Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Rebuilding a Wheel

I've just rebuilt my second-ever bicycle wheel, and you know what? It wasn't that bad. On the Runwell, I dismantled and rebuilt the rear wheel because it needed such extensive cleaning and rust removal. That was my first try, and it took me literally an entire day to complete the job, with several false starts. This time, I've dismantled both wheels on the Huffeigh for the same reason. So far, I've only put the front one back together, but it only took me an evening, and it was much easier. It needs a final truing before I'll call it finished, but I've got a lot of other stuff that needs attending to before that can happen.

That being said, this is NOT a how-to post, because I'm not even going to try to say it any better than Sheldon Brown does. Basically, all I want to say about it is that I did it, and so can you. Speaking objectively, I would say that I possess sub-par spatial reasoning and logic skills, so if I can do it, anyone can. Some folks find Brownie's guide a bit confusing, but trust me, take some time, puzzle through it, and it will make perfect sense. Again, I'm speaking as not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to this kind of thing, so I'm certain you can figure it out, too!


  1. I have built 3 wheels using Sheldon Brown's instructions and have 2 more to do when all the parts are accumulated. Wheel building is fun and doable for almost anyone who can read the instructions, and you save the $40 or so that the shop charges per wheel. We are all indebted to the late Sheldon Brown for the things he has taught us to do.

    Bob Baxter

  2. Amen, Bob. I think the real fun of it is feeling like you've really mastered a skill--gives you some real DIY street cred!