derailleur pulley maintenance

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Victor, Nov 12, 2003.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Victor

    Victor Guest

    While swapping out a Shimano XT derailleur from a 2000 model year mountain bike, I noticed that the
    pulleys had hardened dirt in the vicinity of the seals. While trying to clean this stuff out with a
    toothpick, I noticed that the dirt was trapped in between the pulley and a rubber "seal" that
    surrounds the bearing enclosure. The pulleys do not spin freely at all, at least not in the same
    manner that I have observed on other of my derailleurs - recent comparisons include a brand new
    Shimano 105 and a used Shimano STX. In the past, I have applied a drop or two of Triflow in the
    vicinity of the bearing enclosure periodically thinking that this would actually make it to the
    enclosed bearing surfaces. Words like "sealed" and "ceramic" appear on the pulley, for further
    reference.

    My questions, then, are how does one do the following:

    1) clean the pulley assembly so that the pulley spins relatively freely on its bearings

    2) periodically lubricate the bearings, if this has any meaning for "sealed" bearings.

    My understanding of the term sealed is that seals exist, but the bearings are subject to injection
    of foreign substances, be they for good or bad.

    Thanks for your assistance, Victor Weinstein
     
    Tags:


  2. In article <[email protected]>, Victor <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >My questions, then, are how does one do the following:
    >
    >1) clean the pulley assembly so that the pulley spins relatively freely on its bearings

    Take it apart, clean it with some kind of degreaser and a toothbrush, lube with grease or oil and
    reassemble. Make sure fixing bolts are good and snug since if they back out you get exploding
    derailleur surprise.

    >2) periodically lubricate the bearings, if this has any meaning for "sealed" bearings.

    Most likely the "bearings" are a ceramic or metal bushing, which gets lubricated when you
    take it apart.

    --Paul
     
  3. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    Victor wrote:

    > While swapping out a Shimano XT derailleur from a 2000 model year mountain bike, I noticed that
    > the pulleys had hardened dirt in the vicinity of the seals. While trying to clean this stuff out
    > with a toothpick, I noticed that the dirt was trapped in between the pulley and a rubber "seal"
    > that surrounds the bearing enclosure. The pulleys do not spin freely at all, at least not in the
    > same manner that I have observed on other of my derailleurs - recent comparisons include a brand
    > new Shimano 105 and a used Shimano STX. In the past, I have applied a drop or two of Triflow in
    > the vicinity of the bearing enclosure periodically thinking that this would actually make it to
    > the enclosed bearing surfaces. Words like "sealed" and "ceramic" appear on the pulley, for further
    > reference.
    >
    > My questions, then, are how does one do the following:
    >
    > 1) clean the pulley assembly so that the pulley spins relatively freely on its bearings
    >
    > 2) periodically lubricate the bearings, if this has any meaning for "sealed" bearings.
    >
    > My understanding of the term sealed is that seals exist, but the bearings are subject to injection
    > of foreign substances, be they for good or bad.

    I do not think you can ever get a useful amount of lubricant in a pulley without dissassembly. And
    TriFlo would not be on my list of useful lubricants, either.

    In the case of derailleur rollers, most are now shipped dry, devoid of any lubricant whatsoever. You
    should open them and add a drop or two of real oil [just about any type] or a smear of grease and
    reinstall, taking care to fully tighten the fasteners. If yours have the overdesigned rubber seals,
    note the orientation - they won't fit well backwards.

    Modern index rollers are different top and bottom. The top assembly floats. In that case the top and
    bottom should be opened separately so as not to mix parts. The derailleur cage is cut away at the
    top inside. An amazingly high number of consumer disassemblies end up upside down, risking the inner
    cage in the spokes and a degradation of shift response.

    We notice a distinctive high-pitched whine from dry bushings, in all materials. Pulleys need
    lubrication very infrequently, maybe every couple of years, but they do need some. The classic
    aluminum cover is plenty sufficient even for wet conditions if you have even a minimal amount of
    lubricant.

    "Sealed" rollers are harmless but overkill. OTOH in many cases they are half the price of
    manufacturer's spares and work as well or better. The Tacx particularly are easy to use, as they
    come with sleeves to fit anything under the sun.

    Steel-on-steel pulleys exhibit a uniquely bright red rust on opening. Anyone know why? I do not see
    that color anywhere else in bicycles.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  4. weinstev-<< I noticed that the pulleys had hardened dirt in the vicinity of the seals. While trying
    to clean this stuff out with a toothpick, I noticed that the dirt was trapped in between the pulley
    and a rubber "seal" that surrounds the bearing enclosure. The pulleys do not spin freely at all, at
    least not in the same manner that I have observed on other of my derailleurs -

    Take them off, throw the little rubber oring seals away(from Wayne Stetina, BTW), grease the
    bushings, replace the pulleys.

    Peter Chisholm Vecchio's Bicicletteria 1833 Pearl St. Boulder, CO, 80302
    (303)440-3535 http://www.vecchios.com "Ruote convenzionali costruite eccezionalmente bene"
     
  5. A Muzi <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...

    > In the case of derailleur rollers, most are now shipped dry, devoid of any lubricant whatsoever.
    > You should open them and add a drop or two of real oil [just about any type] or a smear of grease
    > and reinstall, taking care to fully tighten the fasteners.

    I notice on my derailleur (2002 Shimano LX) that "fully" tightening the little hex screws that hold
    the rollers in the cage prevents the pulleys from spinning freely. Does this likely reflect some
    error in reassembly (seems unlikely given that there aren't all that many parts), a flaw in the
    design, or what? I notice that there is a little old loctite on the threads, so I guess I will
    follow that lead, and not "fully" tighten the screws. (Note that I am not the burly type that
    routinely strips threads from overtightening, so I don't think the problem is that I'm wailing too
    hard on the screws.)

    - Tony
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Loading...