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I really want to put a six-speed free wheel on here and a rear derailleur but I don't know if this bike will accept a RD. Does anybody know if I would be able to add a hanger or if I can do a Direct mount Shimano? It is an older road bike and I am not sure the make/model of it. It is a 26 inch frame with 28 inch wheels.enter image description here

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  • Could you please also add a photo of the whole bike frame?
    – Criggie
    Oct 9, 2022 at 0:01

2 Answers 2

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The derailleur attachment itself is not what's in question with this need. You can use any of the products on the market that are made to do it, like the Fyxation thing or the Problem Solvers thing, or you can adapt a claw hanger RD, or a claw hanger adapter like the Sunrace, or you can have a framebuilder replace the dropouts.

enter image description here

enter image description here

What's in question is everything else about the practicality and cost-effectiveness of converting it, since it will mean doing a lot of other stuff to the bike. Since 120mm-rear-end-friendly contemporary 5- and 6-speed freewheels are almost all nonsense parts, there is a lot of impetus to spread the frame unless you use the Fyxation product, and if you do that then you're locked into their proprietary cassettes. The other ways of doing this all involve spreading the frame to 130mm and realigning the dropouts, then buying a normal road cassette wheel plus cassette to match the new configuration. At that point you can have a mechanically sound track bike with gears on it, but in my experience it's not always obvious that it's all worth it.

I don't have an opinion on the Six Fyx and this isn't a venue for product reviews anyway, but to my understanding it only can ever give you 12-24, which may be a dealbreaker if having much of a gear range was why you wanted to do this in the first place.

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No, not easily.

What you have is a "track-end" where the chain's tension is adjusted by moving the wheel back and forth then cinching down bolts securely. There is no good place to attach a derailleur.


However there are some possible solutions.

  1. Fit an internally geared hub instead of a rear derailleur.
    More detail at Can I fit a modern internally geared hub on an old bike ?

  2. Make your own custom derailleur hanger, but you'll need to allow for the slot being a different angle, and that the open end is in the other direction.
    These are available retail for cheap:
    enter image description here
    but you'd want something that looks more like this:
    enter image description here (mock-up)

The hidden problem is the Over-Locknut Dimension of this frame. If the OLD is 120mm or 126mm then there isn't room horizontally for a wheel and cassette, so you're left with trying to stretch the bike if it is steel. You say its a 26" frame (66 cm) which implies some long chain/seat stays, so this is "possible". If it were a 20" wheel BMX then I'd say its unlikely to work.

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  • Thank you all. I think I'll just stick with a single speed for now then. Maybe up it to a 20t instead of the 16T I have on there now. My biggest problem is the freewheel has no tool spot to remove it. Any ideas on that one? Oct 10, 2022 at 14:29
  • @samuelturk "how do I remove this freewheel? " sounds like a new question. Please post clear photos of the wheel+hub off the bike.
    – Criggie
    Oct 10, 2022 at 21:16
  • @samuelturk 16T--> 20T is a 25% change in gearing, which is a big step. On a derailleur bike that's the equivalent of two gear changes. Cogs are relatively cheap, you might want to get one each of 17/18/19/20 and see which one you like the most.
    – Criggie
    Oct 10, 2022 at 21:18

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