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I've got a separate wheelset for cylocross riding and road riding. Would it be detrimental to the life of my cassette or hubs If I swapped the cassette between my road and off-road wheelset frequently?

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I also would plan to use the off-road wheelset on my single speed cross bike with a spacer kit, so I wouldn't want to pick up a separate cassette to keep on the off road-wheelset. – Benzo Jun 27 '12 at 18:24
What's "frequently"? Twice a week? I've swapped cassettes on a single freewheel perhaps 50 times without noticeable wear or damage, while trying to work out exactly how big a range I could shift with a particular derailleur. That's not simple, you actually have to ride the bike to see if it will work in practice as things that shift fine in the stand sometimes don't on the road. The problematic part to wear out is the thread on the inside of the freewheel (where the lockring engages). Care and grease will avoid it IMO. – Kohi Jun 28 '12 at 0:31
up vote 3 down vote accepted

The main hazard is that, with so much swapping, you will sooner or later cross-thread the cassette and ruin both cassette and hub. There will also be additional wear on the threaded surfaces and on the spline, where you wrench it on and off. The spline may eventually become too worn to allow removal.

So a lot depends on the care you use -- if you get too casual in doing the swap you're apt to muck it up.

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You can't crossthread a cassete. You could crossthread the lockring maybe. – user973810 Jun 27 '12 at 21:25
Right, the lockring -- I'm still stuck in the 80s. Probably easier to cross-thread than a freewheel. And probably fairly easy to over-torque, especially after the ratchet teeth get worn down from going on and off so much. – Daniel R Hicks Jun 27 '12 at 23:55
It's cool man. I was born in the 80s too! Pretty much every bike component has changed since then. Everything except the bottom bracket shell. – user973810 Jun 28 '12 at 0:49

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