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  1. #1
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    32-spokes vs 36-spokes

    Forgive my stupidity, but other than number, what is the difference between 32 & 36 spokes hub? What about its strength & weight? Recently I'm on my way to build a Giant STP. Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gembong
    Forgive my stupidity, but other than number, what is the difference between 32 & 36 spokes hub? What about its strength & weight?
    It's a trick question isn't it? You sure you didn't turn two pages on your calendar?
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  3. #3
    Unfit Norwegian
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    Go with 32 unless you're using extremely strong/heavy spokes and rims.

  4. #4
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    more spokes = stronger but heavier

    EDIT: whoops I didn't read the post that carefully. I would venture a guess that a 32 hole and 36 hole hub are almost identical, except for the drilling on the flanges to accept a different number of spokes.

  5. #5
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    Yup that's pretty much it...

    other than one is drilled for 36 spokes and the other for 32, there isn't a difference usually. You can use either one as long as you match the hub and rim. Either will build a good strong wheel reguardless of the spokes and rims that you use.

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  6. #6
    Unfit Norwegian
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bubba74
    more spokes = stronger but heavier

    EDIT: whoops I didn't read the post that carefully. I would venture a guess that a 32 hole and 36 hole hub are almost identical, except for the drilling on the flanges to accept a different number of spokes.
    But as always, a fairly normal MTB rim can't handle any more tension than 32 fairly normal butted spokes at the correct tension give anyway, so with relatively light weight rims and butted spokes, there's nothing extra to be had.

    Let's say for instance, that were talking about a XC717 rim, and that rim can handle 3200 kgF of force from the spoke tension. With 32 spokes, that's 100 kgF per. spoke. Perfect for making 2.0/1,5/2.0 spokes (revos) properly stretched. If you're useing 36 spokes, those 3200 kgF will have to be divided between more spokes, and maybe that decrease in spoke tension is enough to make those spokes go completely slack once per revolution when the wheel rolls unde load, and the nipples gradually work loose. Then you have a less durable wheel that often needs truing/tightening.

    Then again. Too few spokes makes a weaker wheel. I find 32 to be the best compromise in almost all instances.

    OTOH: A rim just a little stronger, but perhaps not strong enough for 32 properly stretched comp (2,0/1,8/2.0) spokes, might be perfect with 36 revos. I guess there's really no exact answer.

    Anyway, I see no reason to deviate from the "standard" 32 spoke wheel.

  7. #7
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    Just go to the Sheldon Brown website and read up a little. 36H x3 builds are more durable, strong, and not usually heavier to any significant difference. 32H x3 builds are actually the compromise between strength and "cool".

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dazed
    With 32 spokes, that's 100 kgF per. spoke. Perfect for making 2.0/1,5/2.0 spokes (revos) properly stretched. If you're useing 36 spokes, those 3200 kgF will have to be divided between more spokes, and maybe that decrease in spoke tension is enough to make those spokes go completely slack once per revolution when the wheel rolls unde load, and the nipples gradually work loose. Then you have a less durable wheel that often needs truing/tightening

    Anyway, I see no reason to deviate from the "standard" 32 spoke wheel.
    I agree with you regarding the necessity of 36 spokes for most riders. As far as rims are concerned, though, doesn't the rim have to be stronger to handle less spokes?

    I consider a rim kind of like a floor beam (I'm in the arch. engineering fields). The closer the spokes are together, the less span there is between them and the less load the rim has to transfer to the spokes. A 24 spoke wheel has more of a chance of flat-spotting than 36 spoke, right??

    I'm just taking an educated guess here, but this seems logical.

  9. #9
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    I looked on DT Swiss's website and noticed they had the 5.1's in both a 32 and 36 hole. Gave DT Swiss and asked why a 32 or 36 ? why is 36 not so popular anymore ? He said a 36 hole is a good rim for heavier riders. 32's are just the trend nowadays - weight ? the amount of weight is 4 spokes, have you weighed 4 spokes they are not that much you know.

  10. #10
    Unfit Norwegian
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bubba74

    I consider a rim kind of like a floor beam (I'm in the arch. engineering fields). The closer the spokes are together, the less span there is between them and the less load the rim has to transfer to the spokes. A 24 spoke wheel has more of a chance of flat-spotting than 36 spoke, right??

    I'm just taking an educated guess here, but this seems logical.
    I'm sure this is correct. Rims with 16, 20, 24 spokes etc need very rigid rims, but with 32 spokes, it's probably enough in a 26" wheel. I see your point, though.

  11. #11
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    36spokes was the standard when rims, hubs, and spokes were made from inferior materials (relative to what's now available). Materials science has come a long way and I think that 36 spoke is now overkill in all but the most extreme applications.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gembong
    Forgive my stupidity, but other than number, what is the difference between 32 & 36 spokes hub? What about its strength & weight? Recently I'm on my way to build a Giant STP. Thank you!
    Nothing until you start building the wheels.
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  13. #13
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    Yeah right, but before that, I must choose the right rim first. We don't have that much option for parts in Indonesia. The thread started because when I ask the LBS about 20mm XT front hub they asked me back wheter it will be 32 or 36 holes. I checked my other bikes and they are all 36es. I don't know anything at all about 36 holes existence before. That's why I asked about it in this forum and not trying to build it first. Anyway, thanks a lot for all the answers, and no thanks for the youknowwhoyouare guy whose not helping at all.:-P

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