not sure why u assuming I know everything. Never said that, and as a matter of fact I said many times that I have a lot to learn.
    Sheldon Brown was and still is a Cycling God to many...was he wrong? Yes...and he was wrong many, many times. He also misinformed people with some of his theories. So don't tell me I have to listen to someone no matter what, or because that person is respected by others. Hitler was also respected guy by millions of people...
    I have my own opinions like everybody else, and if I don't agree with one - I will comment on it.
    You guys need to chill out and take it less seriously. You not a boss here or the worlds best mechanic out there...well...maybe you are. Anyway, we are or at least should be treated equally here, otherwise what is the point of having forum?
    Have a good night...My fingers got very tired lol
    "The clear problem of the outlawing of insult is that too many things can be interpreted as such. Criticism, ridicule, sarcasm, merely stating an alternative point of view to the orthodoxy, can be interpreted as insult."
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    . . . Anyway, you posted 5 photos of flange failure. Only the first, which was of a very old well worn hub, was (possibly) a fatigue failure. The others were all clean structural failures from excess radial load resulting from a combination of excess tension and/or radial or near radial spoke angle. Fatigue is easy to rule out because of the overall condition of the hub, and the lack of evidence of progressive failure over time. . .
    Except that his original claim was neither fatigue nor overload:

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Since the holes are bigger/stretched after first built, does it make sense that the same process will happen after each wheel build?
    It's the same quality/strength/thickness material from the hole, all the way to the outside, so there is nothing to stop that material from stretching even further.
    Loopek shucks, jives, and runs away from his own words . . . a pattern established in earlier posts.

  23. #23
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    Knock knock....who's there? Our old, confused friend AnkleWork.
    Go to sleep and forget about this thread, or it may confuse you even more. Or you can stay up and try to get your comment counter to the next round number...is it what you are trying to do?
    "The clear problem of the outlawing of insult is that too many things can be interpreted as such. Criticism, ridicule, sarcasm, merely stating an alternative point of view to the orthodoxy, can be interpreted as insult."
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    I rebuild wheels on different used hubs all the time. I agree with everything that FB and others supporting his view have said. I also never radially lace unless the hub is designed specifically to handle that type of load and a lot of old hubs aren't designed with radially spoking in mind.
    "When dealing with stuff like this consider that this is a bicycle, not a spaceship." -- FBinNY

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    2008 Novara Randonee - love it. Would have more bikes if I had time to ride them all. Previous bikes: 1968 Motobecane Mirage, 1972 Moto Grand Jubilee (my fav), Jackson Rake 16, 1983 C'dale ST500.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    Since the holes are bigger/stretched after first built, does it make sense that the same process will happen after each wheel build?
    No it does not - because it reached equilibrium once the wheel was built - otherwise you would be having to always re-tension. The hub does not know it's being built to a new rim - it reacts in the same way as previous - it resists enough so that the spoke will not move further once the same tension is reached. I will give you that the release and reapplication of tension might create an extremely small additional distortion, but in my experience (see below) it's of no consequence.

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    It's the same quality/strength/thickness material from the hole, all the way to the outside, so there is nothing to stop that material from stretching even further.
    Of course there is - the same thing that stopped the material from stretching/distorting previously - equilibrium of opposing forces.

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    I wouldn't build another wheel based on an old hub, but it's just me.
    Well maybe a few other people, but it's a matter of choice rather than based on a valid concern.

    Quote Originally Posted by lopek77 View Post
    That is what (I) worry about while using same hub over and over again
    The Internet is a wonderful thing, until one uses it to draw conclusions from a miniscule sample unrelated to the problem at hand. The pics are of a few hub failures, only one of which showed a 36 hole hub with the type of distortion of the holes being discussed here. That one shows wear not only in the hole but on the face of the flange, which is indicative of poor tension over an extended period of time and many, many miles - which is why it was indicated as a fatigue failure. Fatigue is almost always from cyclical stress, and in a well built wheel the cyclical stress on the hub is very minor, and is a smooth rather than abrupt transition - unless the spokes are too loose.

    The OP has a 36 hole hub that is going to be rebuilt with conventional lacing, most likely 3 cross. Even if he were to lace the spokes in a different direction the likelihood of a problem is next to nil. In over 20 years of working on bikes and as a service manager, counting on one hand would cover the amount of such failures I saw, and I don't recall a single one on a conventionally laced 36 hole hub.

    It is not a reflection on you personally, but merely a fact that both your theoretical grounding and your empirical background are lacking.
    Last edited by cny-bikeman; 03-14-14 at 08:35 AM.
    There's no such thing as a routine repair.

    Don't tell me what "should" be - either it is, it isn't, or do something about it.

    If you think I'm being blunt take it as a compliment - if I thought you were too weak to handle the truth or a strong opinion I would not bother.

    Please take the time to post clearly so we can answer quickly. All lowercase and multiple typos makes for a hard read. Thanks!

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