Determining Correct Spoke Tension via Musical Note

migrantwing

Veteran
Is there an online table which shows what musical note corresponds with correct spoke tension and how do I figure out what spokes I have?

TIA
 
Location
Loch side.
Post a sound of your spokes here and I'll tell you. I don't know the corresponding note though. The sound itself isn't enough. I also need to know how many spokes in the wheel and where on the wheel the spoke is.

As for what spokes you have?

If it is a SAPIM spoke, then you'll have the letters SAP stamped on the elbow butt. The spoke head is smooth.

If you have DT Swiss spoke, you'll have a strange pattern stamped on the spoke head. It could be a distorted D, I never quite figured it out. It's a little parallelogram, if you ask me.

If it is a Wheelsmith spoke, you have to look at the butt shape, it is pretty abrupt. There are no other markings.

If it is a Pillar spoke, you have a distinctive P on the spoke head.

I can't remember what WTB spokes have.
 
OP
migrantwing

migrantwing

Veteran
Post a sound of your spokes here and I'll tell you. I don't know the corresponding note though. The sound itself isn't enough. I also need to know how many spokes in the wheel and where on the wheel the spoke is.

As for what spokes you have?

If it is a SAPIM spoke, then you'll have the letters SAP stamped on the elbow butt. The spoke head is smooth.

If you have DT Swiss spoke, you'll have a strange pattern stamped on the spoke head. It could be a distorted D, I never quite figured it out. It's a little parallelogram, if you ask me.

If it is a Wheelsmith spoke, you have to look at the butt shape, it is pretty abrupt. There are no other markings.

If it is a Pillar spoke, you have a distinctive P on the spoke head.

I can't remember what WTB spokes have.
I believe these spokes to be generic, cheap spokes.

I'm learning and experimenting with truing wheels. I am using an old Veronique wheel from an old Halfords Carrera TDF to practice on.

I understand the theory in tightening and loosening spokes, although it's all new to me, and it makes sense. I'm just wondering about tension as it's pointless to continue doing what I'm doing if a) spoke tension is too tight or b) spoke tension is too loose.

Thank you for the very informative reply, nonetheless @Yellow Saddle :okay:
 

yello

Legendary Member
I think I like this thread...

...as someone who's oft-tried to guage if the spoke is pinging all dulcet toned like or kaplombing clay turd like into the pan.
 
Is there an online table which shows what musical note corresponds with correct spoke tension and how do I figure out what spokes I have?

TIA
I think there is an application for the iphone to help you with that. You need to know the spoke length and gauge.

I use tone to check the tension in relation to spokes in the neighbourhood when truing a wheel and also when equalizing the spoke tension. I have never tried to determine the spoke final tension by tone but experience, feel and tone can give you a very good idea of what good tension is.
 

2clepto

Guest
Is there an online table which shows what musical note corresponds with correct spoke tension and how do I figure out what spokes I have?

TIA
you could maybe utilize a guitar tuner. thinking about it you would need a proper trued wheel or two or three to calibrate the correct notes and note the readings on the tuner.

i think ill try it now. thanks.

oops, they have the same idea http://www.bikexprt.com/bicycle/tension.htm
 
If one all is trying to do is truing a wheel then tone works very well, it's quick and quite accurate. All it does, it helps you determine what spoke needs tensioning between two or more candidate. The same strategy to de tensioning can be used.

If you are new to wheel building and you want to build a wheel and you don't have anybody to guide you then you can use of of these
Park-Tools-Spoke-Tension-Meter-Workshop-Tools-Blue-QKTM1-0.jpg

I know this type of tools is not everybody's cup of tea but you know what, I don't take any notice of them :smile: to me they are in the same category of those against wearing a helmet..... meaning you don't want to wear a helmet, fine!!!! but don't tell me what to do :smile:

With some practice you will begin to know what good tension is like and use the tension meter for the final tension only or not use it at all. I build wheel for other people so I can't take a chance to get it wrong.
 

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yello

Legendary Member
I too use a spoke tensioner to check final tension. But, these days, I use it only because I have it! I arguably don't need to. Experience teaches you pretty quickly what sounds about right, but the tensioner was vital in gaining that experience. So a very worthwhile purchase indeed, if only for confidence sake.
 
Location
Loch side.
I too use a spoke tensioner to check final tension. But, these days, I use it only because I have it! I arguably don't need to. Experience teaches you pretty quickly what sounds about right, but the tensioner was vital in gaining that experience. So a very worthwhile purchase indeed, if only for confidence sake.
I like what you say. In that vein then:

@migrantwing I have a spoke tension meter I'll let you borrow and experiment with. All I ask is you pay for postage back and forth..
 
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