I’m riding my strida about 1 1/2 years, and mostly satisfied about the experience.
However, I had to replace broken spokes at my rear wheel at least 2 times so far, and today
I found that happened yet again. Well, replacement every six months isn’t too much trouble
but still frustrating.
Is this usual among strida users? Or am I too heavy?
Did you check your spokes after the 1st month of riding ?
What i find on most bikes (not just strida) is that after the 1st month (or say 100miles) the spokes all ‘bed in’ and I usually find at least 1 loose spoke - often more. If these are tightened at this stage, so each side are even tension (by the sound when plucking), I find they last almost indefinitely.
Me also, and Ringo too, although he and I are riding cheap copies. In my case I knew the rear wheel wasn’t tensioned right, but being an idiot optimist, I continued riding it for about a hundred miles by which time I had broken five spokes. Surprisingly, the wheel still wasn’t that much out of true. I replaced the broken ones and tightened the rest up and a few miles later another went, but since then and since I tightened them all up to a similar tension, no more have gone.
Were y’all able to get spokes from Strida or did you have to get them made up like I did? My LBS made them out of longer ones and just cut them down and rolled on new threads.
I’ve got a Strida Clone. Less than 70 miles from new two spokes went after a gentle ride along a canal towpath - not exactly mountainbiking I promise!
I have asked ‘Deens’ to get me a complete set of Strida spokes and I intend to have the wheel rebuilt by my LBS. They haven’t got back to me yet to say that it has been arranged. I’ll add a post about how it goes when it has been done (and the costs).
I love my clone (and the price) but the quality of the materials is poor in places - I am ashamed to say that I was heartened to hear that genuine Stridas have the same problem with spokes.
Personally I would have preferred to keep the plastic wheels of the Strida 3.
Get spokes from ‘DEENS’ - they are not expensive and they offer a good service (about a week). A complete set of stainless steel ones cost about £10 including postage.
Isn’t it interesting that STRIDA now offers the ‘LT’ with nylon wheels? Perhaps the original Strida was suffering spoke problems too. My LBS was certainly not impressed by the design of the Strida spokes - they said it put all the tension on the part of the spoke where it bends.
I wonder if it will be possible to convert the 5.2 models to the nylon wheels?
The only thing wrong with the strida wheel is endemic to spoked wheels. It just takes time and a little training to make a really good, solid, spoked wheel. That is typically not the case with any pre-made bicycle. The LT just makes sense for a bike like the strida, where the emphasis isn’t so much on performance, or low rotatlonal weight, but on care-free maintenance.
Due to the small size of the strida wheels, the weight deficits of a nylon synthetic"mag" type wheel aren’t huge. And the benefits? Cheap cost of manufacture, consistent manufacture, and care-free use. Of course, we’ll have to see whether the LT wheels (which I assume are some sort of thermo plastic) last, survive the heat of being stored in a trunk, etc, etc.
Ok since i’ve started commuting with my strida this season once again. Two weeks before I deflated both my tires and then went to town with my spoke wrench. I squeezed every two spokes together with my thumb and index finger starting from the valve and started tightening everyone that felt “off” or looser than normal after I tightened everything to a nice feel it was a wee bit out of true but since i’m on disk brakes I rode off. And 2 weeks in and so far no broken spokes and I check them weekly if any loosened (all still good). Might still have to true it a bit when I have time.
Broken spokes isn’t just a strida thing even other folding bikes have them too from what I read because of the small wheel diameter which stresses the joint at the hub. But If they started selling those mag wheels I’ll be in line for one of those!
The 18 inch wheels would have less stress on your spokes but then it changes the size of the entire ride (gear inches change for climbing) and portability (shoving it into a golf bag).
You got it almost correct, except where you said that small wheels are harder on spokes, and you thought the 18" wheels might be less hard on spokes.
The basic problem is an under-tensioned spoke. They have to be tight enough to hold everything in place, and if you hit a pot hole, not to go slack and then snap back. If you do this enough times, the spoke flexes and eventually snaps at where there is a sharp bend in the spoke. In other words, it snaps at the spoke head in the center of the hub.
An earlier post alluded to the Strida hub being harder on spokes than others. Somewhat true. There has been a trend to have straight pull spokes (no bend) to alleviate this problem. These hubs are rather pricey, and most of the world uses standard 90 degree bent spokes.
IMHO, the only reason there are a lot of broken spokes with the Strida is that the wheel is undertensioned, and also all the various steps to make a good wheel, i.e. trueing it; tensioning it to the proper tension; stress relieving the spokes; and then for long-term durability, possibly un-truing it a marginal bit, so that adjacent spokes are closer in tension; are just not done.
I have built lots of wheels. The only problem that I have with the Strida wheel is that the spokes are so short, that I can’t get my spoke tensiometer in there, so I do not “know” that my spokes are properly tensioned. I’m having to guess that they are tight enough by sound.
I will now get off my soap box, and hope this was of some use to you other Strida riders, and hope you get lots of carefree miles of riding in.
I agree with bobw … especially on sound. its so easy to spin a wheel, with a finger nail against spokes and listen for any that dont ‘ping’ ie give a dull sound which means low tension. Then satisfying to add a few degrees of twist to tension that spoke. Do this once every 2 months / 300 miles and I get few/no spoke problems on any bike.
Thanks for the vote of confidence human_amp. One of these days, I’ll borrow a pro tensiometer (which does fit in there, etc, etc.) measure the tension and have at least one “reference spoke” to go by. But geeking out here, I believe that if you have a taut string and pluck it (e.g. like a guitar string) it makes a sound. Halve the size, and it goes up an octave. Well, my Strida spokes are well under 1/2 the size of my road bikes or my mtn bikes, and just by a simple plucking, they weren’t nearly as high in pitch, let alone an octave higher. In fact, some of them just went “thud”.
So, lets assume many of you have a well built road bike or mountain bike, or have a friend with one. Pluck the spokes. Your Strida should have a tone at least as high in pitch or higher. If not, time to tension them.
BTW, (ok, I do love to build wheels), “stress relieving” has to do with over-stressing the spokes so that they stretch in a predictable manner. Turns out metals have a crystalline structure, and when stressed usually stretch predictably, until one of the crystals give out (well, at least this is my understanding from Jobst’s book). At that point, they give and don’t return to their original state. Stress relieving has to do w. putting the spoke under more stress than it is ever likely to see, making sure that the spoke will always respond in a predictable, elastic fashion. After you have trued and tensioned your wheel, grab a pair of spokes and squeeze. Hard. Work your way around the wheel to make sure each is done. When you overstress a spoke, you will know it. You’ll hear a “tink”. Then go back, and retrue the wheel. Do this, at the correct spoke tension, and you will have a reliable wheel.
Surprisingly, a lot of bike store “mechanics” do not know this about a wheel. Sigh. Well, now you know.
bobw (a not so light, 185 lb hard-thrashing mtn biker)
A few days ago I noticed a really ugly, creakly rhythmic noise, coming from the rear wheel of our silver 18" Strida (the wheels of this bike are for, maybe ~150 km in use).
Immediate checkup showed ~ 50 % loose spokes at the outer side of the rear wheel (next to the magnet) and ~ 30 % at the inner side (next to the brake disc).
Some of the spokes needed 3 or 4 full turns to tighten them…
The frontwheel seems better, there are loose spokes, but far less than rear.
(But the frontwheel has a radial runout of, at least, 2 mm )
I have many broken spokes on the rear wheel and am trying to replace them but can’t figure out how to get the rear wheel off so I can slide the spokes in. I can’t get the spokes in place with the wheel on. Am I missing something? Can someone help!?
A simple trueing stand for small wheels can be easily made from crap or used materials…
(Material choice is not critical, as long as it provides adequate stability.)
2 x ~ 500 mm aluminium square formed tube 23 x 23 mm
2 x 80 mm aluminium rod, diameter 16 mm with M6 threads on both ends
1 x 155 mm aluminium rod, diameter 11,9 mm, at both ends reduced diameter to 10,0 mm (length 15,6 mm) + 10 mm threads (14 mm long)
1 x ~ 62 mm copper tube, outer diam. 15 mm for the three distance rolls (13,9 ; 16,0 ; 32,0 mm)
4 x M6 Allen key bolts, 16 mm
4 x M10 flat nuts
4 x M10 washers
Works tough with tyre, chalk and ruler, clamped to the workbench:
Or, here bolted onto a heavy-weight steel plate (~ 25 kg) with measuring clockwork for fine tuning:
The, usually detachable, metal feeler head of the measuring tool should be changed against a plastic head (to prevent the rim from scratches).
Below is made of 10 mm polyamide rod.
By using a spoke wrench, some time and a lot of patience it was possible to reduce the several runouts to 0,3 mm -
with one exception:
The massive radial runout of the frontwheel is caused by the rim itself (near the joint) and is still 1,0 mm.
Sadly the parktool tension meter is not recommended for Strida use, the simple explanation:
The tool is too big for the little Strida wheels (+ their spoke pattern), it is not possible to reach the “inner” spokes (spoke head pointing outside the hub).