My Wheel Building Guide

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My Wheel Building Guide
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Posted: Jun 19, 2021 at 10:40 Quote
seraph wrote:
privateer-wheels wrote:
seraph wrote:


I only use washers when recommended by the rim manufacturer.

I use washers in every single carbon wheel I build. NOBL, We Are One, Crank Brothers Synthesis, yadda yadda. Every set. There are virtually zero drawbacks and lots of benefits as long as you pick the most suitable washer/nipple combo for the rim you are building.

RaceFace ARC 31 have in my opinion, having built them, and having cut them apart to see what they look like inside (I can send pics if you like), a very thin spoke bed. I definitely would not build them without washers. But that's just me.

What benefits are you claiming? I've built tons of carbon wheels without washers and never had problems with tension or rigidity.

The cut down on the likelihood of corrosion if you build with alloy nips.

They reinforce the spoke hole, which most rims can definitely benefit from, some more than others.

They also make building easer as you hit higher tensions, as metal against carbon has more friction than metal on metal. In my experience this definitely makes finer adjustments to tension easier, and street relieving the wheel is easier.

There's three of the top of my head, from my experience. I know a few high end builders who refuse to build without them, and I tend to agree with them.

Do you figure there are con's that outweigh these benefits? Of so, I'd like to hear them.

Posted: Jun 19, 2021 at 12:11 Quote
privateer-wheels wrote:
seraph wrote:
privateer-wheels wrote:


I use washers in every single carbon wheel I build. NOBL, We Are One, Crank Brothers Synthesis, yadda yadda. Every set. There are virtually zero drawbacks and lots of benefits as long as you pick the most suitable washer/nipple combo for the rim you are building.

RaceFace ARC 31 have in my opinion, having built them, and having cut them apart to see what they look like inside (I can send pics if you like), a very thin spoke bed. I definitely would not build them without washers. But that's just me.

What benefits are you claiming? I've built tons of carbon wheels without washers and never had problems with tension or rigidity.

The cut down on the likelihood of corrosion if you build with alloy nips.

They reinforce the spoke hole, which most rims can definitely benefit from, some more than others.

They also make building easer as you hit higher tensions, as metal against carbon has more friction than metal on metal. In my experience this definitely makes finer adjustments to tension easier, and street relieving the wheel is easier.

There's three of the top of my head, from my experience. I know a few high end builders who refuse to build without them, and I tend to agree with them.

Do you figure there are con's that outweigh these benefits? Of so, I'd like to hear them.

My theory is that if a manufacturer doesn't require the use of washers, it doesn't build the rims with them in mind. In some cases you might actually void the warranty. Maintaining warranty is always my first thought, as a working mechanic.

Also, when I build a wheel with alloy nipples it's because I'm trying to save weight. Washers add weight back. Not a huge amount, but it does add up when you're aiming for that 1100g wheelset.

Just kinda playing devil's advocate. You build with them and don't have issues, cool. I build without them (were applicable) and don't have issues, also cool.

Posted: Jun 19, 2021 at 14:26 Quote
seraph wrote:
privateer-wheels wrote:
seraph wrote:


What benefits are you claiming? I've built tons of carbon wheels without washers and never had problems with tension or rigidity.

The cut down on the likelihood of corrosion if you build with alloy nips.

They reinforce the spoke hole, which most rims can definitely benefit from, some more than others.

They also make building easer as you hit higher tensions, as metal against carbon has more friction than metal on metal. In my experience this definitely makes finer adjustments to tension easier, and street relieving the wheel is easier.

There's three of the top of my head, from my experience. I know a few high end builders who refuse to build without them, and I tend to agree with them.

Do you figure there are con's that outweigh these benefits? Of so, I'd like to hear them.

My theory is that if a manufacturer doesn't require the use of washers, it doesn't build the rims with them in mind. In some cases you might actually void the warranty. Maintaining warranty is always my first thought, as a working mechanic.

Also, when I build a wheel with alloy nipples it's because I'm trying to save weight. Washers add weight back. Not a huge amount, but it does add up when you're aiming for that 1100g wheelset.

Just kinda playing devil's advocate. You build with them and don't have issues, cool. I build without them (were applicable) and don't have issues, also cool.

100% appreciate your view. There are 100 ways to skin a cat. I'm not here to tell you that you are wrong. Merely that I have a different point of view.

As a working wheel builder, I know washers won't void warranties for any of the rims I build with; I have had these conversations with numerous manufacturers who don't used them by default. I chalk their choice to not use them as time/cost saving mostly, and maybe weight cutting. Personally I cannot think of a reason good enough to justify not using them myself.

Alloy nips need them the most. For someone super weight sensitive I would use 0.3mm thick stainless steel pillar washers. The don't come close to offsetting the weight savings of going alloy, they will still help mitigate corrosion, and keep things spinning smoothly. 64 of them weight approximately 3 grams, or 1.5 grams per wheel, and greatly extend the life of an alloy nipple. They also greatly reduce the chance of some ham-fisted mechanic rounding off an alloy nipple if he has an accident because alloy nipples spin much easier against stainless steel than carbon, as I am sure you have experienced.

Posted: Jul 17, 2021 at 12:14 Quote
Hi. I have a question about rims.

I run a tubeless set up, My back wheel took a big it and the rim had cracked side-to-side.

I'm looking to replace this rim, the set I have came with the bike (Syncros x-25) The rim isn't on the market anymore to buy as a spare part. Can I run another 29" rim on the back if it's not the same as the rim on the front or would I be better buying a new set completely.

Thanks

Liam

Posted: Jul 17, 2021 at 12:18 Quote
liamblues91 wrote:
Hi. I have a question about rims.

I run a tubeless set up, My back wheel took a big it and the rim had cracked side-to-side.

I'm looking to replace this rim, the set I have came with the bike (Syncros x-25) The rim isn't on the market anymore to buy as a spare part. Can I run another 29" rim on the back if it's not the same as the rim on the front or would I be better buying a new set completely.

Thanks

Liam

As long as your hole count is the same, and the internal width is similar, you can run any 29" rim. Different rims will have different ERDs (Effective Rim Diameters) so you might need to run different length spokes. If you can find a rim with a similar ERD, normally I would tell you that you might be able to reuse your old spokes. But considering that you took a hard enough hit to crack your rim, I'd say it's safer to replace those spokes altogether anyway.

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