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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I need some advice about my rear wheel: I am not sure if something major is wrong with it, or if it just needs to be taken to a competent shop.

I am first a commuter, I just want trouble free, low maintenance wheels. Weight, aerodynamics, etc are not a major factor.

My questions which will be repeated at the end is: Do I just need to get the wheel really trued by a compentent person or does it need to be rebuilt or replaced?

I have a 36 spoke rear wheel (14 gauge spokes) with shimano 105 hubs, velocity A23 rim. (had it for close to 5 years, was a “handspun” wheel). It has been largely trouble free except there was dent in it from hitting brick (years ago) that a shop cleaned up for me. They said it will never be perfect after that but the dent was mild, and I probably wouldn’t notice it at all.

Fast forward to a few months ago, I see the wheel is a little out of true and I go to true it. I stripped some nipples (using a old spoke wrench I got from my grandfather when he died, I need to get a 4 sided one, and will do that). I couldn’t get them out so I took it to a local bike shop (shop #1). They had to replace a few spokes for me. When I got it home the wheel was terribly out of true and round. They obviously really messed up. I don’t blame them: basically I dropped off me wheel and left, then their boss came in and told them the shop was closing tomorrow and that they were out of jobs. Then they worked on my wheel, not a recipe for greatness, all the other work this shop had done had been great up til then.

I went to fix it (I wanted to ride it the next day) and rounded more nipples with my spoke wrench (I know I need a replacement). So I took it to a shop in a near by town(shop #2), and they looked at it and said: there is a radial dent, we won’t be able to make it perfect. (this is from the brick). I had been happy with it before so I figured it would be good enough for me so I had them fix it. They replaced 3 spokes because they were too long (shop #1s work), and the wheel was perfectly true laterally, perfectly round true vertically (to my eye any way).

I was happy and I assumed I wouldn’t need to touch it again for many more years. I took 2 rides (~30 miles, paved, rouch roads, my normal commute, no major impacts) and then looked at the wheel, it was way out of true laterally and vertically and many of the spokes have little if any tension on them. So I utter some explitives and tried to fix it. Guess what: adding to the parade of incompetence I round more nipples. but I got it into a rideable state. I rode it 3 miles and looked at it and it doesn’t seem to have gotten any worse.

At this point I feel stuck, I don’t know if shop #2 just didn’t stress relieve the wheel properly after the spoke change or is some thing is really wrong with the wheel that they missed. I cannot see any cracks in the hub flange or in the rim. I also am reluctant to take it to another shop and find have a third place mess it up.

To complicate things my local shop, which I trusted is closed, the nearest bike shop is now a 45 minute drive away, and one of the seemingly nicer shops there, seemingly screwed up. (I can’t take it there and demand a free repair because I mucked with it so I could ride it to work the next day).

Do I just need to get the nipples replaced and the wheel really trued by a compentent person or does it need to be rebuilt or replaced?

If the concensus is replace the wheel then I will have many questions about best options, but we can cross that bridge later.

Thanks for any help and advice you may offer.

I do have little wheel building experience, I built my front wheel (with the culprit spoke wrench) and really enjoyed the experience. At the time I wasn't ready to tackle an asymmetrically dished wheel.
 

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A wheelist
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I stopped reading 3/4 the way through. Your wheel needs re-building with a new rim, spokes and nipples (and never use that wrench again - throw it away). You need a competent wheelbuilder or you can do it yourself if you're willing to follow instructions to the letter. A first time rear wheel is no place to cut corners or rush.

Read my site 2x and you will then see I recommend downloading (and printing) Roger Musson's fine wheelbuilding e-book. You can thank me when you have 1000 miles on the wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ok, thanks. Sorry for being too verbose.

I have seen you often recommend Mavic Open Pros.

Would you recommend these with Shimano 105 over another Velocity A23?

Also Sheldon Brown speaks highly of half radial rear wheels as a good pattern, most everyone else favors 3 cross. Any opinion on half radial?

With trouble free riding in mind.
 

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A wheelist
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Ok, thanks. Sorry for being too verbose.

I have seen you often recommend Mavic Open Pros.

Would you recommend these with Shimano 105 over another Velocity A23?

With trouble free riding in mind.
Oh it wasn't the verbosity; I just knew all I needed to know. I have great luck with Open Pros (I have 3 sets and never a problem) but others aren't so fortunate (maybe I didn't build their wheels eh? :D ). Most rims have passed OPs in all functions as there has been no OP updating for well over a decade. I'd suggest something else - a Kinlin maybe. They're cost effective.

Look at the BikeHubStore.com rim selection.
 

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H Plus Archetype rim would b my choice. Especially if you have a A23 on the front. THey got em in 36 and they are easy to change tires on. It is probably the best quality/value out there.
 

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I stopped reading 3/4 the way through. Your wheel needs re-building with a new rim, spokes and nipples (and never use that wrench again - throw it away). You need a competent wheelbuilder or you can do it yourself if you're willing to follow instructions to the letter. A first time rear wheel is no place to cut corners or rush...
I'm with Mike, although I didn't stop reading 3/4 of the way through ;-) .

Between 2 bike shops, and stripping several nipples, something's going on. Replace the rim and spokes, regardless of who does it. Sounds like the original nipples might hot have had the nipples prepped or lubed, and with time they can seize. I wouldn't be surprised if that wheel couldn't be salvaged but if you were to pay a competent someone else, it would probably be cost prohibitive due to the time required. If you did the work yourself there would be little lost but time.

As a former long time commuter myself, my priorities are the same as yours; trouble free and low maintenance. I'm a BIG proponent of asymmetrical rear rims such as the Velocity A23 O/C or the DT R440 Asymmetric. Asymmetric rims build up with remarkably even left/right tension that even a novice wheelbuilder like yourself will find easy to construct. The more balanced left/right tension leads to much longer lasting wheels.

I've built tons of wheels and while asymmetric rims are not a necessity, they're an industry secret no one's sharing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Taking a step back:
I can get the same wheel (105,velo A23) I had before for $205.
It worked good for ~5 years. Is this a worse option than building myself or
having a local shop build (assuming I find someone with a good reputation for wheelbuilding)?
Part of me really wants to build the wheel, part of me recognizes it will take a long time: I have a baby and REALLY I enjoy these projects, I also have other "fish to fry".

I am confident that given enough time I can pull it off though if it will be a significantly better result.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Bikerjulio and Peter, thanks forthe heads up on OC rims.
thanks for the suggestions.

It seems I need to maximize spokes for my Goal so I like the 36H rims,
seems the Kinlin is only up to 32.

I also like going with Velocity A23 OC since it keeps with the front rim;
HOWEVER I see there are no Eyelets in it while the
However I see the DT has them. Is this a major advantage?
Mike's site talks about nipple washers, would this make up for the lack of eyelets.
 

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Bikerjulio and Peter, thanks forthe heads up on OC rims.
thanks for the suggestions.

It seems I need to maximize spokes for my Goal so I like the 36H rims,
seems the Kinlin is only up to 32.

I also like going with Velocity A23 OC since it keeps with the front rim;
HOWEVER I see there are no Eyelets in it while the
However I see the DT has them. Is this a major advantage?
Mike's site talks about nipple washers, would this make up for the lack of eyelets.
How heavy are you?

It matters
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I weigh about 200lbs, my work bag with lunch etc, probably 15 lbs right over the rear wheel.

I am not sure if it will get me boo'ed off this forum, but I also have an electric hub motor on the front wheel with a 15lbs battery on the frame.
 

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A wheelist
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I also like going with Velocity A23 OC since it keeps with the front rim;
HOWEVER I see there are no Eyelets in it while the
However I see the DT has them. Is this a major advantage?
Mike's site talks about nipple washers, would this make up for the lack of eyelets.
Eyelets seem to be going out of fashion except for a couple of examples. I would imagine rims are a whole lot easier to make without them. I've no idea if nipple washers make up for the lack of eyelets. The only cracked rim I ever had did have eyelets (a Bontrager MTB rim) and none of my no-eyelet rims (all of which have nipple washers) have ever cracked.
 

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i would ...

1. match the front rim with a new one for the rear.
2. measure the hub.
3. calc spoke length and order sapim race spokes from danscomp.
4. build a new rear wheel in the upside down bike frame following sheldon's wheelbuilding page.
5. use two stacks of cd jewel cases on a table to verify dish.
 

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One more vote for the H+Son Archetype. That's what I do most of my commuting on. Great rims and easier to build good wheels with by being laterally and radially true right out of the box. At around 480 grams or so they are at an appropriate weight for a 23x25 rim to guarantee decent extrusion thickness. They also come with wear indicators which show you if the rim nears the end of its life. Laced with 36 spokes will make very sturdy wheels. Use double butted spokes like Sapim Race or preferably Force if you could find them. Also use brass nipples.
If you can swing the time, get Musson's ebook on wheel building and built them yourself. It's a skill you will be glad you get
 

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Russian Troll Farmer
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First of all, do not work on a wheel again until you get a decent spoke wrench; even something as cheap as a Spokey would be sufficient.

In the end, you might need to do your own wheelbuild, if your local shop is as incompetent as you say. Don't worry-it's not rocket science, but you need to do it slowly and methodically.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I found at least two models on the BHS site with 36h. :confused:
I mean the Off Center Kinlin rim that Bikerjulio was kind enough to recommend.
I did look for other Off Center Kinlin rims there and didn't find any with 36h.

It seems like I have 2 votes for Off center rims
2 Votes for H Son Archetype (not off center)
2 Votes for a Kimlin of some type (though I could not find a Off center rim from them with 36H)

Of what I looked at that folks recommend none of the prices scare me off.

So: Your opinion does a off center rim matter?
 

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A wheelist
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Your opinion does a off center rim matter?
Put it this way - I've been building my own wheels for decades. My current wheelset, with Ryde Pulse Sprint rims, has an offset rear rim. It's the first offset road rim I've ever used (I used an offset mountain bike rim in the early '90s) and none of my non-offset rims has ever let me down because it wasn't offset.

But - the DS to NDS tension difference is less with an offset rim. Because I've never suffered from not having an offset rim, my answer to your question has to be "no".
 
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