How to Remove Rounded Off Nipples

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Kenny Lee, Jan 22, 2003.

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  1. Kenny Lee

    Kenny Lee Guest

    While trueing my rear wheel last week I had one hell of a time trying to get it perfectly round. I
    tried for hours trying to get the tension all even and have a near perfect round wheel. What
    happened was that the spoke nipples at the "bump-up" part of the rim got rounded off by my
    incessant wrenching. The tension on this wheel is ideally high and lateral trueness is only off
    about +-0.3mm. Only thing is is the little bump-up you see as you spin the wheel on the trueing
    stand. It doesn't affect the overall ride but I feel that if my nipples hadn't rounded off at the
    critical area of the wheel I probably would have an even truer wheel. My LBS gave me a handful of
    brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded off nipples off. Since my
    spoke wrench won't work can I use a pair of pliers? Or do I need to detension all the other spokes
    first to facilitate their removal?

    Kenny Lee
     
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  2. Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near the
    brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that region),
    allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough that you might
    be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to the trouble of using pliers, make
    sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the slot in the nipple. This won't work if
    the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the slot, though.

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com

    "Kenny Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > While trueing my rear wheel last week I had one hell of a time trying to get it perfectly round. I
    > tried for hours trying to get the tension all even and have a near perfect round wheel. What
    > happened was that the spoke nipples at the "bump-up" part of the rim got rounded off by my
    > incessant wrenching. The tension on this wheel is ideally high and lateral trueness is only off
    > about +-0.3mm. Only thing is is the little bump-up you see as you spin the wheel on the trueing
    > stand. It doesn't affect the overall ride but I feel that if my nipples hadn't rounded off at the
    > critical area of the wheel I probably would have an even truer wheel. My LBS gave me a handful of
    > brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded off nipples off. Since my
    > spoke wrench won't work can I use a pair of pliers? Or do I need to detension all the other spokes
    > first to facilitate their removal?
    >
    > Kenny Lee
     
  3. Mike S.

    Mike S. Guest

    Its amazing what you learn from old mechanics! Hadn't thought of that one...

    "Mike Jacoubowsky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near the
    > brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that region),
    > allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough that
    you
    > might be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to
    the
    > trouble of using pliers, make sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the
    > slot in the nipple. This won't work if the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the
    > slot, though.
    >
    > --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com
    >
    >
    > "Kenny Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > While trueing my rear wheel last week I had one hell of a time trying to get it perfectly round.
    > > I tried for hours trying to get the tension all even and have a near perfect round wheel. What
    > > happened was that the spoke nipples at the "bump-up" part of the rim got rounded off by my
    > > incessant wrenching. The tension on this wheel is ideally high and lateral trueness is only off
    > > about +-0.3mm. Only thing is is the little bump-up you see as you spin the wheel on the trueing
    > > stand. It doesn't affect the overall ride but I feel that if my nipples hadn't rounded off at
    > > the critical area of the wheel I probably would have an even truer wheel. My LBS gave me a
    > > handful of brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded off nipples
    > > off. Since my spoke wrench won't work can I use a pair of pliers? Or do I need to detension all
    > > the other spokes first to facilitate their removal?
    > >
    > > Kenny Lee
    >
     
  4. John Albergo

    John Albergo Guest

    Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:

    >Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near the
    >brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that region),
    >allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough that you might
    >be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to the trouble of using pliers, make
    >sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the slot in the nipple. This won't work
    >if the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the slot, though.
    >
    You can make a nifty tool for this by notching an appropriate scredriver. With a Dremel tool, you
    can cut a slot in the middle of the screwdriver blade to accomodate the spoke. Now you have a tool
    that will help you remove mangled nipples even if the spokes are through the slot. A stubby
    screwdriver works well -- with just enough shank so that a wrench can be used in conjunction. This
    means you want the shank to have faces (not round).

    If all else fails, just use a sturdy pair of wire cutters. Put the spoke out of its misery and lace
    up a new one.. It's best to keep the rim tape on when you do this to keep the freed part of the
    spoke from becoming a projectile.
     
  5. > Its amazing what you learn from old mechanics! Hadn't thought of that one...

    Old? Oh, you must mean "old" in the sense of the tradition of knowledge handed down over the years
    from mechanic to mechanic...

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com
     
  6. On Sat, 18 Jan 2003 08:37:07 +0000, Mike Jacoubowsky did issue forth:

    > Old? Oh, you must mean "old" in the sense of the tradition of knowledge handed down over the years
    > from mechanic to mechanic...

    That'll be the one yes. Calm down. Put the crownrace fitting tool down, Mike, it's not worth it! ;-)

    --
    Huw Pritchard | Replace bounce with huw | to reply by mail | www.secretworldgovernment.org
     
  7. > My LBS gave me a handful of brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded
    > off nipples off.

    There is nothing that the proper application of high explosives cannot cure.
     
  8. Trentus

    Trentus Guest

    Oooo, it really hurts when your nipples get rounded off.

    Trentus
     
  9. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    "Kenny Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > While trueing my rear wheel last week I had one hell of a time trying to get it perfectly round. I
    > tried for hours trying to get the tension all even and have a near perfect round wheel. What
    > happened was that the spoke nipples at the "bump-up" part of the rim got rounded off by my
    > incessant wrenching. The tension on this wheel is ideally high and lateral trueness is only off
    > about +-0.3mm. Only thing is is the little bump-up you see as you spin the wheel on the trueing
    > stand. It doesn't affect the overall ride but I feel that if my nipples hadn't rounded off at the
    > critical area of the wheel I probably would have an even truer wheel. My LBS gave me a handful of
    > brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded off nipples off. Since my
    > spoke wrench won't work can I use a pair of pliers? Or do I need to detension all the other spokes
    > first to facilitate their removal?

    Get some tension off the spoke by pulling the rim to one side and try a 3" visegrip. Alternately
    I've been able to cut the nipple the long way with an end cutter without damaging the thread. You
    can sometimes remmove the nipple's head, pull the spoke away from the rim and unscrew it with your
    fingers. That only works if the spoke doesn't protrude into the nipple's head or you're willing to
    cut the spoke a couple of mm shorter when cutting the head away.

    Now is a good time to evaluate your spoke wrench. They do indeed wear out. Look at the Tacx
    T4550/T4555 which are the best thing I've ever seen for positive engagement on the nipple It's a
    slow tool to use but I like them for finishing tight wheels as they are less prone to nipple
    rounding than any other design.
    --
    Andrew Muzi http://www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April 1971
     
  10. Jack Kuchta

    Jack Kuchta Guest

    This also give you a use for that Dremel tool that you absolutely need but can't remember why.

    John Albergo wrote:
    >
    >
    > Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    >
    >> Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near the
    >> brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that region),
    >> allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough that you
    >> might be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to the trouble of using
    >> pliers, make sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the slot in the nipple.
    >> This won't work if the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the slot, though.
    >>
    > You can make a nifty tool for this by notching an appropriate scredriver. With a Dremel tool, you
    > can cut a slot in the middle of the screwdriver blade to accomodate the spoke. Now you have a tool
    > that will help you remove mangled nipples even if the spokes are through the slot. A stubby
    > screwdriver works well -- with just enough shank so that a wrench can be used in conjunction. This
    > means you want the shank to have faces (not round).
    >
    >
    > If all else fails, just use a sturdy pair of wire cutters. Put the spoke out of its misery and
    > lace up a new one.. It's best to keep the rim tape on when you do this to keep the freed part of
    > the spoke from becoming a projectile.
     
  11. John Albergo <[email protected]> wrote in news:[email protected]:

    >
    >
    > Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    >
    >>Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near the
    >>brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that region),
    >>allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough that you might
    >>be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to the trouble of using pliers,
    >>make sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the slot in the nipple. This won't
    >>work if the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the slot, though.
    >>
    > You can make a nifty tool for this by notching an appropriate scredriver. With a Dremel tool, you
    > can cut a slot in the middle of the screwdriver blade to accomodate the spoke. Now you have a tool
    > that will help you remove mangled nipples even if the spokes are through the slot. A stubby
    > screwdriver works well -- with just enough shank so that a wrench can be used in conjunction. This
    > means you want the shank to have faces (not round).
    >
    >
    > If all else fails, just use a sturdy pair of wire cutters. Put the spoke out of its misery and
    > lace up a new one.. It's best to keep the rim tape on when you do this to keep the freed part of
    > the spoke from becoming a projectile.
    >

    To go one step further use a piece of tubing over the screw driver blade that just fits through the
    rim hole and over the nipple end. This keeps the screwdriver on after the spoke end unscrews and
    lets you pull the nipple out easily in deep rims.
     
  12. Dave Abraham

    Dave Abraham Guest

    small (6"?) vise-grips...

    Dave Abraham New Wheel ~ Hokie Spokes Beautiful SW VA voice: (540) 552-7765 (or) 731-1211 FAX:
    552-7768 (or) 731-0666 "Treating every bike like our own.."

    Jack Kuchta <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > This also give you a use for that Dremel tool that you absolutely need but can't remember why.
    >
    > John Albergo wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > > Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    > >
    > >> Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near
    > >> the brake mount. This will reduce tension significantly on the spokes on that side (in that
    > >> region), allowing you to possibly spin them off by hand or at least lower the tension enough
    > >> that you might be able to easily turn them with some pliers. But before going to the trouble of
    > >> using pliers, make sure that you can't remove them by using a screwdriver on the slot in the
    > >> nipple. This won't work if the spokes are long enough that they protrude past the slot, though.
    > >>
    > > You can make a nifty tool for this by notching an appropriate scredriver. With a Dremel tool,
    > > you can cut a slot in the middle of the screwdriver blade to accomodate the spoke. Now you have
    > > a tool that will help you remove mangled nipples even if the spokes are through the slot. A
    > > stubby screwdriver works well -- with just enough shank so that a wrench can be used in
    > > conjunction. This means you want the shank to have faces (not round).
    > >
    > >
    > > If all else fails, just use a sturdy pair of wire cutters. Put the spoke out of its misery and
    > > lace up a new one.. It's best to keep the rim tape on when you do this to keep the freed part of
    > > the spoke from becoming a projectile.
     
  13. Lincoln Ross

    Lincoln Ross Guest

    Another good use for a Dremel is cutting cables cleanly. Jack Kuchta wrote:
    >
    > This also give you a use for that Dremel tool that you absolutely need but can't remember why.
    >
    > John Albergo wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > > Mike Jacoubowsky wrote:
    > >
    > >> Kenny: If you mount the wheel securely in your bicycle, you can pull it over to one side near
    > >> the brake mount. This will reduce tension
    >snip
    > > You can make a nifty tool for this by notching an appropriate scredriver. snip
    --
    Lincoln Ross
     
  14. Dax

    Dax Guest

    "A Muzi" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > "Kenny Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > While trueing my rear wheel last week I had one hell of a time trying to get it perfectly round.
    > > I tried for hours trying to get the tension all even and have a near perfect round wheel. What
    > > happened was that the spoke nipples at the "bump-up" part of the rim got rounded off by my
    > > incessant wrenching. The tension on this wheel is ideally high and lateral trueness is only off
    > > about +-0.3mm. Only thing is is the little bump-up you see as you spin the wheel on the trueing
    > > stand. It doesn't affect the overall ride but I feel that if my nipples hadn't rounded off at
    > > the critical area of the wheel I probably would have an even truer wheel. My LBS gave me a
    > > handful of brass nipples yesterday and was wondering how I would get the rounded off nipples
    > > off. Since my spoke wrench won't work can I use a pair of pliers? Or do I need to detension all
    > > the other spokes first to facilitate their removal?
    >
    > Get some tension off the spoke by pulling the rim to one side and try a 3" visegrip. Alternately
    > I've been able to cut the nipple the long way with an end cutter without damaging the thread. You
    > can sometimes remmove the nipple's head, pull the spoke away from the rim and unscrew it with your
    > fingers. That only works if the spoke doesn't protrude into the nipple's head or you're willing to
    > cut the spoke a couple of mm shorter when cutting the head away.
    >
    > Now is a good time to evaluate your spoke wrench. They do indeed wear out. Look at the Tacx
    > T4550/T4555 which are the best thing I've ever seen for positive engagement on the nipple It's a
    > slow tool to use but I like them for finishing tight wheels as they are less prone to nipple
    > rounding than any other design.

    ...when working with screwdriver from inside the rim, put wheel on floor with spoke at 12 oclock,
    and press rim DOWN while turning - should loosen tension enuff to get it started - Ъ×
     
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