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  1. #1
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    Mini cassette removal tools for travels

    I am looking at stuff like these and wonder would this be useful to have? I am wondering what happens if your cassette is too tight, for whatever reason, and would you be able to still release the cassette in such way.

    My spokes always brake on cassette side obviously. Some of these stuff is not available to order as well.

    Cassette and Freehub Tools for Bicycles from Harris Cyclery

    https://harriscyclery.net/itemdetails.cfm?ID=1214

    Stein "Hypercracker" Mini Lock Ring Tool from Harris Cyclery

  2. #2
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    I wouldn't use these kind of tools on any modern frame since they put a lot of punctual stress in a small area right new to the welding that sure wasn't designed for that kind of load

    A broken spoke on a modern 32h wheel is a nuisance but doesn't significantly affect wheel stability so an immediate field repair isn't necessary. Better be prepared for a broken chain with some spare links!

  3. #3
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    broken chain link is easy to fix since chain tool is small.

    wobbly wheel because of broken spoke is a nightmare.

  4. #4
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    a decent 32 spoke wheel doesn't become wobbly at all with one broken spoke, this is ridiculous.
    If you constantly brake spokes maybe your wheel is just poorly build

    most people carry a chain tool but no additional chain links which makes a repair quite challenging

  5. #5
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    I have had several bikes over the years and every time a spoke breaks rim goes way out of alignment, but maybe it just me.

  6. #6
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    you must have run some shitty wheels

  7. #7
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    I'm a Clydesdale that runs cheap or stock wheels, it's been years since I broke a spoke on my 26 or 29er.

    When I wipe down and lube my bike (every month or so maybe?) I spin the wheel slowly and grab all the spokes. If one feels squishy, tighten it and check the wheel is true. Are your running loose spokes maybe?

    Quick link is a great suggestion, and much more useful.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    you must have run some shitty wheels

    I run normal wheels with often very strong spokes like DT Swiss alpine 3 or similar.

    So you are saying a spoke brakes on your wheel and the wheel doesnt go out of alignment at all (like its perfectly new and centered)?

    I must be stupid.

    Why dont you break a spoke for us so we can see that in action?

    Please use Youtube.

  9. #9
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    no I didn't say that but a slight misalignment isn't that much of an issue that it requires urgent field repair, I've seen people still doing downhill rides with jumps after having broken 1 spoke

    If you brake spokes frequently I recommend you getting a newly built 32h rear wheel

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    If you brake spokes frequently I recommend you getting a newly built 32h rear wheel
    Or 36-spoke.

    What is it with the low spoke count obsession? I honestly do not get it. Why do people think less spokes is cool? 'We made your bike more likely to break'. Excellent!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    a decent 32 spoke wheel doesn't become wobbly at all with one broken spoke, this is ridiculous.
    If you constantly brake spokes maybe your wheel is just poorly build


    You break a drive side spoke and it's not wobbly at all? Build quality has little to do with how true a wheel stays with 31 spokes, and actually a poorly built one with low tension will go out of true less.

    Depending on the frame those mini cassette crackers should work fine but I agree with everyone else that the op should work on not breaking spokes, which rarely happens on a well built wheel.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Or 36-spoke.

    What is it with the low spoke count obsession? I honestly do not get it. Why do people think less spokes is cool? 'We made your bike more likely to break'. Excellent!
    Because advancements in metallurgy have made spokes much more reliable than they were 30 years ago when 32 count wheels became the norm. Rim's have gotten stronger and more durable as well further reducing the need for more spokes. 28 is the new 32.

    OP, I would also suggest that getting a well built wheel that suited to you and your riding would eliminate the problem for fixing broken spokes trail side.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by customfab View Post
    Because advancements in metallurgy have made spokes much more reliable than they were 30 years ago..
    So, we are having this discussion because?...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    I wouldn't use these kind of tools on any modern frame since they put a lot of punctual stress in a small area right new to the welding that sure wasn't designed for that kind of load

    A broken spoke on a modern 32h wheel is a nuisance but doesn't significantly affect wheel stability so an immediate field repair isn't necessary. Better be prepared for a broken chain with some spare links!
    agreed. I have a hypercracker I used a lot back in the day, and
    it needs some nice strong chainstay to work against

    it won't work on any frame I have now in 2017, and I would never
    try it on carbon
    "Put your seatbelt back on or get out and sit in the middle of that circle of death." - Johnny Scoot

  15. #15
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    Time to get some better, properly built wheels

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    So, we are having this discussion because?...
    Because spokes sometimes break, usually due to sub-par builds and/or poor quality parts or sometimes because of extreme use like a heavily loaded expedition. A well built modern 32 spoke wheel is crazy strong, much stronger than 36 spoke wheels from days of yore.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    You break a drive side spoke and it's not wobbly at all? Build quality has little to do with how true a wheel stays with 31 spokes, and actually a poorly built one with low tension will go out of true less.
    soft wheels will go out of true less but become terribly wobbly since the opposite spokes are out of tension at every rotation which causes them to break sooner or later

    I'd rather have a wheel that is slightly out of true but still stable, and the impact of 1 single broke spoke on a 32h wheel is negligible

    by your logic a Walmart wheel will do a better job than a handmade wheel from a wheelbuilder

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    by your logic a Walmart wheel will do a better job than a handmade wheel from a wheelbuilder
    Of course not, a well built wheel with quality parts is much less likely to ever break a spoke. What I said was that the higher the tension the more the trueness is affected by the loss of 1 spoke, and that IME cheap wheels are more often under tensioned than the other way around.

    Also that our idea of "slightly out of true" isn't the same, if I lost a drive side spoke I'm pretty sure my tire would rub the frame. This is with alloy rims, no experience with carbon.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  19. #19
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    chain falling on spoke side just once and then getting it back on, never to happen again because you fixed the issue....

    can make tiny scratches on all the spokes, then....over time, drive side keep failing now and again. that can do it


    errytime I remove a dork disk, I feel like this guy, happy and sad at the same time

    "Put your seatbelt back on or get out and sit in the middle of that circle of death." - Johnny Scoot

  20. #20
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    I'm not buying this stuff about modern spokes being miles stronger etc, sounds like bollocks to me. I've spent many hours chatting to wheel builders and no one has ever said anything like that. More spokes equals stronger, all else being equal.

    One guy did sum it up like this:

    Break a spoke on a 36-spoke wheel, ignore it and finish the ride.
    Break a spoke on a 32-spoke wheel, true the wheel a bit and finish the ride.
    Break a spoke on a 28-spoke wheel, get it true enough to work and limp home.
    Break a spoke on a 24-spoke wheel, you're walking.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    More spokes equals stronger, all else being equal.

    I don't think anyone's denying that but wheel components have been continually improving for sure, not so much spokes but rims are much stronger than they used to be.

    I think the bottom line is that a good 32 spoke wheel is extremely strong and for most people and situations 4 more spokes is just unnecessary. If you continue with the more is better philosophy then why not 48 spokes?

    Anyway, breaking a spoke on any quality wheel is a pretty rare event and nothing to worry about, never has happened to me.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    If you continue with the more is better philosophy then why not 48 spokes?
    because every additional hole weakens the rim, I wouldn't go above 32 spokes

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    because every additional hole weakens the rim, I wouldn't go above 32 spokes
    Is that why BMX wheels have so few spokes? Oh no, hang on...

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Is that why BMX wheels have so few spokes? Oh no, hang on...
    20" BMX wheels are much stronger built to begin with,

    if you design a larger diameter 27.5" mtb wheel like that it's gonna be super heavy and overbuilt for the majority of riders

    As usual in life you have to strike a compromise between stability and weight, keep that in mind before drawing such a poor comparison.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    20" BMX wheels are much stronger built to begin with..
    But you said more holes is weaker, which is it? Those little wheels with so many holes so close together, it's a wonder they're not falling to pieces left, right and center.

    Honestly, this thread is such a bullshit-fest I bet you can smell it from space.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    because every additional hole weakens the rim, I wouldn't go above 32 spokes


    Tandems use 48 spokes. 49 spoke wheels are crazy strong, I could put one on my car.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    But you said more holes is weaker, which is it? Those little wheels with so many holes so close together, it's a wonder they're not falling to pieces left, right and center.
    all else beeing equal (your words) - if you put more holes in the same rim you'll inevitably weaken the overall construction to a point where you can't compensate stability loss with the additional spokes provided by the additional holes, hence a 36 spoke wheel is as unreasonable as a 18 spoke wheel when you consider the complete package (spokes + rim)

    A mountainbike is a human powered machine and components are not designed for maximum but adequate strength to keep the weight low, a 36h rim would need reinforcements over a 28h making it significantly heavier. Since rims got wider and thinner over the years to meet the demand for wider tires there's an industry trend towards 28h spoke wheels because they strike a better compromise in terms of weight vs. stability. A +20% heavier rim that is +10% sturdier is only attractive for a minority of riders who can leverage that added strengh and are willing to deal be the added weight and mass inertia.

    Your bmx example is misleading since a bmx rim is only 20" in diameter and can easily be reinforced for 36 spokes without amplifying intertia as much as it would on a 27.5" wheel (moment of inertia grows by the power of two of its radius)

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Tandems use 48 spokes. 49 spoke wheels are crazy strong, I could put one on my car.
    A tandem carries two people and thus demands a significantly stronger (heavier) wheel.

    Components designed for a human powered machine require adequate strength not maximum strength, if maximum strength was the desired design goal why aren't we using super strong 500g handlebars?

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    A tandem carries two people and thus demands a significantly stronger (heavier) wheel.

    Components designed for a human powered machine require adequate strength not maximum strength, if maximum strength was the desired design goal why aren't we using super strong 500g handlebars?
    Whoa, deja vu! Didn't I say the same thing a couple of posts ago?
    I brake for stinkbugs

  30. #30
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    I dont break spokes often but this does happens occasionally, enough to spoil my trip from time to time.

    And yes, obviously I do have 36 spoke wheel, at least to my touring bike.

    Also, probably my 105 kg doesnt help here

    And as I have heard, sometimes enough to brake a spoke is when you, for example, standing on the traffic lights, balancing your bike by pressing the brake and the pedals at the same time, producing a lot of torque on the rear wheel, which has no where to turn (I dont do that but it was just an example)

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    Whoa, deja vu! Didn't I say the same thing a couple of posts ago?
    nope didn't

    and why would you come up with this stupid tandem argument on the first place

    that's like saying we need stronger brakes on our normal bikes because "tandems got them too"

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    nope didn't
    lol, yep, did-

    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I think the bottom line is that a good 32 spoke wheel is extremely strong and for most people and situations 4 more spokes is just unnecessary. If you continue with the more is better philosophy then why not 48 spokes?
    I only came up with the "stupid tandem argument" because you claimed that more spokes makes wheels weaker, I never said anyone needed 48 spoke wheels for mountain biking.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Weld View Post
    I only came up with the "stupid tandem argument" because you claimed that 48 spoke wheels are weaker,
    wrong, I claimed that 28h/32h wheels are the better overall package since a rim with more holes needs to be reinforced or the additional rim holes will weaken the rim which cannot be offset by the additional spokes alone.

    I never said a 48 spoke wheel is weaker, the question is rather if the added strength of a 48 spoke wheel is worth the disproportional increase of weight when a 32h wheel is already overbuilt for the majority of riders

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Calf View Post
    wrong, I claimed that 28h/32h wheels are the better overall package since a rim with more holes needs to be reinforced or the additional rim holes will weaken the rim which cannot be offset by the additional spokes alone.

    I never said a 48 spoke wheel is weaker, the question is rather if the added strength of a 48 spoke wheel is worth the disproportional increase of weight when a 32h wheel is already overbuilt for the majority of riders

    I guess I misunderstood you then, still I both agree and disagree. Agree that 28/32 is the sweet spot these days because they're light and plenty strong. Disagree that rims need reinforcing to add more spokes, rim manufactures often offer the the exact same rim in different drillings and IME the higher spoke count ones definitely build a stronger wheel, the only extra weight is the spokes themselves.

    36 hole used to be popular as a stronger alternative because rims were crap compared to today.
    I brake for stinkbugs

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    So, we are having this discussion because?...
    because you brought it up?

  36. #36
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    Funny about 4 years ago when buying my first wheel set from a very well known and respected builder he recommended a 36 spoke wheel. I was around 210lbs at the time and liked to get off the ground.


    To the OP, that tool likes fine for a steel frame, no way I'd use it on today's carbon or thin walled AL frames.
    OG Ripley v2

  37. #37
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    Getting back to the OP, I've got a Hypercracker that I bought waaaay back in the day when cassettes first came out. It's a pretty neat little tool. I rarely used the chainstay as it is designed to tighten/loosen it, although that works fine with a steel/AL frame, it was easier to use a mallet, or anything close at hand that passed for a mallet. I don't use it much anymore, since shop tools have deeper splines for a more secure fit. If being able to pull a cassette is important to you on the road, I'd highly recommend it.

    As to why you're busting so many spokes, I'd venture you're underwheeled for the riding you do, and IME, carbon rims will stay perfectly true missing a single spoke.

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