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Here is how we deal with the loose wheels with tires on them in the "Tired Wheels" bins. The goals are:

1. to save good tubes and put them in the correct drawers
2. to scrap the very bad tires and sort the good tires onto racks by size, and
3. to sort the de-tired wheels into on of two bins: Evaluate or De-spoke.

This is a great way for beginners to learn how to inflate a tire and use a tire lever — important skills for any cyclist. It also will teach you about tire sizes and what makes a wheel un-usable.

There are two tired wheels bins: one for wheels with tires that have not been pumped up, one for wheels with tires that have been pumped.

For tires that have not been pumped up, pump them! To be sure you don't blow the tire off the rim (causing a very loud and surprising BANG, and ruining the tube), you should pump the tire until it holds its shape but is still soft, and then check that the tire is on the rim evenly all the way around, on both sides. If it's not, you can usually push it down into the rim with your hands. Then you can finish pumping it up until it's hard. You don't need to worry about inflating them to the right pressure, just pump until they're hard, and then stop.

The other bin has wheels with tires that were inflated a few days ago. Any tires that are still hard have tubes that are probably OK, so we can re-use them. Whether the tire is still hard or not, you will remove the tire which is a great thing to get good at doing!

It is best to do all the hard tires first, and then all the soft tires.

If the tire was hard, make careful note of the size printed on the tire sidewall and, if the tube has no cuts on the valve stem or any peeling patches, fold it up to remove all the air, put a rubber band around it, and put it in the correct drawer (need link for sizing instructions).

If the tire was NOT still hard, or has a valve cut or peeling patch, put it in a pile on the floor: it will go into the scrap tubes box, to be used as a bungee cord, or cut up to make rubber bands.

The tires you remove should be checked for cuts, cracks, bulges, or bare spots (need link), and put in a pile on the floor if you think they are not good. If you think they are good, they go on the orange mesh "towers" by size:

27" AND 700c

or in the blue barrel for 22" and smaller sizes.
(need link for more info)

Wheels without tires will go into one of two bins:

  • To evaluate*

-The Good (to be evaluated by advanced mechanic):
-Double wall
-Stainless steel spokes
-Coast brake
-Radial laced
-More than seven gears
-Fat axels

-The Bad (to be cut or despoked):
-Missing or bent axle
-Out of true by more than one inch
-Damage to the rim (dents, out of round, or concave sidewalls: run fingers along rim to find these problems)
- All steel (Scrap the whole wheel unless in PERFECT condition):
-magnetic steel rims, spokes, and hubs

-The good outweighs the bad! Ignore the bad stuff if the good stuff is present. Good signs move wheels on to advanced mechanic evaluation.

-If not sure, put in a “Don't Know” pile.

Created by: pgarver. Last Modification: Tuesday 28 of June, 2011 04:01:34 UTC by JSheehan.