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I've been trying in vain to remove a rear cassette that I myself installed about a year ago. I may have over-tightened the lock ring and now I can't remove it no matter what position I hold the wheel-chain whip-wrench combination. Any advice on what to do to get this cassette off (short of going to my LBS)? The wheel is relatively new and the cassette is very new, and the reason I want to remove the cassette is to replace a broken spoke.

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have you tried a cheater bar (aka a long pipe to add leverage) on the wrench holding your casette lockring tool? You may need someone else to hold the wheel / chainwhip while you do this. –  Benzo Nov 19 '13 at 19:39
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the thing is your LBS will be equipped, they will probably have a vice set up to do this. I struggled all weekend once with a cassette - I like to be self-sufficient - and very reluctantly took the wheel to a shop on the Monday, they were able to loosen it straight away. –  PeteH Nov 19 '13 at 22:27
    
Make sure you're doing it right. Check the Park Tool website for instructions, to be sure. –  Daniel R Hicks Dec 3 '13 at 2:49
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A vice is the way to do it. +1 for a well equipped LBS. –  WTHarper Dec 3 '13 at 6:25
    
Also, I think I remember hearing that the US and the UK use the term vice differently: a bench-mounted clamping vice is the way to do it. –  WTHarper Dec 3 '13 at 13:13
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4 Answers 4

Did you yourself grease the threads before installing? This is especially important when the lock ring is aluminum. I'll assume your free hub body is either steel or titanium and there's no grease. If force alone won't move it, it's time to try leverage or impact or both.

In the shop they'll ask you the above question before putting the wheel on the ground with the right (or cassette holding) chain whip in a position where it cannot move (under a table or something solid and heavy). The lock ring tool or wrench can have a longer lever attached to it and push straight down. If that doesn't work, get a plastic hammer and try impact. Good luck, and always grease your threads..

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I recently broke a ParkTool chain whip by forcing it too suddenly. Good thing that a short piece of chain is enough to repair the tool. –  Vorac Dec 3 '13 at 9:18
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Try engaging the chain whip on different cogs of the cassette. Overlap the chain on the chain whip so that it binds itself in place if necessary.

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Have you tried holding your tool like this:

Way to hold your tools

I have just discovered it (instead of the classical "one tool per hand" technique) and it helped a lot.

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I discovered that technique when I was 6. –  Daniel R Hicks Dec 3 '13 at 13:42
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You should secure the cassette lockring removal tool with the quick release skewer or axle bolt, just enough to hold it in place (although some removal tools don't have a hole in the middle for you to do this). This means you can use more force without fear of the tool slipping.
Then use a long handled wrench (spanner) and chain whip. A box-end wrench (ring spanner) will give you more purchase. Otherwise use a vice in place of the wrench (spanner) and just turn the chain whip counterclockwise when looking from the side of the wheel not fixed in the vice.
When using the wrench and chain whip, if you can't push the two tools toward each other to remove the cassette, you can inflate the tire fully, and go for the most mechanical advantage by having the spanner and whip handles forming a v with angles of about 120-150 degrees. Then push down on both handles. This does run some risk of damaging your wheel though, so only try this as a last resort.
You can also try putting the chain whip on the larger sprockets for more purchase.

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