The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition

The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition

The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition
@ excellent book about learning all the different parts of the wheel and engineering wise, how it works

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Bicycle Wheel

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The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition

16 thoughts on “The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition

  1. 126 of 129 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Good but I’d like an update and correction, June 8, 2005
    By 
    John S. Allen (Waltham, MA USA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition (Hardcover)
    Unlike some reviewers who would like to see Brandt describe and bless novel spoking patterns, I concur with his recommendation of traditional spoking. The traditional tangent tension-spoked wheel is one of the most elegant and efficient structures ever devised. A wheelbuilder may choose a rim, hub and spokes at will and so, construct wheels of many kinds that are not available commercially. With skill and care, an amateur may build wheels of professional quality. The traditional wheel may be built to the desired degree of ruggedness vs. weight, and if damaged, can often be made usable with an emergency repair or adjustment.

    Brandt’s advice faces challenges from within the bicycle industry, which is always looking for a new selling point. Wheels with low spoke counts, trendy now (2006) are more tolerable with deep-section aero rims than with shallow rims and can make sense for racers, who are willing to sacrifice reliability for a very slight increase in performance — but for most bicyclists, it is much more important not to get stranded or crash than to increase speed by half a percent.

    Some of the newer types of wheels may sell because they look different, but provide little actual advantage. Wheels with thick aluminum or polycarbonate spokes decrease weight slightly but at a major expense in air drag. Carbon-fiber spokes have a very poor record of reliability and safety, though carbon-fiber-epoxy composite material has been used successfully in rims and in single-piece formed wheels. Still, brake shoes wear carbon-fiber-epoxy quickly, so a metal braking surface is preferable. Don’t get me talking about paired spokes, which make a wheel look as if it has fewer spokes — but require a heavier rim, because longer rim segments are unsupported. The inward pull of the spokes is, after all, about 10 times the lateral pull.

    I have built some wheels with radial spokes, but I caught one with a cracked hub flange quite by chance shortly before it would have caused a nasty crash. Since that time I have been very careful which hubs I will spoke radially. As usual, Brandt is correct with his warning on this topic.

    There is one serious error in Brandt’s book, and I am astonished that it has not been corrected through 3 editions. A graph, on page 39 in the 3rd edition, shows the change in spoke tension with lateral loading of the rim. The left spokes are shown to go into compression. They can’t, as they simply flex once they are slack. It might also be asked whether this graph reflects the influence of spokes that are differently stressed as the load is applied at the bottom of the wheel. To do so would require a more complicated mathematical model than I think Brandt was able to command.

    I also disagree with Brandt’s advice to tension spokes until the rim begins to deform. It can then deform further due to increased stresses during riding, and loosen the spokes. I have seen a new wheel which failed after a few miles for this reason. Spokes should be tight, but should leave a margin of safety. If the rim deforms before the spokes reach their optimum range of tension, then they are too thick for it, or it is too weak for them.

    I would really like to see this book updated with today’s more sophisticated finite-element analysis, including analysis of stresses in the novel low spoke-count wheels. But for people who are willing to build conventional wheels — the better choice anyway for most cyclists — this book is a valuable and fairly comprehensive reference.

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  2. 79 of 81 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Opinionated and Priceless, August 14, 1997
    By A Customer
    This review is from: The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition (Hardcover)
    Jobst Brandt is an engineer who has been a consultant to the bicycle industry for many years, having been involved in the creation of Avocet’s line of road tires, among other products. Those who have corresponded with him or read his posts on rec.bicycling know him as an opinionated, seemingly gruff fellow who does not suffer fools lightly. Quite a reputation.

    But what Jobst is probably best known for is this book, The Bicycle Wheel. In it, he demolishes myths, and gives actual engineering data to support his contentions about bicycle wheels materials and construction. He tells you why butted spokes are better and longer lasting than straight gauge spokes, and why tying and soldering spokes doesn’t make a wheel any stronger (and why it was nonetheless a useful thing for track racers to do). He explains why radial spoking doesn’t really make for a rougher ride, as some claim, and he gives actual figures on elongation and strain to back up his claims And he teaches you how to build good bicycle wheels, too.

    This is a book for any serious bicycle rider. If you choose to build your own wheels, Brandt will teach you to that. If you buy your wheels, Brandt will teach you to spec and maintain them. And if you’re simply interested in better understanding the function and physics of bicycle wheels, he’ll teach you that as well. Not a bad deal for one small volume.

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  3. 35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Build, maintain and repair your own wheels without fear, July 18, 2000
    By 
    Kurt Klappenbach (Glenburn, Maine) –

    This review is from: The Bicycle Wheel 3rd Edition (Hardcover)
    I have been using Mr. Brandt’s book for 19 years now (since its first edition in 1981). It is invaluable. Concise, clearly written. It debunks myths and makes the seemingly complicated matter of the bicycle wheel easy to understand and not intimidating at all. Maintain, repair, rebuild or build new wheels. The results are perfect. Ride without fear. Have pride in what you have done and show it off to others.

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