[Note: this is #14 of a series of 20]
You have undoubtedly noticed, and I mentioned in tip #4, that spokes do not exactly conform to their path once laced into a wheel. This is especially true at the hub. With higher quality hubs and spokes, the spoke elbow seems incomplete, resulting in a bowed shape before full tension is applied.
This bowing is, indeed, owed to incomplete elbows. Better spokes, those destined for high end builds, have short elbows and a more open angle like 105° rather than 90°. Better hubs also have smaller spoke hole diameter and thicker flanges. Consequently, the spoke can be laced through the hub but it doesn’t fall down to the correct angle towards the rim. Why? Read more →
[Note: this is #13 of a series of 20]
Any task with as many variables and intangibles as wheelbuilding is bound to arouse some superstition. Most of my career in bicycle wheels has been devoted to demystifying the structure and the building process. A demystified process has little place for superstition. And “luck,” for all its elusive charm, is rarely the explanation for anything.
When a wheel is quick to build, when the parts assemble with less than usual effort, when trueness seems to take care if itself…a builder feels lucky. “What a fortunate wheel this is!” is familiar to any builder. When I was early in my career, I generally gave credit to the rim. Great spokes, hub, truing stand, or background music surely help. But it always seemed the rim was to blame or credit for the general mood of the construction. Read more →
In time for holiday gifting or personal fashion, we’ve just received a small stock of Ghisallo T’s. 110% cotton, Italian embroidery and screening, stylish green color.
Two exciting treats have arrived from Italy for the season and, truly, for all year round. First is a wall clock created by Giovanni from rims he made as a teenager during WWII at the d’Allesandro rim company in Milan. These 20″ tubular rims bear d”Allesandro decals, have 24 holes, and make perfect clock frames!