Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Journeyman Wheelsmith
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    172

    Black brass nipples vs silver

    I've built a couple of wheelsets using silver Sapim brass nipples. They always thread onto the spokes nice and smooth.

    For my current set, I'm using black CN Spoke brass nipples. The threads on these are noticeably less smooth.

    Is this because of the coloring or the fact that Sapim nipples are of higher quality?

    Thanks,
    Bob

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    70
    It's probably a little of both. Black Sapim nipples bind a little more than the silver ones, but it's not bad, and it's only as you start to approach final tension. If they are binding at low tension, then the nipples are suspect.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: 4slomo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    62
    The silver coated brass nipples are usually nickel coated, and to me they turn much more smoothly than the black oxide coated brass nipples. I've had much better experience with the quality of Sapim nipples, especially than the budget brands.

    Quote Originally Posted by bobonker View Post
    I've built a couple of wheelsets using silver Sapim brass nipples. They always thread onto the spokes nice and smooth.

    For my current set, I'm using black CN Spoke brass nipples. The threads on these are noticeably less smooth.

    Is this because of the coloring or the fact that Sapim nipples are of higher quality?

    Thanks,
    Bob
    Hey everybody, ride my wheels! They ride good, real good.
    I'm a wheel builder. SRLPE Wheel Works. Send me a PM.

  4. #4
    Journeyman Wheelsmith
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    172
    Thanks, guys. I'll stick with silver Sapims.

    I'm still pretty new at this and am still amazed that anyone can make a living building wheels. If I were to sell the first few sets that I built, they'd have to cost $2000/set to cover all of the hours I put in.

    Bob

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    19,240
    Quote Originally Posted by bobonker View Post
    Thanks, guys. I'll stick with silver Sapims.

    I'm still pretty new at this and am still amazed that anyone can make a living building wheels. If I were to sell the first few sets that I built, they'd have to cost $2000/set to cover all of the hours I put in.
    It takes practice, but you can get a front wheel built in less than an hour and a rear in about an hour.

    As to your nipple issues it might be that the black nipples still have some of the coating in the threads (is it paint or anodizing?). Are you putting grease on the threads? Grease will make things turn much easier and is a great spoke prep.

  6. #6
    Journeyman Wheelsmith
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    172
    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    It takes practice, but you can get a front wheel built in less than an hour and a rear in about an hour.

    As to your nipple issues it might be that the black nipples still have some of the coating in the threads (is it paint or anodizing?). Are you putting grease on the threads? Grease will make things turn much easier and is a great spoke prep.
    Hi Kerry,

    I've been using Park Tool grease on the front spokes and DS rear spokes. For the rear NDS, I've been using boiled linseed oil. These black CN nipples drag more than the silver Sapims. There were about 4 in the bag that had really poor threads that I ended up tossing out. I won't use these in the future.

    I've been using Sapim Laser and Sapim Race spokes. The wind-up with the Lasers is something I really have to watch closely (dot of paint on the outside of the spoke before adding any real tension). It would be nice to be able to hold the spoke and turn the nipple without worry of wind-up. Maybe on the next build, I'll fork out the extra cash for CX-Rays.


    Thanks,
    Bob

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    3,833
    CXrays twist at least as much as Lasers. It's just more visible on the CXrays.

    Get a twist resist or a set of smooth jaw pliers.

  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    3,937
    Quote Originally Posted by bobonker View Post
    I'm still pretty new at this and am still amazed that anyone can make a living building wheels.
    Define "a living".

    I'm probably more "inefficient" than anyone else doing it, but it takes me about an 8hr day just to build one wheelset, and probably the same amount of time to deal with the other aspects.

    But I also hate to be in a rush... it would take all the fun out.

    BTW, I don't use black brass nipples because I haven't found any that look nice... always have a brownish cast to them.

  9. #9
    Cranky Old Bastard
    Reputation: Randy99CL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1,605
    Quote Originally Posted by ericm979 View Post
    Get a twist resist or a set of smooth jaw pliers.
    Thanks for the tip!

    I'm getting ready to build my first set and really want to use Lasers but I'm concerned about the twist. I thought I'd use the edge of a marker to put a line on each spoke so I could keep them straight.

    I'd thought of pliers but what is the "twist resist"??

  10. #10
    Journeyman Wheelsmith
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    172
    It's a spoke holding tool. Runs about $75.



    I have a set of pliers that I'm going to try to use (smooth jaw). If that doesn't work out, I'll get one of the Twist Resists.

    Bob

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    3,937
    Quote Originally Posted by Randy99CL View Post
    I'm getting ready to build my first set and really want to use Lasers but I'm concerned about the twist.
    The Twist Resist doesn't always work and it mars the spokes. I can't imagine regular pliers working at all.

    It's best to use heavier DS spokes anyway for strength reasons on highly dished wheels, so I'd suggest that. Tension doesn't need to be so high on the front.

  12. #12
    Cranky Old Bastard
    Reputation: Randy99CL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1,605
    Quote Originally Posted by bobonker View Post
    It's a spoke holding tool. Runs about $75.
    Thanks Bob!

    I'm thinking of making my own spoke wrench so I can hold the spokes with pliers up very close to the nipple. With anti-sieze on the threads and oil in each rim hole.
    Got lots of time and the patience to do it right.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 28
    Last Post: 05-11-2013, 09:06 AM
  2. Alloy vs. Brass Nipples
    By voodooguy in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 44
    Last Post: 07-02-2010, 05:13 PM
  3. Identifying brass vs alloy nipples
    By allenpg in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 02-03-2009, 12:58 PM
  4. Black wheelset w/ red nipples?
    By Alpinist in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 04-08-2006, 10:02 AM
  5. 20 radial spokes: brass nipples?
    By SDizzle in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 02-20-2006, 10:06 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Hot Deals

Contest

Tour De France

Latest RoadBike Articles


Latest Videos

RoadbikeReview on Facebook