Sunday, May 29, 2005

Relacing the wheels

I still feel very stupid for building 4 (count ’em, four) wheels incorrectly. Especially when I built wheels just fine before then. Anyway, I got to work on the Bluebird. While I had the rear wheel off, I put on a new rear cog with one fewer teeth. This will hopefully make 5th gear a better cruising gear. There was a little problem as the ideal cruising great seemed to be right between 5th and 6th gear, with 5th being too easy and 6th being to hard.

But the weather is great, so I could work on the porch, which is a minor plus.

Here you can see the incorrect spokes. Notice how bent the spokes are as they curve on the wrong side of the 2nd spokes they cross (the first crossing spoke is right at the hub). So following the path of a spoke on relation to the crossing spokes, I went over-under-over (and also under-over-under) when I should have gone over-over-under (and under-under-over). I also should have figured this out earlier, simply by looking at one of my other wheels when I was building these.

Here is the after picture, with the spokes all straight.

And another picture of the properly laced wheel.

I got faster as I went on. But it’s still time consuming, you have to strip the wheel and remove half the spokes. I realized after doing one side of the first wheel, that there is actually a system, which involves removing every fourth spoke (every other spoke on one side) and then lacing them correctly. And then you do the same on the other side. The time saving part is that you only have to remove the nipples from half the spokes and not all of them. But the whole project took about 6 hours. Luckily for Zora this is all covered under warrantee.