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  1. #1
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    Newb: Best way to true the round

    Building my first wheel. Every time I get the lateral good - there's some bumps on the round. I'm confused on how to best true out a bump in the round without throwing off the lateral...

  2. #2
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Consistent spoke tension.

    I try to get a new wheel round early in the process. Lateral runout is easier to fix than vertical. The more tension you have on the spokes the harder it is. Having a spoke tension gauge of some type makes the job much easier. When I lace up a wheel I make sure the nipples are all turned onto the spokes the exact same amount. Unless the rim is bent from new this will give you a big headstart on having the wheel end up round and straight.
    I work for some bike racers
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  3. #3
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    Thanks, yes - might start over as DS spokes are getting pretty tense

  4. #4
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    Start with minimal spoke tension.

    Work on the lateral 1 or 2 times around the rim, but don't shoot for perfection. You're just trying to remove the largest errors.

    The wheel will still have minimal tension.

    Now, go around the rim to true roundness, but since the overall tension is still low, you're only going to remove the high spots as you go around the rim. You won't remove them completely so don't freak out. Just go around the rim once or twice, only tightening the spokes which cause the bumps.

    Then tighten ALL the spokes 1/2 to 3/4 a turn.

    Repeat the lateral, then roundness trips around the rim once or twice more.

    Once you have moderate tension on the rim, then when adjusting for roundness, you will go around the rim and adjust each spoke 1/4 turn; if it hits the indicator then tighten. If it runs freely past the indicator, then loosen 1/4 turn. Go around the rim once or twice.

    Then tighten all the spokes another 1/2 to 3/4 turn.

  5. #5
    Russian Troll Farmer
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    Here's what a newby often does on their first wheel: They get the wheel close, with full tension, then they start ADDING tension, which in itself will cause low points as well as over-tensioned spokes. So, if you have all the spokes roughly at full tension, after that, any tension added will require an equal amount reduced. Consider that total tension will remain fixed, and any truing is a "zero sum gain" in overall tension.

    BTW, a good stiff aero rim will rarely show any variation radially. Makes wheelbuilding that much easier. Box-sections are a lot more flimsy, especially single-wall rims.
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

  6. #6
    A wheelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmcg333 View Post
    Building my first wheel. Every time I get the lateral good - there's some bumps on the round. I'm confused on how to best true out a bump in the round without throwing off the lateral...
    Jm, I don't think you're paying enough attention to taking the spokes down by equal amounts in the initial tensioning phase. Cx says is all in his post - "When I lace up a wheel I make sure the nipples are all turned onto the spokes the exact same amount."

    Be as precise as possible with this stage. There much more about it on my site, link below.

    Of course when you have to true the lateral wobbles you can't take nipples down (on both sides) evenly - but make sure you don't create extra tension in that area. If you tighten 1-3 nipples on one side make sure you loosen 1-3 nipples on the other side. Don't just tighten (or loosen) the nipples on one side.

    For my own wheels, using what I preach on my site, I almost never have to radially true a wheel. I can't remember the last one that needed it. The rim joint area is sometimes a problem area and anything under (about) 1mm (I don't measure it) I just ignore.
    .
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  7. #7
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    What CX and Mike T. said is spot on! Read Mike T.'s wheelbuilding website. There is a wealth of information on it, and......it's FREE!

    And......if you haven't already, spend $12 and buy Roger Musson's awesome e-book "Professional Guide to Wheel Building":

    https://www.wheelpro.co.uk/wheelbuilding/book.php

    If you haven't read this book yet, STOP where you are in your wheel build until you read his book. This is the best $12 you will ever spend. Not only that, but his e-book comes with lifetime free updates. Follow his directions to the letter before you go any further.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  8. #8
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    Thanks everyone, good stuff, good advice.

    Another quick question - as you get closer - as spokes come closer to final tension - do you make smaller turns with the wrench? I kind of like working with 1/2 and 1/4 turns so the spokes all line up - but seems like you need to go smaller as tension gets higher.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmcg333 View Post
    Thanks everyone, good stuff, good advice.

    Another quick question - as you get closer - as spokes come closer to final tension - do you make smaller turns with the wrench? I kind of like working with 1/2 and 1/4 turns so the spokes all line up - but seems like you need to go smaller as tension gets higher.
    Yes. But remember, when you are doing final tensioning, there will be windup for sure. 14/15/14 spokes will generally wind up around a 1/4 turn on the DS, less of an issue on the NDS. Generally, the "two steps forward, one step back" works.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  10. #10
    A wheelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmcg333 View Post
    as you get closer - as spokes come closer to final tension - do you make smaller turns with the wrench? I kind of like working with 1/2 and 1/4 turns so the spokes all line up - but seems like you need to go smaller as tension gets higher.
    Absolutely. But you have to be very sure that turning a nipple is turning it on the threads and not just twisting a spoke. Round spokes are very deceptive here and the thinner the spoke (DT Rev and Sapim Laser) the more the twist. Of course with bladed spokes (CX-Rays etc) you can see any twist BUT you should be holding them with a special tool to prevent them twisting.

    You should be turning much finer than "1/2 and 1/4 turns" in the final stages - like unmeasurable 1/8 or 1/16th turns. These are easy to do with bladed spokes and doable with much experience on round spokes. Try tape flags until you gain the experience of what's happening. It shows this on my site.

    With round spokes, as you gain experience, you will allow for twist and back off the spoke to remove the twist - much like "three steps forward and one step back".

    I'm not sure what you mean about "so the spokes all line up". Only bladed spokes need lining up - but you shouldn't be allowing them to twist in the first place.
    .
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  11. #11
    A wheelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Read Mike T.'s wheelbuilding website. There is a wealth of information on it, and......it's FREE!
    Free to you guys but not free to me !!! I get hosed for hosting services. You're welcome!!
    .
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Try tape flags until you gain the experience of what's happening.
    I tried tape flags on my first build. Trouble was they moved and became useless.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    With round spokes, as you gain experience, you will allow for twist and back off the spoke to remove the twist - much like "three steps forward and one step back".
    This is the method that seems to work best for me. I have achieved a feel for the point where the spoke twist force is enough to make the nipple turn in the thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Free to you guys but not free to me !!! I get hosed for hosting services. You're welcome!!
    Awww, now Mike, why do you have to make me feel guilty like this? You know I hold you in high regard. If it weren't for you, I probably would never have taken up wheel building, much appreciated, thank you! If I'm ever up your way, I'll take you to lunch.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  13. #13
    A wheelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Awww, now Mike, why do you have to make me feel guilty like this? You know I hold you in high regard. If it weren't for you, I probably would never have taken up wheel building, much appreciated, thank you! If I'm ever up your way, I'll take you to lunch.
    Feel free to send large sacks of money anytime!
    .
    Mike T's home wheelbuilding site - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilders with motivation, information and resources.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmcg333 View Post
    Another quick question - as you get closer - as spokes come closer to final tension - do you make smaller turns with the wrench? I kind of like working with 1/2 and 1/4 turns so the spokes all line up - but seems like you need to go smaller as tension gets higher.
    I don't go smaller than 1/4 turn as I don't find it necessary.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Feel free to send large sacks of money anytime!
    A check is in the mail.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  16. #16
    A wheelist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    A check is in the mail.
    No checks! I need cash in a bag; unmarked bills, random denominations. Shhhh.
    .
    Mike T's home wheelbuilding site - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilders with motivation, information and resources.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    No checks! I need cash in a bag; unmarked bills, random denominations. Shhhh.
    Shipping costs too much for that. I was going to send you one of these:
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  18. #18
    A wheelist
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    A million is a good start Lom but that thing is worth about $49.95us.
    .
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