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How bad -vintage alloy rims before they are goners? Dunlop LA 26x1 1/4 EA

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How bad -vintage alloy rims before they are goners? Dunlop LA 26x1 1/4 EA

Old 11-13-15, 11:56 AM
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Brian Mc
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How bad -vintage alloy rims before they are goners? Dunlop LA 26x1 1/4 EA

I have a set of old Dunlop LA 26x1 1/4 EA rims that I have been told can not be trued.

One LBS told me the front couldn't be salvaged but the rear could, a second LBS said the rear couldn't be used but the front could.

Neither one is taco'd. Yes they wobbled, but there are no dents, creases, bends, large nicks or other obvious damage. They frankly don't look that bad to my untrained eye. I cut the spokes out and both rims lay flat or very nearly flat on my concrete basement floor.

Couldn't new spokes be laced in and use the hubs I have (which both seem fine, the 1951 SA AW shifts and ticks nicely after a flush and top off with tenacious oil.)

I don't know enough about wheel building to know if I should bother with them, but the bike is quite ride-able except for the wheels. I'd like to try these rims as they are original to the bike and I'd like to ride and feel the effect of alloy rims on a vintage Raleigh three speed. I do not require them to be perfect.

Do I take the word of the LBS and give up on them or take the hubs and rims in to the shop and say "try it" or something else?


Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-13-15, 12:24 PM
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Got any pics of the rims and stamping on them? Dunlop made at least 5 models of EA1 rims; Endrick chromed steel/stainless steel, special lightweight chromed steel/stainless steel and alloy. Most of these rims are desirable to enthusiasts . LBS's are all different, most would rather sell you a new wheel. I think a good builder can bring most non-tacoed wheels back to usable condition. Be aware that modern spokes have a different profile and may require washers on the hub flanges to safely get the tension needed to straighten the wheel. Your biggest problem is finding good rubber in that size.
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Old 11-13-15, 12:33 PM
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I don't know why your bike shop won't do it, but they have their reasons (such as, for example, liability issues).

Not having seen them, all my remarks have to be taken with a grain of salt. That said, I can true your wheels. I am 100% confident I could build a pair of round wheels from those rims. If you want to do it yourself (which would be my recommendation) I'll explain what you need to do. Whether your spokes will have perfectly even tension, I can't promise, but for a bike you'll ride only occasionally, they'll do. If you plan to use the bike a lot, you might be better off with a new pair of fairly cheap 700c wheels; they'll be lighter and you can get much better tires for them. But don't throw out your Dunlops under any circumstances. Sell them to @photogravity.

@clubman, the thread title specifies that they are alloy rims; so not the garden variety EA1 or Special Lightweight, and not stainless. How many different alloy models were there (I'm only aware of one). That said, I do want to see photos of the rims.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:06 PM
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Old 11-13-15, 01:09 PM
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If you can post some pictures of them, that would be useful. Video showing the wobble would be even better.

EDIT: Nevermind... pictures posted before I responded. As far as I can see, I think these can be trued. They, do not look that horribly bad to my eye.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:20 PM
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rhm,

Thank you for your kind offer. I would like to try to lace them up. I am flummoxed by the proper spoke lenght for them. The front is a standard Sports type hub and the rear is a 1951 AW.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:23 PM
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@Brian Mc, excellent, wise choice. The steps are:

1. Figure out the spoke length needed. You may need to measure the rims, then use a spoke calculator available on line, and order the spokes.

2. Lace up one wheel. Plenty of instructions online.

3. Bring it up to tension slowly, first paying close attention to getting the rim round (true up and down), then true side to side, then dished properly, then all three, then proper and even tension.

You're not in a hurry, are you? It may take a while to get it right, especially if you get frustrated (it happens to first time wheel builders sometimes ) but you'll get it in the end. We'll help.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
I don't know why your bike shop won't do it, but they have their reasons (such as, for example, liability issues).

Not having seen them, all my remarks have to be taken with a grain of salt. That said, I can true your wheels. I am 100% confident I could build a pair of round wheels from those rims. If you want to do it yourself (which would be my recommendation) I'll explain what you need to do. Whether your spokes will have perfectly even tension, I can't promise, but for a bike you'll ride only occasionally, they'll do. If you plan to use the bike a lot, you might be better off with a new pair of fairly cheap 700c wheels; they'll be lighter and you can get much better tires for them. But don't throw out your Dunlops under any circumstances. Sell them to @photogravity.

@clubman, the thread title specifies that they are alloy rims; so not the garden variety EA1 or Special Lightweight, and not stainless. How many different alloy models were there (I'm only aware of one). That said, I do want to see photos of the rims.

Thanks Rudi...alloy they are.

Well worth saving. OP you will also want rim washers on those before truing. No reinforced eyelets there.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:34 PM
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@clubman, @photogravity, anyone know the ERD of those rims?
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Old 11-13-15, 01:37 PM
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Nope...I could measure the special lightweights but that's not good enough.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:39 PM
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I agree with rhm that you should be able to build them up and they'll be at least adequate. Odd that you got conflicting assessments from different LBSs. (Take the rear to the first LBS, and the front to the second LBS! ) A lot of builders won't build with used rims since they can't guarantee the end result, but I've built plenty of wheels with used rims and feel it's worth the effort, especially in a case such as this with rare and original rims.

Originally Posted by Brian Mc View Post
I cut the spokes out...
FYI, it's recommended to slowly de-tension the spokes, rather than cutting them out. The quick, uneven change in spoke tension from cutting out spokes can in fact warp a rim. Personally, I loosen each nipple about a half-turn over a couple rotations of the wheel, then another full turn for another rotation or two. At that point the spokes are loose enough, and I unscrew the nipples from the back with a screwdriver bit on a power drill. Takes about 10-15 minutes or so working quickly. A bit longer than cutting out the spokes, but the rim is more likely to stay true.

I also save and re-use spokes (as long as they aren't galvanized)--labeling them with masking tape based on drive-side or non-drive-side, leading or trailing, front/rear, and then each wheelset of spokes then gets put in a large ziplock bag which I label with the type of hub & rims, spoke count and pattern (3x, 4x, radial, etc.) from which the spokes came.
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Old 11-13-15, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
@clubman, @photogravity, anyone know the ERD of those rims?
Unfortunately, I do not know the ERD.
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Old 11-13-15, 02:13 PM
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I'll work on the spoke length. gaucho 777, gaucho777, thanks. I'll remember that. I tried several spokes and could not get them to turn so I took the shortcut. Very helpfull all. Thank you.
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Old 11-13-15, 02:24 PM
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@Brian Mc: You're welcome!

If you no longer have the original spokes for measurement, here's a method for determining your rim's ERD:
http://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vi...ulate-erd.html

From there, there are many online spoke length calculators available. I've always had good results from Spocalc (downloadable Excel file). Here's a link with summaries, download links, etc.: 5 Best Spoke Length Calculators | BikeFAT
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