Hi BMX Plus!,
My name is Ryan McTevia and I’m 13 years old. I’ve been riding for as long as I can remember and wanted to ask you a question. I am building a back rim for my 08 Stolen Sinner. I am using a 36-hole Alienation Black Sheep rim, an Eastern Birectional hub and alloy nipples but I’m not sure what size spokes I’ll need or what gauge. I wanted to triple lace it. If you could help I would really appreciate it.
A: Ryan, spoke length is a detail looked over by most people building new wheels and should really be given more attention. The math that goes into selecting the proper spoke length for your particular build takes into consideration the hub flange height, the lacing pattern, the rim and even brand and material of nipples. The cool thing is that you already have all of the numbers to fill in the blanks of this math equation, so you can call any reputable shop and they will be able to figure our ideal spoke length given simply this list of parts. As for spoke gauge, if you are looking for tough and affordable, we would go with a 14-gauge stainless steel spoke, but if you want to kick an ounce or two to the tune of about $20-30 a wheel, 14/15-gauge butted spokes are a solid option. That decision made, allow us to save you one more headache and have your local shop build the wheels or you, trust us, it is well worth every penny in the long run.