Introduction: Custom Twist Bikewheel

Picture of Custom Twist Bikewheel

Here is my second Instructable on making a custom bicyclewheel with a custom spokelacing.
Actually this is the first tutorial I've made but it is the second one converted to an Instructable.

The start will be the same as in the Custom Star bikewheel Instructable but from step 4 Lacing the wheel it will be different.

I have written this instructable to my best knowledge, however no rights can be drawn from the contents off these pages.
U build and/or use the shown wheel at your own risk.
Be warned, you will during this tutorial alter some parts in such a structural way like drilling extra holes  that all warranties provided by the manufacturers will be void.

Step 1: Tools & Parts

Picture of Tools & Parts

1. Materials used:
rim: Alesa 26inch ( 22x559 ) aluminium
hub: Shimano fronthub HB-MN72
spokes: Union stainless steel 14g 268mm
nipples: Union nickel-plated brass 14g
This hub is chosen because of the large flanges, this way there is enough space between the spoke holes to drill an extra hole between them.

If you want to use a donorwheel look for one with nice large flanges and you can measure the spokelength to go and buy the 35 extra spokes with the same length + the nipples you need, the donorwheel may have any spokelayout you can find except for a radial lacing because you wouldn't be able to make the twist.

2. Tools used:
Dremel multitool
Drills 2,5mm, 4mm and 8mm
Spoke wrench Park Tool
Hand drill
Clamp
Hammer
Caliper
Marking tool steel
center point
truingstand (or make one yourself like in the Bike Wheel Truing Station Instructable by aaron7575)
a Dremel drillingstand ( not in the picture )

Step 2: Setup the Hub

Picture of Setup the Hub

Picture 1:
First off we measure the width of the flange from the outside of the spoke hole to the outside of the flange ( in this case that's 3,25mm )

Picture 2:
After that we measure the diameter of the spoke hole ( in this hub that's 2,5mm )
With this information we can calculate that the center of the spoke holes is at: 3,25mm + 1,25mm = 4,5mm
Adjust your caliper to this.
If possible lock your caliper and use the back-end.

Picture 3:
Put the bottom of the caliper against the side of the flange and hold your steel marking tool against the measure pen.
Let someone help you by gently turning the hub with the bottom flange.

Picture 4:
The result, a nice parallel marking line.

Picture 5:
Now measure the distance between 2 spokes holes.
On this hub that's 13,5mm divide by 2.
With the results of 6,75mm
Adjust your caliper to this and lock.

Picture 6:
Mark the halfway between the spoke holes with the calipers top by holding it in the spoke hole and gently scratch on the parallel marking line.

Now you can center where the drilling holes are going to be.

Picture 7:
If your center point is sharp enough you can slide it in a little sideways and you will feel the marking line.

Picture 8:
Now upright the center point and gently hit it with the hammer, don't slam it the first time because if you are off the mark you can still correct it by doing it once more.
When you are happy with it slam it once more.

Picture 9:
Ready to drill.

Not shown in picture, I used a dremel drilling stand. .
For the best results put a slight angle on the drilling stand to go with the flanges angle (about 5 degrees)
This hub can be clamped on the axle because of the flat sides. If the axle is round use a special axle clamp so you won't damage the thread.

Picture 10:
Drill the holes using a 2,5mm drill.

Picture 12:
Debur the holes by using a machine or hand drill.

Picture 13:
Debur the inside of the spoke holes of the flange by using a oversized drill.

Step 3: Prepare the Rim

Picture of Prepare the Rim

Picture 1:
Measure the width of the rim and divide by 2.
In this case the rim width is 28mm divided by 2 = 14mm.

Adjust your caliper to 14mm and lock it.

Picture 2:
Gently mark the center of the rim between the nipple holes.
Make small lines so that in the final product they wont show up as much.

Picture 3:
Measure the distance between 2 nipple holes and divide by 2, here that's 51mm divided by 2 is 25,5mm.

Picture 4:
Mark the center between the nipple holes.
You can do this with the calipers top.

Picture 5:
Use the center point to mark them for drilling.

Picture 6:
Drill the holes with a 4mm drill or whatever size your holes (nipple's) are.

Picture 7:
Debur the holes with a hand drill or a lager machine drill.

Picture 8:
Don't forget the inside of the rim.

Now you are ready to build this wheel.

Step 4: Lacing the Wheel

Picture of Lacing the Wheel

Picture 1:
Insert spokes from the inside of the flange to the outside of the hub.

Picture 2:
It's no problem inserting all 36 spokes at once on 1side of the hub filling up the flange.

Picture 3:
Put the first spoke into the rim right next to the valve hole (this is an original nipple hole).

Lift the spoke up high, this way the hanging spokes won't damage the rim on the bottom.
Put the nipple on by turning clockwise about 3 turns.

Picture 4:
Skip one hole every time and insert the next spoke.

Watch out only fasten the nipples by no more then 3 turns the rest wil be done later on.

Picture 5:
Insert all 36 spokes.

Step 5: Determine Left or Right Twist.

Picture of Determine Left or Right Twist.

Before going to the next stage you need to determine if you want a left or right twisting wheel.

When the front-wheel is finished there will be no difference what way you insert the wheel into the bicycle as the twist will look the same either way.

I can imagine you would want the front and the rear wheel twisting in the same direction or opposite of each other, determine now.

Step 6: Lacing the Wheel Step 2

Picture of Lacing the Wheel Step 2

Picture 1:
Now insert the first spoke into the other flange from the inside out.

Picture 2:
Hold a spoke parallel to the inserted spoke from the head straight over to the other side, mark the spoke you come close to.

Picture 3:
Skip 12 spokes on the opposite side and insert the spoke into the next hole in the rim, fasten it with a nipple.

Notice this only apply's to this combination off hub, rim and spokelength.
On other combinations it's trial and error.
For example you can insert 4 spokes on the second flange first to see if you are close.

Picture 4:
Insert all other spokes and start lacing them into the rim, don't forget only turn the nipples about 3 turns.

Step 7: Truing the Wheel Step 1 ( Bring the Spokes Up to First Tension )

Picture of Truing the Wheel Step 1 ( Bring the Spokes Up to First Tension )

Picture 1:
Most of the thread is stil showing.

Picture 2:
Now start fastening the nipples to the end of the thread on the spokes.
Do them all. ( I used a screwdriver for this job )

What if you messed up ?
I was wrong with skipping 12 spokes on the opposite side, this should have been 13.

Picture 3:
At arrow 1 the nipple stands out of the rim almost completely.
Loosen this spoke and reinsert into the hole at arrow 2.
This also works the other way round if you are short on thread on the spokes.
Just do this on 1 flange of the hub!!

Feel if there is tension on the spokes.
If not start turning all the nipples clockwise the same amount (start by the valve hole to keep track) For example start with 1 turn every nipple, half a turn is possible as well.
Repeat until tension is building on the spokes.

Spin the wheel in the stand to verify if its fairly true.

Picture 4:
( Let your son or daughter do the hard work :-)
If the wheel looks right fasten the nipples that are still loose ( do this by feel ) this is where you need practice to get the best result.

Step 8: Truing the Wheel Step 2 ( Make It Run Straight )

Picture of Truing the Wheel Step 2 ( Make It Run Straight )

Picture 1 & 2:
Now find the spot on the rim where it's centered best.
This is extremely important because of the lining of your bike.

With a good truing stand this is no problem but as many of you readers won't have tools like this you can use a makeshift stand by using an old front fork and use a tape measure or your caliper to find the right spot, or go to the Instructable by aaron7575 about making a truingstand yourself.

Picture 3:
Adjust the truing stand on this point close to the rim where this is in the center.
From this point you start adjusting the wheel.

In this Instructable I won't tell a lot about truing the wheel, try google and search for wheel building or have a look at BicycleTutor's Instructable about Truing a wheel.

Picture 4:
On this spot the rim is further away from the truing stand, this means you need to tighten the spokes on this side of the flange, or loosen them on the other side.

Picture 5:
This would be the spoke that needs tightening, if the offset is longer you need to tighten enough spokes accordingly, or like mentioned earlier loosen spokes on the other side.
This depends on how much tension there is on all the spokes.

Picture 6:
Pay attention to the turning direction for fastening of the nipple as in this picture ( looking at the nipple from the rim side ) you need to fasten the nipples counter clockwise.
Always think about the way you would fasten the nipples, this will become second nature when making more wheels in the future.

Step 9: And the Results Are.

Picture of And the Results Are.

Picture 1:
The wheel made during this Instructable, a right turning twist.

Picture 2:
And here a left twist with the tube and tire mounted.

This last wheel I briefly tested in an All Terrain Bike on strength and steering behaviour, and I haven't found any problems using it.
But be warned you build an use this kind of wheel at your own risk.

Enjoy building these wheels: MasterRed

p.s. Just a small thank-you to my wife for tolerating this stuff inside the livingroom.

Comments

FilipJ8 (author)2016-03-04

I won't do it, don't have patience and tools, but KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!

crazypj (author)2013-12-31

Ha, thanks for posting the mess up as well, glad I'm not the only one who does this sometimes ;)

crazypj (author)2013-12-31

The holes are offset in left and right hub flange, I found it easier to make a long drill using brass rod that was a good fit in spoke hole and 1/16" drill bit
Use drill press and everything goes real quick to mark initial hole from opposite (inside) of spoke flange then use 1/16" holes to locate for 1/8" drill (pretty close to 3mm spokes I used)

ranggapanji (author)2013-05-22

with spokes on one flange going on one way and on the other flange going on the opposite direction, the high tension will likely twist the hub, break the flange, or even more extremely, split the hub body in half.
if you're going to build wheels in radial pattern, make sure the spoke tension cancels each other. that being said, you might want to use shorter spokes.

agritzmacher (author)2013-05-05

Normally, spokes on the same side of the hub work in pairs, pulling in opposite directions. When they cross over other spokes in three places it is referred to as a three-cross pattern. Most conventional wheels are built this way.

The way the spokes pull in pairs - one to the front and the other to the rear, on the same side, makes a stronger wheel. This is duplicated on the other side/other flange but offset slightly. A strong wheel with 32/36 spokes can be made this way.

Building a wheel as shown here, with double the number of spokes, obtains strength by using more spokes. In this case all the spokes on one side pull in the same direction and pull against the spokes on the other side, which go in the opposite direction. It's heavier because of the number of spokes, but because of the unique pattern, makes a highly attractive wheel.

It is also an easy pattern to lace, so it would make a good design for a first-time wheel builder.

I am not familiar with the "three cross twist snowflake" pattern, but I suspect is is something like the photo that was shown and is another decorative pattern, more for show than light weight. Nice instructible!

wsajo (author)2013-05-05

very good..congratulations

curious youth (author)2012-04-22

so can you do a right twist for half and left for the other ?

MasterRed (author)curious youth2012-04-25

If I understand your question then you can't because the spokes on one side going to the left would need to cross over the spokes going to the right and then many of the holes in the rim would be already in use by the first set inthere.
And you couldn't make a straight wheel that way, the rim would be tilting to one side, cause you need and equal amount of tension and spokes on both sides of the wheel to keep it straight.

lmvlobos (author)2012-03-15

dchall8 --- you said: "When you double the spokes, you double that drag factor. " I don't believe that would be true. As the number of spokes increases, the closer they become. You now have spokes that are "drafting" each other as they travel around. Thus, there would be decreased drag. To take it a bit further, I there were so many spokes that the wheel center becomes a solid disc, there would be no drag from the spinning "spokes".
Just saying.

Bestar (author)2012-01-22

You'll be think about "maybe dangerous" wheel during the biking. And it is not good.

MasterRed (author)Bestar2012-01-25

I know thats why I stated in the tutorial that you build this kind of wheel at your own risk.
The main goal is to make a nice looking custom wheel.

Farmdog40 (author)2009-01-27

My compliments, You are doing some really great work building wheels. Have you ever built any three cross twist snowflake wheels? Keep cranking out instructibles.

MasterRed (author)Farmdog402009-01-28

I think I know what you mean by a three cross twist snowflake wheel but am not sure, could you post a picture here ? If it is what I think it is you need to inter twist the spokes and no I haven't done that ( yet ) and am not sure if I will ever do that because I like to keep the spokes strait. There are so many spokelayouts you can come up with without having to bend them that I can make a lot off Instructables before doing that. Here is a example of what I mean.

carpe_noctem (author)MasterRed2010-08-31

i think he might be referring to whats also known as crow's foot. i think sheldon brown links something to it in his wheel building section

biggoofwhitemike (author)2009-04-05

This is neat, but would be unusable for a disc/drum/coaster brake, or drive application.

dchall8 (author)2009-01-12

This looks really cool, but from an aerodynamics standpoint you are shooting yourself in the foot. There is a significant amount of drag caused by the spokes on the wheels. When you double the spokes, you double that drag factor.

MasterRed (author)dchall82009-01-13

You are absolutely right but............ The idea for doing these kind off wheels hasn't got much to do with aerodynamics, it's just looks that matter. Normally you wouldn't want the extra spokes weight wise anyway. Cruising down the beach speed isn't important.

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