Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  

Go Back   > >

Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

User Tag List

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 06-17-09, 06:48 PM   #1
The Left Coast, USA
Thread Starter
FrenchFit's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2008
Bikes: Bianchi, Koga-Miyata, Trek, Miyata, Barracuda
Posts: 3,346
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 150 Post(s)
Wheel Wobble due to Spoke Tension

For someone's future search, solved a very slight wobble problem on my cross bike. One of those things you can feel but can't put you finger on the source. I figured it must be the read wheel, but the axle and seat of the wheel was OK, tire OK, wheel was true side to side, ...but when I strummed the spokes with a plastic pick there were big pitch variations spoke to spoke, and a couple of those guys were almost at zero tension. (Last trued by a LBS, foolish me.)

My solution was to tension up / pitch up each side's spokes to the same tension or musical note pitch when strummed. It's a different pitch on each spoke side of the rear wheel due to the dish - higher on the flatter cone, non-cluster side. I appoximated the correct pitch, it's what seemed to me to be about the right tension for that size wheel compared to my other bikes. The charts I found on the internet for correct pitch "note" determined by length of the spokes were pretty much worthless, just too many variables in design and materials I'm thinking.

After tensioning/loosening by sound the wheel came out to be roughly true following a relatively even spoke pitch on each side, which is logical but it was a nice surprise anyway. I finished trued the wheel by making very small and fairly uniform tension or pitch adjustments in a 3 or 4 spoke series on side of the wheel.

The wobble is gone, the wheel feels rock solid. A tension meter would be nice to have, but the 'old school' pitch method seems like a decent alternative to me, and cheap.
FrenchFit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-09, 06:51 PM   #2
Senior Member
mzeffex's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Fort Collins, CO
Bikes: A Tarmac, a TCR, a Tipo Uno, a Grand Prix Luxe, an Anthem, a Norcross, a Claud Butler, and an SLM 2.0
Posts: 9,419
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Interesting discovery.
Originally Posted by rjones28 View Post
Are they talking about spectators feeding the cyclists? You know, like don't feed the bears?
mzeffex is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-09, 07:16 PM   #3
Ex Pres 
Ex Pres's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Mountain Brook, AL
Posts: 6,626
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 166 Post(s)
I had a paired spoke front wheel that I had a hard time riding no hands on, and lo and behold - low spoke tension all around - albeit still true. It's much better now tightened up.
Ex Pres is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:14 AM.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.
  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.