There’s a certain mystique surrounding the art of building a bicycle wheel.
It’s a skill all bike tourists should probably should learn, but few of us do. Instead, we take our bikes to the shop when the wheels wear out and watch the mechanics spin rims and twist spokes. They make little movements, one after the other, dancing with their hands until the wobbles are smoothed out and a perfectly round wheel emerges.
Intrigued by the idea of learning this art, we’ve spent 2 days in an old farm house in the north of the Netherlands, building wheels with the help of bike builder Marten. We’re still very much newbies in the wheel building world but our training so far has boosted our confidence enormously, and we’re no longer convinced that wheel building is that hard.