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The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread.

 

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undertheradar

Sep 28, 11 14:05

Post #1 of 109 (52624 views)
The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. Quote | Reply

I'm cheap...and I like to tinker. Okay, now that that's out of the way we can get down to business.

In preparation for IMAZ this year, I decided I wanted to run a wheel cover in the rear. I'm on a severely limited budget, and since I wanted to get new tires as well, a WB cover would have been a stretch. I started reading old threads on here about making your own and figured I'd give it a try.

Lucky for me, here in SoCal, a quick search led me to a place in Anaheim called Industrial Plastic Supply. Not only did they have .040 thickness ABS sheets, they can also cut to size. Odd sizes are more expensive, but after measuring my 30mm deep training wheels, I figured out a disc with a diameter of 23" would be perfect. The best part? It was cheap. Like $13 a piece cheap. So I placed an order with Miguel (great guy) and the next day they were ready for pick up.

So lets get started.
Here is a list of things you'll need.
ABS discs
ABS Cement
Sharp cutting tool
Straight edge
Sandpaper
Painters tape

Here's the discs after I picked them up:


Next step is to cut your center hole. This depends of your hub, but I found that 1.5" worked well on both sides of my wheel. I used a hole saw in my drill, but you could use anything really.


This shows you why you have to dish the disc properly to make it fit the dish of the wheel.


At this point you need to cut a straight radius from the center out to the edge. This stuff is really easy to cut. Just use a sharp edge to score it a few times, and it will snap cleanly.


With the radius cut, it will automatically overlap and lay perfectly flat when you put it on the wheel. At this point I suppose you could just tape it as is, but that wouldn't look very great IMO.


At this point I taped the overlap down and used the raised edge as a guide to cut the other side of the pie shaped piece. On the non drive side, this piece is quite a bit larger than the drive side because of the greater dish.


Here it is all taped up and ready to be bonded back together. I put the tape on the outside surface so it would keep the cement from bleeding through.


I used another scrap piece of ABS to make two strips that would be used to make a stronger joint.


This is the cement I used. It's used for ABS plumbing and it's main ingredient in MEK which basically melts the two pieces a bit and then bonds them together permanently.


I scuffed up both surfaces with sandpaper to get a good bond. Then I bent the seam backwards to open it up and smeared a good amount over the gap. Then I popped it back the right way and put a good amount of cement on the back of my support strip, and laid it down. A good way to get a better bond with this stuff is to wiggle the pieces back and forth on each other. Then you just hold it in place for 30 seconds or so, then leave it for 2 hours to dry completely


All glued up and taped till dry:


Here is a shot of the seam. For my first try it looks pretty good I think. I plan on putting some graphics on this when I'm all done, so no biggie.


Drive side taped down. I was thinking of buying some nylon post screws, but I think this looks cleaner and seems to be a rock solid hold. Used 4 small pieces to hold it in place, then used one continuous piece to secure it.


I used some packing tape on the inside to help secure it. Don't think its really needed though.


Cut a hole for the valve. I'll probably get a crack pipe so I dont have to make the hole bigger for my floor pump. (C02 head fits here no problem)


On the bike. There are absolutely no dips or distortion of any kind.




There you go. I just did this today, so I'll report back after some training and I get the graphics on there. Hope that helps somebody.


jackmott

Sep 28, 11 14:09

Post #2 of 109 (52608 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

well done!



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Jamaican

Sep 28, 11 14:09

Post #3 of 109 (52604 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Wow. How light is that disc?


FS: FS: Ultegra Di2, TT Cockpit Parts, Pedals, Valve Extenders, Stops, Adaptors, Triathlon Shoes, Miscellaneous.

(This post was edited by Jamaican on Sep 28, 11 14:10)


Tyrell

Sep 28, 11 14:12

Post #4 of 109 (52590 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Awesome write-up! Too bad I just dropped coin for a Wheelbuilder cover a couple weeks ago. I look forward to DIY'ing my next set though! WOuld you say the .04 is about the right thickness? Looking back would you rather have thicker or thinner material?


undertheradar

Sep 28, 11 14:20

Post #5 of 109 (52572 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Tyrell] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

The .040 is the thinnest they had readily available, but it seems perfect. Any thicker and it would be heavier, and any thinner and it would probably be too floppy.

Not sure on the weight since I don't have a small scale, but it seems pretty damn light.


vagus

Sep 28, 11 14:39

Post #6 of 109 (52536 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I've been thinking about this all season... You made it look easy so I'll be looking for a local supplier this weekend!


veganerd

Sep 28, 11 14:51

Post #7 of 109 (52503 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Well done! Im surprised no one has tried to deepen their front wheel yet. It would be trickier but it could be done!.


Edit: nevermind, it wouldnt make sense to make a front wheel deeper because the spokes would be on the outside. Carry on.

enemy of epilepsy



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(This post was edited by veganerd on Sep 28, 11 15:06)


jeremyb

Sep 28, 11 14:59

Post #8 of 109 (52471 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

nice



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wack70

Sep 28, 11 15:01

Post #9 of 109 (52464 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Very impressive! I'll be watching for a report on the performance. I already have a Wheelbuilder cover, but I may have to talk some friends into trying this out just so I can take a stab at it ;-)


Tom A.

Sep 28, 11 15:07

Post #10 of 109 (52437 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Nice.

I started doing the exact same thing with some plastic signboard from a local sign shop. I got the NDS done and for some reason lost interest in completing it...but, now you've sort of got me thinking about finishing it up ;-)



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G$

Sep 28, 11 15:09

Post #11 of 109 (52428 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [wack70] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Wow, I was skeptical...especially since Wheelbuilder's covers are only $90...but you did a great job. How much do you think you spent, all in? (although clearly the satisfaction for you wasn't all financial, as a self-proclaimed tinkerer).


Barchettaman

Sep 28, 11 15:14

Post #12 of 109 (52404 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [veganerd] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

veganerd wrote:
Well done! Im surprised no one has tried to deepen their front wheel yet. It would be trickier but it could be done!.


Edit: nevermind, it wouldnt make sense to make a front wheel deeper because the spokes would be on the outside. Carry on.

Someone on here did:

http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...l%20fairing;#1858532

-------------------------------
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SLOTOPO

Sep 28, 11 15:15

Post #13 of 109 (52398 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Sweet! But the real question: does it make the bitchin' whoom, whoom, whoom sound?


Fastyellow

Sep 28, 11 15:18

Post #14 of 109 (52392 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Nice job!


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steve_c

Sep 28, 11 15:21

Post #15 of 109 (52385 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Very tidy job, indeed!

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undertheradar

Sep 28, 11 15:35

Post #16 of 109 (52352 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [G$] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

G$ wrote:
Wow, I was skeptical...especially since Wheelbuilder's covers are only $90...but you did a great job. How much do you think you spent, all in? (although clearly the satisfaction for you wasn't all financial, as a self-proclaimed tinkerer).

$30 and about an hour and a half of actual work.


Specialized22

Sep 28, 11 16:55

Post #17 of 109 (52226 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Nice job man, you should start your own business on the side making these!

"Heart Rate, Watts, I have no idea, I race, I don't pace." Andrew Starykowicz


Titanflexr

Sep 28, 11 17:05

Post #18 of 109 (52205 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Tyrell] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Tyrell wrote:
Awesome write-up! Too bad I just dropped coin for a Wheelbuilder cover a couple weeks ago. I look forward to DIY'ing my next set though! WOuld you say the .04 is about the right thickness? Looking back would you rather have thicker or thinner material?


I've done a version with 0.020" styrene sheet (the stuff for sale signs are made of). Not quite as durable, but lighter. For the seam I used matching electrical tape (white in my case).

I'm guessing that if I could use 20 mil styrene, 20 mil ABS would work too.

To the OP, great job! The final product looks really professional.

PS: You can use a modified version of this method to make a deep-V front.



__________________________________________________
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.

(This post was edited by Titanflexr on Sep 28, 11 17:08)


Tyrell

Sep 28, 11 21:43

Post #19 of 109 (52023 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Titanflexr] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Titanflexr wrote:
PS: You can use a modified version of this method to make a deep-V front.

I'd be very interested to see that! Got pics or a write up to share?


undertheradar

Sep 28, 11 23:02

Post #20 of 109 (51980 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Tyrell] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Yeah...I could see it wouldn't be too difficult. Basically do the same thing, but you make a ring with whatever depth you want. Cut the radius as before to get the right dish. Once you have the two rings all set, you'd have to notch each one where the spokes will come through.


Titanflexr

Sep 28, 11 23:23

Post #21 of 109 (51963 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Tyrell] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I did it back in the mid-90's, so no pics. Undertheradar has the approach right. You cut the plastic rings and epoxy them to the rim. Then you cut slots that line up with the spokes (much easier with a radially laced wheel than one with crossed spokes), and terminate the slot where the spoke will go through with a round hole (I used a hole punch). You then pinch the two rings together and seal them (you can use epoxy, I used electrical tape). Leave a small area unsealed to stick the valve extender through. You can then seal the slots the spokes went through (again I used electrical tape, but epoxy would give a more finished look).
Since a small flat portion of the rings are glued parallel to the rim the design naturally forms a curved teardrop shape when you join the inside edges.



__________________________________________________
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.


Ironmanfan

Sep 28, 11 23:54

Post #22 of 109 (51948 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Titanflexr] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Great idea I just couldn't justify the amount of time you put into making those vs. buying from wheel builder.


undertheradar

Sep 29, 11 5:52

Post #23 of 109 (51851 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [Ironmanfan] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Ironmanfan wrote:
Great idea I just couldn't justify the amount of time you put into making those vs. buying from wheel builder.

You mean the whole hour and a half? :)


Barry S.

Sep 29, 11 7:24

Post #24 of 109 (51783 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

really great work, and thank for the details, something to think about.

what rims are those?

thanks


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elpete

Sep 29, 11 8:38

Post #25 of 109 (51719 views)
Re: The ultimate DIY disc wheel cover how-to thread. [undertheradar] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Hey man. Great idea and it looks great.

This actually helped me resolve a current issue I was having. I have the notorious Speed Concept / Wheel cover rubbing issue.

You gave me the idea to slice my Wheel Cover just as you did from the center to the outside. When I laid it down, it laid down flatter. There was a small gap in the area I just sliced with a razor blade. I covered the gap up with electrical tap. Used electrical tape to hold the cover to the wheel and voila no more rubbing.

Looks like the opposite issue that you had with your flat piece. The Wheel builder cover appeared to have too much dish. Slicing it allowed it to flatten out. I'm quite happy right now.

So thanks!


(This post was edited by elpete on Sep 29, 11 9:14)

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