Cold Setting A Bike Chainstay


Well-Known Member
Local time
8:35 PM
Jun 21, 2022
Nampa, ID
OK... so I need about 1/2" out of my chainstay to fit my rim + disc + spacer necessary for the disc to fit. It's a little more than I can handle myself (without tools)... which is worrisome as if I did get my brother over here to help me get this rim on ... what happens when I am out in the field and I need to remove the rim for some reason?

It's for that reason I wanted to come up with a "one person" solution to this problem. The way I see it... I could either come up with a spreader of some sort that I could carry in my tool bag... OR I could permanently tweak the chainstay out a bit.

Option 1 would require a tool that I could fit between spokes to "spread" the chain stay while I put the rim on. I am open to suggestions but the closest I could come up with would be a manifold spreader I found on Amazon. I'm not sure if it's long enough though. Any suggestions on this end of things would be greatly appreciated...

Option 2 is a little scarier... especially with the powder coating I have...

What say you about this option? Does this compromise the strength of the chainstay? What are the chances of jacking up my powerdercoat employing this method?

I would actually PREFER to come up with a solution using option 1... BUUUUT.... I'm open at this point.'s another video. Maybe I'm leaning toward this now... because... yeah... it would be nice to be able to pull the rim and put it back on at will...

I have used a piece of wood 1 by 2" (Because I am woodworker!) cut just longer than current width of frame and through the spokes (a bit tricky) wedge it between the stays and "slide" the wheel on while the wood is in between two spokes.
...I went to TrueValue and $4.25 or so later...

The rim is intalled.


Question... now that it is in there... there is (obviously) quite a bit more room between the drive-sprocket/disc brake side and the rim hub than there is on the pedal-sprocket side. Because of that ... logic tells me that I should run the rim OFF CENTERED slightly toward the pedal-sprocket side as that would be the "natural" orientation. Aiming for "center" with the tire would throw the back's orientation off from zero degrees by a hair.

My thinking is sound... right?

EDIT: Adding a photo...

Also... I notice my disc is slightly off. Not quite straight. Is that going to be problematic (i've never had disc brakes on a bike)?
I went from 110mm to 130mm ... it bounced back to 112-113mm or so. I then went up to 140-141mm or so ... it bounced back to about 122mm or so... but close enough I could easily get the rim on using a little pulling pressure.



I do this with anything that is required to be straight and true when running these beasties, it saves me alot of work, pain, and grief in the long run.

To me there is nothing worse than doing something a second time because of trusting that it is trued in the first place.

One of the reasons I also get rid of spoke wheels and go to the mag wheels that I use...I was tired af constantly re-trueing the rims with spoke adjustments every couple of months...A total PITA as far as Im concerned