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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How and when do you form the spoke so it goes straight into the nipple?
Right now I have a wheel laced with the spokes loose and I can't really put a bend in the spoke near the nipple. The spokes are CX Rays so they are really floppy which makes it even more difficult. I not sure if there is going to be a way to do it once I start applying tension.

Thanks
 

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I'm no expert wheelbuilder, but I don't think you should have to bend the spoke at all. The nipples should come out of the rim at a slight angle to accommodate for the angle of the spoke. It will vary with different nipples and rims. Sapim actually advertises the fact that their nipple design allows the nipple to exit the rim at an appropriate angle, as I mentioned above.

http://www.sapim.be/index.php?st=products&sub=nipples
 

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After the wheel is laced you can use a screwdriver or pen and push down towards the rim on all the spoke crossings to help the spokes align. Later, when the tension is getting higher, you can squeeze the spokes that are crossed close to the nipples to help with the spoke angle. You can also push the spokes close to the hub at this point to remove any bends and keep the spokes close to the flange.
 

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If it is an aluminum rim, and the bend is bad enough, I fully tension the wheel and then take a dead blow hammer and tap the spoke right next to the nipple. This will be enough to ensure that the spoke exceeds its elastic region and permanently deforms, removing any residual stress that may have been present prior to deforming the spoke.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I found I could take a loose spoke and place the threads on a flat surface and then place the round part of a screwdriver blade just above the threads and pull up on spoke and get a slight bend in it. Not sure if this is a good way to do it.

The rim is an Aerohead OC and I laced it by looking at another wheel I have been riding for years. Turns out I built that wheel with the rim offset reveresed and it has worked fine all these years. I did check the sopke tensions and found the NDS to be really slack.
So I am going to have to remove the rim and flip it over. So much for my wheel building skills.
 

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not sure what you're talking about...i've never had to do anything like this. put the nipple thru the rim, put the spoke in the nipple and put a few turns on it. just hold the spoke any way you need to get the spoke into it.
 

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jnbrown said:
I found I could take a loose spoke and place the threads on a flat surface and then place the round part of a screwdriver blade just above the threads and pull up on spoke and get a slight bend in it. Not sure if this is a good way to do it.
Whatever works... you just want to be careful not to bend the spoke at the threads... and you want only a slight bend above the threads.

A lot of people don't bother... but I do. The idea is too plastically deform the spoke so that the residual stress will get fully equalized during the stress relieving step. Otherwise you can end up with a bending load on the threads, which is the weak point. The "need" for it varies depending on the rim and where the spokes are coming from. Sapim nipples do not help at all that I've noticed.
 

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+1

cxwrench said:
not sure what you're talking about...i've never had to do anything like this. put the nipple thru the rim, put the spoke in the nipple and put a few turns on it. just hold the spoke any way you need to get the spoke into it.
I'm with cxwrench. I've built a couple hundred wheels over the years and never done anything but proper stress relief of the spokes as the build progresses. I think that takes care of the issue. I've never seen the need for anything more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I only brought it up because I had NDS spoke break a few threads into the nipple and I thought it could be because of the spoke alignment. I also found the tension was too low so I increased it. I also think forming the spoke was suggested in Jobst's book which I had a copy of but loaned it out.
 

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jnbrown said:
I only brought it up because I had NDS spoke break a few threads into the nipple and I thought it could be because of the spoke alignment. I also found the tension was too low so I increased it. I also think forming the spoke was suggested in Jobst's book which I had a copy of but loaned it out.
It's possible the spoke forming mentioned in Jobst's book was referring to forming the spoke to lie flat against the hub flange, not at the nipple end.
If the spoke is at too low of a tension, it's flexing more, moving more, so it's more likely to break. Also, the nipple of the low tension spoke is not engaged in as many threads, so it has less internal structural support. Good spoke nipples have a rounded base so they can deal with angles by swiveling in the rim's spoke hole. A problem may come up is you're using a rim with eyelets, and the spoke angle is so severe the nipple flats are in contact with the top of the eyelet.
 

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Jobst mentioned both. Obviously forming the spoke at the nipple end is unnecessary if the nipple can turn at an angle that points to the hub flange. IME most rims do not allow this much rotation for the NDS rear or front hubs. It is a trade off, because angling the spoke holes or making them larger requires more space inside the rim and/or more material at the rim bed. The Kinlin rims (which I normally use) are center drilled and don't allow for much nipple angle, so forming the spoke makes sense IMO.
 
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