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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 07-29-08, 06:49 AM   #1
flip18436572
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Spoke Tensioner

For those of you who do your own wheel work. Do you use the Park Tools tensioner or what exactly?

I use the ring tone of the spoke, as I have with my motorcycle rims, but thought I should try and find out what the others are doing.


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Old 07-29-08, 07:23 AM   #2
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Park tools tensionometer. It works good for me! Havnt built any wheels yet, but Im thinking of re-building a mountain wheelset I have. XTR rear hub and LX front hub...I believe at least the rear rim is kinda worn. Front I might be ok with leaving... It would be something to play with!

I also use a park 3-size spoke wrench. It actually fits the spokes, unlike cheaper mutli-size spoke wrenches I know the bike shop guy said he prefers them at home because you dont have to search for the right one...

you may be surprized how far off your spokes can actually be yet your wheel still remain "true..." I tension first, then re-true.
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Old 07-29-08, 08:33 AM   #3
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I use my ears and my "reference wheel" (properly trued and tensioned, now just hangs in the garage). I pluck a couple spokes on the reference wheel, then check my build against it.

I've built a few sets of wheels, plus I've de/re-tensioned a few pairs of machine built wheels to strengthen them up for my friends. I've never had a complaint, and my own wheels have been true for almost 2300 miles now.
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Old 07-29-08, 09:20 AM   #4
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I have built a bunch of wheels now and go by sound and feel but am not too terribly concerned with them all being "exactly" the same as that is a Catch 22 where you change the tension on one spoke and it changes the tension on the spoke directly opposite and the one to the other side ....etc. You could chase yourself around the wheel for ages trying to get them all even.
I go for no loose spokes and a fairly high average tension. The wheels I have built (with the exception of the first one) have held up very well. It would be interesting to use a meter to find out what the average tension actually was on a wheel I built but I doubt I would use one much after that.
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Old 07-29-08, 06:37 PM   #5
Mr. Beanz
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I felt and listend to the tension and tone on some new wheels then built mine. Took it to a friend at the shop. He checked them with a meter and I was spot on!

I was planning to buy one but my bud at the shop said I didn't need it, he'd check it any time!
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Old 07-29-08, 06:56 PM   #6
Mazama
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I have the tool, but I don't do wheel work. I just check them so often (monthly)
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Old 07-29-08, 09:17 PM   #7
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I use the Park tool. I'm a numbers guy so I'd rather know what the tension range is and adjust the low ones up to meet a minimum instead of guessing. I use an electronic tuner to tune my guitar too, but I'm capable of tuning by ear. Your preference.

John
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Old 07-30-08, 06:03 AM   #8
flip18436572
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I will probably but the tensioner, because like you, I also use an electronic tuner for my guitars, and basses.
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