Author Topic: Spokes welded to nipples.  (Read 494 times)

Dave_C

  • Trying to get rid of my belly... and failing!
Spokes welded to nipples.
« on: July 12, 2020, 06:47:53 pm »
My dynamo wheel on my commuter has loose spokes. Certainly more loose than I'm happy with. When I attempted to tighten the spokes, the nipples rotate with the spokes. It appears the spokes are welded to the nipples.

Is there a good way of easing the spokes from the nipples, or should I just buy new spokes?

I'm not sure attempting to lubricate the nipples with an oil is going to work?

Anyone with experience of this and can advise please?

Cheers, Dave C

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@DaveCrampton < wot a twit.
http://veloviewer.com/athlete/421683/

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2020, 06:52:00 pm »
if you use a micro-sized blowtorch (cheap alternative = 'torjet' lighter) on a nipple you ought to find that it turns more easily.  Worth a  go...?

The nipple could be binding because of corrosion and/or threadlock.

cheers

Dave_C

  • Trying to get rid of my belly... and failing!
Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2020, 10:32:24 pm »
Thanks Brucey, most likely corrosion as I build my own wheels.

I'll give it a go but most of the dozen or so nipples were stuck, so it may be a long job

Thanks again.

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@DaveCrampton < wot a twit.
http://veloviewer.com/athlete/421683/

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2020, 11:26:05 pm »
I have had good success with this method when brass nipples are fitted to stainless steel spokes (including salvaging the spokes out of Raleigh wheels built with stainless steel spokes in the 1940s).  However with aluminium nipples, not so much; they really can be stuck for good.

cheers

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2020, 10:45:13 am »
The only time this has happened to me was with aluminium nipples - corrosion in that case.  Why are alu nipples used - weight, cost?  They seem a liability.

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2020, 12:26:16 pm »
in the land of salt and humidity here (Bermuda) where I have witnessed aluminium window frames pit and corrode until they fall out of the wall, or a garden tool left out over night will have a layer of rust on it by the morning its brass nipples all the way.  Steel bikes are a sketchy choice here too.
often lost.

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2020, 03:09:46 pm »
I don't like alu nipples but they are supplied with Brompton d/b spokes.  I built a wheel with them last week and it went fine.  I use a good Pedro's 4-sided spoke key.

If a wheel is built well, the nipples shouldn't need touching until the rim or hub wear out, in which case you can buy new nipples.  So I suppose it doesn't matter that much.
And Darkness and Decay and the Coronavirus held illimitable dominion over all.

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2020, 04:27:10 pm »
Alu nipples are OK to build with and OK in dry weather use only but are otherwise troublesome, especially in winter weather. They can fail totally by corrosion in service (heads come off). When they seize up they can seize up in such a way that the spokes cannot be salvaged.

cheers

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2020, 05:09:56 pm »
Alu nipples are OK to build with and OK in dry weather use only but are otherwise troublesome, especially in winter weather. They can fail totally by corrosion in service (heads come off). When they seize up they can seize up in such a way that the spokes cannot be salvaged.

cheers

Thus my question - why would anyone use them, not knowing in advance in what conditions the wheels may be used?  If it's a question of weight or cost, surely that's negligible.

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2020, 06:20:05 pm »

Thus my question - why would anyone use them....

plenty of wheelbuilders won't use them.  I will only use them in very specific circumstances.

Note that the anodised coating on the nipples is damaged at the nipple seat and in the screw threads when the nipple is fitted. This encourages local corrosive attack in both areas, and both are also natural crevices which tend to hold corrosive skog anyway. It is not a happy combination.

cheers

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #10 on: July 13, 2020, 06:35:16 pm »
plenty of wheelbuilders won't use them.  I will only use them in very specific circumstances.

Note that the anodised coating on the nipples is damaged at the nipple seat and in the screw threads when the nipple is fitted. This encourages local corrosive attack in both areas, and both are also natural crevices which tend to hold corrosive skog anyway. It is not a happy combination.


Indeed.  The wheelset I bought second-hand had presumably been ridden in corrosive conditions and within a year of me using them the nipples actually crumbled and disintegrated.  A real waste for (presumably) the sake of saving a few pence/grams - the rims & hubs had very little wear. I always make sure I get brass these days.

Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #11 on: July 13, 2020, 08:30:31 pm »
Mavic Ksyriums have alu spokes in alu nipples in alu rims.  It becomes one solid mass after a while.
And Darkness and Decay and the Coronavirus held illimitable dominion over all.

zigzag

  • unfuckwithable
Re: Spokes welded to nipples.
« Reply #12 on: July 13, 2020, 09:42:16 pm »
i've got alloy nipples on most (10+ pairs) of my wheels and they've been fine so far. i look after them, so not worried about failures. my hack runabout bike that lives outside, is used often and is usually neglected, has brass nipples.