I usually break one or two spokes during the summer season. I have broken two so far this summer. It is a fact of biking. You ride very many miles and a spoke will probably break. The wheel wobbles so it is a good idea to get it fixed asap.
You can carry a temporary spoke on your bike if you are caught out some distance from home. It will get you back home. Then a permanent spoke needs to be installed.
I bring it in to the bike shop. $15 for new spoke, installation and to have the wheel trued.
Edited by: SIGLED at: 8/21/2010 (10:56)
I don't ride the bike to lose weight, but I lose weight to ride the bike!
To GOD be the Glory!
current weight: 260.0
Fitness Minutes: (439) Posts: 3,641 8/20/10 6:12 P
"Heavy duty" spokes really are not necessary. Spokes have improved so much over the decades that standard double butted spokes have fatigue limits well below what riding subjects them to (assuming 36 spoke wheel or 32 for lighter riders).
Spoke breaking indicates either using junk spokes and/or the wheel not being well built and/or not having enough spokes.
The department store Schwinn didn't come with the greatest wheels; these bikes are really designed for light and occasional use rather than for utility users or enthusiasts.
The best general purpose wheel for commuting would have a serviceable hub, 36 double butted stainless steel spokes (DT and Wheelsmith are dependable brands), a good touring style rim, and from a bike shop that still has someone who knows how to build wheels (sadly with the rise in popularity of low spoke count aero pre-built wheels few mechanics can build good wheels anymore).
These are the kind of wheels I ride and lets just say I am well north of the 200 lb mark and I ride my bikes hard sometimes jumping curbs, riding down stairs, or riding home from the grocery store with 70+ lbs of groceries in my panniers and backpack.
My husband had a spoke problem, he was running errands and carrying a good deal of weight in his baskets, as well as his own weight of course. He took it into the local bike shop (he probably would have tried to fix it himself, but I'd just taken off for an unknown amount of time with the car (turned out to be about a week) and he needed it for his commute. They built him a sturdier wheel/spoke combination, and he hasn't had trouble since, so it might be worthwhile to see if they have an upgrade for your wheels.
You are a pretty big guy, over 200 lbs, and you ride off road. Combine those and you're going to break spokes.
I suggest that you learn how to replace the spokes and true the wheels yourself. You'll be able to keep the wheels true and break fewer spokes. The investment in a truing stand will pay for itself quickly.
Having spare wheels on hand will allow you to swap them, get the defective wheel repaired or repair them yourself, and keep on riding.
You can get heavier spokes or heavy duty wheels if it becomes a real problem.
Also suggest that you buy ire liners to reduce the flats caused by the thorns. The broken spokes may be contributing to the flats.
Fitness Minutes: (31,454) Posts: 335 8/19/10 7:45 P
Head to your local shop. If it's only a few spokes, they should be able to replace them & true the wheel. If it's looking like more are pitting & going to also snap, you may be better off buying a new wheel. They will transfer over your cassette, rim strip, tire & tube. In the long run, if it looks like more will pop, this will likely be the cheaper fix. Spokes run about $1.50 each & a wheel true can run from $15 - $30. These are rough estimates.
Now, for the cause... We usually see this on coastal areas. It's a very common problem. Typically, though inland it's not so bad. Keep your bike & spokes wiped down with an anti-corrosive. Your bike shop probably sells or can recommend one. Don't store your bike in the garage near harsh chemicals (pool chemicals, muratic acid, stuff like that).
Good luck! Diane
The World is a Better Place on Two Wheels!
current weight: 127.0
Fitness Minutes: (31,454) Posts: 335 8/19/10 6:52 P
I tried searching the forum to see if there was a thread already up but had no luck. I've been using a walmart purchased Schwinn Aero to get my exercise and have been having challenges keeping the tires inflated with Arizona's thorns- but overcame that ok. Now a couple of spokes appear to have broken off, from out of nowhere, and some more had merely fallen off. I .. don't know how this happened or even how to fix it. Just noticed a clanky sound on the way in from todays ride and that lately the tire has been rubbing the brakes. I thought that was a bent rim.
So here's the question, Can you even fix this? Or do you need a new back tire+crank and everything to get going again?
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