View Full Version : Online sources for custom cut spokes?

05-01-2016, 08:41 AM
Its been over a year now, that my project got stalled/sidelined, for I was in process of a tadpole build, but needed spokes specially made for the front wheels. I had talked to the LBS's, one place, their machine was broken, the other place...the way the guy winced when I asked him about it (he did have the machine) made me think somebody had pinched him or something. I had left the hub and rim with him so that he could verify the required spoke length etc but thats as far as it went. After a month of one excuse after another, I simply went and picked up my rim and hub and that was the end of it.
Needless to say it was extremely irritating that the ONE thing in my build where I had to rely on somebody else's expertise and they just drop the ball! I got the impression from the guy at that shop (and really the other one too) is that unless it is something that they can just simply go online and order it for you, they don't want to be bothered.

This snag really knocked the wind out of my build, for I was constantly battling with the spouse who is not supportive of any of this type of venture and is constantly badgering me about all the 'junk' I have collected. That I finally gave in and just dumped all 'junk' parts. Although for the life of me, I can't see how a cluttered garage, where she never really goes into, is any bother to someone...but whatever.

I still have my unfinished frame set off in the corner of my shop at work (auto mechanic), where I have my welder set up etc. and I really would like to get the darn thing done, for recently got a pre diabetes verdict from my doctor and getting exercise is one the big things to do, so this would go a long ways to helping that!

Does anyone know of an online source, where you can give them your desired spoke length and they can ship them to you?

If this doesn't work out then I may also look into building something that doesn't require altering the spoke lengths I guess, but really do like the tadpole design but I guess in the sake of getting something done and rolling that may be simpler to build might be the answer.

Sorry about the rant guys, but like I say, its sooo frustrating when you get derailed by stuff like that. I felt like that guy doesn't deserve to hang that fancy little bicycle mechanic certificate in his shop...lol. Found it amusing at the time, for I could bring him back to where I work and show him certificates in a trade.:evilgrin:

05-01-2016, 09:01 AM
I should add another note to my post: I see online spoke sites, but I guess am leery of not having the right length calculated and then wasting $$. Would have been much better to just hand the rim and hub to a guy and let him take it from there kinda thing...lol. Call me lazy, but heck, I'm doing all the rest of it! :)

05-01-2016, 10:52 AM
Most spokes come in length increments of 2mm (which is very granular).
A Double-walled rim is not only strong it keeps any overly long spoke ends that extend beyond the spoke nipple on the finished wheel from having any chance at contacting your inner-tube.
As an example look at this UK online store http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/jtek-14g-stainless-plain-gauge-spokes-and-12-mm-brass-nipples-pack-of-6-prod37994/ where the range of lengths available is 120mm to 310mm.
Once you work out your required spoke length h (http://www.prowheelbuilder.com/spokelengthcalculator/)ere (http://www.prowheelbuilder.com/spokelengthcalculator/)
I'm sure there will be an equivalent online store where you are.

05-01-2016, 11:16 AM
Evox_rider, this spoke length calculator (http://www.prowheelbuilder.com/spokelengthcalculator/)is really good and has almost all of the rim and hub manufacturers dimensions programmed into it. If your hub and rim dimensions aren't listed (unlikely) you can manually enter the following data
1. "Effective Rim Diameter" (ERD) this measurement is the one that has the biggest effect on spoke length, there is lots of info on the web on how to measure this.
2. "Flange to center" easiest way to measure this is to measure the distance from outside to outside of the flange and divide by 2.
3. "Flange diameter" this is measured from spoke hole to spoke hole.
4. "Spoke hole diameter" (2.6 is most common)
The other numbers don't have an effect on the spoke length.

play with the calculator by using different rim and hub configurations to see how it works. hope this helps.
I do recommend using double walled rims as Danny C mentioned

05-02-2016, 04:18 PM
I second the suggestions about playing with spoke length calculators, and using the numbers they put out.
The thing about spokes is that the threads are not cut into the spoke, but are rolled into it (kinda like being forged). So finding a shop that will roll custom length spokes in small numbers is pretty unlikely. So long as your rims are a reasonable depth there is no reason why you should need custom spokes - 2mm increments should be close enough for pretty much any purpose (play it safe by using decent rim tape).

05-03-2016, 09:48 AM
I used to use Holmes Hobby but they are no longer cutting custom lengths, I am now using these http://www.utahtrikes.com/PROD-104.html