57. How to Replace a Wheel Rim

Learn how to replace a worn out wheel rim (rim transfer).

IMPORTANT: Nuts and bolts on your bike should always be tightened to the manufacturer's specifications.
How to Replace a Wheel Rim

In this tutorial we will learn how to replace a worn out rim. This repair is often called a rim transfer.

What You'll Need

For this job you will need an appropriately sized spoke wrench, a wheel truing stand, an optional nipple driver, waterproof grease and a toothpick, linseed oil, rim tape, and some tape or zip ties to fasten the rims together. You'll also need a replacement rim. The new rim must be the exact same size and spoke count as your old rim.

Grease Spoke Holes

Using a dab of grease on a toothpick, grease all of the spoke holes on the new rim. You'll only need a tiny bit. This helps the nipples turn easier when you're tensioning the wheel.

De-tension Old Wheel

Next you'll need to loosen all of the old spoke nipples. The safest way to do this is to start at the valve hole and loosen all of the spokes by turning clockwise 1/4 turn each. Repeat this step until all of the spokes in the wheel are de-tensioned but still attached.

Attach New Rim

Tape or zip-tie the new rim to the old rim in 2 places directly across from each other. Make sure that the valve hole and placement of the spoke holes in the rims match up exactly.

Transfer Spokes

One at a time, you'll need to move each spoke from one side of the wheel over to the new rim. Turning counter-clockwise, unthread each nipple from the old rim and place a drop of linseed oil inside the nipple threads. This will keep the nipples tight while still allowing them to be turned in the future. Move the spoke over to the corresponding hole on the new rim. Thread the nipple on most of the way, but leave 2 spoke threads showing.

Once all of the spokes on the first side of the wheel are transferred, repeat the process and transfer the spokes on the other side of the wheel, until all of the spokes have been threaded onto the new rim.

True and Tension Spokes

You can now undo the tape or zip-ties and remove the old rim. Starting at the valve hole, tighten all of the nipples by turning each 1/4 turn counter-clockwise, all the way around the wheel. Repeat this until all of the spokes are fairly tight, and then tension and true the wheel. See the video titled how to true a wheel. In the next video we'll learn how to properly tension your spokes.

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Discuss this topic in the Wheel Forums

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I have 2 fairly new, mid-range folders which ride quite well d seem like good bikes for the cost. 8 sp. Shimano components.

I have a 7 second video of this.

When I was recently cleaning-lubing the drivetrain, one of them was wheels-up and I did the customary pedal-spin the rear wheel and when it the wheel slows down to a near stop, it reverses direction for a small fraction of a rotation, then stops.

My first suspicion is the hub bearings are too tight (way too) , but Im presently more experienced in the vintage beach cruiser genre, so any advice for a mu... Read more >>

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I have an unusual question I'm hoping to get answered on this forum. I've got a fixed gear bike that I want to convert to a horse training device. How do I get the rear wheel to become free wheeling, so I can turn it backwards as well as forwards? It has a bendix brake on it. Do I need to remove that, and if so, is there a special way to tighten the chain and hub? I'm kind of grasping here, so hoping someone with bicycle knowledge can help me.... Read more >>

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The SSB has the same frame as the IGH 3, so it already has the cable guides for the hub. I'm going to take my bike to a local comm... Read more >>

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I bought an old bicycle and see an unusual metal part attached on rear axle. Derailleur side. Starting from end I see a closed (no hole) bolt, two washers, then this "handle", a washer, then a deep nut, then a washer, then the derailleur, and then the bike frame. "Handle" is about one inch across and three inches deep, quite thick metal...flat but one edge has a perpendicular flange about 3/8 inch. No marks on handle. I think bike is a 1986 Schwinn Sprint made by Giant, with 24" wheels made in Taiwan by Femco (tire size a problem). I have a digital photo but it would not paste here. Wha... Read more >>

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I think the rearing bearings are 13mm ID and 30mm OD. Are these measurements correct? Please help.

Thanks.... Read more >>

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I have a 10 year old Trek 7200 Hybrid. I am thinking of replacing the wheels in a while and was wondering what you guys could recommend. It came with Matrix 750's but they are no longer available. I tip the scales around 230lbs. and am looking to spend around $300. any suggestions.... Read more >>

03/04 How to remove wheel with internal gearhub

I won a Specialized Daily in a contest. It is a pretty sweet bike. But it has an internal gearhub on the rear wheel. I have never had this type of gear setup before. I am afraid to mess with it to get the wheel off. How the heck do I remove this wheel to change my flat tube? Thank you in advance for any assistance.
[Image: IMG_4902_zps1yiav5sf.jpg]... Read more >>

02/24 Knocking sound coming from freewheel? (Especially form when riding uphill).

Hi.
I have a fairly cheepish bike, Appolo Evade Mountain Bike. (The reason for it having a freewheel was probably due to price not age).

Anyways. So, there is a tiny bit of freewheel wobble which I have come across on a lot of freewheel bikes so I never considered this a problem. Freewheels just tend to get a little bent right? Despite this, shifting is just fine and smooth and the whole drive system is just good overall. However  

When I ride up a hill, and I mean steep hills, doesn't matter what front/freewheel gears I... Read more >>

12/11 Axle too long

replaced the rear wheel with new one  the axle is slightly longer approx 4mm  had to use washers as a temporary measure. i was wondering can you get knurled washers that will do the job better
thanks chris... Read more >>

12/09 Changing rims

Hi!

I wanted to replace the rim on my roadbike and heard from a friend that I should do it spoke by spoke, that way I don't have to be careful where to put which spoke. I tried that and now the new rim has kinda an egg shape and I can't fit any more spokes (I got stuck after switching 18 of the 32).

(both rims are 622x15c)

Should I:
1. Buy an already built new wheel and be done with it?
2. Start over again?
3. Remove all of the spokes from the old rim, learn how to align them correctly and try it again?
4. or something else?
... Read more >>

12/08 No action on wheels in cold conditions

I recently bought a second hand Giant Upland SE and to be frank, it is my first bike with multiple gears. The bike functioned normally for the first day or two. I could shift between all the gears. When the bike is stored indoors, the pedal and wheel work fine but once I take it out in the cold (anywhere from -10 to -30 degrees celsius), the pedals rotate freely and have no action on the wheel. Also I am not able use some gears on the rear wheel. Can anyone please help with an explanation and solution?... Read more >>

10/23 Replacement Axle

Hi,

I need to find a replacement axle for the one which broke on my 1970's road bike. I've written the specs below, can anyone help me source a replacment? I don't know what to search for:

Length 165.5mm
Thread size 9.2mm
Shaft 8.8mm

Starting from the drive Side
24mm to first nut
First nut 6mm with an incorporated spacer 9mm
Second nut 3mm
Spacer 1.7mm
Cone specification unknown
Gap to second Cone 71mm
Cone Specification unknown
Spacer 1.45mm
Nut 2.8mm
20mm to end of thread
Read more >>

09/15 Schwinn meridian rear drive axle

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While the drive side hub slides back and forth and seems to be creating un... Read more >>

08/02 Any idea what could have happened to my rim?

[Image: IMG_3671.jpg]
So today I got a flat tire (unrelated, it was a nail, extracted, repaired. All good) and when I pulled over to try to find what caused it, I noticed that my rim was rubbing the brakes the way it does when it's out of true because of a broken spoke.
The spoke is fine. It's the RIM that's been damaged, and that has damaged my calm some. I took it to my usual bike shop, guys are pros, figured they'd have an answer, no such luck. They gave me vague language about how it "looked like it h... Read more >>

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Hi

We have a hand me down bike which has been in the family for 30+ years. It's original ower is now in her fourties!!! I'm attached to this bike because the memories I have with my dad riding it.

It has rusted underneath the chrome coating it had so it now all pitted.

I was wondering, can I respray the paint back onto the rim?... Read more >>

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