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Spoke tension

Old 12-11-21, 05:30 PM
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mrwang199432
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Spoke tension

Hey!

Went to get my rear wheel trued at my LBS, it's true now but the spoke tension is pretty uneven on the NDS side.

Do I need to go back to the LBS?
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Old 12-11-21, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
Hey!

Went to get my rear wheel trued at my LBS, it's true now but the spoke tension is pretty uneven on the NDS side.

Do I need to go back to the LBS?
Sure, take it back if you're not happy with their work.

But out of curiosity, did you address this when you picked it up? How are you measuring the tension?
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Old 12-11-21, 08:44 PM
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Is it uneven between the spokes on the NDS or is the NDS lower overall compared to the DS? If it's uneven between the spokes on the NDS take it back or try to fix it yourself.
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Old 12-11-21, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
Is it uneven between the spokes on the NDS or is the NDS lower overall compared to the DS? If it's uneven between the spokes on the NDS take it back or try to fix it yourself.
This is the pertinent question. Implicit is the understanding that tension on the non-drive is usually less than the drive and expected to be that way. As long as the wheel is straight and true. As cxwrench says, if between the spokes on one side, bring it back.
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Old 12-12-21, 03:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
This is the pertinent question. Implicit is the understanding that tension on the non-drive is usually less than the drive and expected to be that way. As long as the wheel is straight and true. As cxwrench says, if between the spokes on one side, bring it back.
Check out the video beginning at 3:50ish point BRACING ANGLE >>>

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Old 12-12-21, 04:17 AM
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On a bike thatís been (ab)used, sometimes you get into a tradeoff between how true you want the wheel and how even you want the spoke tension.
If the rim as such is bent, you simply canít hit both true and even tension simultaneously.
No way to tell from here if your wheel is as good as circumstances will allow, or if itís poor work.
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Old 12-12-21, 05:53 AM
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It's a newish wheel, 2 months old. Pretty basic axis sport wheels. Was a little untrue so the LBS offered to true it. Went home and realised that yes the wheel is more true, but the spoke tension on the NDS is all over the place. The DS side seems even though
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Old 12-12-21, 11:56 AM
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IMHO, asking your LBS to tension the spokes and true the wheel is different than having him just true the wheel. This is based on an argument back in 1993, with a LSB about the wheels on a new bike I just purchased . Itís the age old, solve the problem or treat the symptom.

ďThe Bicycle WheelĒ, by the late Jobst Brandt describes a wheel trueness in terms of radial, lateral, and center, as seen in the Park video. The book also goes into torsional load and stiffness. I always wondered why I could get trueness while my tension had wild variance. Once I noticed fewer spokes on wheels it occurred to me that a 24 versus a 36 spoke wheel could explain poor spoke tension uniformity (rear or front wheel). Essentially, Iím may be using fewer spokes to obtain stiffness while using the extra spokes to obtain trueness.
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Old 12-12-21, 12:46 PM
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Yeah, spoken to a few people who have said usually when you take a wheel to the LBS to get rid of any wobble, they usually true the wheel and as a result creates spoke tensions variances.

I know it should always be relatively equal but I wonder how many people are riding with wheels which have tension variances...
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Old 12-12-21, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
I know it should always be relatively equal but I wonder how many people are riding with wheels which have tension variances...
Virtually everyone, since you didn't specify a tolerance.
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Old 12-12-21, 01:14 PM
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haha, I dont have a tension meter, I am just going by sound.

And yes i'm referring to uneven tensions relating to just the NDS. I am aware the DS spoke tension will be higher.
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Old 12-12-21, 01:37 PM
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Heres a quick vid

https://imgur.com/a/fIlC6gM
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Old 12-12-21, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
Hey!

Went to get my rear wheel trued at my LBS, it's true now but the spoke tension is pretty uneven on the NDS side.

Do I need to go back to the LBS?
It might not be possible truing a used wheel and have even spoke tension at the same time. Forcing even spoke tension would likely un-true the wheel.
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Old 12-12-21, 02:34 PM
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Don't have, can't afford, don't trust, can't wait, to far... bike shops. And many other reasons for doing this yourself. It's not hard. For me with bike shops 40 miles off getting the tools needed to do this at home cost less than a few trips of gas... Ha

And don't get me wrong... I love bike shops and thier people... But times are a changing...
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Old 12-12-21, 02:44 PM
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Based off my video, do you think the tension difference is that bad? Can i keep riding...
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Old 12-12-21, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
Based off my video, do you think the tension difference is that bad? Can i keep riding...
If the wheel is straight and centered it doesn't matter, it is what it is. If you add or remove tension it won't be centered.
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Old 12-12-21, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
If the wheel is straight and centered it doesn't matter, it is what it is. If you add or remove tension it won't be centered.
It certainly does matter. The main cause of spokes breaking is uneven tension. A wheel needs to be both true and have even spoke tension. Small variances in tension are OK, but if they're all over the place the wheel will not be as strong and that's when spokes start breaking. That's why they make a special tool to measure it, and that should be included when any bike shop trues a wheel. If they don't have a tensionometer (or don't use it), that's not where you want to have your wheels serviced.
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Old 12-12-21, 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
If the wheel is straight and centered it doesn't matter, it is what it is. If you add or remove tension it won't be centered.
It's not as simple as adding or removing tension. In order to keep tension fairly even while also truing the wheel, you can often choose to loosen one while tightening the next one over (from the same side) to achieve similar trueness. Whether that is the case for the OP in this situation is up for debate.
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Old 12-12-21, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Neese View Post
It certainly does matter. The main cause of spokes breaking is uneven tension. A wheel needs to be both true and have even spoke tension. Small variances in tension are OK, but if they're all over the place the wheel will not be as strong and that's when spokes start breaking. That's why they make a special tool to measure it, and that should be included when any bike shop trues a wheel. If they don't have a tensionometer (or don't use it), that's not where you want to have your wheels serviced.
Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
It's not as simple as adding or removing tension. In order to keep tension fairly even while also truing the wheel, you can often choose to loosen one while tightening the next one over (from the same side) to achieve similar trueness. Whether that is the case for the OP in this situation is up for debate.
delete
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Old 12-12-21, 10:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
It might not be possible truing a used wheel and have even spoke tension at the same time. Forcing even spoke tension would likely un-true the wheel.
That's where a lot of skill or a tensiometer comes in. Unless the rim is bent it is possible to even the spoke tension to within a proper range. When doing a wheel that's out of whack tension wise I check all the spokes one one side and pick a middle spot (say 100 if the spoke range is 120-60) then bring all the spokes to that tension, then the same to the other side before rechecking the 1st side. Once done bring the tension back up to close to normal, check true, straight and round and finish tension. Most don't ever need that extreme but it happens.

Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
Based off my video, do you think the tension difference is that bad? Can i keep riding...
Video doesn't tell me anything, maybe I'm missing what you're trying to show? Easy way to get a general idea is to grab a pair of spokes and gently squeeze, do the same for all the pairs, unless you have one that is noticeably loose or really tight you're probably fine.
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Old 12-12-21, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Neese View Post
That's why they make a special tool to measure it, and that should be included when any bike shop trues a wheel. If they don't have a tensionometer (or don't use it), that's not where you want to have your wheels serviced.
Hmm. I don't think I've ever encountered a shop that evaluated all the spokes with a tensiometer during a routine wheel truing service.
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Old 12-13-21, 12:30 AM
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Because I’m in the middle of building my own birthday present (NOS CAAD8 frame, with take-off components from a 2015 Specialized Roubaix). I decided to check the Axis 1.0 wheels. 28 spoke, 2cross and radial lace (crazy I never noticed). After a quick and dirty lateral true, the (haven’t been used since the 90’s) Wheelsmith reading is 70 non-drive, and 90 drive. There were two out of wack non-drive reading 50, and two 100 reading on the other side. The wheels had a couple hundred miles before taken off the Roubaix.

Should I have measured before trueing…yeah.
Am I concerned about the tension…not really
Will I geek over this…only because it’s fun and makes my family avoid me if I talk about it.



Specialized Axis 1 wheel.

Drive side reads 90.

Non-drive reads 70.

Radial spokes on the Non-drive side.
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Old 12-13-21, 03:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
That's where a lot of skill or a tensiometer comes in. Unless the rim is bent it is possible to even the spoke tension to within a proper range. When doing a wheel that's out of whack tension wise I check all the spokes one one side and pick a middle spot (say 100 if the spoke range is 120-60) then bring all the spokes to that tension, then the same to the other side before rechecking the 1st side. Once done bring the tension back up to close to normal, check true, straight and round and finish tension. Most don't ever need that extreme but it happens.


Video doesn't tell me anything, maybe I'm missing what you're trying to show? Easy way to get a general idea is to grab a pair of spokes and gently squeeze, do the same for all the pairs, unless you have one that is noticeably loose or really tight you're probably fine.
I was trying to show the different sounds between the spokes. Some are higher pitched that others, doesn't that show a variance in tension?
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Old 12-13-21, 04:19 AM
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Originally Posted by jlmonte View Post
Because Iím in the middle of building my own birthday present (NOS CAAD8 frame, with take-off components from a 2015 Specialized Roubaix). I decided to check the Axis 1.0 wheels. 28 spoke, 2cross and radial lace (crazy I never noticed). After a quick and dirty lateral true, the (havenít been used since the 90ís) Wheelsmith reading is 70 non-drive, and 90 drive. There were two out of wack non-drive reading 50, and two 100 reading on the other side. The wheels had a couple hundred miles before taken off the Roubaix.

Should I have measured before trueingÖyeah.
Am I concerned about the tensionÖnot really
Will I geek over thisÖonly because itís fun and makes my family avoid me if I talk about it.



Specialized Axis 1 wheel.

Drive side reads 90.

Non-drive reads 70.

Radial spokes on the Non-drive side.
same wheel as mine , how have you found it in the long term?
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Old 12-13-21, 05:11 AM
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Originally Posted by mrwang199432 View Post
I was trying to show the different sounds between the spokes. Some are higher pitched that others, doesn't that show a variance in tension?
Yes, it does. If you check Youtube you'll find a few guys showing how to measure tension with a guitar tuning app on your phone and plucking the spokes, and some old-timers claim to be able to get it pretty close by ear. The best and most accurate way is still with a tensiometer.
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