When people ask why I build wheels, they expect an answer like:
"I save money not hiring someone to do it for me," or "My work is more careful and meticulous than I get from another builder."
No, neither is really true. If I do the raw math on wheelbuilding cost, I don't save enough to warrant the trouble. And no longer is the scene barren of conscientious builders. Thank goodness, our trade has become somewhat repopulated in recent years.
Actually, my reason to build is the transcendent experience of assembling a wheel. The tranquility, the patient order of steps, the sense of accomplishment as it takes shape, the satisfaction of knowing the wheel will exceed expectations. All these are impossible to buy and crucial for peace of mind. If you build, you know exactly what I mean.
For that reason, it's a rush to glimpse someone's personal work space. Not only are the items familiar and a sense of effectiveness palpable, but I can feel the calm that the builder enjoys when a job is underway.
A space to relax and focus.
This is Jonathon Bell's bench. He's an experienced builder, now launching his independent work as Noble Wheels in London. Website's in progress, meanwhile he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notice his trick truing stand. This is by PK&Lie from Germany. It's top of the line, an example of the good work dedicated builders will do to meet their needs. He's also using a DT tension gauge, an outstanding unit, but get ready for the Wheel Fanatyk tool, due out in the next few months. News to follow!