Bike was working fine. I was stopped at a stop sign, when I went to pedal it jerked and felt like my chain popped off, but it had not. Pedaling does nothing. The back wheel still rolls if I push it. It’s not locked up and the pedals and sprockets spin but rough now, and it makes a clanking noise. sounds like its coming from inside the axle - I can still use the brakes though. it’s a single speed beach cruiser with coaster brakes.

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    So you have a single-speed bike with coaster brakes. When you pedal forward the pedals move and you get some noise, but there's no forward motion. Pedaling backwards seems to operate the brakes normally. Is that right? (Sounds to me that your rear hub has self-destructed -- a fairly rare event. Could be that the nuts holding everything together have come loose, or something inside could have broken.) Oct 12, 2018 at 21:08
  • The freehub/freewheel has failed, and the transmission can drive the rear cog, but its not connecting to the rest of the wheel. bicycles.stackexchange.com/q/44990/19705 has a heap of photos of different pawl systems. You may be able to get more life out of it by liberally soaking the area in penetrating oils to get the pawls to drop again, but its probably better to replace the freewheel component. A temp fix will fail again.
    – Criggie
    Oct 12, 2018 at 22:03
  • Ok thx :) believe ill just buy a new one seems to be the quickest easiest solution Oct 13, 2018 at 2:15

2 Answers 2


Most likely the freewheel mechanism in the hub has broken.

Unless you have the knowledge and tools to disassemble the hub you’ll have to take the bike to a local bike store or mechanic.

If fixing the freewheel is not possible replacement of the whole rear wheel is likely the solution as replacing a hub requires rebuilding the wheel which has a substantial cost.


Coaster brakes have internal clutch that that can fail. Your local bike shop can fix this without costing a lot of money. Fixed a lot of coaster brake bikes when I worked for a Schwinn dealer many moons ago. If you're mechanically inclined, you can probably do it yourself.

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