Tuorial: Sick Wheel Covers

quiet thunder, boston

First rule of polo: don’t talk about polo.

Second rule: don’t play with your nice wheel set!

Everyone knows that your wheelset will be the first thing you have to replace on your polo bike…especially after a few rounds with Sassy. Check back later for a tutorial on redneck truing from Sassy himself!

In the meantime, build yourself a sick wheel cover. Helps keep everyone’s mallet from going through your spokes, including your own.

Build a sick wheel cover!


“bad attitude”, boston

Materials:

How much time and money are you going to invest in this project?
Cardboard is quick, easy, and free, but corrugated plastic is going to hold up much better and is rain-proof. Fortunately, if you look in the right places corrugated plastic can be free too!
Either way, you’ll need:

  • Two pieces of material about 2′ x 2′ for each wheel you want to cover. (Really, only the front is necessary.)
  • Zip ties – I used about 8-12 per wheel, others use more. Don’t skimp.
  • Materials to decorate your wheel cover and make it sick. Spray paint, stickers, markers, whatever. Don’t skip this part or you are lame.

Tools:

  • Box cutter
  • MarkerDrill – only if you are using corrugated plastic
  • 24″ or so of string
  • Tape measure (or just use your string to measure, whatever.)
  • Push pin

Make those covers:

Start with your 2×2 square, and mark the center.

Measure your wheel radius – rim to rim. Keep in mind that the wheel cover should not cover the braking surface if you are running a brake! Bad news!

Tie a loop in each end of the string, making sure that the total length is equal to the radius of your rim. Pin one end loop of your string to the center point you just made, and put your marker in the other end, and draw yourself a circle exactly the size of your wheel. Now cut it out.

Cut a 2″ circle out of the center for the axle. Also make a cut along the radius of your wheel cover if using corrugated plastic – this will allow your cover to match the dish of your wheel. This cut isn’t really necessary for cardboard covers.

Repeat above – you’ll need two covers for each wheel.

Decorate those covers to make them sick! Be creative! I’ve included a gallery below to get you thinking.

Mark holes for the zip ties by laying your wheel over the cut out cover and marking every few spokes. A small hole on either side of the spoke will allow the zip tie to loop around the spoke and hold the cover on. Don’t go too close to the edge of your cover, especially with cardboard.

Cut the zip tie holes by stacking your wheel covers on top of each other and cutting through both pieces. For this step you can use an exacto on cardboard, or a drill for the corrugated plastic. What the heck, use a drill for either material, it will turn out better.

Throw those covers on your wheel by running that zip tie through one sheet, through the wheel, then the other sheet, and then back again, making a wheel cover-wheel-wheel cover sandwich. Don’t tighten too much until you have all the zip ties in loosely – then go back around and snug everything up. Trim of dangly zip tie ends.

Play polo! Your wheel cover is awesome and now everyone thinks you are cool! Make them for others that are too lazy and charge in beer!

I’ll keep a running gallery of awesome wheel covers. Email me at editor at boston bike polo dot com if you want your cover pic added. Here’s a start…


gus legit, boston


marco, pheonix


tink, dc


mystery wheel cover, who claims it? I like.


ken, NYC


veronique in the background and “bad attitude”, boston