Bicycles Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people who build and repair bicycles, people who train cycling, or commute on bicycles. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

My chain is skipping only on the smallest sprocket, and it skips with every crank turn. The chain is not stretched. Also, chainrings are almost new. Could this freewheel be the reason, it doesn't seem worn out to me (although it's old):

enter image description here enter image description here

share|improve this question
Another pic showing the derailleur might help. Doubt its the freewheel. – Ken Hiatt Jun 7 '13 at 5:49
I would check the limit screw, maybe turn it half a turn anti clockwise. – alex Jun 7 '13 at 6:07
@KenHiatt: I added another pic. – Mladen Jablanović Jun 7 '13 at 6:17
@alex: Good idea, I'll try that. – Mladen Jablanović Jun 7 '13 at 6:17
Those rear sprockets appear to be in good condition. The derailer or hanger may be bent, or the derailer limit or the shifter may be preventing the derailer from swinging all the way to the outside. Or the chain may be too long. – Daniel R Hicks Jun 7 '13 at 11:06

The reason was the sprocket after all. Changing the freewheel resolved the issue. I had some problem finding a service which has the wrench for that old Sachs/Maillard freewheels. Replaced it with standard Shimano 6-speed, and everything works smoothly now!

Thanks all for help.

share|improve this answer

Sprocket, cassette and chain match together. An old set will work well but change one part and you'll be skipping. Often people will wear out their favorite gears, change the chain and then only the less favorite gears work reliably.

The problem is that the chain will actually ride up high on the teeth, eventually so high that they're not all in position and the chain-reaction of skip occurs; the sprocket teeth graze the chain links uncontrollably in that ever-so-painful sound.

The derailleur is surely not the problem (as you noticed). If it were you would first here the clack-clack-clack from the out of alignment.

share|improve this answer
Actually, this is something of an old wive's tail. As a sprocket wears the "ideal" link spacing actually gets smaller. Too often people fail to replace a worn chain because they believe this, and it can cause worn but still good sprockets to become worn out fairly quickly. – Daniel R Hicks Dec 19 '13 at 12:11

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.