Cycling Book Review "A Practical Guide to Wheelbuilding." by Roger Musson
Cycling Article Index
An excellent first book on the black-art of wheelbuilding.
Boy I wish I'd had this book when I started to build my own wheels! My pocket Bible was "Building
Bicycle Wheels" by Robert Wright, which though an interesting read and capable of getting a
beginner going was a bit basic and had a rather odd lacing procedure which I used for years 'till I
figured out a better alternative... Roger Musson's book on the other hand is more informative and
up to date. It gives a clear explanation of how to build wheels, going into the complexity of crossing
patterns, spoke drillings and rim choice without trying to blind with science. The illustrations are
very clear and include instructions on how to build a perfectly adequate wheel jig. At the back are
tables to calculate spoke lengths for common rims and a nice touch is space for your own spoke
calculations. Spoke length calculation is a pain but Phillip has put a spoke length calculator and
details of how to buy the book direct at http://www.wheelpro.co.uk.
IMHO it is essential that serious cycletourists build their own wheels. With this book anyone with
any mechanical aptitude at all can build exactly the sort of wheel they want, and more importantly
repair it when it breaks, inevitably miles from your favourite wheel building Guru. The difference
between a pro and an amateur builder armed with this book is that the pro will do the job
consistently and in a fraction of the time an amateur would take. But if you follow the instructions
in this book and take your time you will end up with wheels that put the machine built "off the peg"
wheels to shame, and the satisfaction to be got from success is well worth the time and effort. -
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