Wheels Repairing wobbling back tire

Discussion in 'Bicycle Repair' started by core2kid, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. core2kid

    core2kid Member

    So long story short, a guy turned without looking in my neighborhood. I slammed on my brakes and missed him by a couple inches. Bike seemed fine after that. Continued riding, it started to rain so I went back inside. After it stopped, I took my bike back out. About 30 seconds into the ride, the china made bolts holding on the tensioner stripped. The entire top screw was shaking loose. The chain derailed and the engine suddenly stopped while I was going 20mph. The bike skidded to a stop and the rear tire blew.

    I looked at the damage. It looks like I'm gonna need to spend about $20 in parts. Some questions are:

    My rear tire before the accident was slightly wobbling. Slightly in a sense a millimeter left and right. Should I worry about it? The brakes on my bike are pedaling backwards so could that be the cause?

    Second is that the chain mounted to the engine gets very close to or drags on the side of the rear wheel. Should I worry about it? I have no idea how to move the wheel to the right. The wheel also looks off center from the top so I am thinking it's the wheel and not the engine mount.

    If you need pictures please let me know. I need to get this up and running asap.

    Thank you!

  2. GearNut

    GearNut Active Member

    A teeny bit of wobble will not hurt if you only go 10 mph max.
    If you want to ride it at the speeds attainable with an engine, I recommend both wheels be straight and true. Truing a wheel is not hard to do, it just takes patience to learn it.
    There are plenty of videos on u-tube that can teach you how to do it.
    I recommend getting a real spoke wrench from a bicycle store if you feel up to trying it. I
    have a nice one that is round with different slots cut all around the edge to fit different sized spoke nipples. It cost around $8.00 a few years ago. It is not a professional spoke wrench, but I am not a professional wheel wright either.
  3. will_start

    will_start Member

    Uploading pictures... Makes it easier to read.
    Especially if you need help.

    I rode with a buckled wheel for ages.
    As long as your breaks don't hit, it will work.
    Just in case it does all happen at once, or the stuff hits the fan...
    The cable ties on the spoke cross over's are recommended
    to catch flying spokes.

    Look/Search for threads here on it.

    This simple precaution, could save your life.
    This simple precaution, could save one of our lives.

    I can see the sense in trying a spoke tightener
    on a wheel you'd throw away.

    I just had two wheels fixed for $50.
    The Petrol MB one with extra tension.

    I am dislexic when it comes to fixing back wheel buckles.

    You, may be able to learn it quickly however.
    At $8, you at least learn how hard it is.
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
  4. professor

    professor Active Member

    My thinking is that the rain acted like a lubricant (along with the bad bolts) on your chain tensioner and that was the cause of your adventure. On that tensioner- drill a small hole into it and the frame for a screw to keep it from turning. Or eliminate it altogether by taking links out of the chain (providing there is a straight path for the chain after you do it- not hitting the frame).
    If the chain hits the tire, it won't hurt but putting a bit smaller tire on the back will eliminate that.
  5. core2kid

    core2kid Member

    Well I went to Lowes today and bought some 1/2-20 bolts and used them on the tensioner. It worked for a mile and came loose again and I found the tire very off center. I eliminated the wobble though by tightening the axle.

    Just now I realized though that when I installed the rear sprocket back in February, I had to remove a black piece that fastened the axle onto the frame to prevent it from sliding. Since I removed that, I don't have that 1/2 CM space on the left side of my wheel causing all of these problems. I'm going to try to reinstall that and see how it goes. Most likely though I'll end up putting some washers instead.

    About the tensioner, the bolt that actually holds the wheel in place is stripped or stuck. It won't unscrew but the wheel won't move either. The problem is the entire tensioner moving. I like the idea of eliminating the tensioner completely but I also like the idea of having it as an easy way of adjusting the chain. I think what I'll end up doing is removing some links from the chain and shortening it just a bit so the tensioner is in the front where it won't move. I also think I'll end up drilling a hole in the frame to hold the tensioner in place.

    Sorry I didn't get picture up, I'll fix the bike up some more with the missing spacer and I'll get back to you all.
  6. will_start

    will_start Member

    If the chain can be the exact size is good, but usually its not.
    Chains stretch. So do this after a while of riding.

    The chain tensioner bolt has a set size, I read about that here.
    Don't ask me the size.

    You can replace it with a high tensile bolt from the hardware store.
    Most high tensile bolts have a special mark on it, that identifies it as high tensile.

    Add some rubber or old tire, prevents the chain tensioner moving.

    My test is once its done up, push it hard with your foot.
    If it moves, you should not ride the bike
    until it you have fixed it so it doesn't move.

    This test can be done with no tools but a shoe.
    I hope you wear shoes.
  7. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Even better than rubber is to grind a cross-hatch pattern on the contact areas of the bracket, then, as Will suggested, use a pair of 8mm high-tensile bolts to clamp it on and do them up really tight. After I did that, I never had another problem with the tensioner moving.
    You might also need to twist/bend the tensioner slightly to achieve perfect alignment. (Worth the effort to help prevent a recurrence of your little incident. You're lucky you weren't hurt.)
  8. core2kid

    core2kid Member

    Well I fixed the alignment and wobbling. It now wobbles so little that it's not even noticable. Another problem came up though, the cheap china made screws holding the sprocket in place loosened and the wheel went crooked. The bolt holding the wheel on also slipped.

    I am now just getting an entire new rear wheel and hub. Hopefully this will fix all my problems.
  9. jeffuehrer

    jeffuehrer Member

    I recently had to brake abruptly too. After that the brakes would rub so I backed off the brakes (way off) and they still rubbed. I took the back brake pads completely off. After that the back tire would rub on the chain but only when I started (pedaling). I tightened up the back axle and it helped. I asked my local Mike-chanic and he suggested checking for a broken spoke and to squeeze all the spokes that cross each other around the wheel. I noticed play in all the spokes on the sprocket side. I don't have a spoke wrench but i was able to adjust them with a crescent wrench. The spokes on the other side were all tight. I replaced all the factory sprocket bolts and nuts with American steel parts. The tensioner was installed for me with two screws drilled right into the frame :(faux pas). It has never moved. :) I was thinking of getting a front disc brake (new forks, brakes, pads.) Might set me back a few but could save my life. Speed update: 37 mph