Questions tagged [freewheel]

The freewheel is a ratcheting mechanism, that coupled with a set of gears, is that threaded onto the rear hub of a bike. The freewheel allows the rear wheel to engage and move when the pedals are spun forward, but coast freely when the pedals are stationary or spun backwards.

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50
votes
11answers
124k views

Why are higher-end freewheels so much louder when coasting?

I tend to ride relatively modest gear (Tiagra/Ultegra), but when I'm riding near higher-end bikes, I sometimes notice that the clicking sound that comes from their cassette/free-wheel while coasting ...
32
votes
2answers
16k views

Why does pedalling backwards not move my bike backwards?

On the Mountain bike I have, pedalling backwards moves the chain but doesn't drive the wheels of the bike backwards like you would expect it to. Why is this?
18
votes
8answers
4k views

What if both wheels were powered by pedalling?

Only the rear wheel of a bike is connected to the drivetrain in order to propel the bike forward. I assume the choice of rear wheel instead of the front wheel is for stability (e.g. avoiding '...
16
votes
4answers
14k views

What freewheel mechanism designs are used in bicycles?

What are the various freehub mechanism designs that have been designed and or put into production? (doesn't need to have been made necessarily!) A good post will contain: A description of the design,...
14
votes
5answers
9k views

Do silent freewheels exist?

I have only just noticed that my bike dosen't seem to make a lot of noise when free wheeling, in fact it's pretty much silent. Is this down to the fact that I have been putting off a major clean?, is ...
14
votes
11answers
23k views

Is there such thing as a freewheel that doesn't click?

The clicking sound of the freewheel on my singlespeed when it's coasting is annoying for me, so I flipped over my back wheel and rode fixed for a few months in blissful silence. But having to pedal ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

Should I replace all wheel bearings when only some are worn?

I just ripped apart my mom's mountain bike's rear hub. One of the bearings was incredibly rough, so I replaced it, and the other one was smooth, but didn't turn very easily. Since I didn't have a ...
12
votes
6answers
2k views

Why are trigger shifters so widely used, instead of the twisting grip shifters(revoshift)?

I recently rebuilt my whole bike. It was in terrible condition. I also decided to get a new freewheel with more speeds. While i was doing some research and looking through shifters and freewheels, i ...
11
votes
3answers
86k views

What is the difference between a freewheel and a hub?

I think these are both just types of cassettes, one all the rings come apart, and the other it's just one big piece all welded together. Can someone please tell me what the difference is?
9
votes
3answers
7k views

How do I clean the inside of a freehub?

I didn't know any better and I let degreaser drip into the freewheel body of my Shimano FH-RM65. Now it makes a terrible retching noise when it rotates. How do I clean the inside of this thing? I'm ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

What's the point in a freewheel/cassette with incrementally sized rings?

Pictured is a freewheel with 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20 tooth sprockets. What I don't understand is why such small increments are worthwhile. Surely the point of having gears is the variance that they ...
8
votes
5answers
875 views

What can I do to keep my rear derailler in good condition when commuting in the snow?

In the winter, it seems that whatever I do, my rear derailleur stops functioning after few weeks of commuting in light snow. Ice always gets in there somehow, and the chain refuses to move the wheel, ...
8
votes
1answer
291 views

Why do deraillers require a freewheel?

I've seen fixies with internal hubs, but a non-freewheeling rear wheel with deraillers seems to be unrepresented: | Freewheel? | Derailler? | Yes | No | ...
8
votes
1answer
134 views

Freewheel engaging sporadically when turned backwards at low speed

I noticed that when going at low speed without pedalling the freewheel sometimes seems to engage anyway and pulling the chain until there is enough tension ( as the rear derailleur contracts due to ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Is changing wheel necessary to use a freewheel with different number of gears?

Approx. 3 weeks ago I found an abandoned frame (including handlebars, fork, brakes, pedals and shifting gears attached to it). I decided to use it to build a new bicycle since only recently I've ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I lower the gear ratio on my son's bike?

I got a SH Commencal 24" MTB for my son. He loves it - except on climbing steep slopes where he runs out of steam. It comes with a 7-speed 14-28T freewheel (Shimano MF TZ21) + Acera derailleur, ...
6
votes
6answers
7k views

Reverse Gear in Bicycles

For an ordinary bicycle (neither fixed gear nor capable of changing any gears). Is it possible to modify it to have a reverse gear on it? (i.e. reverse pedaling causes the bicycle to go backward) (...
6
votes
5answers
16k views

Could I replace a hub on a wheel?

I have a freewheel and I keep bending the axle, however the rim, spokes and tire are all fine, does anyone think it would be possible to unscrew the spokes, buy a new hub that has a freehub, install ...
6
votes
2answers
110k views

When I pedal the rear wheel is not turning

I have a very old bike. It used to work perfectly, but just recently it happened that when I pedal the rear wheel is not turning. Just for notice I pedal in the correct direction, brakes are not ...
6
votes
2answers
312 views

Should the tightness of the QR skewer (rear wheel) affect the freewheel

The tighter I fit my rear QR, the less freely my rear wheel spins. It’s very noticeable. Problem is that when I have the QR quite loose I tend to get a creaky noise from the rear axle under load but ...
6
votes
2answers
7k views

Tightening rear quick release stops rear wheel

I have a medium sized Trek Mountain Track/Antelope with a seven speed freewheel. When I tighten the rear quick release, I have to carefully back off on the tightness so that the wheel will actually ...
6
votes
2answers
379 views

Freewheel replacement for a touring tandem bike

I have an older touring tandem bike that we use to go on long trips. The gear setup is 3x7. I noticed that we hardly ever use the smallest 3 cogs on the freewheel (of course together with the largest ...
6
votes
5answers
51k views

What should I use to lubricate a freehub?

I've noticed my freehub has gotten quite a bit louder over the last few months. Several people have recommended that I lubricate the freewheel by tipping the bike on its side and dripping lubricant ...
6
votes
3answers
48k views

Advantages / disadvantages of freecoaster and cassette hubs

I've been reading a lot over the past few days about BMX, and last night I watched a few videos like this one. I have been seeing the words "freecoaster" and "cassette" around a lot, and I was curious ...
6
votes
3answers
372 views

Are all ready-made wheels sold “cassette compatible” only?

I will have to change my wheels on my old trusty late-80s Peugeot (PS28) soon. The rear wheel is mounted with a freewheel-type 6-speed hub (not cassette). I was wondering if all ready-made wheels ...
6
votes
1answer
383 views

SRAM XD driver body wear

I was climbing a steep hill, and all of a sudden my pedals started spinning freely. The freewheel had given up. I removed the cassette and found the XD driver looking like this: The areas around the ...
6
votes
2answers
196 views

How I can remove this freewheel (without “destroying” it)?

How I can remove this freewheel (without "destructing" it) ? By "destructive removal" I mean this: https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/freewheel-destructive-removal P.S. I ...
5
votes
4answers
7k views

Rusty chain and back cassette – Replace or repair?

Reference of the chain: KMC Z51 Reference back freewheel: Shimano TZ21 14-28 Teeth 7 Speed Reference of the bike: BTWIN Rockrider 340 I recently acquired a second-hand bike and decided to repair it: ...
5
votes
2answers
762 views

Switching a 11 speed cassette+wheel with a 8 speed freewheel+wheel. Any compatibility issues?

I'm trying to get a pair of training wheels to swap out for my race wheels. I dug up a pair of freewheel compatible wheels and I'm trying to buy freewheels now to fit the bike. The bike's drivetrain ...
5
votes
2answers
734 views

Just replaced axle on rear wheel. It is loose at first but as soon as I ride it, it tightens and wheel no longer rotates. Help!

Yesterday, the axle on my rear wheel snapped. I spent today trying to replace it with a new axle of same length. Before doing so, I checked bearings, and they seemed ok. When I put the hardware on the ...
5
votes
5answers
4k views

Old freewheel removal

I have an old rear wheel - I think its from a Raleigh Arena roadbike from the late 70s or early 80s. There are broken spokes that require the sprockets removed to access. I've done this plenty of ...
5
votes
1answer
6k views

How can I tell if my bike has a freewheel or a cassette?

I bought a Frankenbike off Craigslist. It's a Specialized Rockhopper of unknown year, converted to a commuter, with shocks up front and V-brakes. I love this weird little bike and want to put a ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Chain skipping on new freewheel and chain setup - What went wrong?

BACKGROUND NOTE: The bike is a 1992 Univega MTB that originally came with 6-speed SIS with a triple chainring. I removed the SIS shifter when it broke, and went with a friction shifter. The bike is ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

Can we turn a fixie bike into a freewheeler?

I'm new to the fixie world. I'm planning to buy a fixie bike though, but to start right away would be difficult especially when I'm pedaling down hill. Is it possible to change the fixie bike into the ...
5
votes
1answer
17k views

How many freewheel thread sizes are there?

I'm buying new freewheel and noticed that not every freewheel can be screwed onto my hub because they have different thread sizes. For example: I've found the following thread size specifications: ...
5
votes
3answers
24k views

What tool is needed to remove a Shimano HG-50 freewheel?

What tool is needed to remove a Shimano HG-50 freewheel from the wheel hub? It looks like a 12mm or 13mm Allen key. Will this do it or is there some detail I have missed?
5
votes
2answers
184 views

What model/make are this Freewheel and Freehub?

I am in the process of overhauling my old Motobécane racing bike and I'd like to replace the freewheel, if reasonable. However, there is no indication of who made it (the bike shop couldn't help) and ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

5 speed cassette on 8 speed hub

I just picked up a cheap wheelset to replace the wheels on a vintage bike. The old bike had a 5 speed freewheel (I think. The model printed on it is shimano-ug). The new rear hub is a shimano fh-rm30 ...
5
votes
3answers
542 views

Shaky Freewheel

I posted a question some time ago about vibrations in the frame of my road bike (a 1973 Sekine). Recently, I determined that the rear wheel is sliding back and forth across the axle, with about 0.5cm ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Help me understand my 8-speed uniglide compatibility issue

I have a Dura Ace 8-speed uniglide rear hub/freewheel marked 'Integrated 8 SIS' and an 8 speed uniglide 14-21T cassette. Two issues - the first being that the smallest cog needs to be a special 32mm ...
5
votes
4answers
4k views

Why is my chain riding up and skipping teeth on the freewheel?

Due to a number of reasons, I would like to keep my freewheel at all costs (It's a Sachs freewheel, the bike has all sorts of more 'vintage' components, and they're hard to come by). From reading all ...
5
votes
1answer
10k views

How many ball bearings inside shimano MF-HG20 freewheel top and bottom?

help me fix the bearings in my freewheel. I need to know the number of ball bearings top and bottom in my shimano mf-hg20 freewheel, and what size are they?
4
votes
3answers
60k views

how to reassemble mountain bike rear wheel hub and bearings

So I thought I would sort out my wheel bearings (after asking a few questions here first). Did the front without much of a problem, (reused the existing bearings at the moment, had not got round to ...
4
votes
2answers
8k views

What do I need to know when replacing my cassette?

I'm looking to replace the cassette on my bike with a smaller version, as I find I'm only ever using the top ring of my chainring (except once recently during rain-ageddon). What do I need to know ...
4
votes
1answer
102 views

How does one remove a old French (Maillard) sprocket set from its freewheel?

I assume that the smallest sprocket functions as a lockring and has an outer thread that screws into a mating thread on the freewheel. (I also assume that the other sprockets have inner threads that ...
4
votes
5answers
14k views

Chain “vibrates” on higher gears

My freewheel that I have installed myself only 1.5 years ago has totally worn out by the moment and so I just had it replaced along with a chain at the workshop. I'm still concerned though about the ...
4
votes
2answers
183 views

Removing an unusual freewheel

Could someone tell me which tool I can use to remove the freewheel in the attached picture please. I do have a couple of freewheel tools but they don't fit this particular freewheel. Thanks Chris
4
votes
2answers
12k views

Freewheel not working properly

I have an older Trek Mtn bike with Shimano components. Just today the pedal started spinning without turning the wheel. I can pedal forward and backwards and occasionally it will start turning the ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Mounting a 7-Speed Cassette on an 8/9 speed hub

I asked an earlier question regarding putting modern road wheels on my old steel frame. After clarifying a few things the main issue to me is the number of gears on the freehub. (The freehub I'm ...
4
votes
2answers
30k views

How did my rear freewheel become incredibly tight overnight?

I got a flat yesterday morning after a normal ride, walked my bike inside the house and propped it upside-down (like this) overnight. This morning, I changed the flat and put on some brand new tires ...

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