Are there tugnuts meant to fit forward facing horizontal dropouts such as those on a Surly Cross Check, All City Space Horse, or Salsa Cassaroll which won't block rack and fender bosses and keep wheel from sliding forward during heavy pedaling or skid stopping on fixed gear setups?

  • 2
    I know you didn't meant it, but no wheel properly tightened in place should slide forward, and the reason for using tugnuts shouldn't be to avoid sliding under power (but, by the way, to help positioning the wheel when tightening). Commented Apr 24, 2012 at 21:24
  • I'm going through this exact issue, and the cause is a QR that won't bite into the dropout face properly. A new QR or shoulder nut might fix the cause, but if the dropout's face is work-hardened then a tug might be the only remaining solution.
    – Criggie
    Commented Jul 21, 2022 at 22:44

3 Answers 3


I was able to use a surly tuggnut tensioner with my cross check frame with semi-horizontal, forward facing dropouts. No slipping after that. The end of the tensioner bolt bolt nested in the opening on the rear of the dropout where the long wheel positioner bolt would be installed. It would likely work on most bikes with this style of semi-horizontal dropout.

Looks like this:
Cross Check With Tensioner

The newer Surly Hurdy Gurdy chain tensioner is actually designed with the cross check dropout in mind (and should work with most semi horizontal dropouts). It's not going to get in the way of rack and fender mounts like the tuggnut. From surly's site:

Hurdy Gurdy is another nifty device that keeps a rear wheel from slipping forward in the dropout under pedal load. It’s designed for our Cross-Check’s semi-horizontal front-loading dropouts, and will also work on many other similar dropouts.

Hurdy gurdy looks like this: Hurdy Gurdy

  • 1
    Another variant of the same is the Problem Solvers one. problemsolversbike.com/products/shifters-derailleurs/… Its smaller and potenitially lighter than the Surly ones. This one gives you a "bolt-on hanger" but they should have a non-hanger version.
    – Criggie
    Commented Jul 21, 2022 at 23:22
  • 1
    @Criggie - I've seen the problem solvers in action on a bike with rear facing dropouts (All-City Nature boy) and it worked like a charm. However, I'm not sure this would work well on front facing dropouts like on the Surly cross check.
    – Benzo
    Commented Jul 22, 2022 at 13:23

You can use a BMX chain tensioner, like this one, reversed, on some dropouts, but you will need to find one that works with your particular frame and dropout.

There is nothing designed for that purpose which I am aware of. However, If you are using proper torque, and proper track nuts, or nuts with washers, your wheel should not move in the dropout, with or without a tensioner.

Tensioners are designed to make it easier to align the wheel, and get proper tension on the chain, not to keep the wheel from slipping in the dropout.

If your wheel is slipping in the dropout, then there is something else wrong, in my opinion.

enter image description here

  • 3
    Putting this in the dropout reversed only prevents wheel from sliding backwards, not forwards. The chain prevents backwards movement (at least on the drive side). This cannot be setup to prevent forward movement in the dropouts due to the design, which is the typical issue due to forces puling the axle forward when pedaling or skidding (on fixed gear)
    – Benzo
    Commented Jan 24, 2014 at 19:56


enter image description here

Is what I used for forward facing horizontal dropouts with a Shimano Nexus hub. Perfect. As somebody said, you shouldn't really need them. But it makes getting chain tension and alignment a lot easier.

And as my bike tech said, you effectively have a pair of stainless steel washers.

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