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View Full Version : OT would you, can you powder coat M/C spokes?



oddball racing
12-01-2015, 02:38 PM
Like title says. I'm restoring an old Harley Sprint.
The wheels were all rusted, so I dropped them in the electrolysis tank and was able to free all the seized spoke nipples. I will be replacing them onto ankront alum. rims. Spokes have some minor pitting, but the plating and corrosion resistance are gone. How would powder coat hold up on this application? I figure it might chip at the " hook" area on the spoke, but I think I have seen it done before. Anybody have experience on this subject? New spokes are nearly unheard of for these Italian Harley's. Sets are unheard of and I would need to find 72 spokes and nipples.........yeah,sure.

1200rpm
12-01-2015, 03:46 PM
i can tell you from experience that once they are under tension the powder will crack...BTDT

http://www.buchananspokes.com/categories/index.asp

bob_s
12-01-2015, 03:50 PM
The big trick will be stringing the spokes through the hub after powder coating them.

Clearance will depend on the thickness of the coating (in general thicker than electro-plating).

Check the maximum diameter of the holes in the hub to see if there is sufficient clearance.

?? 350 ?? Played with one of those evil contraptions in the early 70's. I can't recall that it had any redeeming qualities (not light, not quick or powerful, parts were expensive or unavailable )

Jim Williams
12-01-2015, 04:14 PM
Powder coat before assembly may cause problems. I got new spokes and nipples for a British sports car from Dayton Wire Wheel. They were very helpful, have a large variety of spokes, and can probably do custom lengths.

Jim

daryl bane
12-01-2015, 04:23 PM
Just send the original spokes and nipples to Buchanan's with pertinent wheel info and they can duplicate. In fact they probably already have the correct patterns for the Sprint

old mart
12-01-2015, 05:12 PM
I should think you could get some stainless steel spokes.

Hopefuldave
12-01-2015, 06:16 PM
I wouldn't risk pre-damaged spokes... Electrolytic clean-up's great, I use it all the time (well, almost all), but it can cause hydrogen embrittlement in high-tensile steels, like wot spokes is made a, and spokes are under a lot of tension. Buy fresh, they're not THAT expensive and they'll set off the Akront rims a treat, although Boranni would be more age and type appropriate, being Italian...

You could look for Aermacchi instead of Harley in the parts catalogues, that's who made 'em!

(excuse probably poor spelling, Italian was never my strongest language...)

Dave H. (the other one)

Doozer
12-01-2015, 07:04 PM
The opposite gear shifter and brake always screwed me up.

-D

flylo
12-01-2015, 09:19 PM
When I traded for the '69 Bonny I only messed up once but it does get your attention when you pull up to a stop sign & push as hard as you can on the shifter & it doesn't slow down.

tyrone shewlaces
12-02-2015, 12:59 AM
Another consideration is whether or not the heat used to cure the powder coat is enough (in addition to the other possible molecular altering that chemical cleaning may do) to alter the temper of the metal too. I don't know either way, but the heat is around 400 degrees isn't it? There's a lot I wouldn't worry about for this kind of heat, but spokes on a wheel that you'll really need in top condition at high speeds and such isn't something I would take a chance on unless I knew dead sure all the ways it could possible go wrong so I could make a good decision.

I do know for sure that if my life depended on it, I wouldn't drive it any faster than I could run until I had accurate and definitive answers.

Black_Moons
12-02-2015, 11:32 AM
I wouldn't risk pre-damaged spokes... Electrolytic clean-up's great, I use it all the time (well, almost all), but it can cause hydrogen embrittlement in high-tensile steels, like wot spokes is made a, and spokes are under a lot of tension. Buy fresh, they're not THAT expensive and they'll set off the Akront rims a treat, although Boranni would be more age and type appropriate, being Italian...

You could look for Aermacchi instead of Harley in the parts catalogues, that's who made 'em!

(excuse probably poor spelling, Italian was never my strongest language...)

Dave H. (the other one)

Agreed, buy fresh. They do kinda keep your whole wheel together and you don't have any spare wheels on a motorcycle :P

bob_s
12-02-2015, 02:26 PM
... but spokes on a wheel that you'll really need in top condition at high speeds and such isn't something I would take a chance on unless I knew dead sure all the ways it could possible go wrong so I could make a good decision.

I do know for sure that if my life depended on it, I wouldn't drive it any faster than I could run until I had accurate and definitive answers.

High speed with a Sprint? 81 mph downhill with a tail wind and jet pack enabled!

Hopefuldave
12-02-2015, 02:32 PM
81... at least you'd leave the American Harleys behind in your dust ;)

Dave H. (the other one)

ulav8r
12-02-2015, 07:49 PM
High speed with a Sprint? 81 mph downhill with a tail wind and jet pack enabled!

That is about 78 mph faster than I could run downhill, and I sure would not want to roll down a hill that fast after losing a wheel. I doubt 400 degrees would be a problem, but stress risers from corrosion damage could be a major cause for concern.