Beating the system - the cycling commuting section
4 posts • Page 1 of 1
After a little advice.
I have had a GT Traffic 2 for a little under 12 months now. I have been having consistent problem with breaking spokes near the hub. I am on the heavier side at about 118kgs. My riding is all on baike paths, no gutter hopping or anything like that. My ride is just over 20kms each way to work & back doing 2-3 times per week.
I am looking for options to counter breaking spokes all the time that are costing me between $15 - $30 each time. I tried to fix two myself, 1 successfully, 2nd, well, let's say did not turn out so well.
Options so far I have considered:
Continue with repairs $15-$30 each time,
Complete rebuild with better spokes & rim, $270-$300 quoted,
Buy new bike without internal hub so increases options to rebuild, or change wheel.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
I've had wheels rebuilt to interrupt repeated breakages of spokes. It does generally work as a properly hand tensioned wheel with good components is usually stronger than a machine tensioned wheel. I presume you are only breaking spokes on the rear wheel ? if so, I wouldn't bother getting the front rebuilt. How many spokes is your internal gear hub drilled for ?
I'd also get the bike serviced every 3-4 months or so to make sure they are trued reasonably often, or learn to check and true the wheels yourself, and consider (rim and clearances allowing), running a wider rear tire. You might be able to fit a 700x48 for more cushioning.
What also can be a factor, a cause of your broken spokes, is that you are replacing spokes. Once you start replacing spokes in a wheel you start introducing dissimilar spokes and creating problems from this with differences in tension, flex and other characteristics. So, yes, at some point it is better to just get someone to respoke the whole wheel, all new spokes and from the same box, all hand-tensioned. Or do it yourself.
If you're paying out $15-$30 a pop, even thinking of shelling out for a new wheel, why not instead use that to invest in some wheelbuilding and truing tools and DIY it? All you need really is a flat-bladed screwdriver, a spoke key and truing stand (or an old fork in a bench vice with a cable tie on the fork as a rim guide would do). You may already have the tools to remove a cassette from the hub, normally just a freewheel remover and a chain whip.What you learn at home reading the Sheldon Brown website and other sources and practicing there will help you on the road, besides knowing how to do quick adjustments to the spokes and keeping the wheel true, the quick road-side check, can prevent spoke breakage.
I had an IGH wheel that would not stay true, didn't break spokes but I am now not as heavy as you are currently, so I am sure it probably would have broken them with more weight. The flange on an IGH is quite large and my bike mechanic and I determined the problem was because we were trying to use a 3 cross pattern for supposed strength which was causing the spokes not to be able to tension properly. We changed to a 2 cross pattern and the wheel became solid and bullet proof, it was used as an MTB wheel so it was hammered by comparison to wht you are doing. I would try reusing what you have but getting it laced properly by hand with new spokes and $270-$300 is too much for that, it should cost around $100 for 30 odd new spokes and a build.
I could agree with you, but then we would both be wrong.
4 posts • Page 1 of 1
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