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Noob wheelbuilding question

Old 03-13-10, 05:20 PM
  #1  
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Noob wheelbuilding question

I just got these rims, to take my first stab at building up a pair of wheels.



Odd thing - and you can sort of see this in the pictures - one of the rims has the spoke holes more offset than the other.

Does that make one of them more suited to be a "front rim" and one a "rear rim"? Or is it just a trivial variation? Does it matter which rim I use where?

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Old 03-13-10, 05:32 PM
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Odd. I think you would want the less-offset one in the front, but I may have to think about that a bit. If you can't figure it out, send the rims to me and I'll let you know.
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Old 03-13-10, 11:45 PM
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I'm not sure, but you may want the rear wheel to use the more offset rim since you will need to dish it for the freewheel. A more experienced wheelbuilder should be able to clarify this. Nice Mavic rims! Have fun!
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Old 03-14-10, 06:34 AM
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I vote for manufacturing variance because in my wheel building days of yore, I don't remember any older rims (Mavic, Wolber, Matrix, Sun, etc.) that were "front" or "rear" specific.
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Old 03-14-10, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by metabike View Post
I vote for manufacturing variance because in my wheel building days of yore, I don't remember any older rims (Mavic, Wolber, Matrix, Sun, etc.) that were "front" or "rear" specific.
Given the identical labels, I concur. It probably does not matter at all, but if you want to play the best possible hand with the cards you have been dealt, put the rim with the greater offset in back. If the offsets are asymmetrical, the less-offset row of holes goes on the right/drive/dished side.
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Old 03-14-10, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by metabike View Post
I vote for manufacturing variance because in my wheel building days of yore, I don't remember any older rims (Mavic, Wolber, Matrix, Sun, etc.) that were "front" or "rear" specific.
Originally Posted by John E View Post
Given the identical labels, I concur. It probably does not matter at all, but if you want to play the best possible hand with the cards you have been dealt, put the rim with the greater offset in back. If the offsets are asymmetrical, the less-offset row of holes goes on the right/drive/dished side.
I will third the manufatcuring theroy. nice rims what are you lacing them to? what pattern? what kind of tubulars are you going to use? I hope something with a nice tan sidewall.
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Old 03-14-10, 06:25 PM
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Doesnt matter.
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Old 03-14-10, 09:06 PM
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1). After thinking about it, I agree it does not matter

2). To the extent that it does matter, I would still do the less offset in the back. Offset rims designed for rear use have the offset to the non-drive side to help offset (there is that word again) the dishing. By having more offset towards the drive side, it would be offset in the wrong direction, structurally speaking.

3). Again, it probably dies not matter.
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Old 03-15-10, 02:55 PM
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Hm ... I count two votes for more offset rim in back ...

One vote that I'm not sure of:
balindamood you first said "I think you would want the less-offset one in the front"

and later said "I would still do the less offset in the back"

Could you clarify?
Anyway I hope the majority is right, because I did not notice the variation until I'd already laced one rim (as you can see in my 2nd pic). I can undo it if there is a compelling reason to, but as it happens, I laced the front hub to the less-offset rim.

And - I'll need to examine the still-unlaced rim (the more offset one) to see if the offset is symmetrical or not. I hope to be able to lace it with the label facing the correct (right) side.

Last edited by sekaijin; 03-15-10 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 03-15-10, 03:11 PM
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Frankly, the difference is so small that i don't think it would matter anyway what end of the bike the rims end up at.
I built a new wheelset a couple of months ago and I goofed big time when I had the spokes on one rim on the wrong side offset so that I ended up with spokes that actually went past the center line of the rim to the other side. I only noticed it when I was starting to tension the spokes up. I always wondered after thaqt if I could have left it as it was, but being that it was the rear wheel I decided back then to play it safe by tearing the wheel back down and relacing it correctly...I still wonder....

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Old 03-15-10, 04:35 PM
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I put the wider offset wheel in the back simply because the rear hub is wider, but it's not going to make any difference.
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Old 03-15-10, 07:36 PM
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I simply thought about it. The difference is so minor, it probably does not matter. My first post I went with the "offset goes in the back" theory. Then it occured to me that the offset on the freewheel side is going the wrong way. So, it does not matter, but if you think it might, low offset in back, high up front. Just my opinion.
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Old 03-15-10, 07:55 PM
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I think the OP is trying to say one rims holes are closer to the centerline than the other.
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Old 03-16-10, 04:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
I will third the manufatcuring theroy. nice rims what are you lacing them to? what pattern? what kind of tubulars are you going to use? I hope something with a nice tan sidewall.
Lacing them to these.

2 cross in front, 3 cross in back.

Servizio Corse tubulars, the ones that are 3 for $50 at Yellow Jersey.

Sidewall - you've hit on something I'm really on the fence about. I have a pair of lightly used black sidewall tubulars on hand. Undecided whether to just use those, or spring for some new tan sidewalls. This bike (build in progress) will be more modern than my others, so I'm not sure which is the right way to go.

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Old 03-16-10, 04:23 AM
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Originally Posted by balindamood View Post
I simply thought about it. The difference is so minor, it probably does not matter. My first post I went with the "offset goes in the back" theory. Then it occured to me that the offset on the freewheel side is going the wrong way. So, it does not matter, but if you think it might, low offset in back, high up front. Just my opinion.
Thanks - since "it doesn't matter" is such a strong theme and I had already laced the less offset rim to the front hub, I'll finish the job as is.
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Old 03-16-10, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by sekaijin View Post
Lacing them to these.

2 cross in front, 3 cross in back.
I've built many over a thousand wheels over the years and I've never understood why any body would ever use a cross two set-up on wheels having this many spokes. What is your reasoning? With 28 spokes there is some justification, but with 32 or 36 spokes, I just don't get it.

Last edited by Citoyen du Monde; 03-16-10 at 10:39 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 03-16-10, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Citoyen du Monde View Post
I've built many over a thousand wheels over the years and I've never understood why any body would ever use a cross three set-up on wheels having this many spokes. What is your reasoning? With 28 spokes there is some justification, but with 32 or 36 spokes, I just don't get it.
Are you saying that you think all 32 and 36 spoke wheels should be built as 4X or are you saying that you think 2X is enough for any wheel with more than 28 spokes?

I like using a combo of 2X upfront and on the rear non-drive side and then 3X on the drive side, usually works out that you can use the same length of spoke so just need one box of spokes.
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Old 03-16-10, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Citoyen du Monde View Post
I've built many over a thousand wheels over the years and I've never understood why any body would ever use a cross three set-up on wheels having this many spokes. What is your reasoning? With 28 spokes there is some justification, but with 32 or 36 spokes, I just don't get it.
Not much reasoning involved, I'm no expert on wheelbuilding. 3 cross is the standard I see everywhere ... and since I'm a skinny guy I was LBS-advised it was safe to go 2 cross on the front, which I know doesn't need to be as strong as the rear.
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Old 03-16-10, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by GrayJay View Post
Are you saying that you think all 32 and 36 spoke wheels should be built as 4X or are you saying that you think 2X is enough for any wheel with more than 28 spokes?

I like using a combo of 2X upfront and on the rear non-drive side and then 3X on the drive side, usually works out that you can use the same length of spoke so just need one box of spokes.
Sorry, I just reread what I wrote and see why you are puzzled. I mistakenly wrote three cross instead of two cross as stated by the OP for the front wheel. If you have 32 or 36 spokes there is no advantage to doing a cross two set-up. You can get better wheels with either cross three, cross four or radial.
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Old 03-16-10, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by sekaijin View Post
Not much reasoning involved, I'm no expert on wheelbuilding. 3 cross is the standard I see everywhere ... and since I'm a skinny guy I was LBS-advised it was safe to go 2 cross on the front, which I know doesn't need to be as strong as the rear.
Stop going to that shop if they advised you to go with cross 2. The only thing less useful would be to recommend cross one.
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Old 03-16-10, 10:50 PM
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Well, radial would be worse than 1x or 2x. But really, what's wrong with 2x on a front wheel?
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Old 03-17-10, 06:08 AM
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Blarg - new problem - started lacing the second rim and it's missing an eyelet.
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Old 03-17-10, 07:59 AM
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D'oh!
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Old 03-17-10, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by sekaijin View Post
Blarg - new problem - started lacing the second rim and it's missing an eyelet.
Just checked with Yellow Jersey. Andy Muzi says he can't help.

Trying to forestall a sinking feeling here.

Am I SOL? Or can I get and install a replacement tubular rim eyelet?

EDIT: think I'm OK after all. Andy Muzi and I emailed some more, and he was very helpful. He said don't try to find a replacement eyelet, too hard to get something to fit by hand, just use a washer.

Last edited by sekaijin; 03-17-10 at 04:14 PM.
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