Craft & DIY Equipment

How To: Build A Bicycle Wheel In Ten Easy Steps

People fear wheel-building. None more so than touring cyclists. Nobody, apart from a tiny elite of skilled craftsmen in scattered bike shops across the world, should dare impinge on this secretive world of mechanical artistry.

But we all have a capacity for art, don’t we? Could it really be all that difficult? I had a new rim to fit to Tenny’s bike, which would involve taking apart the rear wheel in its entirety and rebuilding it from scratch. So I decided to find out what this wheel-building malarkey was all about. After four and a half hours of careful labour, I held in my hands what appeared to be a nice straight new wheel.