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  1. #1
    Upright bars SirMike1983's Avatar
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    Truing Stand- Worth it?

    I'm putting my Christmas list together and was wondering if a truing stand is a tool worth having? I have a handful of bikes around and do mostly my own work. I don't have a truing stand, and I don't have a whole lot of space. Is there a truing stand that is a good idea for the home do-it-yourself mechanic who owns a few bikes, makes the occasional adjustment or wheel build and that doesn't take up much space?
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  2. #2
    Light Makes Right GV27's Avatar
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    "Worth it" is always a loaded statement. But yeah, they are a nice tool to have. I'll leave the recommendation on make/model to others though. Mine's an ancient *** that I'm intending to replace. It basically gets the job done though.....

  3. #3
    Senior Member divineAndbright's Avatar
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    Ive managed without one thus far, and ive probably built a dozen wheels so far. I\d like to get one eventually but im sorta pressed for space as well, I actually broke down and bought a work stand this past summer though thanks to a half price discount I can get on that sorta stuff.

  4. #4
    Senior Member BigPolishJimmy's Avatar
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    I think I'd like one, but every time I think about it my mind starts to wander towards taking some scrap wood (or maybe an old barstool), sinking an old fork into it and calling it a day. I suppose if I were spending significant time building wheels it'd be a necessity. I'm running about 50/50 with just flipping a bike upside down and truing the wheel on the forks. My average increased significantly by removing the tire as at first I was truing the tire and not the wheel. You may not want to listen to me though. I like Red Green style hack solutions. My work stand is a 2x4 screwed onto the end of my work bench and wrapped with salvaged plastic packing material.

  5. #5
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    If you're building wheels, a great tool to have! They can be pretty basic or really fancy, with dial gauges and such. I learned on one my friend made in college, and have a simple one that works just fine.

  6. #6
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    I suppose the way to look at this is to get eh annual average amount you spent on wheel truing and building in the last few years. Then look at the cost of the tools you'd need - truing stand, dishing tool, etc. Divide the cost of the equipment by the same number of years for the average cost you actually spent. This, of course assumes that your labor is worth nothing and the money would not have been better invested. When you compare the average you actually spent with the annualized costs for the equipment you can make a rational decision.

    I suspect that most of us would be better off letting a LBS true our wheels. Of course there's the fact that you can touch up wheels that you wouldn't pay to have trued, the joy of truing the wheels yourself, and the fact that you might do a better wuality job than you can actually pay someone else to do.

    All that said, I want a truing stand, too.

  7. #7
    Light Makes Right GV27's Avatar
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    They don't really take up space. You can get folding ones, or the basic "home mechanic" Park just clamps to a work bench or table with a c-clamp or two. C'mon - it's not like you're buying a table saw here! I'm gonna get the basic Park when I replace mine.

    edit: Just noticed that P-O-S doesn't pass the potty-mouth filter here. Man - that's pretty restrictive!
    Last edited by GV27; 11-09-09 at 07:51 PM.

  8. #8
    Makeshift kbjack's Avatar
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    I've got a Park Tool ts-7. Easy to use, compact, and has paid for itself in a relatively short amount of time (also beats in-frame truing, using the brake pad as a guide...nothing more frustrating).

    Looks like they're not readily available anymore, which is too bad. The ts-8 is, however, and would probably be a good option. But I'll let those who've had experience with this model review it.

  9. #9
    Senior Member jebensch's Avatar
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    I have this one by Minoura. Kinda chintzy, but it gets the job done and more importantly folds to nearly flat and demands little storage space.
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  10. #10
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    A good tool is always worth the money and usually more valuable to you over time than the money it cost. A few years back I bought a used Park truing stand on ebay -- a stand exactly like the one I used to use in my high school job rebuilding bent steel wheels in the basement of the local bike shop. It's always been something I've enjoyed having. I've only built four five wheels on it but it still worth far more to me than what it cost (about $125 as I recall). Even during periods of several years when I didn't ride bikes I never considered selling it.

    Then again, I just sort of feel that way about tools. There's no way I could justify my table saw based on what I've built with it, but I can't ever see being without one.

  11. #11
    Randomhead
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    you can get a Park TS2 on ebay for less than $200 shipped. The front arm will fold up and it takes very little space. Your grandkids' grandkids will be using it. A lot of good wheels have been built on that stand. I've looked at the home built stands and the < $100 stands and they just don't seem worth it in comparison.

  12. #12
    slow as I ever was Ex Pres's Avatar
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    Used my Minoura tonight to build a rear wheel. A little higher up than the linked one above, but not much. It's nothing special, but gets the job done.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member vincev's Avatar
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    I just picked up a park ts-7 with dishing tool for $45.I mounted a dial indicator on it and it is great for the home mechanic.Do I really need it? Probably not but it beats the brake pad method and makes my workshop look more impressive.One thing about tools is that they may sit for long periods of time unused but when you need them it beats the hell out of not having them and running around borrowing them.I dont think tools are ever a bad investment.
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  14. #14
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    I don't have the space or extra money, or really the need. I didn't have much luck with the brake pad method, but I do ok by mounting a piece of white hobby plastic on the stays/fork with a small vise grip. Much easier to see. I've built four wheels that way, and trued many others.

    I'd love to have all the tools I need, but I'd rather spend the money on parts, and a bike stand in the dining room is probably already pushing it to the limit...that said, if I had the space to mount one permanently...

  15. #15
    Senior Member kalifornsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vincev View Post
    i dont think tools are ever a bad investment.
    +1
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    you can get a Park TS2 on ebay for less than $200 shipped. The front arm will fold up and it takes very little space. Your grandkids' grandkids will be using it. A lot of good wheels have been built on that stand. I've looked at the home built stands and the < $100 stands and they just don't seem worth it in comparison.
    +1. I've used cheaper stands, and there is no comparison. Its fully adjustable, and the adjustments stay in place, unlike on others. I've built over 80 wheels on this stand, and not a speck of trouble. Its also bombproof, it will last you forever. The Brooks saddles of stands.

    I thought about building my own, but there are too many moving parts. You're better off buying one.
    Cog Cycles, Chicago

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    you can get a Park TS2 on ebay for less than $200 shipped.

    Ouch! I've been using this simple Cinelli one designed to mount in a vice, but I added a base to it. I've had it at least 20 years and I think it cost about 30 bucks. Its as simple as possible but works just fine!

  18. #18
    Seņor Member USAZorro's Avatar
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    I have a truing stand, but not a work stand. Guess it says something about my priorities.
    The search for inner peace continues...

  19. #19
    Vello Kombi, baby Poguemahone's Avatar
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    I have an ancient hozan truing stand that weighs about forty pounds, would survive a direct hit from thermonuclear bomb, and is capable of truing motorcycle wheels, if I ever become to weak to pedal. IME, the Park stands are too finicky; they've become shop standard in this country largely by default. I'd take the Hozan or a Var Atomic over one.

    I believe a decent stand is a good investment, as is knowing how to true and build wheels. Frankly, I'd rather do it than have a shop do it; to many shop jobs I've seen pay not enough attention to radial true, often just getting a wheel back in lateral true. There's certainly an art to it, and it is worth learning.



    Mine is an earlier version of this beast.
    Last edited by Poguemahone; 11-10-09 at 11:20 AM. Reason: grammur, add image
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  20. #20
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    you can get a Park TS2 on ebay for less than $200 shipped. The front arm will fold up and it takes very little space. Your grandkids' grandkids will be using it. A lot of good wheels have been built on that stand. I've looked at the home built stands and the < $100 stands and they just don't seem worth it in comparison.
    I'll have to disagree on one point regarding the TS-2 - while it is built as if it were a tank, it is not the easiest thing to perform lateral truing with. I wouldn't recommend a beginner to start with a TS-2 for this reason; someone who has built wheels before, perhaps, but not a beginner.

    -Kurt

  21. #21
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    I watched someone use a Park TS-2, and was instantly in love.... until I saw the price. After much deliberation on the Park home stand, I decided to go with the Performance Bicycle "Spin Dr. TS-II" #40-1207. I'm hoping it wasn't a mistake, but I just received it (not yet opened the box). Early holiday present. That was one of two large items on a $300 order, so got $50 off. Say $79 - $25, or about $55 net, plus $5.50 in "Team Points" towards a future purchase? If it works, it will be worth the $50.

  22. #22
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    TS 2! Yes, it is a bit expensive, but it will last, as others have said, a lifetime. You could always go with Hozan, DT Swiss or other, but the price will go up towards the 500 or 1000$ mark. Unless you plan to open a shop, I don't see the point.

    On the other side, great wheels have been built using brake pads as a reference for lateral truing. No truing stand will ever compensate for experience.

    Roger Musson's book on wheel building shows how you can build a homemade truing stand. Worth it if you are handy with woodwork

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
    I'll have to disagree on one point regarding the TS-2 - while it is built as if it were a tank, it is not the easiest thing to perform lateral truing with. I wouldn't recommend a beginner to start with a TS-2 for this reason; someone who has built wheels before, perhaps, but not a beginner.

    -Kurt

    When I was 16 I got my first real job . . . at a local bike shop, rebuilding wheels. This was back in the late '70s (the age of steel rims) and barely a day went by that I didn't have two or three wheel rebuilds waiting for me when I got to work each afternoon. I used a Park TS-2. You can't get much more of a beginner than a 16-year-old kid earning $1.75 an hour.

  24. #24
    Randomhead
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    I learned how to true wheels on an Eldi stand. If you can do that, you can use anything. The TS 2 has its quirks, and it could be improved. But I think buying a $50 stand is a waste of money in comparison. I wouldn't mind being able to use one of the better stands out there, the sky's the limit. The LBS has some stands that Trek used to make. They look pretty nice.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Sci-Fi's Avatar
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    You have to decide whether or not a truing stand is worth the investment or not. IMHO, Wrench Force Truing Stand was better than Park's TS2. Before one dismisses using a fork for truing, click on this link to see what some of the pro teams use:
    http://velonews.com/article/92080/to...tour-mechanics

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