Freehub maintenance

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Michael, Jun 20, 2003.

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  1. Michael

    Michael Guest

    I used to think of freehubs as "black boxes" that required no thought, but I recently learned that
    they can can have grease added to them, or be disassembled and regreased. I used to have to add oil
    to my freewheels a couple of times a year (usually without taking them apart, but I've done that on
    occasion), but the freehubs seem better sealed, and they sound fine when I spin them manually (I've
    got an assortment of freehubs of various ages ... LX, Ultegra, 105 and XT, subjected to varying
    degrees of wet and mud on and off road.)

    Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on occasion? Should it be
    injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub?
     
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  2. On 20 Jun 2003 14:13:17 -0700, [email protected] (Michael) wrote:

    >Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on occasion? Should it
    >be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub?

    D'you mean the wheel bearings, or the freehub freewheel bearings? The wheel bearings in a freehub
    are just regular cup and cones as found in almost every hub, and need regreasing at the regular
    intervals.

    Jasper
     
  3. There is a small device (at least I think there still is) called the "freehub buddy". It screws onto
    the back of the freehub, You have to remove it fro the hub section first. It allows you to inject
    grase directly into the freehub without dissassembly. Just squeeze until the dirty grease coming out
    the other side is purged.

    I believe it uses a regular grease gun with a zerk fitting. Maybe one of the bike shop owners of the
    group can set you up.

    May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear for the hills! Chris

    Chris'Z Corner "The Website for the Common Bicyclist": http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
     
  4. Jb Toth

    Jb Toth Guest

    >Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on occasion? Should it
    >be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub?
    Check out Sheldon Browns' article on freewheels and freehubs @ http://www.sheldonbrown.com/k7.html
    It doesn't take long to do if you have the proper tools and are careful not to lose any bearings.

    Jim Toth
     
  5. David Kunz

    David Kunz Guest

    Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > There is a small device (at least I think there still is) called the "freehub buddy". It screws
    > onto the back of the freehub, You have to remove it fro the hub section first. It allows you to
    > inject grase directly into the freehub without dissassembly. Just squeeze until the dirty grease
    > coming out the other side is purged.
    >
    > I believe it uses a regular grease gun with a zerk fitting. Maybe one of the bike shop owners of
    > the group can set you up.
    >
    > May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear for the hills! Chris
    >
    > Chris'Z Corner "The Website for the Common Bicyclist": http://www.geocities.com/czcorner

    Not grease, heavy oil. I used to use 75w90 synthetic gear lube (that's what my Jeep takes, so I have
    it on hand). Worked great. (Now I have a Chris King and don't worry about it :)).

    David
     
  6. michael-<< Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on occasion?
    Should it be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub? >><BR><BR>

    Cannot really take any shimano freehub 'apart'. Just take the seal off the underside, flush and
    relube with OIL(NOT grease). I use Mobil One.

    Peter Chisholm Vecchio's Bicicletteria 1833 Pearl St. Boulder, CO, 80302
    (303)440-3535 http://www.vecchios.com "Ruote convenzionali costruite eccezionalmente bene"
     
  7. Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:
    > michael-<< Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on occasion?
    > Should it be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub? >><BR><BR>
    >
    > Cannot really take any shimano freehub 'apart'.

    Sure you can, I do it all the time. Well, not actually all the time, but once or twice a year - but
    I don't see nearly as many wheels a shop mechanic does.

    In addition to a pair of cone wrenches (to remove the axle) and a 10mm hex wrench (to remove the
    freehub), only one additional tool is needed to disassemble the freehub. The freehub is disassembled
    by simply unscrewing the main bearing cone via the two slots on its edge. There is a special Shimano
    tool for this that costs about $15, but I generally use a 1 3/16" drag link socket, which I bought
    for $7.50 from Sears:

    http://www.sears.com/sr/product/summary/[email protected]@@@[email protected]@-
    @@&BV_EngineID=ccegadcijdjhmfhcehgcemgdffmdflk.0&vertical=SEARS&bidsite=&pid=00944514000

    Contrary to popular belief, when the you disassemble the the freehub, there aren't a bizillion
    pieces that go flying every where - the only moving parts are the pawls, which are completely
    retained by the circular spring (similar to the pawl and spring arrangement in the latest
    Campagnolo freehub).

    Once apart I can easily clean everything, and check the condition of the pawls. I generally replace
    the bearing balls (1/8") when I service the freehub.

    Peter, I'm surprised you've never taken on apart.

    Mark McMaster [email protected]
     
  8. Matt O'Toole

    Matt O'Toole Guest

    "Mark McMaster" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...

    > Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:

    > > Cannot really take any shimano freehub 'apart'.

    > Sure you can, I do it all the time. Well, not actually all the time, but once or twice a year -
    > but I don't see nearly as many wheels a shop mechanic does.

    > In addition to a pair of cone wrenches (to remove the axle) and a 10mm hex wrench (to remove the
    > freehub), only one additional tool is needed to disassemble the freehub. The freehub is
    > disassembled by simply unscrewing the main bearing cone via the two slots on its edge. There is a
    > special Shimano tool for this that costs about $15, but I generally use a 1 3/16" drag link
    > socket, which I bought for $7.50 from Sears:

    A really big screwdriver does the job for me.

    > Contrary to popular belief, when the you disassemble the the freehub, there aren't a bizillion
    > pieces that go flying every where - the only moving parts are the pawls, which are completely
    > retained by the circular spring (similar to the pawl and spring arrangement in the latest
    > Campagnolo freehub).
    >
    > Once apart I can easily clean everything, and check the condition of the pawls. I generally
    > replace the bearing balls (1/8") when I service the freehub.

    I've taken a couple of Shimano ones apart to "blueprint" them. A few years ago these things were so
    sloppy when new that they wiggled, and I'm sure the play contributed to their early death. The play
    is adjustable with shim washers.

    After getting ones that didn't wiggle and flushing/relubing them occasionally, I haven't had any
    problems. Before that I used to go through 1 or 2 a year. This is uneconomical, especially because
    bike shops prefer to sell only the $35 XT ones. So it's definately worth flushing and relubing them
    whenever you have your hubs apart.

    I find they're best flushed from back to front, and relubed with heavy oil. I like Phil Wood oil --
    it stays in place like grease, and does this even better than heavy gear oil. Grease gums up the
    works, and can actually cause the pawls to stick.

    Matt O.
     
  9. David Kunz

    David Kunz Guest

    Mark McMaster wrote:
    > Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:
    >
    >> michael-<< Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively get new lube on
    >> occasion? Should it be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub? >><BR><BR>
    >>
    >> Cannot really take any shimano freehub 'apart'.
    >
    >
    > Sure you can, I do it all the time. Well, not actually all the time, but once or twice a year -
    > but I don't see nearly as many wheels a shop mechanic does.
    >
    > In addition to a pair of cone wrenches (to remove the axle) and a 10mm hex wrench (to remove the
    > freehub), only one additional tool is needed to disassemble the freehub. The freehub is
    > disassembled by simply unscrewing the main bearing cone via the two slots on its edge. There is a
    > special Shimano tool for this that costs about $15, but I generally use a 1 3/16" drag link
    > socket, which I bought for $7.50 from Sears:
    >
    > http://www.sears.com/sr/product/summary/[email protected]@@@0039408849.1056220654-
    > @@@@&BV_EngineID=ccegadcijdjhmfhcehgcemgdffmdflk.0&vertical=SEARS&bidsite=&pid=00944514000
    >
    >
    > Contrary to popular belief, when the you disassemble the the freehub, there aren't a bizillion
    > pieces that go flying every where - the only moving parts are the pawls, which are completely
    > retained by the circular spring (similar to the pawl and spring arrangement in the latest
    > Campagnolo freehub).
    >
    > Once apart I can easily clean everything, and check the condition of the pawls. I generally
    > replace the bearing balls (1/8") when I service the freehub.
    >
    > Peter, I'm surprised you've never taken on apart.
    >
    > Mark McMaster [email protected]

    I made my own tool with a bench grinder and an old 1/4" extension. I used to reshim mine to get rid
    of the wobble, but I used a bearing buddy to do the actual lubing.

    David
     
  10. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > michael-<< Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively
    get
    > new lube on occasion? Should it be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub? >>

    "Qui si parla Campagnolo" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...> Cannot really take any shimano freehub
    'apart'. Just take the seal off the
    > underside, flush and relube with OIL(NOT grease). I use Mobil One.

    "Cannot"? Huh? The Shimano cassette body tool fits all models from the mid-seventies through
    current models. But once you open the cassette body, there's nothing to do in there. Flushing
    without opening is excellent advice. When there are cracked pawls, repairing these seems a
    temporary fix so a new body is a better idea. Agree that grease is a poor choice. Oil won't cause
    pawls to stick open.

    --
    Andrew Muzi http://www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April 1971
     
  11. John McGraw

    John McGraw Guest

    "A Muzi" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > > michael-<< Should a freehub require new lube ever? Should it proactively
    > get
    > > new lube on occasion? Should it be injected or taken apart, repacked and rebuilt like a hub? >>
    >
    > "Qui si parla Campagnolo" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...> Cannot really take any shimano freehub
    > 'apart'. Just take the seal off the
    > > underside, flush and relube with OIL(NOT grease). I use Mobil One.
    >
    > "Cannot"? Huh? The Shimano cassette body tool fits all models from the mid-seventies through
    > current models. But once you open the cassette body, there's nothing to do in there. Flushing
    > without opening is excellent advice. When there are cracked pawls, repairing these seems a
    > temporary fix so a new body is a better idea. Agree that grease is a poor choice. Oil won't cause
    > pawls to stick open.

    A "Freehub Buddy" is a really quick & efficient way to do this. You do not have to remove the
    ffreehub body. Much better than trying to driddle solvent and / or lube in, because it forces the
    solvent / lube into the entire body.

    John
     
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