Tension meter / dishing tool recommendations?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Boyd Speerschne, May 22, 2003.

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  1. Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So, now
    I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about 1/2 as
    much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past, I've
    found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will either do the
    job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations in
    that area? Thanks in advance,
    - Boyd S.
     
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  2. Boyd Speerschneider wrote:

    > Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    > have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So, now
    > I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about 1/2 as
    > much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past, I've
    > found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will either do
    > the job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations
    > in that area? Thanks in advance,
    > - Boyd S.

    well your first mistake is buying the book.

    you don't need a dishing tool, a fair quailty trueing stand will do the same thing ( as will a bike
    frame). the wheelsmith tool works fine.
     
  3. Russell Yim

    Russell Yim Guest

    The best dishing guage IMO is the french VAR. As for a tensiometer, the Wheelsmith is great value.
    The Hozan and DT are really nice, but super expensive.. According to John Barnett (Barnett Bicycle
    Institute) the new Park is not so good (I can't remember his reason, though.)
     
  4. Russell Yim wrote:

    > The best dishing guage IMO is the french VAR. As for a tensiometer, the Wheelsmith is great value.
    > The Hozan and DT are really nice, but super expensive.. According to John Barnett (Barnett Bicycle
    > Institute) the new Park is not so good (I can't remember his reason, though.)
    >
    most var tools are sweet (and built like tanks). but a dishing tool is unnessesary just pick a
    side for reference, flip the wheel over in it's holder, move it half the distance it's off from
    that side.
     
  5. David Kunz

    David Kunz Guest

    James Connell wrote:
    > Boyd Speerschneider wrote:
    >
    >> Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    >> have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So,
    >> now I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about
    >> 1/2 as much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past,
    >> I've found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will
    >> either do the job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any
    >> recommendations in that area? Thanks in advance,
    >> - Boyd S.
    >
    >
    > well your first mistake is buying the book.
    >
    > you don't need a dishing tool, a fair quailty trueing stand will do the same thing ( as will a
    > bike frame). the wheelsmith tool works fine.

    You don't need a dishing tool. Just flip the wheel over in the truing stand and make sure that the
    offset is opposite to that it was the other way. Or, put a known properly dished wheel in the stand
    and make sure that it's center indicator is ok (and flip it over to make sure that it's actually
    dished ok :) -- should read the same either way in the stand).

    I use the wheelsmith tool to check for final tension, but you want to use pitch (pluck the spokes
    and listen to the "note" that plays) to get the tension balanced.

    Along with Jobst's book, I'd visit some of the web sites that discuss wheel building and compare
    techniques. There may also be some fine points that make more sense after reading the web sites
    (where the same thing is explained differently).

    David
     
  6. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "Boyd Speerschneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    > have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So, now
    > I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about 1/2 as
    > much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past, I've
    > found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will either do
    > the job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations
    > in that area?

    If you read the book, you'll see that truing stands, dishing tools, and tensiometers are all
    regarded as optional. I don't understand buying $100's worth of tools just to build a few wheels.
    It's not rocket science.
     
  7. kh6zv9

    kh6zv9 Guest

    Boyd Speerschneider <[email protected]> wrote:
    : Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    : have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So, now
    : I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about 1/2 as
    : much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past, I've
    : found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will either do
    : the job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations
    : in that area? Thanks in advance,
    : - Boyd S.

    The best technical advice ever given on the subject of wheel building was given by Sheldon "tight,
    but not to tight" Brown.

    You might want to check out his wheelbuilding sight on the web. Much better than that lousy book you
    paid way to much for.

    --------------------------------
    Bob Masse' [email protected]
    --------------------------------
     
  8. Andy Dingley

    Andy Dingley Guest

    On Fri, 23 May 2003 05:09:14 GMT, Boyd Speerschneider <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel"

    Excellent book. Tells you all the theory you need to know to understand and choose spoke patterns.

    Then take a look at Sheldon's site for a better guide on the practicalities of actually doing.

    >tension meter

    Fingernail

    > and dishing tool.

    Mine is made from plywood, a bulldog clip, and a little triangle of plywood.

    The trueing stand is old bits of fork, bars & clamps off an old roofrack, and some welding.

    >I all ready have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs.

    What sort of spoke wrench ? make sure it's a 3-corner gripper, not a Park.

    One day you might need some spanky tools. But not on your first pair.
     
  9. G.Daniels

    G.Daniels Guest

    the dishing tool is useful. The wheel your rear wheel your bike needs may not require "dishing" but
    golly it looks as if all wheels are kinda dished equally sometimes on both sides. If one measures
    the axle divides in half minus the rim's width factor then the mech winds up with the distance a n
    unspoked rim should be supported by wooden blocks/shims above a straight 2X4 that's been bored for
    the hub to rest upon or if one wants to get stable here drilled straight thru and then bolted to the
    2X4. While not necessary it's something to do in your spare time. But if the wheel does require
    dishing, the 2X4 gives a good starting point.After spoking, the wheel can be mounted in place and
    then brought into a correctly dished line. I guess. As this is the work of a grade c wheel builder.
    maybe an expert would find moving the rim over at this point less than ideal in producing the
    desired result? I dunno. But the 2X$ werks gud.
     
  10. In article <[email protected]>, Boyd Speerschneider
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    >Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    >have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com. So, now
    >I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about 1/2 as
    >much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100). What's the difference? In the past, I've
    >found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is this the case here? Or will either do
    >the job equally well? Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations
    >in that area?

    Unlike truing stands, cheap dishing tools work pretty well - the basic Minoura unit is quite
    servicable.

    I have not used the Park tensiometer, the Wheelsmith one works well enough for me. I don't really
    trust it to tell me an absolute tension value with great accuracy, but it does give me a decent idea
    if the tension is even for a given wheel.

    --Paul
     
  11. Tim McNamara

    Tim McNamara Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Andy Dingley
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > What sort of spoke wrench ? make sure it's a 3-corner gripper, not a Park.

    Why? I've built hundreds of wheels using a standard Park spoke nipple wrench, with nary a nipple
    rounded off. The three corner ones are a PITA.
     
  12. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >Hello, I've decided to finally take the plunge and teach myself how to build wheels. I all ready
    >have a trueing stand and spoke wrenchs. I just ordered "The Bicyle Wheel" from Amazon.com.

    Good. You did the most important thing first. You can read the book while you wait for the other
    parts to be delivered.

    >So, now I'm in the market for a good tension meter and dishing tool. The Wheelsmith meter is about
    >1/2 as much as the one made by Park ($50 as opposed to $100).

    I've always seen the price of the park at about 3/4 the price of the wheelsmith. They are both
    similar in the say they work and either one will work for you.

    >What's the difference? In the past, I've found that you usually get what you pay for with tools. Is
    >this the case here? Or will either do the job equally well?

    They both work about the same.

    >Also, what's up with all of the different dishing tools? Any recommendations in that area?

    Any of the dishing tools would work for you. You can even make your own.
    -----------------
    Alex __O _-\<,_ (_)/ (_)
     
  13. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >In article <[email protected]>, Andy Dingley
    ><[email protected]> wrote:
    >> What sort of spoke wrench ? make sure it's a 3-corner gripper, not a Park.
    >Why? I've built hundreds of wheels using a standard Park spoke nipple wrench, with nary a nipple
    >rounded off. The three corner ones are a PITA.

    I've been using a spokey spoke wrench and it is not a PITA at all. I've never round off any nipples,
    but I have only built about 50 wheels and trued another hundred or so with it.
    -----------------
    Alex __O _-\<,_ (_)/ (_)
     
  14. Spacey Spade

    Spacey Spade Guest

    Alex Rodriguez wrote:
    >[email protected] says...
    >>Andy Dingley <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>> What sort of spoke wrench ? make sure it's a 3-corner gripper, not a Park.
    >>Why? I've built hundreds of wheels using a standard Park spoke nipple wrench, with nary a nipple
    >>rounded off. The three corner ones are a PITA.
    >
    >I've been using a spokey spoke wrench and it is not a PITA at all. I've never round off any
    >nipples, but I have only built about 50 wheels and trued another hundred or so with it.

    I have both tools, and the Spokey wrenches are shorter than the Park's, so contact area on the
    nipple is about the same. If the nipples were very short, then the Spokey's would have more
    contact area.

    Clearance would be another big factor.
     
  15. Andy Dingley

    Andy Dingley Guest

    On Fri, 23 May 2003 12:55:00 -0500, Tim McNamara <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Why? I've built hundreds of wheels using a standard Park spoke nipple wrench, with nary a nipple
    >rounded off. The three corner ones are a PITA.

    Personal choice I guess.

    But I was faffing about quite happily with my Park (the black ring) on DT spokes, even though I knew
    I had to be careful holding it firmly in place and that it would round a nipple given half a chance.

    Then I bought a cheap Spokey just to true a cheap Taiwanese wheel and was amazed how much better it
    was. Went back the next day and got a DT-sized one to go with it.
     
  16. I've always used a mid grade wheel truing stand, a "Spokey" soke wrench and my finernail.

    If I need to review the procedure (which is not unusual since I rarelb have to build a wheel) I use
    my greasy old copy of Eugene Sloan's "Complete Book Of Bicycling".

    Haven't had a chance to read Brandt's yet

    May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear for the hills! Chris

    Chris'Z Corner "The Website for the Common Bicyclist": http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
     
  17. I've always used a mid grade wheel trueing stand, a "Spokey" spoke wrench and my fingernail.

    If I need to review the procedure (which is not unusual since I rarely have to build a wheel) I use
    my greasy old copy of Eugene Sloan's "Complete Book Of Bicycling".

    Haven't had a chance to read Brandt's yet
     
  18. [email protected] wrote in news:[email protected]:

    <snip>

    > The best technical advice ever given on the subject of wheel building was given by Sheldon "tight,
    > but not to tight" Brown.
    >
    > You might want to check out his wheelbuilding sight on the web. Much better than that lousy book
    > you paid way to much for.
    >
    > --------------------------------
    > Bob Masse' [email protected]
    > --------------------------------

    When I asked about wheel building websites on this group, the consensous was to buy the book.

    I checked out Sheldon's site all ready. But I'm a beginner, so I figured reading the book couldn't
    hurt. If its worthless, I'll just sell it on eBay ;)

    - Boyd S.
     
  19. Ted Bennett

    Ted Bennett Guest

    > The best technical advice ever given on the subject of wheel building was given by Sheldon "tight,
    > but not to tight" Brown.

    > --------------------------------
    > Bob Masse' [email protected]
    > --------------------------------

    Sheldon actually said, "tight, but not too tight".

    --
    Ted Bennett Portland OR
     
  20. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > In article <[email protected]>, Andy Dingley
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    > > What sort of spoke wrench ? make sure it's a 3-corner gripper, not a Park.

    "Tim McNamara" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Why? I've built hundreds of wheels using a standard Park spoke nipple wrench, with nary a nipple
    > rounded off. The three corner ones are a PITA.

    Yes, Park is fast for quick jobs (wheel in bike) and beginning a wheel. But I much prefer the Tacx
    once there's real tension. Hard to finish modern wheels with a Park (don't we all just hate a dinged
    nipple when nearly finished. . . )

    --
    Andrew Muzi http://www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April 1971
     
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