Just got a brand new mountain bike and the front wheel is so out off true spin it looks undesirable. But I know it can be fixed. I have the tools for it . my question is, can I just remove the front wheel off of my bike and lay on a flat table , lose in all the spokes and start from scratch to repair the wobble. I mean it really sounds like a logistical technique. Any opions would be very welcomed. Thank you all. Tye

  • 8
    I'd take the bike back to the shop you bought it from and get them to fix it. They shouldn't have sold you the bike in that condition. Also, you should probably do some reading (e.g. on Park Tool's website or something) on truing wheels, since it sounds like you haven't done that before.
    – Batman
    Apr 28, 2017 at 10:53
  • After the initial 50 miles/kilometres, it is quite frequent that factory built wheels become untrue. It is due to settling of spoke in hubs and rims. (A decent 'human' wheel-builder however knows how to avoid this by laying the wheel flat and pushing down the rim, flipping and repeating. Then he'll true it for good.)
    – Carel
    Apr 28, 2017 at 11:35
  • 3
    You need to read up on how to do it. Releasing and then re-tightening the spokes is probably unnecessary and is apt to get you deeper into trouble. You DO need some sort of truing stand (a flat table won't work), or else you can simply leave the wheel on the bike and use that for a truing stand. But for a new bike you should be due a free/cheap "tuneup" from the shop where you bought it. Apr 28, 2017 at 11:48
  • You would think that whether the wheel is done by machine or by a human that they could get human to perform a break-in on the wheel as described by @DanielRHicks. It seems like it would be a lot cheaper to pay for the time to get somebody (or a machine) to break in the wheel at the factory than to have to have everybody take the wheels back to their respective bike shops to be true after the first couple rides.
    – Kibbee
    Apr 28, 2017 at 13:09
  • @kibbee the shops love it - its a way to get the rider back to the shop and another chance to connect with them (ie, sell them something else)
    – Criggie
    Apr 29, 2017 at 12:25

1 Answer 1


On a brand new bike I would expect the seller to take responsibility for this and sort it out.

If this is not an option, the usual way to true a wheel without a stand is to turn the bike upside down, or remove the fork and hold in a vice, attach a zip-tie to one of the fork legs and use that as a guide.

The procedure is spin, find largest deviation, pull/push that towards the centre, repeat ad nauseam. There are guides all over the internet on the actual process of truing.

Do not just loosen the whole wheel. Getting a slightly wobbly one straight is easier than building one straight from scratch.

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