Wheel building help please

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by rexamillion59, Apr 5, 2016.

  1. rexamillion59

    rexamillion59 New Member

    I brought a sturmey archer x-rk8w hub.thought it would be cool for my gt2-a knock off. But what rim can I use.and how to spoke it correctly. Specs say 13 or 14 gauge spokes for the hub.but the heavy duty rims I'm finding are 12 gauge.
    Any help appreciated. Thanks 20160328_183212.jpg 20160328_182518.jpg

  2. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Hmmm......nice lookin' bike.

    But you might have a problem with that hub. I'm drawing a blank on it. Some more info about it would be helpful.

    You do want to go with 12 gauge spokes if at all possible. They're better able to take the strain that motorizing will give. If this means drilling out the holes on the hub, then you ought to do so. Let's hope there's enough room there. But if you can do this, then the rest should be pretty easy.

    There's such a thing as spoke length calculators out there. Try a google search. I looked at one once. I didn't go far with it because some of the figuring was a bit more complex than I was willing to do right then. But if I'm ever matching hub, spokes and a rim, then I'll put on my thinking cap and work my way through that calculator.

    Once you've gotten through that and you have your spokes, rim and hub ready to go, then building the wheel is easier than folks might imagine. You can find youtube tutorials on that.

    I've only done it once. But the wheel in question is still in use. With the help of a youtube tutorial I got it together and true without any trouble at all.

    Before then I was able to take a warped wheel and make it straight enough that it wouldn't rub the brakes too badly. But I wasn't anywhere close to 'expert'. I was just a hacker.

    When I rebuilt that wheel, I was simply replacing a hub with an identical hub. So the rims and spokes were already here. So I didn't have to go through calculating hub length and ordering rims or spokes.

    So that's one more step you'll need to take that I didn't need. But it shouldn't be too terrible.

    Best of luck and tell us more about that hub. We're always interested in stuff like that.
    rexamillion59 likes this.
  3. rexamillion59

    rexamillion59 New Member

    Yeah I was wondering if it was going to work here is the specs Screenshot_2016-04-05-21-42-28.png 20160405_214001.jpg 20160405_213945.jpg
  4. rexamillion59

    rexamillion59 New Member

    The hub spacing is 135mm and my frame is 139mm
  5. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Yep! Nice hub.

    If you have any hills to deal with, then you're liable to make good use of that extra pedal gearing. It's hard to find just the right gearing when you've got only one speed on the engine side and only one speed on the pedal side. Eight pedal gears ought to take care of that. I've considered it myself. I just haven't had the guts to stake the money on an 8 speed internal hub yet.

    It looks as though you've got the space you need on that flange to widen those holes to fit 12 gauge spokes. If you can get 11 gauge in there, that might be worth-while as well.

    But do keep in mind that I don't really, really know what I'm talking about here. I've never done it. And weakening that hub flange is one risk you'd be taking.

    So go slow and drill only if absolutely needed.

    I wonder if it would be possible to go with 14 gauge spokes and reinforce them somehow?
  6. rexamillion59

    rexamillion59 New Member

    Thanks for your input.
  7. Hello Moto!

    Hello Moto! Active Member

    Interesting thread. That's a pretty slick bike man. I'm relatively new to motorized bikes but have been around bicycle my whole life and I have never attempted to build my own wheel. Props to you for goin for it! Are you only building it yourself because you can't find a preassembled wheelset that you like? I know there are sellers out there who sell Sturmey Archer hubbed 12g rims with tires and tubes for about $200. Is it any cheaper to build it yourself?
  8. johnsteve

    johnsteve Member

    for me its cheaper and then I know what I have when I build my wheels. also for me its all about the hubset and the rims matching up. For me it really makes a differance
  9. Timbone

    Timbone Active Member

    My comments on wheels:

    My experience with motorbike wheels has fought me that pretty much any mountain bike wheel with 36 spokes will work on the front provided speeds are sane (low 30's max).

    The rear wheels are stressed and enhancement would be good. I have lots of experience wheel building and a properly laced and tensioned 14g spoke wheel can easily handle the strain. Maybe if we were talking speeds of 45+ mph you might need thicker gauge spokes. But the daily banging of the rim while under torque is where the real damage is done. Therefore, my judgement is you should get as strong a rear rim as you can afford and make work.
  10. HeadSmess

    HeadSmess Well-Known Member

    one thing i found out after buying a few spokes, was that it is cheaper to buy one of these IF you plan on doing more than one or two builds...
    it does need a different head for the 12 guage spokes... me? i would just use whatever i find, if its 14...its 14. drilling wont hurt the hub though. usually.

    spokes arent exactly cheap... especially the stainless ones. well, over here from "the local bike shop"... might as well be made from platinum with the price they ask!

    use the length calculators found online, its pretty straightforward, especially with single sprocket hubs. gets tricky when you use a 10 sprocket cassette with the massive offset on one side. or cross four/five, etc.

    there isnt much need to go past cross 3 anyways. as long as you dont go radial...

    once youve done it a few times, lacing a wheel is pretty easy. even then, its once you start the last row that you realise you have stuffed up and have to undo most of them again...

    avoid deep section rims, they can be a challenge(read, nearly impossible) to get the nipples in.
  11. Vapourtrail

    Vapourtrail New Member

    I had a sturmey archer 8 speed it only did 300k then gears 1-7 blew out

    I also had a shimano nexus 7 speed it did a 1000k and gears 6 & 7 blew out

    another problem with the sa 8 speed is 1st gear is 1-1 ratio the rest are all overdrive

    that means you have to make all the chains and sprocket gearing as low as possible

    even then I couldn't get it low enough to make top gear usable
  12. rexamillion59

    rexamillion59 New Member

    No it isn't any cheaper. I couldn't find a hub with a strong rim combo so thought I'd give it a try