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spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 3:19am
by RustyKipper
Morning chaps.

Just received my new bafang cst and spokes after three weeks of chasing, unfortunately the motor arived damaged which I believe is not uncommon and the spokes I ordered seem to be of a very poor quality, there is a mix of 2.25 and 2.5mm diameter, the screw ferules seem a very loose fit and a couple don't even tighten they just pull trough, my bike takes a real pasting on my commute so no way am I risking my life with these.

I have had a search but am struggling to find many posts relating to spokes and rims, I wonder if any of you knowledgeable types have a preferred supplier, preferably here in the UK. I need 210mm for the front wheel as the 250W bafang was laced in radial fashion and the amount of spring when using the disc brake is quite alarming and I need 191mm for the rear cst, at least I believe I do from using an online spoke calculator and finding the closest size available on the BMS Battery website. The rim needs to be 36 hole 26 inch, I do have a rim with a pancake type DD motor but I want to keep that intact so I can sell it on as a complete kit when I upgrade my battery.

Many thanks for any advice.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 4:38am
by spinningmagnets
I was happy with the spokes and nipples I purchased from danscomp.com, but I don't know if there might be a better supplier for the EU. Consider getting "13/14 butted" spokes. They are a slightly stringer/thicker 13ga at the part that attaches to the hub, while the shaft and nipple are still the common 14ga.

This link may have some helpful advice.

"The wheel-building spoke-lacing thread, post your tips" (spinningmagnets, 5 pages)
http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewto ... =2&t=64324

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 5:02am
by d8veh
I use these rims:

http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item.vi ... 44&alt=web

And these spokes, except when I get BMSB ones with my order. The supplier is in Germany, but delivery is very quick::

http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item.vi ... 30&alt=web

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 5:57am
by Punx0r
Tiller Cycles

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 8:28am
by wesnewell
Rims designated for 26 x 1.75" tires are usually too narrow to properly fit a 2" or wider tire. I use these, although I have no idea where to get them in the uk.
http://www.weinmanntek.com/Products/DOWNHILL/DH39.htm
The Alex DX32 rim is very similar.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 9:59am
by Punx0r
Chain Reaction Cycles are usually good for rims if you're looking for brand-name/quality ones.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 10:30am
by Drunkskunk
Get rid of the radial lace pattern on the Bafang. a Single cross lace pattern would be far stronger.
The 3 best brands for spokes are Sapim, DT Swiss, and Phill Wood. They don't cost much more than a cheap brand, but the quality is far beyond anything that comes on a cheap wheel kit. I don't know a Euro vendor, but any bike shop should have one of those three brands. 14 gauge is what you need, but if they can get 13/14 single butted, that's even better.

As for rims, Alex MTB/DH rims are probably what you need. Other good quality choices are Sun Ringle MTX and Rhyno Lite rims, along with Velocity Blunt and Dually.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 02 2015 11:16am
by arkmundi
Alex DX32 26" 36H Black can be had through Amazon, which is what I ride on, laced by EM3ev for my MAC 8T. Genuine Sapim spokes 13/14 gauge butted. Can be had independently. Just be careful in sizing.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 03 2015 2:28am
by RustyKipper
Many thanks guys that has been a huge help.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 03 2015 4:20am
by d8veh
I forgot to mention to use 14g (2.0 mm) spokes in a 2-cross pattern. You don't need anything more than that. In fact heavier gauge ones seem to come loose more easily and break too.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 03 2015 6:06am
by motomech
I took Dave's advice on this one and really like the results.
The stainless DT Swiss spokes were a little pricey, but they will never rust.
I should have opened up the valve stem hole on the Alex DM 24 rims, as the fit w/ thick tubes is tight with sharp edges and I have torn one(pothole).
Here is the Q100 CST installed, two chessy torque arms, one on each side. More than enough for the Cute on 17 Amps.
SAM_1049.JPG
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Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 03 2015 6:45am
by Storapa
Punx0r wrote:Tiller Cycles
+ 1 for Tiller Cycles

Graham has cut spokes for a fair few wheels that I have built over the last couple of years. He's a proper old school bike mechanic and very good at what he does.

http://www.tillercycles.co.uk/

I also purchased a copy of the e-book by Roger Musson

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

The book is superb and good value at £9. I also use Roger's spoke length calculator on his website for all wheels that I build.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 06 2015 9:39am
by Eskimo
Guys, i know "19 moped rim equals "24 bicycle rim, but does "21 moped rim equal "26 bicycle rim?
I am considering of using a moped rim. Better tires and stronger rim.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 06 2015 1:01pm
by Drunkskunk
Not exactly. 19" is a common motorcycle size. but a 20" motorcycle wheel is within 1mm of a 24" bicycle rim. Similarly, a 22" motorcycle rim is closer to a 26" Bicycle.

However, 20" Motorcycle rims and tires are very uncommon and 22" are nearly impossible to find. 19" are a very common dirtbike tire and they are are plenty of options out there, and 21" can be found easy enough.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 06 2015 1:16pm
by Eskimo
Drunkskunk wrote:Not exactly. 19" is a common motorcycle size. but a 20" motorcycle wheel is within 1mm of a 24" bicycle rim. Similarly, a 22" motorcycle rim is closer to a 26" Bicycle.

However, 20" Motorcycle rims and tires are very uncommon and 22" are nearly impossible to find. 19" are a very common dirtbike tire and they are are plenty of options out there, and 21" can be found easy enough.
Thanks. I think i will try "21 rim at some point. If it is slightly smaller than "26 that"s ok. "24 is bit too small, my velomobile drops too low.
Steel rim i am using now is ok but bicycle tires are weak and tire wear is fast, 1500km with velomobile per rear tire.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 22 2015 5:08am
by Eskimo
I have now 21" moped rim installed around my DD and a moped tire. It"s heavy but i just love it on a velomobile. It"s stabile as hell and takes sideloads very well. No spoke music anymore.
Putting the tubeless three-ply tire on with tiny bicycle tire spoons and one screwdriver was a show though. Takes a bit of effort. Rim is used and scruffy so i don"t have to care about some marks.
Now i have to do it again because i finally found 3mm spoke nipples from this country, so i can replace these chinese 2,5mm shits with good 3mm spokes.
It is really hard to find moped spoke nipples here these days. Retailers just say "oh, spokes? We don"t sell spoked wheels anymore". There"s still some good spokes on sale but only one retailer has nipples anymore. Which closes down next week for a month like most shops here during the summer. 30 mile ride from here.
Riding feel with moped rim and tire is brilliant. Goes like on rails and huge tire offers great cushion against potholes.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jun 22 2015 9:45am
by Drunkskunk
Sounds awesome. I'd love to see some pics of that.
3.0mm is 11 gauge. The rim will take the stress of tightening those spokes to proper tension, but the motor's spoke flange will be heavily stressed and might not.I It's still just a bicycle part. You might be better off using quality 13 gauge/2.3mm or 12 gauge/2.6mm spokes. Sapim makes them, and they will be more than strong enough. Far stronger than the cheap coat hanger quality wire many Chinese spokes seem to be. They will also give you a better ride than the thicker 11g spokes.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 06 2018 4:32pm
by Chalo
augidog wrote:
Jan 06 2018 12:34pm
Is it OK if I, as a member, pimp my friend, a wheel builder, with a one-time post that complies with the required details? I'm not financially affiliated with him, just a very satisfied customer who has no problem recommending his product to those who are looking for seriously strong wheels, as in 10G motorcycle spokes. ps-they are not cheap.
I'm quoting this from another thread because this is a better topic for it.

I've said it many times, and I expect I'll have to keep reminding people: The strength of the wheel is in the rim. Spokes are there to support the rim, and they support the rim by maintaining tension as the rim flexes under load.

Using thicker spokes than the rim is designed for makes the wheel weaker, not stronger. The rim can only withstand so much spoke tension before it buckles, puckers, or cracks. When you use too thick a spoke, it doesn't have enough stretch at the rim's working tension for the spoke to stay tight as the rim flexes under load. So the spoke nipples unscrew, and the nipple and elbow fret against their respective holes. This makes the wheel less reliable, more failure prone, and more work to maintain.

One of my buddies when I lived in Seattle had a pair of MTB wheels built for him by The Wheel Master, a motorcycle wheel builder in that area. The guy used I think 11ga spokes on the front, and something even thicker on the rear. They were zinc plated steel spokes, a type that has been considered inferior in the bicycle industry for decades. Even though the rims were deep section and about as radially stiff and strong as any that could be found at that time, the spokes constantly came loose and unscrewed themselves after very short intervals of riding, until the rear rim cracked at the drilled-out spoke holes. This isn't anomalous-- it's what happens when you use spokes that are too thick for the rim. Those wheels fell apart faster and failed harder even than the junk that comes on department store BSOs.

A wire wheel is a system. If you use 12ga spokes instead of 14ga, they have to be 1.8 times as tight to provide the same amount of constant support to the rim. If you use 11ga spokes, they have to be about 2.1 times as tight. 10ga spokes have to be 2.6 times as tight. Bicycle rims are rated for between 90 and 140kgf of spoke tension, depending on the rim and manufacturer. This amount of tension is very easy to achieve with 14ga or even 15ga spokes. So what you're really doing when you use such thick spokes is giving the rim half to a third as much spoke support before the spokes go slack. That's not good. You can try to compensate by using too much spoke tension, but then you damage the rim.

Bicycle rims are designed for use with spokes not heavier than 14ga. You reduce their reliability, stability, and longevity by matching them with spokes of thicker diameter.

If you need a stronger wheel, use a stronger rim.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 06 2018 7:22pm
by augidog
....

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 2:48am
by Chalo
augidog wrote:
Jan 06 2018 7:22pm
i might add that it seems malicious to use 3rd party anecdote vs first hand experience when discussing someone's work,
I witnessed that failure unfolding firsthand.
my bicycle hasn't been a bicycle for a long time now.
Noted. But if you use bicycle rims, the same principles apply.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 9:20am
by MadRhino
I was using 12ga Sapim spokes for my fisrt 3 ebikes (high power 45+ Mph dirt bikes and city commuter).

Now I build faster bikes. 3 years ago I started building hub motor wheels with 14ga DT Swiss SS spokes, long 18mm nipples, and rim washers. At the same time, I started using bigger motors,wider rims, and feeding much higher power. Yet, my wheels are better, with lesser maintenance and longer avg life.

Building with motorcycle spokes only makes a better wheel using a heavy rim. Heavy spokes, heavy rims, heavy tires... are making performance losses that I am not willing to compromise. I prefer changing tires often to save the extra weight, and when I hit my wheel hard I prefer changing a few spokes than replacing a rim that too stiff spokes had pulled through. Flex is for a big part of wheel reliability, and spokes need to be the weakest part of a good wheel.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 10:53am
by augidog
....

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 12:43pm
by Chalo
Of course everybody can have his own bike his own way. But since the value of this forum is its useful information, I think it's important to be clear that thick spokes by themselves don't make stronger wheels. That's a persistent misconception which has been around longer than any of us. It's somewhat counterintuitive that thin spokes make a wheel that's better at carrying a heavy load, so it bears explaining.

The late Jobst Brandt made a reputation for himself as a grumpy guy because he insisted on dispelling many of the myths about wheels that were holding back the industry. Since I learned a lot of the blunt and fine points about wheels from the man himself, I don't mind carrying on the thing he did that helped me learn these principles.

Here's a picture of the last wheels I built two days ago. They are as strong as I know how to make them: big hefty double walled rims, wide hubs for lots of bracing angle, symmetrical construction, ample but not excessive spoke tension. 14-15ga double butted spokes. Big ol' tires to make the wheels' job as easy as possible.
rps20180107_112823.jpg
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Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 1:44pm
by augidog
there's a subtle difference between grumpy and rude, brother. learn it, live it...for the benefit of all.

Re: spokes and rims

Posted: Jan 07 2018 5:02pm
by wturber
Chalo wrote:
Jan 06 2018 4:32pm

A wire wheel is a system. If you use 12ga spokes instead of 14ga, they have to be 1.8 times as tight to provide the same amount of constant support to the rim. If you use 11ga spokes, they have to be about 2.1 times as tight. 10ga spokes have to be 2.6 times as tight. Bicycle rims are rated for between 90 and 140kgf of spoke tension, depending on the rim and manufacturer. This amount of tension is very easy to achieve with 14ga or even 15ga spokes. So what you're really doing when you use such thick spokes is giving the rim half to a third as much spoke support before the spokes go slack. That's not good. You can try to compensate by using too much spoke tension, but then you damage the rim.

Bicycle rims are designed for use with spokes not heavier than 14ga. You reduce their reliability, stability, and longevity by matching them with spokes of thicker diameter.

If you need a stronger wheel, use a stronger rim.
Doesn't this analysis assume that the spokes are made of pretty much the same material?

My ebay motor kit has spokes that appear to be 12 gauge. So far, I only have about 1500 miles on the rear wheel. But it is on a hardtail MTB and it has been holding up fine so far. No spokes appear to be loose. All seem to have a similar tone when plucked.

I took a magnet out to my bike and noticed that these spokes react strongly to a magnet compared to the 14 gauge front spokes (mildly magnetic) and especially compared to the spokes on my road bike which do not react to a magnet at all. The 12 gauge spokes are also painted black. So it seems clear that these 12 gauge spokes are made from mild steel. Mild steel isn't as strong as stainless but is generally more ductile. Would the tightness requirements for a mild steel 12 gauge spoke be different than for a 12 gauge stainless spoke? Would the extra ductility make these spokes less prone to breakage? How do the guidelines for spoke size change when the spoke materials change?