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What do I need to learn about spokes?

inexorable

Active Member
Aug 16, 2018
106
40
28
UK
#1
Never had a motorbike with spoked wheels before.

Soooo anyone got a good lead on a resource, video, lesson or post about spokes? I've been looking around youtube but I don't feel educated yet.

I suppose what I need to know is about servicing, checking & maintaining them. I don't imagine I'll be re-spoking a wheel any time soon but understanding the basics might help me better spot a problem when it arises.

All I know so far is that they are adjustable and sound different when pinged like a guitar ;)

I posted this in the wrong place didn't I. Should have been in wheels. There's no delete option.
Should/could this be moved @Admin?
 
Last edited:

Graves

Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2016
880
273
123
So. Cal.
#2
You just want to make sure that you check them once in a while, tighten the loose ones so they sound like their neighbors. But don’t fall into the trap of tightening all of them repeatedly, you’ll get them too tight and will start popping the heads off, or worse yet because these wheels don’t typically see regulat abuse, experence catastrophic failure when stress is raised.

Never had a motorbike with spoked wheels before.

Soooo anyone got a good lead on a resource, video, lesson or post about spokes? I've been looking around youtube but I don't feel educated yet.

I suppose what I need to know is about servicing, checking & maintaining them. I don't imagine I'll be re-spoking a wheel any time soon but understanding the basics might help me better spot a problem when it arises.

All I know so far is that they are adjustable and sound different when pinged like a guitar ;)
 
Likes: JimInOz

inexorable

Active Member
Aug 16, 2018
106
40
28
UK
#3
... catastrophic failure ...
Jeeeez... sounds fun. I'll keep an eye for that then! 😂

Daft question... but I assume I am avoiding "too tight" just from the pinging sound being too high - as opposed to keeping track of what we have previously tightened right? Is there a level of magic I need to learn about keeping the wheel running true if I'm just tightening some low pinging spokes?
 

Graves

Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2016
880
273
123
So. Cal.
#4
They make all kinds of magic tools that are supposed to provide the perfect torque to spokes, not necessary, just bounce your 1/4 (6MM) wrench off of them and only tighten the ones that go thud. They should ring a little, but not ping. Be careful that the crossing spoke is not touching the spoke you're inspecting, that will deaden the ring and possibility make you think that the spoke made a thud noise.

Jeeeez... sounds fun. I'll keep an eye for that then! 😂

Daft question... but I assume I am avoiding "too tight" just from the pinging sound being too high - as opposed to keeping track of what we have previously tightened right? Is there a level of magic I need to learn about keeping the wheel running true if I'm just tightening some low pinging spokes?
 

inexorable

Active Member
Aug 16, 2018
106
40
28
UK
#5
cheers @Graves - first bits of knowledge going in! 👍
 

Admin

Administrator
Staff member
May 13, 2015
525
159
178
#6
@inexorable You posted in the right place! @Graves is a wizard and we're lucky he hangs out here. Haha. This probably doesn't apply to you @inexorable but the early Africa Twin models (2015-2017) had corrosion issues with their wheels and spokes. There are reports of Honda US and EU replacing them under warranty. So if you're in the market for OEM wheels, try to get the 2018 model wheels because Honda used improved material (stainless steel) to battle against the complaints.
 

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