If a wheel is not trued...

...what happens to it over time? If corrected, do the spokes move enough
that this is an ongoing maintenance


  • good place to start:

    what happens to it over time? rim distortion gets worse, spokes break, tires wear, brakes hard to align, people point out your wobbly wheel for a good laugh . . .

    If corrected, do the spokes move enough that this is an ongoing maintenance job???

    they do stretch, deform, and unwind depending on what the wheel encounters on the road. indication of maintenance determined by spinning the wheel with a pointer next to the rim and seeing how much wobble you have.

    have used a tensiometer in the past - slow process on 32-spoke 20-inch wheels, cant on 48-spoke wheels, so have settled on pinging spokes. think those things are meant for the tour de france type folks.

    if you have a tin ear, you can use a cell phone app or guitar tuner to check pitch when pinging each spoke with a teaspoon, settling on the majority of pitch sounds for adjustment and checking the result against wheel true.

    ongoing maintenance? i play musical spokes to entertain the cat when i think about it or after going off a curb at speed or hitting a decent pothole. fast and easy to check before the riding season if you are blessed with that white stuff. ymmv.
  • Do you think it starts at the mfg? Lack of quality control? Believing the buyer
    is not knowlegable of such items?
  • I'm a strong believer in " if it works don'y mess with it ". What makes you think you have a wheel/spoke issue ?
  • edited March 13
    When I finished the right brake yesterday and spun it, the wheel moves
    left and right in one spot. Going to take tire off and then spin it again. See how far off it is. One shop in town offers trueing starting at $12.
  • edited March 13
    no need to wait for a broken spoke - tinging them tells the tale, preventive maintenance kinda thing if you subscribe to the notion. we used to sample engine oil every 25 hours when i was in the air force, sent it to the lab to test for wear metal particles - pretty good predictor of forthcoming engine failure. local flights only when we got the word - no point in probable engine failure when the bird was doing a cross-country. imagine broken spokes far from home would cause inconvenience.

    good place to ask about quality control of factory wheel builds is the bentrider forum technical section. lot of old pros and opinions there. someone had recently asked how come the catrike 26-inch rears had noticeable wheel wobble - crap wheel builds was one answer.
  • Methinks I have a good ear. ( unless she is talking to me. ). I can hear the diff notes of spokes when I use my finger nail on em. LBS had spoke wrenches yesterday. Didn’t know what
    size to get. More snow overnight so I won’t be riding soon. Have time to tinker.
  • I DO have a bad spot on rim where in dances to the inside. Took tire n tube off to see it better.
  • Looks like where the rim dances inward is even with the stem hole. Will take rim with me to LBS tomorrow to buy the correct wrench.
  • check closely for any sign of a crack. do solicit an opinion from the lbs manager as to whether the rim should be replaced. weakest stress points on a rim are at the stem hole and where the rim is welded together.
  • Really simple to fix. Just get the correct
    spoke wrench. Spins smoothly. Pitch of spokes may be off from one to another. I can live/ride with that.
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