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Thread: rim damage

  1. #1
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    rim damage

    I slipped into a deep groove in the pavement yesterday and caused some damage to my rim/brake track. Can I still ride on this? Do I need to replace? Thoughts?

    rim damage-rim-damage.jpg

    Thanks!
    Last edited by tvJefe; 10-25-2015 at 02:09 PM.
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  2. #2
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    No need to replace. Remove tire. Take a fine file and take off the high spots, especially on the brake track. Finish with 600 grit emery paper.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerjulio View Post
    No need to replace. Remove tire. Take a fine file and take off the high spots, especially on the brake track. Finish with 600 grit emery paper.
    ^^^this. Also place a straight edge across the scarred area to make sure the rim lip is not bent. If it is it could be carefully straightened with welding type pliers.
    With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important.

  4. #4
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    Be the craftsman!! Like others have said, file things smooth, buff it out a bit and ride.

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    Might check your brake pad alignment too. Make sure it's not too close to the tire side where your rim issues are.

  6. #6
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    You only need to file/sand off any high spots that catch on the brake pad. If you do more than that the brakes will pulse annoyingly. If you don't feel or hear the damaged spot when braking then don't do anything.

  7. #7
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    +++. Only the high spots. A fine flat file held flat against and moved along the brake track works well to accomplish this.
    ... 'cuz that's how I roll.

  8. #8
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    Check inside lip to make sure nothing nasty will be coming after your tire bead, then what others have said. Check for dents as Mike said, and if you have a good caliper check to make sure width isn't locally modified.

    The mistake would be doing too much. This is one of those "first, do no harm" deals. The scar on the right in the photo looks like it may need to be addressed, the others I would do nothing until they proved to be problematic.

  9. #9
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    Don't just use any file, make sure it's a fine tooth metal file, get the rough edge down as much as you can then finish with the 600 grit as mentioned. All I've ever used was just sandpaper and never a file. I use a wet/dry 3M sandpaper starting with 120 and working up to 1200, but if you don't want to buy 4 different grits of sandpaper 600 will work just will take longer and not be as smooth when done. I have a sanding sponge (dampen it before using) I keep on hand in case I run into a rounded edge, the sponge will conform to the edge making it better to sand with. This is all I use; some want a mirror finish I don't have any need to get that radical especially since rims rarely come with a mirror finish. Make sure you rub the rim in the direction of the grain in the aluminium.

    If you don't want to go too nuts over this then just take some sandpaper and smooth it the best you can or want to then ride it! The brake pads will take out the rest of the harshness over time but it could chew the pads up faster till it smooths out and might grab a tiny bit.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerjulio View Post
    No need to replace. Remove tire. Take a fine file and take off the high spots, especially on the brake track. Finish with 600 grit emery paper.

    This^, skip the 600 grit. Are the pads going to be near that? Does not seem so looking at that pic to me...
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by robt57 View Post
    This^, skip the 600 grit. Are the pads going to be near that? Does not seem so looking at that pic to me...
    I disagree with this, my opinion of course, I would skip the file and use the sandpaper. Those are minor gouges and not on the brake track, or it shouldn't be on the brake track.

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    Dremel with sanding drums.

  13. #13
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    Why would you use Dremel? It's soft material, it will dress down fast and a flat tool like a file by hand is much easier to control and get the high spots knocked down which is all that's needed prior to putting the finishing touch on with sand paper or emory cloth.
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  14. #14
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    With the right buffing wheel I find a variable speed dremel easier to control.

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    I have always used a Medium or Fine grit Diamond file when smoothing nicks in a rim, never a metal file. Usually follow with 0000 synthetic steel wool.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post
    Why would you use Dremel? It's soft material, it will dress down fast and a flat tool like a file by hand is much easier to control and get the high spots knocked down which is all that's needed prior to putting the finishing touch on with sand paper or emory cloth.
    I agree, too much room for error using a high speed Dremel, it's soft material as you said and doing it by hand works really well. With a Dremel you could accidentally go too deep or go in divots across the rim, etc, simply too much tool for the job.

    Though, sorry, again I repeat I disagree with using a file, the damage on that rim is very slight no file is needed. I've had worse damage and never used a file. Like you said it's soft material and a file simply isn't needed, and especially a Dremel tool is not needed.

  17. #17
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    I agree to skip the Dremel - too easy to lose control and trash the rim.

    I would also add to finish with a Scotchbrite. The 0000 steel wool that
    cdhbrad recommends is another option.

  18. #18
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    Pardon the dredge, but figured why start a new thread when old ones exist.

    Got caught in a rut a few days ago, pretty decent damage to brake track on both sides of a front rim... is fine file + 600 grit still the consensus for repair method?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetdog9 View Post
    is fine file + 600 grit still the consensus for repair method?
    sounds good to me.
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  20. #20
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    Some hardware stores sell individual sheets of wet & dry sandpaper.

    I have a selection of grits on hand, they have lots of uses.

    I'd use 320 or 400, either would be fine. Wrap a small piece of sandpaper around a flat scrap of wood. Just sand off the high spots, leave any gouges alone.

    Years ago, I tried sanding down a misaligned rim joint that was causing a pulse. I found out how easy it is to get carried away and sand a dip into the brake track. Aluminum is soft and easy to sand, so don't sand too much!

    If you need a file or 120 grit to fix major damage, you probably have a bent rim too. You might be able to bend it a little. Take the tire off first. But a bigger wobble might still pulse on braking, but you may be able to live with that.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetdog9 View Post
    Pardon the dredge, but figured why start a new thread when old ones exist.

    Got caught in a rut a few days ago, pretty decent damage to brake track on both sides of a front rim... is fine file + 600 grit still the consensus for repair method?
    I have a smallish file that has no handle over the tang so I can lay it flat on the brake surface of a rim and smooth any imperfections out. Works great...it's maybe 6" long and cuts really well. I never see the need for sandpaper after that.
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