How To Build A Bicycle Wheel | Maintenance Monday



this is a very special wheel special to me at least because it's the first one I've ever laced and built but I must say with considerable help from this man here Marcel Wilburn who is a master wheel builder at DT Swiss where there were 35 years of experience on building wheels who better then to show us how to build a bicycle wheel building a wheel is a time-consuming job but with patience and carefully following the steps anyone can do it well that's probably worth making a cup of tea and settling yourself down this is a strangely therapeutic process we are lacing a traditional wheel with the common three cross method so-called because each spoke crosses three others will lace it pre tension it dish it distress it through it and then tension it fully first though what we actually need to build a wheel so first step we've got our raw material so we've got our strokes we've got the nipples we've got a hub and the rim Marcel how do we actually calculate first of all the spoke length it's really fair Yin barometer okay from there run eyelets the other eyelet how big is their hub and hole because the distance between the middle of the hub to the flange I'm going right side and also on your left side that sounds remarkably complicated so you can there is a there is a cheat online you could go to the dt s– web web dt swiss website and it will tell you okay well that's really now it's 40 G's nice we have a rule yeah every time it's the tediousness it's in the valve hole okay so your tie logo is lined up with your hub logo we're gonna use Shriner's method now we'll start on the right side of the wheel so that means on the rear wheel it's the drive side with this method each spoke is threaded into the wheel at an alternate direction with either the spoke head facing in towards the center of the hub or out the first step is really important so we'll take a moment to cover it we start lacing each side of the wheel at the valve hole we thread spoke 1/4 holes in the hub to the left of the center with the head out and then thread one for holes to the right of Center head in and that is very important the first spoke is laced to the rim immediately to the left of the valve hole then the second spoke which is threaded into the hub from the inside out he's laced to the rim in the second hole to the right of the valve wah feels like we're getting somewhere excellent ok we then thread all the drive side spokes which will have their heads facing out they will of course be in every other hole in the hub taking the spoke next to the one that's already threaded onto the rim lace it into the rim four holes to the right and then repeat that for the remaining spokes if every time the same one to three holes the next one it's for us four holes yeah in the fourth when you work from the top and now when you look from the side it's no problem that doesn't make sense ok ok alright and then you can feel the hole from this side then we thread the remaining drive side spokes into the hub from the opposite direction starting with that spoke that's already laced thread the next one into the rim four holes to the left okay next so we went from the one that was next to the valve all right okay so they've all across from yeah from that right not for crossed for holes go outside for now it's and we best this goes in here have your fingers on the trade which is very sharp for the okay and then it goes here and it goes oh so okay so drive site that looks okay doesn't it yeah we're repeating the process on the non-drive side of the wheel now but we use exactly the same method so we lace those first two spokes separated by eight holes at the hub we do one to the left of the valve hole and then the other two holes to the right sounds get complicated the more the more spokesman got yeah then we'll come to know this game okay better there goes this way okay so okay so that one so one two okay turn and fill up the last okay do stuff oh no it's from here again yeah I can't tell you how cool this is I've been riding bikes for like 27 years and I've never built a wheel before yeah this is fantastic okay okay yeah I'm sure for that so what's the next bit the next bit regard to the throwing stone the wheel is now correctly laced but we need to tension the spokes we need to make sure the wheel is dished correctly meaning that it will sit centrally in your frame or fork remember that by over tightening one side another you can actually move the rim itself by several millimeters then we need to true it so make sure it's perfectly round and perfectly straight by over tightening some spokes you can actually create flat spots or bend the wheel from one site to another the first job is to pre tension the wheel make sure that each spoke is threaded into the nipple the same amount so wheel is in the truing stand but we're gonna do some cheating now is that fair to say micelle you've got a drill in your hand after work with the drill before we work by hand and if we look how goes the nipple or the tray so you let you literally count the number of threads yeah normally because before it's pretty make this the whole day haha there maybe in the evening you can feel also your arms okay can I can I have a go with the drill yeah even with a drill it's slow-going for me now we have a base yeah from this one because take it to the next level yeah all right every spoke comes from the inside to turn a house just a half just the heart but if say you were lacing up erm I don't know Shimano dura-ace hub also so also used to do half a turn so yeah this little gizmo here tells us exactly how straight the wheel yeah is that right it's is 1/5 maybe ok but sometime is snow it works the watch like this yeah okay now we look for the dish so what's what's he supposed to be on 0 its 0 and 5 so no point four millimeters yeah okay doesn't sound team that no two point six oh no point six millimeters yeah that's time Sam worse but um some Browns Hefty's it's okay for us it's a little bit too high now it's me it's zero point six out okay and then we removed the rim and the right left side I'm not 0.6 0.3 okay this side of the rim comes also the same okay so we're gonna increase the spoke tension on the drive side no non drives no non Drive side okay now we're comes out here can turn here yeah the goes up to the zero okay not correct here but next time when you come pinky let's go maybe because a little bit over okay so and how much we turn your step so are you not doing much thing so it's not real yeah I look only under watch so then it's the wheel is pretty much straight in both directions but now we need to check the spoke tension it's just to make sure that yeah I mean sounds so that says what's that one on bunk if we can immediately have one and there you can lose a little bit that's nine four so no point nine four yeah okay and then do we check the next the next drive side one yeah every time on the same side okay okay so that's one point what's that one point one yep and is that okay all right we go later we go up we make it more similar okay what's and we need to we need to hold the spoke tension ometer in the right place on the spokes that gives the same reading each time as much bone or not too much up so we're gonna add a little bit more attention to the spokes a quarter turn each nipple start from the valve hole okay right ready turn every time onto the right track okay so we're doing one sided right we cartwheel and we go to the distress so here we have three points we have a lot of pressure then we put it in so push you can hear the sound from the spokes and now we go back to the twins then okay so before we have CEO point that's to say see 0.5 0 and 5 it's all the same ok myself see you still think we need to get a bit more spoke tension in this if you were if a viewer at home doesn't have a spoke tension meter Howie how can you describe how tight the spokes need to be on a wheel before you know that it's done for me it's when you've got them at the hand we can feel it maybe this one here it's a little bit too soft maybe we turn a half turn up the attention and then everybody have some he want a softer wheel or more wheels and there because a little bit more up or so so the spoke tension will actually affect the ride quality of the wheel yeah so you know softer spokes mean a softer wear and a high tension spokes between is stiffer well yeah ok so actually there's it unless you've got a spoke tension meter on there there's it's an art form yes that's what you're saying like that's just not enough the feeling in your hand okay now we work everything every wheel give up with the same tension yeah the front in the this range and the back rear wheel in this range and so we have all wheels they similar yeah some it's a little bit higher like in the combination between the hub the spokes and the rim or the other ones it's all in the same range okay Wow finished well I can't claim to have done this completely by myself and do the bike no no I don't have a damn bike but then it's my real you well there we go then a finished wheel and that is built very much in the classic style sort of traditional wheel but Marcel here is currently lacing up a very new wheelset a RC 1100 darker and his wheel designers evolved you can see the way that wheels are built is also change so it's quite a fluid technology at the moment thank you very much so myself for showing us how to build a traditional world that is something I've ticked off my bucket list now to make sure you subscribe to GCN before leaving this video to do so it's completely free just click on the globe also make sure you give this a big thumbs up thank you again it's myself for showing us how and if you want some more content right now well how about how to true a wheel that one is just down there or to see a little feature retro versus modern wheels click just down there

43 Comments

  • Global Cycling Network

    April 15, 2019

    Do you build your own wheels or leave it to the master wheelbuilders like Marcel? Let us know here! ?

    Reply
  • Athos M

    April 15, 2019

    there are some things you can do yourself on the bike and there are some that you rather pay. This is one of those that your rather pay and safe yourself from a bit of everything…

    Reply
  • Nick Coyle

    April 15, 2019

    @10:23 Literally right when he said "you can hear the sound from the spokes" the music came on and you couldn't hear anything! thanks…

    Reply
  • Gub alicious

    April 15, 2019

    0:12 is that a cardboard cutout?

    Reply
  • Michel Guerrero

    April 15, 2019

    the video is really really sooo cooolll!

    Reply
  • JT Cruz

    April 15, 2019

    Thanks for the video. I didn’t get what the compression bit was for though?

    Reply
  • Lekha Pratap

    April 15, 2019

    Flablablfsbmkabkg
    remarkably complicated.

    Reply
  • walks tall

    April 15, 2019

    This makes wheel building look like a science- it's actually easy as piss. You need a screwdriver- annnd a screwdriver, that's it…

    Reply
  • JBratt

    April 15, 2019

    I learned to build wheels when I was 15. It was harder then. 36 spokes and softer less precision rims made truing a bigger challenge. The better rims have made thing so much easier. Now a days wheels come prebuilt more commonly and wheel building is not a very practiced skill as it was.

    Reply
  • Ramond Ferreal

    April 15, 2019

    After witnessing this level of precision I am beginning to question the quality of every wheel in my garage.

    Reply
  • xbeanx3000

    April 15, 2019

    Sorry but it's hard to understand that guy's voice so the guide isn't that useful. Such a shame.

    Reply
  • John

    April 15, 2019

    calculating spoke lengt is WAY more complicated

    Reply
  • theguyttissy bob

    April 15, 2019

    Doe this apply. to all different. many holes or just one

    Reply
  • theguyttissy bob

    April 15, 2019

    yes still contusing

    Reply
  • ??‍♂️

    April 15, 2019

    One side of my spokes is flat and the other is normal any ideas on how to fix?

    Reply
  • Rolly Olney

    April 15, 2019

    Anyone else still have absolutely no clue what your doing or is that just me

    Reply
  • mostafa mohamed

    April 15, 2019

    It's very complicated method
    I know a method much easier than this

    Reply
  • Constantin Balan

    April 15, 2019

    This isn't very clear at all, it's more of a vlog of you guys rather then an instructional video

    Reply
  • jose abrego samudio

    April 15, 2019

    i have a best way to lacing wheel rim…

    Reply
  • Lisergiko

    April 15, 2019

    Has been riding a bike for 27 years. You look like you're 21 years old mate!

    Reply
  • Lisergiko

    April 15, 2019

    Important question!!! How should I set the spoke path? When a spoke crosses another, should I make it cross from the inside or the outside? Or, should I just cross all the subsequent spokes ON the spokes that are already set?

    Reply
  • Jaden Clemow

    April 15, 2019

    I’d still pay someone to do it for me

    Reply
  • Jaden Clemow

    April 15, 2019

    I got lost at step 1 but kept watching to try to learn something

    Reply
  • Brian Link

    April 15, 2019

    Your voice over sounds like one who would explain how to rally race. A good tutoral voice orcer. I will say your laking the small details needed to understand. How you bringe that up to you. but I like it!

    Reply
  • P Kelly

    April 15, 2019

    building my own wheel is time consuming, uneconomical, mentally challenging, unnecessary, and difficult which is exactly why I want to do it.

    Reply
  • Edwin Flores

    April 15, 2019

    Am i the only one who got lost

    Reply
  • Usama Nasher

    April 15, 2019

    I like zis sviss chairman Ekzent !

    Reply
  • G C

    April 15, 2019

    Wow! The most complicated way to lace spokes. Check out Jobst Brandt's book on the easy way to build a wheel. Seriously!

    Reply
  • Strong man

    April 15, 2019

    I use a big rubber band and a spoke wrench and I get it ?% true

    Reply
  • j en

    April 15, 2019

    this is exactly the sort of thinking i am very very poor at. i learn by rote, then upon successfully doing something, i dissect the process and can understand it from the inside out, but this way of learning is super slow for me. common sense stuff takes me a long time to absorb. good on ya for a good build!

    Reply
  • Ove Simonsen

    April 15, 2019

    Build all my wheels (exept my LW and Campy) since '83.

    Reply
  • WatchMeStress

    April 15, 2019

    I've built my own, using a bike as a stand with zip ties.

    In all honesty it's not that difficult if you are the patient sort. Im sure it's not as perfectly true as these but I really haven't noticed a vibration or whobble.

    I say give it a shot on a cheap set, dont let all this "expert" "black magic" talk scare you away.

    Reply
  • Ernesto Ramos

    April 15, 2019

    I'd get a HED GT3 front trispoke, and either rear 88mm or aero disc HED. 15t cog

    Reply
  • Ashaun Walwyn

    April 15, 2019

    I'm a do it yourself type guy and I built my wheels and they came out like they were done by a professional

    Reply
  • Gabriel Naranjo

    April 15, 2019

    I have a 24 spoke wheels and I would like to convert it to disc brake. Is it recommendable to do it. The spoke count does affect on performance with a disc brake. Could it be a little risky?

    Reply
  • lionel jeanne

    April 15, 2019

    I think it s a real job to built a wheel.
    Next week, I'm going to start my first wheels on a vintage bike.
    Good job to repair and built bikes.

    Reply
  • Brian Baldino

    April 15, 2019

    At 3:44 my exact feelings too, when I fist did this.

    Reply
  • Matt Britton

    April 15, 2019

    Is it cheaper to build your own wheels?

    Reply
  • Collin Timmermans

    April 15, 2019

    That's a joke DT, wow. That's the most complicated method I have ever seen.
    I taught myself how to build (solid) wheels at 13, came up with my own method, and have yet to ever see anyone use it.
    Awesome job learning to build wheels though guys!

    Reply
  • Factory051

    April 15, 2019

    This video is terrible. Confused by a master builder who is unable to teach another properly. Shame. Needs remaking.

    Reply
  • TheKooster31

    April 15, 2019

    description unclear, head explodes

    Reply
  • Ahmad Al Alwani

    April 15, 2019

    where's the hub assembling part?

    Reply
  • Grace e

    April 15, 2019

    When truing the rear wheel how do you accommodate the hub which the cassette sits on ?

    Reply

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