Need a spoke key to tighten spokes? How?

It is really hard to diagnose wheel problems without the wheel in hand, but from your description I think I would start by truing it. You say that it’s tension is off, and that it’s out of true. Truing it could fix the tension problems.

If it is really bent up it may be a good idea to detension the wheel and physically straighten the rim before tensioning and truing. When a rim is out of whack the tension will be uneven in order for the wheel to be true. Even tension is a starting point, but for most rims there is a wide latitude in spoke tension before you lose integrity.

Again, it is really hard to determine the best approach to your wheel without actually looking at it. You can learn a lot about wheels on Sheldon Browns site.

Thanks. I’ll also speak with the person who trued my wheel last time. They have had thirty years experience in wheel truing, so I’m sure they know their stuff.

When I get my new rim, recommendations for the tension it should be at? Or does that really matter? 19" trials rim it is. I’ll probably get up with my LBS and borrow their tensioner at the shop. They are some nice people and they like me well enough. :slight_smile:

Wheels can be touchy, so just going at them isn’t the best way of tuning them.
Buy the right tool at the local bike shop after bringing the wheel in. Pay them to true it, but ask if they can show you the process and recommend a good wheel book. Explain that you want to be more self sufficient and this way you don’t learn on a decent wheel, you learn how without getting it all weird and having them fix it anyway, and you both walk away with something. Local bike shops rule. If one won’t show you, shop around and then stick with the one that helps you the most. Once you have seen the process, have the tools, and the reference material that these threads and folks have shared -you’ll be all set!

most bike shops have tensiometers that cost way too much

So my spokes constantly get loose(finger turnable nipples). Not all of them, just a couple here and there. I have to tighten them every few rides, and I had never had this problem before til I build my new wheel. Is this common? Is there a way to avoid this?

put a few drops of linseed oil into the nipple and this should help keep them from loosening.

i get loose spokes every ride. i’ve accepted it :stuck_out_tongue:

but i’ve also learned to maintain my wheel over the past few months…i used to break spokes nearly daily, and now i never break them, nor do i have creaking unicycles anymore.

If your spokes are getting loose just from riding your tension is too low.

It should only be possible for the spokes to loosen themselves if they loose all their tension in the downwards position. That should never happen and will eventually lead to your spokes braking at the elbow from excessive stress cycles.

well i do at least 75-100 drops off the skinny a ride.

in my experience with 5 20" nimbus, they all get loose spokes quick.

and that’s even after retensioning and truing from 2 diff lbss.

could be a product of me weighing 185, but i think if youre hoppin and dropping spokes will get loose quickly.

Hmmm, I’ve never tried putting oil on my nipples.