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

01/22 Wheel Dishing

Is the rear wheel on a bike properly dished if the rim is equally distant from the frame? I trued my rear wheel a little today, and I'm wondering if I need to go any further to check if it's centered than measuring the distance between the rim and the frame on either side of the wheel.... Read more >>

01/21 Wheel not turning when I pedal

Hi. Riding in sub zero temps here and my rear brake has seized for the last three days heading to work but today I started off pedalling but after about 100m my pedals no longer moved the rear wheel. I had a major service a few months back where all cranks, chains etc were replaced. Could it just be the cold that is preventing me moving and if so what can I do to cure it.

Sitting sadly on the bus commute as I type.... Read more >>

01/19 Spoke protectors?

I need a couple spoke protectors for a 70+ mm hub. I see some listed on e-bay, but they are the smaller hub spoke protectors.
Can anyone tell me where to find the bigger hub spoke protectors ??... and how do they measure for them ??
Thanks... Read more >>

01/18 Help overhauling hub

Hi I need help. I'm rebuilding my bike ready for spring and noticed my rear wheel bearings needed changing so took cones off removed. Axel and the non driver side bearing and cassette and I'm struggling to get the other side bearing out I have tried Everything possible they are sealed bearings any help would be great I can post pictures if needed.... Read more >>

01/14 Remove brake drum from chariot trailer axle

I need to replace the suspension plate on a chariot trailer. The plates slide onto the axle, and therefore I need to remove at least one brake drum from the axle.

This is what it looks like.

[attachment=5677]
However I subsequently found this parts diagram, which suggests what I've labelled as "final part of axle" and "collar" are actually a single part which fits inside the axle (ringed in red)

[attachment=5676]

I can think of several ways of getting this out - unscrew it (seems unlikely), heat the axle with a blow torch, or ... Read more >>

01/11 What bearing Quality used for MFG in past years?

Question: Say you have a bike that was built in every 10 year increment since 1920 or so...
1920, 1930, 1940, 1950, etc...

What grade of Bearing 100, 50 25, etc would have been used for Mfg, and I realize this might be MFG specific too... ??

What I'm trying to determine (And this could be another of those 'unknown' things about 1970--1980 French bikes...)

If you rebuild an old bike, based upon year, what grade of bearing do you think you're replacing?

I would assume there would be a diminishing returns issue....

Jus... Read more >>

01/10 Motobecane wheel replacement

hello all!

i have an old motobecane roadbike, and have been learning that nothing on it is standard sized (relative to american road bikes), which has posed some difficulty when making repairs and replacements.

id like to replace my back wheel- can i use any wheel or do i need to find a french/motobecane manufactured one?

thank you very much for the advice!... Read more >>

12/31 Hubs for a 1973 Schwinn Continental (fixie)?

hey I'm trying to build a bike for the first time and I would like to build one in its entirety (including putting together the wheels). I am fairly smart, and am confident that I will be ok assembling everything, but I just need help finding what parts I need.

so, I have a 1973 Schwinn Continental frame and fork, and I am currently working on comverting it to a fixie. As I dont have any wheels as a reference (I only have the frame and fork that I bought off of eBay), I was wondering what hubs I should choose for this bike.

thanks for any help!

-cvs1998... Read more >>

12/21 Bearing replacement Mavic TS2 Freehub

Morning All,

One of my bearings collapsed in the free hub so I decided to see if I could fix it. After cleaning all the gunk out I was able to see the circlip on the threaded side of the hub.

[img]http://imgur.com/hj1ae8Ql.jpg[/img]

I then removed circlip thinking it should be just a case of knocking the old ones out and replacing however there doesn't appear to be anyway to knock these little buggers out.

Here is a pic of the other side

[img]http://imgur.com/Rv32fIql.jpg[/img]

Hopefully you can s... Read more >>

12/01 Can i fit a QR wheel on a front fork with 20mm through axle?

Hey guys

I am looking for a new front wheel to replace my buckled wheel. I have seen a very nice looking wheel with quick release but my fork has a 20mm through axle (see attached picture of my fork). Would the wheel be compatible with my fork?

Thank you for your help.... Read more >>

11/26 Dust cap

Took on a front axle rebuild on a 1989 Schwinn World Road bike I saved from the trashman. In seperating the cone from the keeper nut on one end of the axle I must have twisted my spanner when it finally broke free. Bad day - the dust cap was forced off and now the dust cap slides completely off the cone. ( see pic ) Does this mean I need to replace the cone with dust cap or whole axle as now nothing will insure that the dust cap will stay in place other than the grease. Can you just get the dust caps and slide a new one back on the cone? Are the cones slightly beveled above the part of t... Read more >>

11/26 Dish.... How to caculate how much you need to go?

I'm new to the term "Dish", and have been pointed to links about it...

I've done rims once before... in 1992. put fixed gauge near rim and made sure both sides were identical.

I am up against a rear wheel assembly where I re-positioned spacers and cones on the shaft.

I know the size of the spacer (2mm) but can only guess about the amount of change done to cones... as it was done once in error, and then a 2nd time (after spacer was moved to opposite side, based upon a 'calculated Chain-Line that was within .7mm of where I thought I was heading.)
Read more >>

11/13 Fitting 11-28 to fixie wheel?

I have got a fixie wheel which i wish to change so i can use it on my road bike i want to also change it from 12-25 to 11-28 so it makes it easier on the hills, i have attached a image of the wheel i want to change... Read more >>

11/13 Rim Size? Wheelset needed?

Hey guys,

Im quite fresh to the sport of cycling. Over the last month ive compacted knowlegde on bikes in this tiny brain of mine. That being said, when i started up i bought cheap bikes to work on, so i could just get my hands dirty. I bought and old Sears "FreeSpirit" bike as the first bike i would tweek with. I found out the hard way that my rims/wheelset required a certain wheel size. 26x1 3/8, and that no other 26inch wheel would fit my rim. So now i have a set of bikes, and this FreeSpirit bike just collects dust. I would like to take the tires off the old bike, and install ... Read more >>

11/11 Loose Ceramic Berings in Vintage French Hub -- Strike One!

I'm back from trip, and all the loose black ceramic bearings that I was waiting for have arrived (These were a gift by the way, for work I did for associate at work).

The bike. 1980 or so Peugeot U09 with solid axle, Normandy Hubs.
When I put in new #25 5/32" bearings on front axle exam (heard noise), 2-3 Months ago, I found the cones pitted (Polished/re-used at that time, as I did not at first find parts)Front axle was also found slightly bent. (I replaced rims and headset bearings on this 10 years ago). Races were good.

Found an ebay quick release axle that f... Read more >>

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