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Rear wheel lacing pattern

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi all,
I am embarking on my second wheelbuild. I had previously built a 3X rear wheel, and this time round want to minimise the difference in spoke tension between the drive and non-drive side.

A friend of mine (Al) recommended the 3X drive side, and 2X non-drive side.

What is the trade off in using 2X, 1X or radial on the non-drive side?

Also have any of you used the Alpine III spokes?

My intended wheelbuild is Mavic open pros on Ultegra hubs. 14G DTswiss spokes for the front, and AlpineIII for the rear.

Your comments are appreciated.
post #2 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
Hi all,
I am embarking on my second wheelbuild. I had previously built a 3X rear wheel, and this time round want to minimise the difference in spoke tension between the drive and non-drive side.

A friend of mine (Al) recommended the 3X drive side, and 2X non-drive side.

What is the trade off in using 2X, 1X or radial on the non-drive side?

Also have any of you used the Alpine III spokes?

My intended wheelbuild is Mavic open pros on Ultegra hubs. 14G DTswiss spokes for the front, and AlpineIII for the rear.

Your comments are appreciated.
32h hub, 24h rim, all 16 spokes 3x on drive side and radial on the non-drive using 8 holes. Campy G3, Fulrum 2:1 etc use this system. It apparently works well.
post #3 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
Hi all,
I am embarking on my second wheelbuild. I had previously built a 3X rear wheel, and this time round want to minimise the difference in spoke tension between the drive and non-drive side.

A friend of mine (Al) recommended the 3X drive side, and 2X non-drive side.

What is the trade off in using 2X, 1X or radial on the non-drive side?
Different cross lacing will do nothing to change tension balance. You can build a good wheel with a funky lacing pattern but it won't be any stronger than a conventional 3x.

Is there some problem with your last build you're trying to correct?
post #4 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
Hi all,
I am embarking on my second wheelbuild. I had previously built a 3X rear wheel, and this time round want to minimise the difference in spoke tension between the drive and non-drive side.

A friend of mine (Al) recommended the 3X drive side, and 2X non-drive side.

What is the trade off in using 2X, 1X or radial on the non-drive side?

Also have any of you used the Alpine III spokes?

My intended wheelbuild is Mavic open pros on Ultegra hubs. 14G DTswiss spokes for the front, and AlpineIII for the rear.

Your comments are appreciated.
Half radial with heads out on the non drive side will help spoke tension balance somewhat. 2X on the non drive side will make the spoke tension balance worse since you will slightly increase the spoke support angle on the non-drive side. 1X would push the problem even further. Using radial on the non drive side allows you to put all the spoke elbows on the inside of the flange; thus slightly reducing the spoke support angle and bringing the spoke tension left to right closer. Check out Sheldon Brown's information on this subject:
http://www.sheldonbrown.com/wheelbuild.html#half-radial
If you could, I suggest 14/15 DB spokes front and rear.
You might even like 14/17 DB spokes front and left rear, with 14/15 DB spokes right rear.
I have built many wheels with the 14/17 DB front and left rear. That is a good combination with Open Pro rims and many other light to standard road rims.
I have built some wheels with Alpine III spokes. The last set was over a year ago. I was not impressed with the build and that experience with DT and their support pushed me into using Sapim spokes. DT had a rin of spokes with the distance from head to elbow the was too long. I got some, and they would not take them back or provide any support .
post #5 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

I like what daveornee wrote on the different size spokes. I've built wheels with thinner front and left-rear spokes for 15-20 years (although back then it was 15/17 spokes). I built two sets recently and will be rebuilding some high tension wheels (Reynolds DV carbons) as well.

I'd add that for a few grams difference, you can use alloy nipples on the thin spokes and brass on the heavier ones (right-rear). Not really significant but something to make you smile when you look at your wheels.

The only way to balance tension substantially is to have an offset type rim or a relatively narrow flange-to-flange rear hub. The offset rims I don't have any experience and the narrow flange hubs simply make for a weak wheel laterally.

Make sure you use some kind of spoke thread treatment (I use Spoke Prep), oil or grease the spoke nipple-to-rim, and turn the spokes while holding the spoke with the other hand so you can untwist the spoke each time you turn the spoke nipple. This will prevent the need to stress the wheel too much to unwind the spokes (the popping sound you get when you first ride a new wheel).

Practice makes perfect. Just keep building wheels and learn from your mistakes.

Keep in mind that a bad rim cannot be made good - if you have a bad seam either accept the poor rim quality or get another rim. A bent or otherwise untrue rim is less common but equally effective in preventing a great wheel build.

Hope this helps
cdr
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Thanks for the replies.

I was reading this page on the 2X/3X lacing. There seems to be some different views on rear wheel lacing.

http://www.geocities.com/spokeanwheel/lacingsr.htm

I am intending to build with Ultegra hubs, and Open Pro rims. Will they withstand radial lacing/3X?

This is not implying that I experience something bad with the 3X rear wheel I built. If it can be done better, why not? My spoke tensions for the 3X wheel was 120kgf/85kgf. I have always assumed that key to a strong reliable wheel is even tension (as close as possible) throughout.

On the topic of spoke choice, I am tempted to go DT Revolutions (14/17/14), on the rear, and front. Does it matter that I am a 95kg rider? The wheels are intended to be a robust general riding/training set (I am always training as I dont race).
post #7 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

I was having trouble with spoke and nipple breakage, I have rebuilt my rear wheel with alpine III spokes and they are fine. I ride a lot of rough roads on this bike and use it to comute home on a daily basis so I can't afford the failures I was getting with the chinese spokes originaly fitted. 2x with novatec hub into a sun assault rim 28 hole.
post #8 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

I am also going to be building a new wheelset with Ultegra hubs and Mavic OP rims. Personally I will be going 32H 3x front and 3x rear. Using DT revolutions with alloy nipples.

I am surprised people are needing to run anything bigger than a DT Champion (15g) spoke. I have built a front MTB DH wheel using DT revolutions with DT Champ spokes on the disc side only in the direction of the breaking forces. The wheel has done alot of racing/riding and now lives on my jump bike. It is in great condition and no spokes have broken. My rear MTB wheels have always been 3x DT Champion. I think I have broken 2 spokes ever in any of the wheels I have built myself.
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Paulie, what is your experience in building with revolution spokes? The comment was that it was hard to build with revolution spokes, as they twist.

When I was building and truing my wheelsets, as I turn the nipple my other hand is always on the spoke, I can just feel when the spoke twists, and when the nipple begins to turn. This allows me to untwist the spoke after I have turned the nipple. Would this be the case with revolution spokes?

As mentioned before the reason I am considering alternative lacing patterns is an attempt to try and minimise the tension difference between the drive and non-drive sides. Do you not think this is important in building a reliable wheel?
post #10 of 10

Re: Rear wheel lacing pattern

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
..The comment was that it was hard to build with revolution spokes, as they twist.
It probably depends a lot on the nipples and how high you tension the spokes. I wasn't particularly troubled by spoke wind-up, but to be able to watch for it I'd stuck small pieces of tape like flags on the spokes. Someone here mentioned that painting a stripe on the spoke with a whiteboard marker would do the same thing and be far quicker to apply and remove.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
... as I turn the nipple my other hand is always on the spoke, I can just feel when the spoke twists, and when the nipple begins to turn. This allows me to untwist the spoke after I have turned the nipple. Would this be the case with revolution spokes?
I take it that you use your two-handed approach to keep track of when the nipple start turning with reference to the spoke, and then to back off until the spoke is back at its starting position with reference to the rim.

That will work with the thinner spoke as well, it will be a bit more fiddly though. And if wind-up is bad you might have to take it in two stages as not to lose your position.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thomas_cho
...I am considering alternative lacing patterns is an attempt to try and minimise the tension difference between the drive and non-drive sides. Do you not think this is important in building a reliable wheel?
Actually I don't think so. The two most important features for a reliable wheel are:
1) The lowest tensioned spoke should remain under tension under all riding conditions.
2) The highest tensioned spoke should not break or overload either hub or rim or nipple under any riding conditions.

There might be other reasons that makes a tension balanced wheel desirable, but as long as slack and overload is avoided I don't think tension difference as such has any impact on wheel durability.
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