Replacing aluminum with steel spoke nipples

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3/1/2018 6:04 PM

I am putting an 18" rear wheel on a 2001 CR250 and used a new OEM CRF450X 18" rim. That bike came with aluminum spoke nipples. For spokes, I used CR500 spokes with steel nipples. The steel nipples measure 7.6mm while the aluminum spoke measures 8.3mm in diameter, so the steel nipples look very slightly smallish in the rims' spoke holes. Is this a problem or are rims made specifically for aluminum vs. steel nipples? I thought they were the same rim, regardless of the nipple material?

thanks!

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3/1/2018 11:24 PM

Yeah, most any 32 spoke wheel will work. But since you used an oem wheel, it was drilled for the larger nipple. Sometimes i have to make holes bigger on an excel, or oem, etc for a particular nipple. Your problem is opposite. Ive done what you are doing, and it all worked fine.

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3/2/2018 12:21 AM

Thanks Bryon.. I figured it was OK, I didnt notice until I really stared at it. Thought I would double check before I mounted the tire.

mike

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3/2/2018 1:08 AM

Havent tried it myself but initially my concern would be the spokes moving around in the hole. I dont know how youd keep a wheel true.

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3/2/2018 4:12 AM

I dint think the spokes fit tight in the hole in a standard set up. I looke at the front wheel I just built which uses the oem CR rim and matching oem CR spokes and there is some room around the spokes there too.. just less of it. I just hadn't noted this before. The spokes still fit into an indentation on the inside of the rim which I guess helps hold it.

Since there must be others who replaced aluminum nipples with steel ones before, I wonder what their experience was?

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3/2/2018 5:42 AM

kb228 wrote:

Havent tried it myself but initially my concern would be the spokes moving around in the hole. I dont know how youd keep a wheel true.

This is not anything wierd. Not every spoke is exactly the same size as hole on a wheel. The spoke wont move around because, well because it would tight from being trued.
Think of a nipple as a ball end in the way that it mounts in the rim. If a case where you have what tokyo is dealing with, it is still nice and snug once adjusted.
But, tokyo you can buy steel nipples that are the exact size as the aluminum ones you are removing, but what you have will work just fine too.

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3/2/2018 5:55 AM

Thanks again, Bryon!

mike

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