I have a brand new Shimano Ultegra WH-6800 rear wheel. The freehub has about 2mm of play in it. I can feel the play without the cassette installed by grabbing the freehub body and moving it. It moves side to side and a little less in and out.

I installed a cassette (brand new Shimano Ultegra CS-6700 10spd) and put the wheel on the bike (only in a stand) but it makes some awful noises when pedaling and shifting is a mess. If I look at the cassette from the back it is wobbling all over the place.

Should I return the wheel or is this something that can be fixed by disassembling the hub?

  • 1
    Shimano seems to be rather sloppy in their bearing adjustments. I've seen new Shimano hubs with a scary amount of binding.
    – BSO rider
    Oct 16, 2015 at 14:52
  • With cassette removed can you tell if the freehub is loose on the wheel or is the axle loose where it goes through the freehub?
    – mikes
    Oct 16, 2015 at 22:55
  • It's not the axle. I've gone as far as removing the axle and the wobble is still there. The bolt that holds the freehub in place was not loose. I can't tell if the play is inside the freehub or is between the freehub and the hub shell. I should probably send it back for a warranty replacement but I got it online and with all the time and money sending them back I'm leaning towards buying a replacement freehub and trying that.
    – yothenberg
    Oct 18, 2015 at 2:16
  • I've got a brand new WH-6800 wheel set with the same problem on the freehub. With the cassette on its very noticeable. Very disappointed with Shimano's quality control on this.
    – user29383
    Sep 18, 2016 at 17:00
  • I sent mine back and got a replacement. The replacement also had a little play but not as much as before. I started using the wheel and I haven't noticed any problems even though it looks wobbly when I look at the cassette.
    – yothenberg
    Sep 20, 2016 at 1:50

1 Answer 1


If its brand new and under warranty, don't mess around with it... take it back.

Your freehub should have pretty much no discernible play, and adding a cassette on top just makes it look worse.

As for fixing the freehub yourself, I don't know because I've not yet had one that needs repair.

  • Thanks. I wish I had brought them from the LBS but I got them online and considering all the time and money I'll incur sending them back I'm leaning towards buying a replacement freehub and trying that.
    – yothenberg
    Oct 18, 2015 at 2:19
  • 1
    Just to add one extra thing from what I have learned. The freehub body on the Shimano WH-6800 is not designed to be serviced. Shimano sell a replacement as a whole unit for about $30.
    – yothenberg
    Oct 19, 2015 at 1:30
  • @yothenberg If I was OP, I'd call that a challenge! Cos if I break it, I'll learn something new. Just remember "no user serviceable parts inside" is a label put there by lawyers.
    – Criggie
    Oct 19, 2015 at 1:32

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