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My rear wheel is bent and I have no idea what kind of wheel I should be buying for replacement.

My bike is a 700Cx23 road bike with 14 gears and a 7 speed cassette. I was advised that I'd need to buy a new wheel and fit the cassette into it.

What equipment and what kind of wheel do I need?

I'm really clueless as I'm quite new to all this so any feedback would be really appreciated! :)

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  • Please give a few more details. Do you Shimano/Sram cassette? 7 speeds cassette types may vary. Your hub is likely to have 130 mm width axle. Essentially any 130 mm Sram/Shimano compatible 28" wheel should be good. – mkpaa May 30 '16 at 13:54
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    Take the ruined wheel to the LBS and have them swap the cassette to a new wheel. It's a matter of minutes and would/should/could be included in the price of a new wheel. – Carel May 30 '16 at 16:12
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    If you want to do it yourself, go on the Park Tool site and look up the instructions. They give detailed instructions and cover many different scenarios. – Daniel R Hicks May 30 '16 at 19:34
  • How did you bend it? Was it while riding, a pothole perhaps? Or something else? If you're at the upper levels of weight, now is the right time to consider a stronger wheel rim. Is rim is only slightly out or is it knackered ? – Criggie May 30 '16 at 21:57
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The first thing, you should actually verify that you do have a cassette, ond not a freewheel. Sheldon Brown's site is good here, providing photos etc.. My answer will assume that you are actually running with a cassette.

The outside of a wheel is called a rim. The centre is called a hub. On your bike, bolted on to the side of the hub is something called a freehub body. This part holds the cassette in place (and provides the freewheel mechanism).

The thing is, different manufacturers use different patterns to keep the csassette in place, so if you're buying a new wheel you need to make sure you buy one with the correct freehub body, or be prepared to fit one yourself (added faff, more tools). So that's why we can't fully answer your question.

However, what we can say is that 700x23 is enough to define the size of new wheel you'll need. This is actually the tyre size, but the two are pretty much interchangeable in terms of defining wheel size. Also, you need to make sure that you get something compaztible with your 7-speed cassette.

In terms of actually swappuing the wheel out, new wheels generally come with freehub bodies ready to ride, but don't come with cassettes. So your problem basically becomes one of getting the cassette off the old wheel to use on the new. To get the cassette off, you'll need something called a lockring removal tool, which is basically a keyed nut, but again these vary with cassette manufacturer, aqmongst other things. Park Tools, among others, offer a good selection here.Then you'll need a spanner, 1" iirc, and lastly something - a vise or a chain whip - to keep the freewheel still while you unscrew everything. You'll use the same lockring tool/spanner to tighten it all up again. It really is a 2-minute job, but without the correct tools is quite impossible.

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