Spoke length & pattern help

I want to lace an Alex DX32 26" rim to a Kris Holm Moment hub using a 3 cross pattern with 14 gauge spokes.
How long are the spokes supposed to be?

Is the 3 cross pattern the most common, are people using 4 cross?



The UDC UK spoke length calculator is located here. I saw neither the Alex DX32 26" nor the Kris Holm Moment hub in Roger’s list of pre-measured parts. Looks like you’ll have to do some measuring. Three cross is the most common pattern.

Sheldon Brown has a page devoted to spoke length calculation. Like Roger’s, explanations are provided on how to measure your components.


I was bored so i decided to look it up for you

some numbers i have come up with
DX32 IRD 553mm
hub diameter 56.4
Hub width 74.5
Spoke hole diameter 2.9

spoke length 264.17mm

I got my numbers from http://www.unicycle.uk.com/SpokeCalc.asp and http://spoke.mapleflow.com/index.php?title=get

I already have 263mm spokes, they’re too long for a 3 cross lacing ( not enough thread to adjust tension), and just too short to do a 4 cross ( not enough thread to engage to thread in the spoke nipple).

Thanks for looking it up though. I’m off to a LBS to see if they can figure it out…


I had a 24" or 26" wheel built up for me once with a 4-cross. The guy asked me several times to confirm I wanted 4-cross and I said yes, definitely. Mistake. I’m not the expert here, but I think 4-cross is a good pattern for 20" wheels, but doesn’t look the same on a bigger wheel. The spokes were coming out slightly less than tangent from the hub. That wheel looked wrong.

In other words, you might want to try to find pictures of 4-cross 26" wheels before choosing that pattern. I think 3-cross is what you want.

Has anyone tried a radial pattern on their uni? According to Sheldon Brown, this probably would not be good.

Has anyone tried a radial pattern on their uni? According to Sheldon Brown, this probably would not be good.

If you’ve got some time on your hands, you could always take a die to them and increase the thread lengths. You’d probably want to shorten the spoke after working out the correct length too.

Yes, I have one. It’s an original Semcycle, from 1985. The early ones had radial spokes. Beautiful to look at, but terrible to maintain. They needed fairly constant maintenance to stay tight. Later models were made with a cross-1 pattern, which seemed to hold up fine.

A radial pattern doesn’t work well for powered wheels, as every time power is applied, it twists the hub in relation to the rim, causing wear & tear (and a slight loss of power into the spokes, rather than into wheel rotation). It works good for reducing weight on non-powered wheels, such as bike front wheels. I guess you also wouldn’t want radial spokes on a wheel with a disc brake.