Wear on braking surface of a wheel


New Member
Oct 24, 2001
Hi Guys<br /><br />I use Campy Atlanta 1998 36 hole rims on my tandem. Although on the ehavy side the deep section of these rims allow me to use spokes short enough to make the wheel immensely strong (me and my wife weigh at least 200kg together) I intend fitting Shimano LX disk hubs with the wider flange to make these wheels even stronger. I am scared about wheel collapse. How can I determine what acceptable wear on the braking surfaces must be. Is there any way to find out what the minimum thickness of this surface must be or am I overly worried about a trivial issue. Remember our top speed on the tandem has been just under a ton and rim collapse at this speed can be fatal. Can anybody help????<br /><br />Keep those wheels spinning!!!<br /><br />Big H
big_h - Some of the newer rims on the market today have rim wear indicators i.e. a sunken black line that runs along the rims' breaking surface. As soon as the line starts to disappear you know it's time to replace it. <br /><br />Your rims don't have this indicator so determining the amount of wear might be a little more difficult. Rims last between 7 - 10 years depending on the material that the rims are made of, conditions that they were ridden in and the amount of riding done (rims that were used on 'normal' bikes NOT tandems)<br /><br />Lets take the following into consideration:<br /><br />Type of bike: Tandem <br />Riding Conditions: not to harsh (road use)<br />Rim material: Aluminium<br /><br />- Because of the extra momentum that a tandem carries the amount of braking power needed to slow down is considerably more compared to a normal bike.<br /><br />- Because the bike is ridden mostly on the road wear caused by mud or sand is insignificant.<br /><br />- Because the rims are made of Aluminium they wear allot faster than steel rims.<br /><br />I would say you could safely use these rims for, depending on how much you ride, about 4 - 5 years (from the date of purchase). <br />