By Danson Cheong
Each wheel begins as a bare rim - a wheel without the spokes and hub attached. The process where the spokes and hubs are threaded through and connected is known as lacing.
TENSIONING THE SPOKES
When all the spokes are laced, the wheelbuilder brings the spokes to tension. This involves tightening each individual spoke at the nipple.
STRETCHING THE SPOKES
The spokes are then given a "stretch". Then the process of tensioning and stretching might be repeated.
CHECKING THE TENSION
Once the wheel has gone through a few rounds of tensioning and stretching, the tension of the spokes is checked.
A very important aspect of wheelbuilding lies in ensuring that all spokes have an equal tension - meaning they all pull at the rim with the same force.
This ensures that the wheel is true, or rolls straight.
Once this is done, the wheel is ready to ride.