Since I already hit the problem with wrong spoke length (changing my old front 32H hub with asymmetrical flanges to a new one with symmetrical), just started to think about the stiffness of the wheels. Heard that the standard lacing pattern is usually 3-cross (3 holes interval on the rim, 4 holes interval on the hub), but never thought which one is the strongest. So I changed the lacing (and spokes to be shorter) - 3 holes interval on the rim, 2 holes interval on the hub ...

Any suggestions about the lacing pattern, note that the new hub is 20x110 (a model for DH/FR, but will be used in street hard braking/drops/etc a lot)

  • 3
    Note that strength is not the only criterion -- there is also stiffness and (not entirely the opposite thing) flexibility. Plus torsional resistance -- important for disk brakes and for the rear with non-disk wheels. Commented Aug 12, 2017 at 17:26
  • So its going to be used for normal road riding ? Are there disk brakes ?
    – Criggie
    Commented Aug 12, 2017 at 21:37
  • As I wrote it's a DH/FR hub, so yeah
    – 1000Gbps
    Commented Aug 13, 2017 at 0:17

1 Answer 1


3x is the standard lacing pattern, because it is strongest. Radially spoked wheel will be slightly lighter and stiffer but can not handle torque at all.

There are two reasons why 3x is strongest for 32 and 36h: First, the spokes are connected to the hub tangentially, so braking and pedaling forces go directly to spoke tension without any sideways forces. Second, for every spoke there is a spoke pulling against it in the next hole, so they are less likely to tear apart the hub flange.

  • So, should I relace the wheel or it is safe to be ridden?
    – 1000Gbps
    Commented Aug 13, 2017 at 18:49
  • To be honest, I don't understand what you mean by "3 holes interval on the rim, 2 holes interval on the hub"
    – ojs
    Commented Aug 13, 2017 at 19:01
  • The interval between two inner or outter spokes from drive/nondrive side is 3 holes (or spokes) on the rim. Or 2 holes (or spokes) on the flange for each two crossed
    – 1000Gbps
    Commented Aug 13, 2017 at 21:30
  • 1
    The spoke sequence at rim is always left push - right push - left pull - right pull - repeat for any number of spoke crossings, unless you are doing something really special.
    – ojs
    Commented Aug 14, 2017 at 6:43
  • Hmmm, should we cross the spokes above the valve hole or not? I'm usually leaving them not crossed so there'll be enough space for pump heads
    – 1000Gbps
    Commented Aug 14, 2017 at 15:59

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