How To True A Bike Wheel Without A Truing Stand

Not everyone has an expensive truing stand. So I show how to true bicycle wheels with the wheel mounted on the bike. This is just simple truing and assumes the wheel is in good shape and just has a little bit of side to side wobble. If the wheel has more serious issues, truing an be much more involved.

* When I say “clockwise” and “counter-clockwise” in the video, the reference point is looking at the nipple from the spoke side of the rim. The side where you are actually turning the wrench. Not from inside of the tire.

These are the Park Tool spoke wrenches that I use:

If you want a professional level truing stand, this is what you want. The Park Tool TS-2.2. I have the older TS-2 model. The TS-2.2 will do the larger 29″ wheels.

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Category: General

34 Responses to “How To True A Bike Wheel Without A Truing Stand”

  1. Do you think it helps at all to deflate the tire first?

  2. i accidentally overtightened a nipple and i think it snapped. it doesn't stay tight whether turned clockwise or counterclockwise?

  3. Hi RJ (and all.) Thanks for the vid. Duly liked. There's one thing folks may want to try in conjuction with this method, which I also use as I don't have a truing stand. It's possible to score the rim (if you're not as skilled as RJ.) If you don't want to score the rim with a tool, apart from using a plastic tool as stated in video, and for a visual help, use a fresh new juicy marker pen instead of a screwdriver, then you can see where the wheel rim rubs as the pen will draw a nice line for ya. Non permanent should rub off as soon as the brake gets used. Wont make such a noise, but hey, just a thought.

  4. So helpful, thanks bro!!! Very informative and patient. Excellent work..

  5. Thank you RJ!

  6. Hi Rj thanks for this video a learn a lot :)

  7. Cool video. Do you need a truing stand to true up hops (as opposed to wobbles)?

  8. Simple and awesome. As I started my search on this topic luckily I found this vid. thanks a ton 🙂 :)

  9. I loosened all of them. now it's worst. is it more difficult to start from scratch?

  10. What happens if you say Meh and just leave it ?

  11. thanks man

  12. very helpful thnx

  13. You said loosen this one and you turned it clockwise, and you said tighten this one and you turned it counter clockwise, which means they are reverse thread………….are they reverse thread ? or do you not know what your doing ?

  14. thanks RJ your videos are always easy to understand and follow

  15. Dammit, I tried this, now the wheel looks like number 8 :(

  16. ThankYou!

  17. Thank you!!!

  18. mystery solved. wow. so easy.

  19. I really appreciate your concise editing. 90% of maintenance tutorials I watch are mostly just some asshole saying "ummmm" for 10 minutes.

  20. If you held a screwdriver to my $500 wheelset, I would murder you. Use a pencil doofus.

  21. great vid on this subject. love to do my own work. cant wait to fix my wheel.

  22. I believe my rear wheel's spokes weren't tightened enough in some spots. I own a 26" GIant Sedona hybrid bike, I presume some of the spokes were a bit loose, then when I had an accident where I went off the curb and over the bars, when I started riding I noticed quite a large wobble, enough to make my v-brakes get pushed, which makes riding a lot more energy intensive due to heavy resistance. I attempted to true the wheel and it did help, but my wheel is still somewhat wobbly. Should I rebuild my wheel, or take it to a professional shop and have them attempt to repair it? Do you know the average cost of a 26 inch rim? Thanks very much, Liam.

  23. Very helpful. Thnx mate!

  24. This is great if you don't have a truing stand but do have a work stand. What we need is a video on how to true a wheel when you have neither – representative of the majority of the population.

  25. A zip tie would work as a guide for truing.

  26. excellent info – thanks!!!

  27. Thanks, RJ! I really like the basic theory behind truing (spokes pull the rim one way or the other). It really helps me visualize the problem. Now, do I have the right spoke wrench…

  28. "if the nipples are tight you may wanna drip some penetrating oil on there! proof the my adult self is still immature

  29. This was the easiest simple truing I could find and do. Bought the red wrench and almost done. Thanks a lot for the vid!

  30. Great video: except tightening on spokes is counter clockwise and loosening is clockwise

  31. I was able to successfully true the wheels on both of my kids' bikes thanks to your instructions. Your time, talents, and efforts are very much appreciated!

  32. I think you misspoke. You said to tighten the spoke turn counter clockwise but in fact you turned the spoke tool clockwise. Then when you said to loosen the spoke to turn clockwise but you actually turned the tool counter clock. So which is it?

  33. What happens if you leave your wheel untrued

  34. You are so right – patience is key (certainly for those of us who don't have a lot of experience with this). I messed up my last rear wheel through over tightening, and eventually the rim cracked near a few nipples.

    After a few hundred miles on my new wheel a couple of spokes had loosened themselves completely. I sat down this afternoon to adress what I thought would be a simple issue but the whole thing went pear-shaped as I started to lose patience. What I WASN'T doing was loosening the opposite side to that which I was tightening, so, armed with this new knowledge, I'll have a tea break and one more go but it could be a job for the bike shop :(