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machine built wheels?



 
 
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  #1  
Old March 16th 05, 05:05 AM
Leonard & Peggy Brown
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Default machine built wheels?

I am not new to bicycles. I was a pretty active rider back in the 70s but
lost touch with things over the last 30 years. I have seen several
references to "machine built wheels". What does that mean? I can't really
see a machine clever enough to just put steel parts in one end and wheels
come out of the other. Please enlighten me.

LB


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  #2  
Old March 16th 05, 05:46 AM
Brian Sanderson
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"Leonard & Peggy Brown" wrote in message
...
I am not new to bicycles. I was a pretty active rider back in the 70s but
lost touch with things over the last 30 years. I have seen several
references to "machine built wheels". What does that mean? I can't
really
see a machine clever enough to just put steel parts in one end and wheels
come out of the other. Please enlighten me.

LB

Most high-end (alloy and other exotic materials) wheels are assembled by
hand...


However, the wheels (often steel) on "mass market" cycles haven't been built
by hand for some time now. An automated machine presses the rims, threads
the spokes, aligns the nipples and tightens them automatically, then rolls
the assembled wheel to check if it is true. I saw it on a segment of "How
it's made" on Discovery channel.

I once worked for a Dept Store that introduced a "racer" model with 27x1
1/8" wheels. ALL of these bikes came back within a few days or weeks with
warped rims. Turned out the wheels had been assembled on a machine that was
set up to assemble the larger 27x1 1/4" inch wheels. No wonder we got such
a good deal on them...


  #3  
Old March 16th 05, 06:05 AM
Tom Sherman
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Leonard & Peggy Brown wrote:

I am not new to bicycles. I was a pretty active rider back in the 70s but
lost touch with things over the last 30 years. I have seen several
references to "machine built wheels". What does that mean? I can't really
see a machine clever enough to just put steel parts in one end and wheels
come out of the other. Please enlighten me.


See http://www.bmd.nl/wh/wh_uk_lacing_cc.htm and
http://www.hollandmechanics.com/f3/products/machines/MACHINES.htm.

--
Tom Sherman - Earth (Illinois)

  #4  
Old March 16th 05, 02:34 PM
Peter Cole
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Leonard & Peggy Brown wrote:
I am not new to bicycles. I was a pretty active rider back in the

70s but
lost touch with things over the last 30 years. I have seen several
references to "machine built wheels". What does that mean? I can't

really
see a machine clever enough to just put steel parts in one end and

wheels
come out of the other. Please enlighten me.


The issue with "machine built" wheels is that they're generally
delivered under-tensioned. Riding wheels like that often causes spokes
to go slack enough to unscrew nipples as they are loaded by the rider's
weight. It's not uncommon to find rattling-loose spokes after a ride or
two.

Machine-built wheels can be fine if they're brought up to ideal tension
and stress relieved (see bike FAQ &/or articles on Sheldon Brown's
site).

 




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