Nipple Driver Recommendation
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  1. #1
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    Nipple Driver Recommendation

    I'm not sure it's just my bad luck or these things are made to be $#!t but I've gone through 2 new nipple drivers in a year. First was Birzman spoke nipple driver which worked well for 1 wheel build. Then this thing won't spin anymore due to some friction developed inside. I returned it for a refund.

    Then comes Park Tool spoke nipple driver at $3 more. It worked well for 2 wheels, then about half way through 3rd wheel building, the shaft fell out. It's not like I was using it as a chisel with hammer. WTF?


    Anyone with recommendation for a decent spoke nipple driver that lasts longer? Thanks in advance.
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  2. #2
    Cleavage Of The Tetons
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    I have had the same one for thirty five years, silver aluminum handle. Forget the brand.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    I have had the same one for thirty five years, silver aluminum handle. Forget the brand.
    Maybe "Bicycle Research"?
    Too old to ride plastic

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Maybe "Bicycle Research"?
    I've been using the same Bicycle Research driver (long) for 27 years. Hundreds and hundreds of wheel builds.

    This tool is not designed to tighten spokes by the way, just to thread the nipples on far enough for the pin on the end to disengage the driver. If you're tightening spokes with the driver, the spokes are to short.

  5. #5
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    Why not buy a special bit and use it with an electric screwdriver?

  6. #6
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    Why not buy a special bit and use it with an electric screwdriver?
    ^This^
    I work for some bike racers
    I've got some bikes, some guns,
    and a bunch of skateboards

  7. #7
    Cleavage Of The Tetons
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    Interesting, who makes the 'special bit'?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Interesting, who makes the 'special bit'?
    Unior among others.

    https://www.amazon.com/Unior-Speed-N...CD9?th=1&psc=1

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    Why not buy a special bit and use it with an electric screwdriver?
    For me, I'm just not sure that would be any better than a regular old nipple driver.
    Now, get off my lawn.

  10. #10
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    This is the one I've been using for about 10 years. Uses a piece of 2.0mm spoke.

    https://problemsolversbike.com/produ...driver_-_25272



    I work for some bike racers
    I've got some bikes, some guns,
    and a bunch of skateboards

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by 202cycle View Post
    just to thread the nipples on far enough for the pin on the end to disengage the driver.
    That's exactly what I used it for.

    Thanks for the suggestions.

  12. #12
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    Bicycle Research nipple driver is really hard to find on the market.

    I fixed my Park Tool driver with couple of lock rings I bought from a local hardware store for 33 cents each.


    I happened to have lock ring pliers so I replaced the snapped washer shown in the picture of the first post with 2 lock rings (for double secure force) and now it's working again. I think it was a quality control issue with Park Tool because that brass sleeve may not have been fully seated inside which the teethed washer wasn't slid in sufficiently down the shaft and ended up popping out.

  13. #13
    [REDACTED]
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    I have the Park Tool and never really liked it.

    What do I use? I took a regular straight head screwdriver to a grinder, ground the edges down so there is a point in the middle. Works best for me!

    Oh, ahem, shouldn't this thread be in Wheels & Tires?
    "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



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    What do I use? I took a regular straight head screwdriver to a grinder, ground the edges down so there is a point in the middle. Works best for me!
    But the shaft doesn't spin.
    Oh, ahem, shouldn't this thread be in Wheels & Tires?
    I thought it's part of wrenching...
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvber View Post
    But the shaft doesn't spin.
    Precisely. I tried the Park tool and personally, I don't like the spin. I prefer a straight shaft. I find I have better control.

    Quote Originally Posted by bvber View Post
    I thought it's part of wrenching...
    Well yes, technically true. I was just trying to beat CX to the punch.
    "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
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    A good article on the subject and a great blog on wheel building https://www.wheelfanatyk.com/blog/wh...those-nipples/.

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