How critical is spoke length really?
When I'm building I usually try to buy particular spokes for the build I'm doing. But I am taking some spare spokes with me on tour, and I reckon I can just go for 289mm long spokes for front and rear, including both sides of the rear wheel.
Which led me to wonder; most rims these days are box section, so a long spoke pokes into an air space. Screws are largely loaded on the first two or three threads, so a short spoke is a little under-engaged but probably still OK. So what sort of tolerance on spoke length can you really get away with in a pinch?
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