Spoke Nipple Washers

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Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby caad8 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 13:29 pm

I understand and appreciate the use of washers between the spoke head and hub flange when building wheels, but is there any merit in the use of washers under the nipples? Given that there is more metal on metal 'turning' during building and truing, surely this would be the best place for the use of a washer?

Any thoughts/experiences are appreciated

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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby keef66 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 13:45 pm

But would that then mean the spokes were more likely to lose tension? Do they not rely on friction at the nipple / rim interface? And think of all that extra rotating mass!

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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby nicklouse » Fri Mar 15, 2013 13:50 pm

caad8 wrote:Any thoughts/experiences are appreciated

that is what the Eyelets do and washers on the nipps no point and would make building a pain.
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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby Barteos » Fri Mar 15, 2013 14:00 pm

All you need is to lightly oil the nipples in order to reduce the friction just like with any other fastener.
Generally speaking washers aren't required to build a good wheel.

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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby estampida » Fri Mar 15, 2013 14:10 pm

eyelets are primarily there to stop the drilled holes in the rim from cracking under the tension of the spokes, light and old school rims might not use eyelets (I have a set of Sun Equalizer 31's made in 2009 or so just like that)

washers on the spoke heads, that could cause issues if the holes on the hub are not the correct profile as the spoke head will wedge the hole and again cause a crack (CNC hubs are at more risk than forged versions)

the fit between spoke head an hub is quite critical as there can be a lot of load within the hub shell

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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby ugo.santalucia » Fri Mar 15, 2013 14:11 pm

They were used on box type rims with no eyelets, because they used to crack... now they crack a lot less as those are V shaped and stronger and virtually nobody use them. I would still use them if I could find a size that fits the rim holes... I have a collection of these washers that don't fit modern rim holes

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Re: Spoke Nipple Washers

Postby caad8 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 19:07 pm

Thanks for all the prompt replies, I think Ugo hit the nail on the head - 'V' shaped rims have more material in the well of the V and are therefore stronger/less likely to crack. Thus negating the need for a washer


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