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What do you do *after* replacing a spoke?

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What do you do *after* replacing a spoke?

Old 05-29-20, 09:24 AM
  #1  
pennpaul
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What do you do *after* replacing a spoke?

Broke my first spoke yesterday in my "Clydesdale" rear wheel on the drive side yesterday after ~1500 miles of riding.

Of course now that I've replaced the spoke and remounted the tire, I'm seeing other spokes on the drive side with scrapes/nicks in them--maybe from my chain slipping between the cassette and spokes, not sure--that I should also replace.

So after a visual inspection, retruing the wheel, what else do you/can you do after replacing spokes? I hate this paranoid, ticking time bomb feeling after having a broken spoke.

Thanks,
Paul
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Old 05-29-20, 09:30 AM
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I wouldn't do a thing until you break another. Unless it broke at one of the "nicks".
It may not happen.
If it does, replace all spokes on that side. Maybe both sides?
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Old 05-29-20, 10:19 AM
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You now know why they created and made so many "dork discs"; those goofy aluminum or plastic discs between the freewheelcassette and the spokes. Of course every self-respecting cyclist promptly took it off (and many of us also dumped our chains between like you did).

Bill Kapaun is right on. Ride the wheel, If it works, great, if not you could replace spokes as they break, but as a clyde, I;d do all the right-side spokes and probably both sides. (I'm a light, skinny guy, I'd probably go till the 3rd breaks but then, I never and cannot rip stuff apart on a bike.

Ben
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Old 05-29-20, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by pennpaul View Post
Broke my first spoke yesterday in my "Clydesdale" rear wheel on the drive side yesterday after ~1500 miles of riding.

Of course now that I've replaced the spoke and remounted the tire, I'm seeing other spokes on the drive side with scrapes/nicks in them--maybe from my chain slipping between the cassette and spokes, not sure--that I should also replace.

So after a visual inspection, retruing the wheel, what else do you/can you do after replacing spokes? I hate this paranoid, ticking time bomb feeling after having a broken spoke.

Thanks,
Paul
Did you stress-relieve the spokes afterward? One of the reasons for giving them all a really good squeeze is to test whether any others were close to snapping.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
You now know why they created and made so many "dork discs"; those goofy aluminum or plastic discs between the freewheelcassette and the spokes. Of course every self-respecting cyclist promptly took it off (and many of us also dumped our chains between like you did).
I am not ashamed to admit that I use both dork discs and Jump Stops on my bikes. Nothing ruins a nice ride like having to dig a greasy chain out of a tight spot. I keep my derailleurs properly adjusted but things happen and I am a belt-and-suspenders kind of guy who couldn't give a rat's a** what other people think.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:43 AM
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I was out on my mountain bike a few of years ago and a stick got caught in my rear derailleur stuffing it into the spokes pulling the chain with it. Rear derailleur destroyed, hanger bent, and 3 spokes broken. Once I replaced the spokes, I noticed that several others were badly gouged right near where they went into the hub. Since I had things apart, I headed back to the bike shop and bought new replacements. I ended up replacing 10 spokes in all, and trued the wheel. To be fair, these spokes were badly chewed up. After 4 or 5 years of riding I have not had any more trouble. In your place, I would replace those spokes
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Old 05-29-20, 10:46 AM
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If I broke a spoke on a wheel after only 1500 miles, I would suspect that the wheel was not built properly. Did it come on a new bike. or did you buy aftermarket wheels? Do you know who built them? What parts were used?

As others have suggested, you might want to make sure the wheel was properly stress-relieved and re-tensioned. If you aren't experienced with this, you might want to take the wheel (or wheels) to a shop and ask them to make sure everything is up to snuff.
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Old 05-29-20, 12:16 PM
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Stainless steel spokes may start to rust due to non stainless steel particles embedded in the surface.
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Old 05-29-20, 12:34 PM
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I agree with checking the tension of the spokes. You don't want them banjo-string tight. You do want them tight. The object of the game is that the wheel is suspended in tension. The greatest load is taken by the spokes on the top of the wheel in it's rotation. With the tension balanced (at rest) between all the spokes the wheel is kept "round". As you put more and more miles on the bike the spoke tension can settle and change causing the wheel to go out of round (usually not too bad). The object of the game is to keep up with it.

And that reminds me - I need to do the same on my touring bike. The wheels aren't "bad" by my book, but I can see a bit of wobble so they are due for a truing.

I wouldn't consider a broken spoke a catastrophe or a ride-killer. If I broke one (never have yet) I'd tape the pieces to the next spoke and keep on keepin' on.

If spokes were popping left and right then there would be something very wrong with the wheel - most likely too much tension. That or a defect in the spokes.

If spokes are spaced out far enough around the wheel I wouldn't even consider 2-3 spokes ride-killers. If they are all in the same quadrant or so then it might be a bigger issue.

Of course, it is best practice to replace spokes - but my point is it isn't a road-side repair, nor should it be considered a ride-killing mechanical. Bandaid it with some tape to secure and move along. If you're on tour - maybe that could be an evening project. Or if you are a day out from a better place to do the work than in camp - carry on for a day and get there.

Once a spoke is replaced - what should you do? Make sure the tension is set properly in the spokes and keep on keepin' on.

Good luck!
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Old 05-29-20, 01:13 PM
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New spokes need to be broken in. So you need to get at least 5000 miles on it ASAP.

You do have to check it and all the rest every so often just to be sure they all feel about the same tension.
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Old 05-29-20, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Did you stress-relieve the spokes afterward? One of the reasons for giving them all a really good squeeze is to test whether any others were close to snapping.
This!

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Old 05-29-20, 04:57 PM
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I went to the LBS and bought some new spokes. I showed one of the shop guys my wheel but he said he wouldn't change them out. His concern with swapping them out was affecting the tension, but at $70 to retension the wheel, I think I'm going to take my chances. I think the two I circled need to go and the 3rd one underneath the PostIt was a candidate, but I'm fine keeping that one.


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Old 05-29-20, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Did you stress-relieve the spokes afterward? One of the reasons for giving them all a really good squeeze is to test whether any others were close to snapping.
??? That is not why you stress-relieve a wheel. You stress-relieve to remove the false tension where the spoke has turned when the nipple has turned. You don't squeeze them to find the spokes that are 'about to break'.

OP - I think you're riding on borrowed time. From your last pic it looks like you've dropped the chain between the cassette and the spokes a few times, and you can see it's the outboard spokes on the drive side that are nicked. I'd bet a C-note that the spoke you broke was one of those. I predict another broken spoke if you don't replace those spokes, which are 1/4 of your total spokes on that wheel. Some bikes, when you break a spoke, you get so much rub against the brake pads or even the chainstay that your ride is done. Some wheels you can make it home with a sizable wobble.

It looks like you have a pretty conventional wheel with at least 32 spokes and 3x crossing, so if you break a spoke you can probably limp home.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:44 PM
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Grind down anything sticking up from the rim with a dremel
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Old 05-30-20, 06:25 AM
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I see you have disk brakes so rim wobble won't affect your getting home if you break another spoke. In fact, I heard someone posit that a drawback of disk brakes is that you don't always immediately know when you've broken a spoke.

I do my own wheel work, and I wouldn't hesitate to replace all spokes nicked by the chain. It takes little more time to replace six or seven spokes than to set up the job again to get access to DS spokes.
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Old 05-30-20, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by pennpaul View Post
I went to the LBS and bought some new spokes. I showed one of the shop guys my wheel but he said he wouldn't change them out. His concern with swapping them out was affecting the tension, but at $70 to retension the wheel, I think I'm going to take my chances. I think the two I circled need to go and the 3rd one underneath the PostIt was a candidate, but I'm fine keeping that one.
If that's really what your LBS would charge, you need a need to find a new shop. Mine charges $50 to build a wheel from scratch.
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Old 05-30-20, 08:47 AM
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I overlooked replacing the Spoke Protector after overhauling my hub and dumped the chain on a bad shift. A few rides later a spoke broke. When I was replacing it I realized that 8 other spokes were cut. I replaced them and after about 75000 miles replaced the rim using the original spokes.
From the pics I would replace the damaged spokes, retension , and stress relieve the wheel.
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Old 05-30-20, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Rogerogeroge View Post
??? That is not why you stress-relieve a wheel. You stress-relieve to remove the false tension where the spoke has turned when the nipple has turned. You don't squeeze them to find the spokes that are 'about to break'.
You are correct-ish, when building/rebuilding a wheel that is the purpose but on an old wheel where one spoke is replaced there isn't a need to do that, the thousands of miles have done the job and you should know if the few spokes you tweaked to true a wheel are right, I find just setting the wheel upright on the ground and pushing down on the top and going around the wheel that way will do the job on a more difficult true. On a questionable wheel going around the rim and squeezing the spokes in pairs after a spoke relacemet can also serve the function of finding out if spokes are bad. I've a number of times replaced a spoke and squeezed and behold, another broken spoke, then I tell the customer its time for a rebuild and don't bother going further.

To the OP, the two spokes you circled are absolutely going to break and will any that have any kind of jagged cut to them. If you undo a spoke, replace and tension till the wheel is true then do the next you won't need to rebuild the wheel, doing even 7 spokes this way will be faster then replacing all at once. Though if you remove all the outside spokes first, put new ones in, thread the nipple to the same point on all of them and then start turning them 1/2, 1/4 and 1/8 turns in order till you have the wheel properly dished the job would be fairly easy as well and a good mechanic should be able to do that. The key with the first is always unwind the spokes and with the second method for all the outer spokes you do each of the 8 spokes in half turns going around till they're fully detensioned, this assures that you don't put undo stress on the other spokes and will keep the rest of the spokes correct.
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Old 05-30-20, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Rogerogeroge View Post
??? That is not why you stress-relieve a wheel. You stress-relieve to remove the false tension where the spoke has turned when the nipple has turned. You don't squeeze them to find the spokes that are 'about to break'.
Sorry, but you've got it wrong. Spoke windup (which is what you describe) is a completely separate issue that a competent wheelbuilder resolves while tightening or loosening the spokes. There should be almost no residual spoke windup when the wheelbuilder squeezes the spokes.

Jobst Brandt (you may have heard of him) developed his stress-relieving process decades ago, initially to identify weak spokes. That it helped wheels last longer was a bonus: https://yarchive.net/bike/stress_relieve.html
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Old 05-30-20, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Sorry, but you've got it wrong. Spoke windup (which is what you describe) is a completely separate issue that a competent wheelbuilder resolves while tightening or loosening the spokes. There should be almost no residual spoke windup when the wheelbuilder squeezes the spokes.

Jobst Brandt (you may have heard of him) developed his stress-relieving process decades ago, initially to identify weak spokes. That it helped wheels last longer was a bonus: https://yarchive.net/bike/stress_relieve.html
People seem to have a hard time understanding that the stress relieving process has multiple benefits:

1. Early on, it assists with spoke setting.
2. Near finishing point, reveals if more work needs to be done. (Wheel is not done if it comes out of true, out of dish, or results in a drop in tension.)
3. As a finishing process - reduces residual stress in the spokes for a better attainment of a spokes theoretical life span - whatever that may be.
4. For a wheel that refuses to settle down - can reveal an overtension condition.


I pretty much cover it in that video.

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