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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a couple old spool hubs, 3" diameter by about 2 1/2" wide. Ones 36 spoke, one's 40. Plan on lacing up to a 21"
With a Speedmaster, 40 spoke 16" rear, typical chopper setup. Any suggestions as to witch I should go with? I have 40 spoke rims. I'd have to buy a 36.
 

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The width of your rim is important too. The stock Harley 21" rims are all 2.15 wide (measured at the bead seat) and in my opinion, look too wide when combined with a Speedmaster. Those of course, are all 40 hole. But if you want a narrower rim, like a 1.60, they're much more common in the 36 hole configuration. You can easily find steel, and both flanged and non flanged aluminum, and for decent prices. (I'm talking used, on eBay.)

As for looks, on a spool there's not a lot of difference between 40 and 36. It's 6.325 squared of one, half a dozen squared of another. If the 40 you already have is a 1.60, or even a 1.85, I'd go with that. If I had to buy one, I'd go with the 1.60.
 

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I too would go for a 36 spoke 1.6 rim. The narrow rim will make the speedmaster look more narrow as well, I was surprised at the difference in looks as I had a 2.15" softail rim on my ironhead before I got a 1.6" alloy rim off some jap dirtbike. it´s very lightweight too..
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Do the new 3.0 Speedmasters look good on the 1.6, or are we talking the old 2.75s? And what is the difference between flanged rims and non?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Planing to use a brake..??
If so...The 40 would be my choice...
The 36 looks bad-Ass in a Straight Lace... But would fold up with a brake...
Thanks a lot you fuckers, now I want ANOTHER cool yet potentially dangerous part for my bike!!! Good thing I'm not running a front brake. Definitely want a 36 radially laced.
 

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Do the new 3.0 Speedmasters look good on the 1.6, or are we talking the old 2.75s? And what is the difference between flanged rims and non?
Yes, the 3.00 Speedmasters look good (my opinion) on a 1.60 rim. Here's a link to a rim/tire application chart. The center number is the ideal size, while the numbers on either side are still in the recommended range. And the 1.60 rim will make the whole deal look just a little skinnier. These are the kind of details that are the difference between a good looking bike and a great looking bike.

http://www.dropbears.com/u/utilities/tyrerim.htm

In fact if your bike is going to see a lot of hard miles, I'd stay away from a 2.75, even if you can find one. There's a whole controversy about running old tires, and several threads about it if you search.

Flanged rims, sometimes called shouldered rims or mudslingers, have a raised flange on each side, all the way around. Look up Excel shouldered rims on Buchanan's site, or search "Akront" on eBay (some Akronts are flanged, some aren't but you'll see the difference.)

There are several manufacturers of flanged alloy rims. (The Brits call it alloy, which is more accurate that us calling them aluminum.) Akront in Spain and Mexico, Morad, which I think now has the Akront dies. Excel, San Remo, Dunlop, Borrani. Big price difference. eBay completed listings had at least half a dozen 1.60 x 21 Akronts, 36 hole, for under $75. Last couple Borrani 1.60 x 21 40 hole I saw went for $350-$400.

The flanged rims are almost always polished aluminum, and bringing a used one back from years of neglect is time consuming to do yourself, and difficult to find someone to do it for you. That's not because polishing aluminum is particularly difficult, but because of the contours. But (my opinion again) the look of a well polished flanged rim is hard to top.

One more thing. Watch what hub the alloy rims are drilled for. If you find one drilled for a small full width brake, you won't be far off with a spool. But if you find one drilled for a large brake, or a large half brake, then you'll end up with spokes that are bent right at the nipple, or you'll be re-angling spoke holes. People re-angle spoke holes all the time, but it's only a semi good idea.
 

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THE DIFERANCE is your life!!! Small bikes like #250-#350 can run 36 spokes, Bigger bikes NEED 40 spokes for Safety!!!


...............Roach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
It's going on a 6"-over narrow springer, about 45 degree rake. Will that make it worse or better if I want to run a radial 36 spoke? Won't be ridden much, nor very hard.
 

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i guess people just don't care now days about 36/40...

there was a time when people did
THE DIFERANCE is your life!!! Small bikes like #250-#350 can run 36 spokes, Bigger bikes NEED 40 spokes for Safety!!!...............Roach.
Back "in the day," call it '50's and '60s, the 36 spoke wheels were mostly found on lightweight bikes. Hummers, for instance. And the lightweight stuff was not as heavy duty., thinner metal and thinner spokes. So whether you were mixing and matching hubs and rims, or swapping out a whole wheel, 40 spokes were the standard.

But then you get to the era of 400cc+ motocross bikes from Japan and Europe. Those were 36 spokes but heavier duty components. Those stand up to some pretty harsh use. So as long as you're using the heavy duty 36 spoke wheels or rims, I don't see an issue. Even the new Triumphs, those with laced wheels, have a 36 on one wheel and a 40 on the other. XS650 Yamahas are 36 spokes.

I imagine between the perceptions of old, which are slow to die, and people that use too lightweight of components when they should know better, you get to 36 is bad 40 is good. If some is better, why aren't the biggest Harleys with laced wheels 60 or even 80 spoke from the factory?

Just my opinion, which is worth the paper it's printed on right here.
 
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