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Help with finding replacement wheel for old bike

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Help with finding replacement wheel for old bike

Old 12-24-16, 09:38 AM
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HermitJensen
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Help with finding replacement wheel for old bike

Hi, I recently picked up a bike that a bike shop near me was throwing out for free and I want to get it fixed up for my girlfriend as a gift (cause shes the one who grabbed this specific one from the shop). Now the rear wheel is completely bent severely and no chance of me bending it back into shape. I though it would be easy to find a replacement but I quickly learned that I know nothing of bikes in general.

I learned that the bike is a 1987 Murray Road Bike and the numbers on the bike wheel I took off are 37-590 (26 x 1 3/8) unfortunately when i type that in anywhere I just get the tire (the tube?) and not the metal rim part. Also as well, i only ever see the front wheel being sold never a back wheel. I guess heres my question, since i literally know nothing about all these sizes and stuff, can anyone recommend a site/link to a site that sells what I am looking for? or at the very least let me know what i should be typing in to find this replacement?

Sorry if i didnt give enough information about it, i really do have no idea about bikes other than how they work so i dont know what is needed or not.
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Old 12-24-16, 10:02 AM
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"37-590" is the ISO nomenclature for 650A, EA3, or one of the few different 26" x 1 3/8" specs. "37-590" or even just "590" would be what you're looking for, so that you don't get one of the other (incompatible) "26 inch" sizes. Schwinn 26" x 1 3/8" (S-6) wheels are 597 mm in diameter, for example. 26-inch mountain bike rims are 559 mm in diameter -- more than a full inch smaller than your 590 mm rims.

I haven't done a comprehensive search, but a quick glance turned up a few different 37-590 rims and wheels at Bikewagon. Here's a rear wheel with freewheel hub:

Sta-Tru 26x1-3/8 Ea3 Rear F/W Alloy Wheel | Bikewagon.com
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Old 12-24-16, 10:27 AM
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26 x 1 3/8 (590) wheels, while they are obsolete in the world of OEM production, rims, wheels and tires are still available. before anyone can direct you to a source for a complete replacement wheel, we need to know what hub it is equipped with. 3 speed, thread on freewheel, single speed coaster brake, something else?
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Old 12-24-16, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by HermitJensen View Post
Sorry if i didnt give enough information about it
You'll want to get the right configuration in terms of gearing and braking. Some bikes have rim brakes on the rear wheel and use a 5-speed or 6-speed derailleur drivetrain. On others, the rear brake is a coaster brake in the hub and the rear wheel has only a single sprocket threaded onto it, and of these, some are single-speed but others have multi-speed hubs.

Note that most available 590 wheels aren't super fancy. Basic wheels will basically work if adjusted correctly, but oftentimes they ship with insufficient spoke tension, making them prone to broken spokes. If you can true the wheel and make sure it's adequately tensioned, I'd definitely recommend it.
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Old 12-24-16, 10:35 AM
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Cheapest solution is to buy a replacement rim. Switch over spokes one at a time and then return to the shop to have it trued. Murray bikes weren't high class bikes to begin with so you don't want to spend a lot on fixing it up. That's why the bike shop dumped it rather than spend labor and parts to fix it up as a used bike. Wheel Master 590 steel rim for under $9 plus shipping and sales tax (NY resident) from Niagara Cycle Wheel Master Steel 001 Rim - 26" x 1-3/8, 36H x 14G, Chrome Plated or if you happen to live near Niagara Falls go to their store.

Last edited by VegasTriker; 12-24-16 at 03:07 PM.
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Old 12-24-16, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by VegasTriker View Post
Cheapest solution is to buy a replacement rim. Switch over spokes one at a time and then return to the shop to have it trued. Murry bikes weren't high class bikes to begin with so you don't want to spend a lot on fixing it up. That's why the bike shop dumped it rather than spend labor and parts to fix it up as a used bike.
That the bike has 590mm rims suggests to be that it may have been built in England under contract with Raleigh, which would make it somewhat nicer than the American-built Murrays. Pictures would help determine this.

Wheel Master 590 steel rim for under $9 plus shipping and sales tax (NY resident) from Niagara Cycle Wheel Master Steel 001 Rim - 26" x 1-3/8, 36H x 14G, Chrome Plated or if you happen to live near Niagara Falls go to their store.
If the OP's bike has rim brakes (as opposed to coaster or drum brakes), spending a few more bucks for an aluminum rim will give far superior braking performance, particularly in wet weather. And if this actually is a British-built bike, keep in mind that until the mid-70s most British utility bikes had 40 spoke rear wheels and 32 spoke front wheels, so be sure to get the spoke count correct with whatever rim you choose.

Sun CR-18 26 x 1-3/8 40-hole Polished Rim, fits EA-3/590 ISO

Sun CR-18 26 x 1-3/8 36-hole Polished Rim, fits EA-3/590 ISO

Sun CR-18 26 x 1-3/8 32-hole Polished Rim, fits EA-3/590 ISO
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Old 12-24-16, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by VegasTriker View Post
Cheapest solution is to buy a replacement rim. Switch over spokes one at a time and then return to the shop to have it trued. Murry bikes weren't high class bikes to begin with so you don't want to spend a lot on fixing it up. That's why the bike shop dumped it rather than spend labor and parts to fix it up as a used bike. Wheel Master 590 steel rim for under $9 plus shipping and sales tax (NY resident) from Niagara Cycle Wheel Master Steel 001 Rim - 26" x 1-3/8, 36H x 14G, Chrome Plated or if you happen to live near Niagara Falls go to their store.
This would be my suggestion as well. By doing it this way, you don't have to worry about trying to find or buy a wheel with the same hub.
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Old 12-24-16, 01:12 PM
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After you send for a rim, find some of the spokes need replacing, get new ones, then find you can't build the wheel yourself, take it to the shop and get a quote of $75 to build the wheel, then find the brakes don't work with that rim, etc, you'll spend more than the bike is worth.

Toss it and buy your girlfriend a new one!
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Old 12-24-16, 01:36 PM
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If you have a bike co-op near you that would be probably the first place to look.
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Old 12-24-16, 03:06 PM
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If I brought a wheel into a shop after I switched rims and they quoted me $75 to finish tightening the spokes and true the wheel, I would be out the door in an instant looking for a different shop. The trick is to leave the spoke nipples evenly turned on the spokes but not cinched down as you would do for truing.

The last time I had a wheel trued by the store I use it cost me $10 for labor. I would expect more for a rim switch but not $75. Of course, it is a one-man bike shop in a less desirable part of town and you will not find carbon fiber bikes on sale there. He's a older competent mechanic so truing a wheel doesn't take long.
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Old 12-24-16, 05:29 PM
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eBay. Several are available for as low as $35.
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Old 12-24-16, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasTriker View Post
Cheapest solution is to buy a replacement rim. Switch over spokes one at a time and then return to the shop to have it trued. Murray bikes weren't high class bikes to begin with so you don't want to spend a lot on fixing it up. That's why the bike shop dumped it rather than spend labor and parts to fix it up as a used bike. Wheel Master 590 steel rim for under $9 plus shipping and sales tax (NY resident) from Niagara Cycle Wheel Master Steel 001 Rim - 26" x 1-3/8, 36H x 14G, Chrome Plated or if you happen to live near Niagara Falls go to their store.
Lousy idea. First of all, if he's here asking where to get these components, that means he knows next to nothing about bikes (the fact he picked up an old Murray kinda confirms this). How would a guy like this have a) a decent spoke wrench, b) a freewheel removal tool, or c) enough knowledge to make such a repair? No, he needs to do one of 2 things:

1) Take it to a shop, and spend the $125 or more they ask to have the freewheel swapped and wheel replaced.

2) Spend about the same amount on tools and equipment for a job he's never likely to do again, or

3) Just throw the old bike in the trash and buy something that's worth repairing and is going to last.

OP, those are the choices, pure and simple. The bike, unless it just happens to be an old Raleigh-built version (doubtful, if a bike shop was throwing it away) is simply NOT_WORTH_REPAIRING. That's why even a bike shop didn't want it. You can spend either your time or your money on a basically worthless bike, or you can use it more wisely elsewhere.
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Old 12-24-16, 06:36 PM
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I'm going to say it's a 5 spd freewheel bike based on the catalog. I'm with Alex, if it costs more than $10 for a used wheel I'd scrap the bike and take the $2 from the recycler and buy beer.

1987 Murray Bicycles catalog in Murray Bicycle Catalogs & Ads Forum
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Old 12-24-16, 08:14 PM
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Thanks everyone for the help and the feedback.
I realize that this bike really is probably not cost effective wise to fix up, but my girlfriend really liked this bike style, and she only needs a bike to go a couple blocks to go to our college campus, so i figured this would be a nice way of helping her out.
Took some pics to hopefully explain what I cant in words, I will say it has rim wall brakes, and that there are 5 of the gears/sprockets on the back wheel. I just really want to replace this wheel as its the only thing really wrong with the bike. There are some minor things that i can fix relatively easily.



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