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Precision Hand Built From Start To Finish

Built precisely for you.
By building each of our wheels to order, it means that individual wheel components can be specified and the build customised to suit your needs precisely. It means we don't need to pre-set rider weight limits - because we haven't yet built your wheels.

And at Spin Industries we build each and every Koppenberg wheel by hand from start to finish. From lacing the spokes through the hub to the rim, to tensioning each spoke and truing the wheel to perfection. 

The German heavyweight build stations used in all K2 Wheel builds

Most wheels from the big name wheel brands tend to be mass produced, and that's as true for the lowest through to the highest end of the money spectrum. And mass production means automated wheel building lines. Machines build wheels very quickly but crucially, machines ignore three important things that we find make all the difference between slow, lazy wheels and truly great, lightning fast wheels.

These are:

  1. even tension across all the spokes, 
  2. removing the twist from each and every spoke, and finally, 
  3. relieving any stress in the finished wheel.

All wheels are built on tension. Truly great wheels require more: equal tension 
During a wheel build it's normal that some spokes end up at higher tension than others. If left unbalanced in this way then when placed under load, such as whilst being ridden, the spokes at the highest tension will be doing far more of the work than the others. Evening the tension across all the spokes allows each one to contribute equally, making for a strong, balanced, stiff, responsive and long lasting wheel. You can check any wheel for even tension yourself: just spin it slowly and pluck each spoke in turn. If it plays a merry tune, your spokes are all at different tensions. A wheel with even tensions on the other hand sounds pretty monotonous and dull, but rides anything but!

Twisted spokes
We build all of our wheels with evenly distributed and very high spoke tensions. This is key to a wheel's stiffness, response and handling. It's also the key to trouble-free long life. The problem is that very high tension produces huge resistance at the spoke & nipple threads during tightening. This causes each spoke to twist around as the nipple is turned, deforming along its length and effectively turning each spoke into a coiled spring, ready to unwind the moment there's any loss in tension, such as when you ride over a bump in the road. So it's important to remove this twist completely before a wheel leaves our hands. To do this you need to understand the degree of rotation induced in the spokes during the build, and then to remove all of this stored torsion so that there is no residual force left waiting to unwind itself at the first opportunity - the next time you ride.

The Spin Cycle
When ridden, every opposing pair of spokes in a wheel goes through a load / unload cycle, once every revolution. Any torsion will force each spoke to unwind from its nipple during the point of least load. This can be heard as a "pinging" sound when riding. A few spokes that undo like this results in your wheel going out of true. More commonly all the spokes gradually unwind themselves, resulting in a wheel that's below optimal tension. Even though it may look OK, the lower tension means a wheel more likely to end up out of true and in the mean time is quietly stealing your power.

Listen out for pings when you next ride: it's the sound of your spokes coming loose!

If your new wheels ping when you ride, it means your builder (or more likely, a factory machine) didn't remove the twist. A wheel with zero spoke twist doesn't ping.

Stress Relief
As a wheel is brought up to tension, the individual components react differently in different places. Not every spoke beds itself properly and fully into the hub flange. Not every nipple rests cleanly on the rim bed nor at the optimal angle. And in wheels with crossed spoking, there's extra bend and friction at the spoke-to-spoke contact points.

It's important to remove all this stored up resistance because if you don't then as soon as you start riding, things that appeared to be tight in the truing stand suddenly shift position a few fractions of a mm and end up loose. So we check and remove any built-up stresses several times during the build of each and every wheel, effectively putting it "on the road" under max loads all around, without actually doing so. Once fully stress-relieved, the wheel goes back into the truing rig to check for any shift in the components, re-tensioning to the final, evenly balanced and perfectly true wheel.

Heavyweight build stations
You can't expect to build a perfectly true wheel, nor check its lateral stiffness if your truing stand is flexy and wobbles about when you spin the wheel that's in it. Most truing rigs we've tested do exactly this, being made from materials such as plastic or lightweight aluminium. Even expensive and very famous ones that you'll probably find in the workshop of your LBS.

The ideal build station is totally rigid and weighs a ton, like the one's we use

An ideal truing rig would be perfectly rigid and stiff so that any wobble you see is definitely in the wheel and not in the stand. For this reason we build our wheels exclusively on the very best truing system yet devised. These rigs use incredibly accurate measurement calibrated to 0.05mm, and they're constructed in solid brass for incredible rigididity. These heavyweight truing stations courtesy of our friends at P&K Lie in Germany help us achieve consistently fine centering (dish), lateral and radial tolerances and that 0.05mm calibration we can read is actually tighter than the manufacturing tolerance on most rims.

We love machining metal. But for best strength to weight ratio forging is way better
And that's why our lightweight SPN Precision hub bodies are forged for incredible strength. Forging isn't the cheapest or even the easiest way to make parts in metal but it produces superior strength and durability over machining, as the metal's lattice structure is re-inforced and retains its integrity throughout. Further weight is lost after forging by CNC machining out the fine details.

Machine for fine detail but forge for strength

Lesser hubs are simply machined from start to finish. Even hubs that cost you a great deal more money. Beware.

What about on the inside?
The stuff you don't see on the inside of the SPN Precision hubs is pretty impressive too. Double-sealed precision bearings are used throughout as are oversized hollow axles. The hot-swap HyperDrive48 freehub design also means that switching from Campag 11 speed or Shimano/SRAM 10 speed to the latest 11 speed standard or back again requires neither special tools nor big expense.

And the 24-tooth nano-coated steel ratchet delivers instant drive pick-up via two independent sets of 3 pawls (6 in total). That's 48 drive engagements per wheel revolution, or put another way, a pick-up every 7.5 degrees of rotation. That's twice the speed of the much more common 15 degree drivetrains that you'll find on even the most expensive wheels and hubs on the market. It's also qicker than even headline grabbing famous brand 45-point ring drive hubs that are 4 or 5 times the price, yet deliver a slower, 8 degrees of rotational freedom. (Here's the maths: 360 degrees / 45 ratchets = 8 degrees of freedom per ratchet. 360 degrees / 24 ratchets = 15 degrees. Spin HyperDrive freehubs use two alternating sets of pawls in a 2 x 3-pawl arrangement, which doubles the number of ratchet stops from 24 to 48, halving the rotation between each stop to just 7.5 degrees: 360 / (24 x 2) = 7.5 degrees)

Industry gold standard spokes & nipples
We build all our wheels with industry-leading stainless steel spokes from Sapim and traditional, industry-standard external nipples. Why is this so important? Because it guarantees you a lifetime of hassle-free easy maintenance without having to remove your tyres & tubes just to tweak a spoke. It means that every decent bike shop on the planet can replace a broken spoke or help you true your wheel on the spot, without waiting for hard-to-find and usually out-of-stock proprietary spokes & nipples.

You're just one week away from riding your best wheels yet!
By building to order you get to choose your preferred hub colour and spokes. Tell us your weight and ride style and we'll tweak the build to suit you even more. Once you've made your choice just leave the rest to us. Your new custom wheels can be hand built, delivered and on your bike in less than one week (UK only. International orders may take longer to arrive).

Fast turnaround UK rebuild service & crash replacement programmes.
Available to all our customers worldwide. We keep all spares in stock, from bearings to nipples, spokes and rims, and can tune, service or completely rebuild your wheels at any point in their life span. Just fill out the service request form online to get started.