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Spokes Working Loose

1262 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Lucky
The spokes on my rear wheel, non-drive side have been working loose (unthreading) after each ride or two. It's just the one side, drive side stays tight. i have been tightening them after each ride and they keep unthreading.

what can i do? lo-grade loctite?

is it possible i'm not putting enough tension on them which makes it easy for them to unthread?

thanks....
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yes and yes

Eggman said:
The spokes on my rear wheel, non-drive side have been working loose (unthreading) after each ride or two. It's just the one side, drive side stays tight. i have been tightening them after each ride and they keep unthreading.

what can i do? lo-grade loctite?

is it possible i'm not putting enough tension on them which makes it easy for them to unthread?

thanks....
tension helps prevent spoke nipples from unthreading. that's why the drive side spokes aren't doing it, R side spokes are under higher tension due to the dish.
if you increase L side tension you will also have to increase R side tension. To do the job well, you will want a truing stand and a dishing tool, as the wheel will likely require a dishing check if you start tightening all the spokes.

you can put a drop of weak loctite down the gap between each spoke and nipple. I would use purple 222, the weakest. I know others use medium/blue. if you have aluminum nipples, blue might cause the flats to round off when truing later.
Most factory built wheels (and a lot of handbuilts) are under tensioned. How tight should they be? You can either guess or measure with a spoke tension meter. The Park TM-1 is extremely easy to use and relatively inexpensive (~$50). Properly tensioned wheels don't need locktite.


https://www.parktool.com/tools/TM_1.shtml
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Homebrew said:
Properly tensioned wheels don't need locktite.QUOTE]

Instead of locktite, a dab of penetrating oil might help keep the spokes from winding up when you tighten them. If they wind up (twist), they unwind when you ride them and loosen themselves.

Kathy :^)
The lock tite goes inside the threads and nipple. The oil goes between the rim and the nipple.

I true my wheels on my bike. This way you can center the rear wheel and get the dishing aspect correct without extra expense of truing stand.

Spoke tension can be reasonably calculated by feeling another wheel that has been properly trued. The hardest part is getting equal tension on all the spokes. The wheel will true and you will on occasionally find that every third spoke is under tensioned. Tighten all these spokes up then make corrections for centering purposes.

One way to check tension is to squeeze two spokes and note how they deflect, then squeeze the next to and compare.

Also when you get the spoke somewhat tight or tensioned, then over tighten the spoke and back up a bit. This will keep the spokes from being twisted and untightening.
DrGlen51 said:
The lock tite goes inside the threads and nipple. The oil goes between the rim and the nipple.
You need lube on the threads, too, not just on the rim. Personally, I use anti-seize compound (thanks, MikeT), but that requires you remove the nipple, which I was thinking he may not wish to do, hence the suggestion of a penetrating oil.

Kathy
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