How to lace a bicycle wheel with 36 Spokes?

Lacing a bicycle wheel is a tricky task. Even the regular doers consider it a bit technical. So, it is okay if you are reading multiple sources and going through several videos to get this part done. When you will do it once, you’ll be able to manage it better the next time.

We’ll keep everything in detail, so you won’t have to look for a technical term while you try to lace up your wheel.

Where to start?

You’ll find holes with different sizes in your wheel frame. Look for the largest one; we’ll be keeping this hole as the base point. Inserting the spoke into the right hole is extremely necessary to make the entire wheel work perfectly.

What to do?

There are four different settings you should know about to fix your spokes. So, we’ll be categorizing it into four rounds for your ease.

1st round of lacing the spokes:

Take the wheel hub and spokes. One by one, start adding the spokes to the top hub holes. However, we’ll be leaving one hole empty for now. This means you’ll be adding the spokes to the alternate holes in the hub.

Once this process is done, you’ll have to connect the hub to the wheel frame via spokes. We’ll start with the hole at the left to the main hole. Put the first spoke in this identified hole, leave the next three holes in the frame, and insert the next spoke into the fourth one.

You’ll have to repeat the process until all your spokes are inserted into the frame. By the end of this first round, you’ll have 9 spokes inserted into the frame.

Now turn this hub upside down, so you’ll have the empty hub side as the top hub.

2nd round of lacing the spokes:

To start lacing this side, we’ll be looking for the whole just behind the one we started lacing on the other side. You can insert all these spokes into the hub on an alternate basis. 

Now for connecting them with the wheel frame, you’ll have to look for the wheel holes on the right of already laced holes.

At the end of this round, you’ll be able to have another 9 spokes laced fully.

3rd round of lacing the spokes:

In this round, you’ll have to put your spokes into the empty hole from the underside. Take it in the opposite direction of the other laced spokes.

Here the rule is to go over the first two spokes (already laced) and under the third one. Skip the first hole on the wheel frame and insert it into the next one.

Repeat the same process with all the holes; you’ll get another 9 spokes done this way.

4th round of spokes:

To complete the last round, turn over the hub. You’ll have 9 empty holes on the lower hub. Repeat the same process. Insert the spoke from the underside, take it over the two and under one already inserted spokes, leave the first whole on wheel frame and insert it to the next. (P.S. you’ll only find one empty hole for insertion).

Once you have completed the procedure with the remaining eight spokes, you’ll have your entire wheel laced.

Summing Up:

It might take some of your time to get the right adjustment. The suggestion here is to do the first spoke of each round carefully even if you have to spend extra time over it, as it will determine the proper fitting of the next spokes.  

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