Results 1 to 21 of 21
  1. #1
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    I managed to score a free set of wheels off of a 1987 Schwinn Traveler. The specs I know are:

    Weinmann 416 matte annodized 27" X 1 1/4 alloy rims
    Maillard front and rear hubs 36h

    I'm thinking about taking this opportunity to try my hand at rebuilding a wheel. How do I go about determining what size/length spokes and nipples I might need to give this a try? Are there any unique challenges to building a 27" wheel as opposed to a 700c?
    Last edited by Opus51569; 04-19-2013 at 06:16 PM.

  2. #2
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Read my webpage and the answer to your last question is "no".
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  3. #3
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Read my webpage and the answer to your last question is "no".
    Excellent. I was planning to use your site as a guide.

  4. #4
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    Excellent. I was planning to use your site as a guide.
    Use it just as a basic 1st step guide. Get Roger's great e-book (on my links page) and you're good to go.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  5. #5
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    Any advice on what to use on stuck spokes/nipples? Liquid Wrench? WD-40?
    When a cyclist in your area is injured or killed by a motorist, make an extra effort the next day to go for a ride. It doesn't have to be an organized ride, or even a long ride. Hell, ride a 15 minute loop around your neighborhood if you want.

    Just be seen riding your bike.

    Do it to make people aware we're out there. Do it to honor a fellow traveler. Do it because you're lucky enough to still be able to.

  6. #6
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    Any advice on what to use on stuck spokes/nipples? Liquid Wrench? WD-40?
    Wire cutters. Save yourself a lot of troubles.

    Thanks for another idea for my site. This is how I get them.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  7. #7
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Wire cutters. Save yourself a lot of troubles.

    Thanks for another idea for my site. This is how I get them.
    Glad I could help
    When a cyclist in your area is injured or killed by a motorist, make an extra effort the next day to go for a ride. It doesn't have to be an organized ride, or even a long ride. Hell, ride a 15 minute loop around your neighborhood if you want.

    Just be seen riding your bike.

    Do it to make people aware we're out there. Do it to honor a fellow traveler. Do it because you're lucky enough to still be able to.

  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    2,042
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Wire cutters. Save yourself a lot of troubles.

    Thanks for another idea for my site. This is how I get them.
    LOL, yes don't waste your time with the old spokes or nipples.

  9. #9
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by mikerp View Post
    LOL, yes don't waste your time with the old spokes or nipples.
    Me and lots of others have re-used spokes but ones that are damaged, had a long life or have seized nipples just make the job much harder or less reliable that it needs to be.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  10. #10
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655
    Well, I'm guessing the spokes are the original ones from 1987 (14ga, zinc coated). They actually look pretty good given their age, but it looks like there's a bit of rust at the nipples on some of them.

    Rather than calculating spoke lengths, can I simply measure then lengths of the existing spokes (the ones I can remove without cutting).

  11. #11
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    Well, I'm guessing the spokes are the original ones from 1987 (14ga, zinc coated). They actually look pretty good given their age, but it looks like there's a bit of rust at the nipples on some of them.
    Save them for all kinds of home projects like I do.

    Rather than calculating spoke lengths, can I simply measure then lengths of the existing spokes (the ones I can remove without cutting).
    Absolutely if you're using the same dimension rim, hub and number of spoke crosses.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  12. #12
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Save them for all kinds of home projects like I do.

    Absolutely if you're using the same dimension rim, hub and number of spoke crosses.
    Yeah. I'm trying to keep the wheels as original (read: inexpensive) as possible and for my first foray into wheel building, I think a reconstruction might be a good way to start.
    BTW, I tried your fork/bench vise idea for a truing stand. It worked like a charm. I never would have thought to mount the rear wheel on the outside of the fork.

  13. #13
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    BTW, I tried your fork/bench vise idea for a truing stand. It worked like a charm. I never would have thought to mount the rear wheel on the outside of the fork.
    There ya go. You can't imagine how many wheels I've tensioned and trued using that setup - or the bike frame & fork.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  14. #14
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    2,042
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Me and lots of others have re-used spokes but ones that are damaged, had a long life or have seized nipples just make the job much harder or less reliable that it needs to be.
    I don't disagree that they can be reused, for me "old" means they have some degradation (run a spoke through your fingers and they have rust spots from oxidation) hence they are not worth the effort. If I ran into some pristine/NOS spokes I'd work with them.

  15. #15
    A wheelist
    Reputation: Mike T.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    9,300
    Quote Originally Posted by mikerp View Post
    I don't disagree that they can be reused, for me "old" means they have some degradation (run a spoke through your fingers and they have rust spots from oxidation) hence they are not worth the effort. If I ran into some pristine/NOS spokes I'd work with them.
    As I've never used any spokes but stainless steel ones since I was a kid, "rust" has never been an issue.
    .
    Mike The Bike's home wheelbuilding info - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder information and motivation.

    I'm not cranky; I just have a violent reaction to stupid people.

  16. #16
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    Just to confirm Sheldon's info:

    When I measure the existing spokes, length is determined from the interior of the J-bend to the end of the threads, correct?
    When a cyclist in your area is injured or killed by a motorist, make an extra effort the next day to go for a ride. It doesn't have to be an organized ride, or even a long ride. Hell, ride a 15 minute loop around your neighborhood if you want.

    Just be seen riding your bike.

    Do it to make people aware we're out there. Do it to honor a fellow traveler. Do it because you're lucky enough to still be able to.

  17. #17
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: dcgriz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,434

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    Just to confirm Sheldon's info:

    When I measure the existing spokes, length is determined from the interior of the J-bend to the end of the threads, correct?
    Yes. It may not be a bad idea to check the existing spokes for correct length. If the spoke end is within 1 mm of being flush with the top of the nipple, the spoke is of the correct length.
    BTW, point the spoke away from you before cutting it with a wire cutter.

  18. #18
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    I thought I should start with the front wheel. As I was starting to loosen the spokes, I noticed that they thread all the way through the nipple and protrude ever so slightly beyond it.

    Once I got everything disassembled, I measured the spoke and it came out at 305mm. When I purchase the new spokes, should I go with something a bit shorter? 303 maybe?
    When a cyclist in your area is injured or killed by a motorist, make an extra effort the next day to go for a ride. It doesn't have to be an organized ride, or even a long ride. Hell, ride a 15 minute loop around your neighborhood if you want.

    Just be seen riding your bike.

    Do it to make people aware we're out there. Do it to honor a fellow traveler. Do it because you're lucky enough to still be able to.

  19. #19
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: dcgriz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,434
    304 but they may not be easy to find

  20. #20
    Wave, dammit!
    Reputation: Opus51569's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,655

    Rebuilding a "classic" wheel

    Quote Originally Posted by dcgriz View Post
    304 but they may not be easy to find
    So is the object to have the spoke flush (or just inside) the end of the nipple once the wheel is tensioned? 304 would probably make it flush. 303 would leave it just inside the nipple end.
    When a cyclist in your area is injured or killed by a motorist, make an extra effort the next day to go for a ride. It doesn't have to be an organized ride, or even a long ride. Hell, ride a 15 minute loop around your neighborhood if you want.

    Just be seen riding your bike.

    Do it to make people aware we're out there. Do it to honor a fellow traveler. Do it because you're lucky enough to still be able to.

  21. #21
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    19,288
    Quote Originally Posted by Opus51569 View Post
    So is the object to have the spoke flush (or just inside) the end of the nipple once the wheel is tensioned? 304 would probably make it flush. 303 would leave it just inside the nipple end.
    Stop worrying about it. 303 will be fine. It's just not that critical. 302 would work as well.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 30
    Last Post: 04-12-2014, 08:10 AM
  2. Replies: 23
    Last Post: 04-04-2013, 01:06 PM
  3. 6' 7" 240 lb Clyde Looking for "Inexpensive" Wheel Setup
    By TallCoolOne in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 01-23-2010, 09:54 PM
  4. Windsor "The Hour", Moto - "Messenger", Mercier - "Kilo". Differences???
    By midlife_xs's in forum Motobecane - Mercier
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 11-04-2007, 07:57 AM
  5. When does "old" = "vintage" or "classic"??
    By Dave Hickey in forum Retro-Classic
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 03-06-2006, 09:31 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

Latest RoadBike Articles


Latest Videos

RoadbikeReview on Facebook