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Wheel Repair

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Wheel Repair

Old 11-12-20, 10:43 AM
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Wheel Repair

I recently purchased a 2017 Trek 520 Disc. The wheels were the original Bontrager factory wheels. The rear wheel had three replacement spokes and one missing spoke. The owner said he had been replacing spokes as they broke. I spun the wheel in my trueing stand. The rim had lots of wobble but seems to be okay otherwise.

I have since completed a rebuild of the 520. I replaced the bottom bracket, cassette, chain and wheelset. The replacement wheels are Williams Summit 29, wheels I had purchased in speculation of building up a gravel bike.

My questions...

Are those Williams wheels suitable for a loaded touring bike?
How do I tell if those Williams rims are tubeless ready?
Should I re lace the factory wheel? Iím interested in learning how.
I watched a wheel lacing video. Looks doable. Is there a best video to watch?

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Old 11-12-20, 04:21 PM
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It's never a bad idea to have an extra wheel. You never know when you may have a problem with your primary; flat, broken spoke, bad rotor, or to have somewhere to test a patched tube.

Learning to build a wheel is a good skill to have and will give you an understanding of how a wheel is structured. Keep it mind that wheels with disc brakes may need to be laced differently, depending on your opinion of braking vs drive force. Do a search of lacing for disc brake wheels to get varying viewpoints.
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Old 11-12-20, 04:24 PM
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I'll skip #1, 2, and 4, and tangentially address #3.

Just MHO, it sounds like you need to tension, possibly true, and stress relieve the factory wheel. I'd start by using the "Brandt stress relief method": put on some heavy leather gloves and go around the wheel, squeezing the heck out of parallel pairs of spokes. After four broken spokes, you've probably got more that are fatigued and close to breaking -- replace anything that breaks, obviously. If a bunch of spokes break, buy a wheel's worth and replace them all. If nothing breaks, or once you've replaced any or all the spokes and re-laced the wheel, proceed to tensioning the spokes correctly. A tensiometer will help, or you can use one of the pitch/tuning techniques. One you've got the wheel true and balanced the tension, stress relieve the spokes one more time. At that point the wheel should be good for years with only minor touch-ups.
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Old 11-12-20, 11:36 PM
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I don't know about the wheels you bought and couldn't really find any useful info online. I know Williams is a Snap-On brand but I doubt the two are related. However the Trek wheel is gone and was gone a long time ago and the previous owner should have been told that. Once you break 2 spokes it is time for a new wheel as that thing is failing. You can chase spokes but you will be chasing spokes until you give up.

You could rebuild the wheels but honestly the hubs are lower mid level Shimano hubs and the rims probably aren't anything to write home about. Certainly could be a fun learning project but I would get some higher quality parts if I was building a set of wheels.
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Old 11-13-20, 02:56 AM
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Stock components on those 520 wheels is fine and totally appropriate for loaded touring. If it's had a number of spoke failures, and you want to learn to build a wheel, this would be a fantastic place to start. Measure the existing spokes and order new ones, preferably double butted (at least on the non drive side). I like Jobst Brandst's the Bicycle Wheel as a reference, Roger Musson's ebook is also more than reasonable.

I'm not familiar with those particular Williams wheels. Do they have 32 or more spokes? If they're well built they're likely to be a reasonable touring wheel.

Tubeless compatible rims all have a distinctive center channel to aid with tire mounting, and typically a bit of an bead lock just outside of that center channel.
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Old 11-13-20, 07:10 AM
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Bontragger/Trek wheels are absolute crap.
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