New spokes on old, drilled hub?

On my 36er I use the extra wide hub (bearing spacing 125 mm) from unicycle.com together with 12g spokes. I’d like to relace the wheel with 14g ss-spokes. Is it a bad idea to reuse the hub with its bigger (drilled) flange holes? Will the new, thinner spokes move around? I doubt spoke washers would help.

When dealing with such expensive spokes I would be tempted to buy a new hub. The holes being too big might lead to more spokes breaking at the elbow. Unfortunately if this happens you can’t just go down to your LBS and pick up a replacement spoke.

I have no reservations on re-using hubs in general. Like you I don’t know how much having too big spoke holes would affect spoke strength, and would rather play it safe than have to deal with broken spokes. Maybe you should order a couple more than you need just incase. I would also be switching to a regular wide hub but that is just a preference thing. If using an Airfoil or Stealth rim it should be strong enough to get away with a regular hub.

A new hub is like $30 and with the price you paid for spokes, I wouldn’t even considering reusing the one with the drilled holes. I don’t even think spoke head washers would help with that big of a gap to fill.

Get a new hub, you’ll get new bearings too and a fresh start with the center of the wheel.

BTW, So far, I’ve had great luck reusing the 14 ga spokes in two different 36er hubs/wheel builds
B

I have my doubts. Even on the wide hub the airfoil rim is easily moved laterally. And I keep the spoke tension quite hard.