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I have tried 10mm allen: too small, spins freely, with very little grip.

Hub brand: Joytech

On the outer side it has 9 ball bearings.

Video showing right/drive side:

Video showing left/non-drive side:

enter image description here

enter image description here

It is a low-end (BSO-ish maybe), 170USD hybrid bicycle, bought from Decathlon. 8 gears; Bicycle model: B'Twin Riverside 120; Derailleur model: B'Twin.

I'm not a bicycle expert, this is my first freehub removal attempt. I'm not sure how this freehub is secured to the hub; any details are greatly appeciated.

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    Have you tried a hex tool in both sides at the same time? – Criggie Apr 27 '18 at 1:30
  • @Criggie That means, a hex key inserted from the non-drive side to kind of "hold it in place", and another from the drive side to which I apply torque? I'll try that as soon as I aquire some 11 and 12mm hex keys, the 10 one really seems too small. – Robert Lee Apr 27 '18 at 1:35
  • Is it possible for a freehub not to be removable? To be somehow combined with the hub in the factory? – Robert Lee Apr 27 '18 at 1:50
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    Maybe - even the lowest spec unserviceable Shimano freehub is still removable and can be replaced with an entire new unit. Is there any branding written onto the hub between the spoke flanges? – Criggie Apr 27 '18 at 2:05
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    bikeforums.net/bicycle-mechanics/… Another similar problem. Somebody says it is not worth removing, since you can't find a replacement. I just wanted to relubricate the bearings, because it makes a slight grinding noise when turning (coasting). – Robert Lee Apr 27 '18 at 2:40
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I believe this one is a 12mm allen inserted through the non-drive side. 11mm is out there too.

Usually what I do is clamp an L-type one in a vise, long end up. A long socket would also work but it would need to be very long.

  • Facing the non-drive side, do I spin the allen key clockwise? I'll try as soon as I find a 12mm allen. I'll visit some hardware stores today. – Robert Lee Apr 27 '18 at 3:13
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    Counter-clockwise – Nathan Knutson Apr 27 '18 at 4:57
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    I also tried to remove a freehub from a cheap Shimano hub recently, and while scouring the Internet learned that it may sometimes be 10mm hex, or 12 mm hex, or 12.7 mm (½ inch) hex or even 14 mm hex, as a tool needed to remove some hubs. – Grigory Rechistov Apr 27 '18 at 7:44
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    Thank you very much, sir! A 12mm allen key from the non-drive side worked perfectly. Counter-clockwise, long end up, as you said. Didn't require much force. – Robert Lee Apr 27 '18 at 17:01
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    I don't even own a 12mm... my biggest is 10mm and that is only used for some pedals. Excellent work @RobertLisaru and thank you for coming back to provide closure. – Criggie May 9 '18 at 7:54
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Inside, where the axle goes through, it is like a 12-point socket. A 11 mm or a 7/16" hex key (Allen wrench) will fit. You can also use a 3/8" square drive like for a socket wrench. I used the latter. The threads are right-handed. You can work from either side. Drive side counterclockwise. Non-drive clockwise (driving it away from you takes the freehub off in that case). The back of my freehub center piece (pawl carrier) has a 10-lug pattern that engages a female internally lugged pattern on the wheel's hub. Mine is opposite what is shown in the video above. The lugs trasmit the torque when you pedal.

On the drive side, a think steel ring sits over the wheel bearing balls. With a nylon tire lever, I pried this out. The bearing race has two slot 180 degrees apart. The race is threaded onto the center piece of the freehub. The threads are left-handed. You need a tool that is 1 1/8" wide and about 1/8" thick. The slots are 0.150" wide, but 1/8" will do. The bearing race is tightened against a pair of crush washers and is crazy tight. Unscrewing the bearing race will allow access to the internal bearings. Mine has 25 loose balls on each end. A light steel spring holds three pawls against the center piece of mine. These engage 15 ramped teeth on the inside of the freehub body. One of my pawls had a burr on the tip of it, which I removed with a whetstone. I hope that is what was causing the occasional skipping when I pedal hard.

Reassembly is the reverse of assembly. Don't lose those balls. I glued them in the races with grease. Don't use too much grease inside the freehub, or the pedals will turn when you coast.

  • Welcome to the site! You might like to take a look at our short tour for more information about how things work here, but you're doing great so far. :) – David Richerby Jun 30 at 8:35
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Reviving an old thread here. Me and my partner are doing a long cyclo touring trip and taking the chance for a stop to do some bicycle maintenance. I wanted to address my freehub since it's been doing some noise and doesn't seem to roll very smoothly... Having a look and if needed cleaning and putting some appropriate grease. Prefer to do it now than in the middle of nowhere in Asia... Supposedly it's a joytech D342RCC. I found this thread and based on it bought a 12mm and it does fit on the non drive side. I tried by hand rorttating counterclockwise (looking at non drive side) and it didn't budge.. I was planning on putting the wheel in a vise and turning the wheel instead (in corresponding directions) but just wanted to confirm that i got the directions right...? Also, is it expected to be lock super tight? How strong should I go? Bit afraid of ending up breaking it now instead... Many thanks for any insight!! enter image description here

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    I unscrewed it by rotating the wheel counter-clockwise in a vise. parktool.com/blog/repair-help/… This article recommends ~350 in-lb (40nm) torque for the freehub body (pretty tight), so you can expect the same amount of torque to unscrew it. With the leverage of the wheel in a vise it should be fairly easy. If you don't have a torque-wrench search how you can approximate torque without a tw. I believe you are pretty safe with applying 40-50 nm in the ccw direction, it should unscrew. – Robert Lee Feb 21 at 13:16
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    Though I don't think it is worth taking the freehub apart for maintenance, maybe you can just find a replacement. Are you sure the freehub is making weird noise and not just the wheel bearings? (If the noise persists even when pedalling, then it's not the freehub) – Robert Lee Feb 21 at 13:25
  • The wheel counter clockwise (while turning looking from above). Ok perfy! Many thanks! Will give it a go... Btw, out of curiosity, were you replacing it it just cleaning and greasing it? If you kept it, how has it been behaving?? Thanks!! – Pedro Vicente Feb 21 at 13:35
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    Cleaning and greasing is rather complicated, you might need fancy tools. See this video: youtu.be/X9gIEG1db0s I removed it because it was making a slight grinding noise, but then I found out it was not big deal so I put it back on, 2000km since then and it's working perfectly and the grinding noise disappeared. – Robert Lee Feb 21 at 13:37
  • If it doesn't have play, and is not slipping forward when you put force on the pedal, then maybe it's not in bad condition. – Robert Lee Feb 21 at 13:44

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