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Spoke Nipple Sizes

Posted: 23 Aug 2013, 1:49am
by Valbrona
I like this link that Brucey put up a while ago:

But that aside, what about nipple sizes? I must confess, I have never really been able to work them out. Some don't realize that nipple size can vary independent of spoke gauge, ie. two spokes of the same gauge can have different size nipples depending on the manufacturer.

Would anyone be kind enough to perhaps give some nipple sizes (in mm) for the higher end type of spokes that we like, and not the cheapo ones on the kids bikes from Argos. I am interested in which ones would be 3.23mm and which ones 3.45mm and which ones might be something else. Thanks.

Re: Spoke Nipple Sizes

Posted: 23 Aug 2013, 10:30am
by Brucey
most quality 14g spoke nipples are 3.2mm (spokey 'red' size). DT, Alpina, ACI, Sapim etc.

15g spokes often come with the same size nipple square too.

There are at least two different nipple square sizes for 13g spokes, too.

IME if 14g nipples are 'short' pattern i.e. 12mm long, then a 3.2mm square is most common. But if the nipples are longer than this, the larger square (spokey 'yellow') is commonplace.


Re: Spoke Nipple Sizes

Posted: 23 Aug 2013, 1:34pm
by Mick F
I trued up a couple of well-buckled wheels for my mate's MTB.

My Red Spokey wouldn't fit, so I removed ALL the nipples with a screwdriver and replaced them all with my spare nipples that my Red Spokey would fit.

The old nipples - I think they must be Japanese - were 3.45mm
Normal ones (Red Spokey) are 3.25mm

Both of them are 12mm long.

Re: Spoke Nipple Sizes

Posted: 17 Jul 2014, 10:00pm
by Mr. Viking
I measured mine with (99p) vernier calipers. I think they were either 3.2 or 3.3mm, couldn't be sure. Suppose that would mean 3.25mm, though presumption does precede a fall. My (cheapo again) spoke key wouldn't fit properly.Going to see about getting a good one for the weekend. Need to get this bike finished.

Re: Spoke Nipple Sizes

Posted: 18 Jul 2014, 11:19pm
by Brucey
as per a recent post I bought a 'fat spanner' spoke key a little while ago. It has fours sizes in a single key and (unlike many other designs) it drives the nipple securely. So if you are not quite sure of you nipple sizes, this is very likely to fit OK.