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Thread: Freehub body problems

  1. #1
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    Default Freehub body problems

    I finally bought Zinn & the Art of Road Bike Maintenance (it's great) and decided to put it to use by attempting to replace the cassette on a wheel. I got the original one off, which felt like a great accomplishment, but I can't get the new one on. I'm pretty sure it's because of these notches in the freehub:

    http://i.imgur.com/43KMqHx.jpg

    http://i.imgur.com/T4kF94l.jpg

    (both cassettes are 10-speed so I doubt it's a compatibility issue) Do I need to replace the freehub? It feels like everything I do requires more tools and parts...

  2. #2
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    Be sure you are lining the notch pattern in the gears to the hub. There is a small spline in the pattern. I am no bike guru but I have used a file to dress the high spots in the hub splines. Be sure to tighten the cap nut to the recommended torque. I am close to Ballston if you end up stuck and want a hand with it.

  3. #3
    hozn's Avatar
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    Yeah, you can take a file to flatten the notches if you are just having trouble working the cogs on. Some cassettes are worse than others for notching the freehub body (e.g. Shimano cassettes that only engage every 3rd spline - criminal!). From the picture the notching doesn't look too bad, so as long as you line up the cogs correctly with the splines, maybe they just need some "encouragement" -- but don't use a hammer

    Steel freehub bodies don't have this problem, of course, but they weigh a lot more. Some hub manufacturers like Novatec and I believe American Classic have the face for one of the splines made of steel. I am excited for that on my new wheelset (Novatec hub in my case).

  4. #4
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    Thanks guys! It's a lot easier to buy a file than a whole new freehub body (is something like this what I would need?). And I'm pretty sure I had the spline things lined up right -- I managed to move the older cassette to a different freehub, so I like to think I sort of know what I'm doing...

    And yes, in the future I'll make sure my cap nut is tight enough...

    While searching I also noticed the wheel manufacturer even mentions the notching problem: http://www.boydcycling.com/freehub-body/

  5. #5
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    Default Yay!

    One trip to Cherrydale Hardware for a file later, success! Thanks guys!!

  6. #6
    hozn's Avatar
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    Awesome! Sorry, I missed your followup question, but sounds like you found what you need. Eventually the notching may get really bad and you will have to replace the freehub body, but usually that isn't a big deal (just more expensive).

  7. #7
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    Some folks found that you can take some of the large steel packing staples flatten and clip them to length. They can then be slid between the hub and cogs to take up the slack and stop the cogs from notching the hub splines

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