3x or 4x lacing

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
belgiangoth
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3x or 4x lacing

Postby belgiangoth » 28 Jul 2019, 7:27pm

36 hole hub, coaster brake and hub gear. I thought 4x would be stronger, but apparently the overlap at the hub can weaken the spokes.
Will be 13g spokes.
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soapbox
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby soapbox » 28 Jul 2019, 8:30pm

I'd be interested to know the answer to that, too. I've got a couple of touring wheels that are 4x, but they're on 40h hubs. I've never known anyone build 4x on 36h hubs.

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531colin
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby 531colin » 28 Jul 2019, 9:40pm

The things that really matter are....
1...stress-relieving ….with 13g spokes, that will take a bit of force. If 4x spokes interfere with each other at the flange, proper stress-relieving will give them a "set" and then it isn't a problem. 4x may also approach the rim at an odd angle, again they need to take a set. ("improving the spoke line" according to Brandt)
2...the fit of the spoke elbow in the hub ...use washers if its a "long elbow" or a thin spoke flange.

I think its completely immaterial whether you use 3 or 4 cross, I would just do 3x because its likely to be simpler and just as strong.

13g spokes are a bit numb, you would "share out" the load between more spokes with thinner spokes, but I guess this is the rim which is drilled for 13g nipples?

belgiangoth
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby belgiangoth » 28 Jul 2019, 9:45pm

Yep, drilled for 13g spokes, which is why I'm sticking with it. I think I will pay to get the bike shop to build them for me rather than spend the money on a new rim.
Rebuilding a second hand wheel, ~10 of the spokes had snapped, hence the rebuild. Interesting for me as I have never had a spoke snap yet, but then it is a cargo bike.
If I had a baby elephant I would let it sleep in the garage in place of the car. If I had either a garage or a car. (I miss sigs about baby elephants)

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531colin
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby 531colin » 28 Jul 2019, 9:54pm

belgiangoth wrote:Yep, drilled for 13g spokes, which is why I'm sticking with it. I think I will pay to get the bike shop to build them for me rather than spend the money on a new rim.
Rebuilding a second hand wheel, ~10 of the spokes had snapped, hence the rebuild. Interesting for me as I have never had a spoke snap yet, but then it is a cargo bike.

Kind of suggests the wheel wasn't built very well in the first place; or maybe wasn't stress-relieved properly, which is almost the same thing. Did they snap at the elbow? Is it a thin spoke flange with the spoke elbow unsupported?

fastpedaller
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby fastpedaller » 28 Jul 2019, 10:21pm

A factor to bear in mind, if a large flange hub (as in this case) the angle of the spoke at the rim will not be ideal and 4 cross will make it worse (despite stress relieving) - I'd certainly stick with 3 cross (wheel builder 40 years experience)

belgiangoth
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby belgiangoth » 28 Jul 2019, 11:37pm

Snapped between the last cross and the rim as far as I can tell.
If I had a baby elephant I would let it sleep in the garage in place of the car. If I had either a garage or a car. (I miss sigs about baby elephants)

Carlton green
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby Carlton green » 29 Jul 2019, 2:32pm

IIRC 4X is something that is intended for use on small flange hubs only.

I wonder why some spokes broke in the original wheel and rather than some specific cause I suspect that it’s probably down to a vague mix of possible and probable things - you might never know the cause(s). Moving forward I suggest that, without going OTT, you check out the quality of the spokes that you intend to use (IIRC not all spokes are perfect and good) and that you ensure that all the spokes share the load roughly equally. Over the years I’ve build a few wheels using second hand rims, it’s not ideal ‘cause sometimes they’re too misshapen but it’s mostly doable. With book in hard I’ve managed though for me it’s not been a quick process - done quite a lot of miles on the results though :-) .

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531colin
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby 531colin » 29 Jul 2019, 9:22pm

belgiangoth wrote:Snapped between the last cross and the rim as far as I can tell.

If the spoke approaches the rim at a funny angle (and its not given a set) then I would expect spokes to fatigue and fail where they enter the nipple.

Brucey
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby Brucey » 30 Jul 2019, 6:03pm

it would help if you could say what rim and hub you are using.

FWIW if the rim is drilled for 13G you don't have to stick with 13G spokes if you don't want to; you can use 'converter nipples'. There are both Rim14/Spoke13 and Rim13/Spoke14 types.

cheers
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belgiangoth
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby belgiangoth » 30 Jul 2019, 6:40pm

Cheers Brucey,

I had found 14/13 nipples that match a 13G spoke to a 14G rim, but not vice-vera. Where would I find those?

It's a Nexus-3 with coaster brake.
If I had a baby elephant I would let it sleep in the garage in place of the car. If I had either a garage or a car. (I miss sigs about baby elephants)

David9694
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby David9694 » 30 Jul 2019, 10:00pm

I had a 4x wheel-set built in 1987 at the LBS I was working at. Large flange. I’d read somewhere that 4x was better for rear wheels, but both were built 4x. I’m still running the front wheel now on my “gravel” bike. 3x interlaced seems to be the standard.

Brucey
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby Brucey » 30 Jul 2019, 10:26pm

Nexus 3 with coaster brake? That is a steel hubshell isn't it?

Most spokes require spoke washers (often more than one on each spoke) in that hubshell if the wheel is to reliable. It also helps if you rebuild onto a used hubshell using the same spoke positions in the hubshell; the edges of the spoke drillings in a used hubshell (laced the same way) will be less sharp and less likely to damage the spokes.

Sapim make Rim13/spoke 14 nipples. They are not widely available in the UK, the last time I bought some I had to get a packet via an overseas vendor.

On a cargo bike you can make a strong wheel with 13G spokes but (IMHO) only if the rim is really strong enough to take a tension that is proportional to the spoke cross-section, i.e. that is getting on for double the tension that which you might use in a 14G spoked wheel. There are very few such rims and those are very heavy. If you don't overload a standard rim (eg by using a tension of 'only' 120kg or so) with 13G PG spokes, they tend to settle in service and therefore slacken; there isn't much 'stretch' in the spokes and the overall effect is to give a wheel that isn't terribly satisfactory.

Its easier to build a strong wheel (using a medium weight rim) if you use 14G spokes or 13G/14G single butted spokes (eg sapim strong). In either case the spokes can be tensioned to give a fair amount of stretch and the result is a wheel that isn't so likely to lose tension.

cheers
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531colin
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby 531colin » 31 Jul 2019, 12:50pm

Brucey wrote:...….Sapim make Rim13/spoke 14 nipples. They are not widely available in the UK,...…
Its easier to build a strong wheel (using a medium weight rim) if you use 14G spokes or 13G/14G single butted spokes (eg sapim strong). In either case the spokes can be tensioned to give a fair amount of stretch and the result is a wheel that isn't so likely to lose tension..

I don't think I have ever seen a rim 13 / spoke 14 converter nipple. :?
..but I have built lots of touring wheels with sapim 13/14 g single butted spokes driveside, and I agree that's a better plan than 13g plain spokes.
(although for my own use I went back to DB spokes all round a few years ago...I'm under 11 stone and I don't go camping.)

Brucey
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Re: 3x or 4x lacing

Postby Brucey » 31 Jul 2019, 1:51pm

sapim call them 'reduction nipples' whether the rim or the spoke is reduced in size. Both types of 13/14 are available here

https://www.spokesfromryan.com/product/bat-reduction-nipples-13g-spoke-to-14g-spoke-hole-silver/?add_to_wishlist=9716

cheers
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