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Hub starting to slip...

Discussion in 'Folding Bikes' started by Kell, 24 Jan 2018.

  1. Kell

    Kell Senior Member

    Every now and then, my 6-speed slips.

    I can't be sure it's linked to a particular gear, but it happened in third, and also fifth and maybe sixth.

    It's not even a 1/4 turn of the pedals, but it is noticeable.

    Is this a sign of a hub that needs replacing or one that needs servicing?

    For the record I've done just over 5,000 miles on this bike in the last two years.
  2. Maenchi

    Maenchi StoneDog

    i'd say it's most likely the freehub, I replaced mine recently after about the same mileage and the same problem. Generally freehubs are best replaced save for a few models.:smile:
  3. Ian H

    Ian H Guru

    Hub gear? Derailleur?
  4. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    Both - it's a Brompton.
  5. Poacher

    Poacher Gravitationally challenged member

    Look at the control cable to the rear hub. Check that the lock nut next to the adjuster barrel is still tight against the barrel. If not, the adjuster may have worked loose, in which case turn the adjuster until it is snug against the lock nut. Even if it's still snug, you may need to use the adjuster and tighten (or loosen) the cable and see if this makes a difference.
  6. Reiver

    Reiver Legendary Member

    I think they get dirt and muck in and that can stop the little pawls engaging properly, difficult to dislodge unless you can take them to bits, and all the ones I have seen are sealed / need special tools.
    I took the entire freehub off and boiled it up in chainsaw oil - it seemed to cure it. hopefully the muck come out when it drained.

    certainly less wasteful / enviromentally damaging than having a new one manufactured.
  7. Poacher

    Poacher Gravitationally challenged member

    Can we just confirm whether it's a Brompton or some other folding bike we're discussing?
    If it's a Brommie, when did they swap from BWR 3 speed to a free hub? I'm confused!
  8. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    I'm sure @Kell has a six speed Brompton, so as you say it has a three speed Brompton Wide Range internal gear hub and a two speed derailer - 3X2=6.

    I suppose the jumping could either be the hub or the chain skipping on one of the derailer cogs.

    Some info about hub servicing in this thread:

  9. Poacher

    Poacher Gravitationally challenged member

    That is one scary thread! My sleep last night was disturbed and fractured - I can just about envisage partially dismantling a BWR hub, but putting it back together again? :unsure:
    Much kudos to @XC26, and I hope the problem can be solved more simply.
    Pale Rider likes this.
  10. Pale Rider

    Pale Rider Guru

    Looked to me like not a job for a novice.
  11. mjr

    mjr Wanting to Keep My EU Citizenship

    Let's start with the obvious: is the indicator/shift rod at the correct tension, so the shoulder is level with the end of the axle in middle gear?

    Although I thought recent hubs were meant to be designed so it didn't slip on misalignment so easily, so it might be lack of lubricant causing a sticky pawl or (if it's been unlubricated and wet) a failed pawl spring. :sad: Still be serviceable rather than a reason to junk the hub. Sturmey are good for having most parts available for most hubs, unlike Shimano's buy-another-unit approach.
  12. OP

    Kell Senior Member

    Sorry - I meant to say up front, yes it's a Brompton.

    I need to give the whole drive train a clean this weekend so I'll check everything is properly aligned, but I'm pretty sure its hub-related rather than the chain skipping as I've had that before when the chain was worn and it feels different.
  13. OP

    Kell Senior Member

    If you notice the second post on that thread was from me...

    I think I have two options if the cleaning/checking/oiling doesn't work:

    1. Take it in for a service.
    2. Buy a new wheel, and take the old one apart to learn how it works.

    I use my bike everyday and being without it costs me an extra tenner a day, so if I took it apart to save money and messed it up, it wouldn't be long before it starts costing me the same as if I'd just got someone to do it in the first place.
    mjr likes this.
  14. 12boy

    12boy Well-Known Member

    Casper WY USA
    It is possible the sprocket on the hub is worn. I have found slippage with only a 1 speed after swapping for a new chain. Sprockets are cheap and easily replaced. I have to get parts via internet and buy a couple at a time since postage is almost as much as the sprocket. If your hub were at fault seems it would slip in the lower gears as well since the hub should work the same regardless of which cog it's on. I rely on oil lube for my SA hubs in lieu of using 2 different kinds of grease. 5-20 synthetic motor oil left over from car oil changes works well for me. Couple of quick and easy things to try....good luck.
  15. OP

    Kell Senior Member

    It is also happening in lower gears.

    I noticed on Friday night when I have to change down for a steep hill from 4th to 2nd, to 1st.

    Cleaned and lubed everything at the weekend and checked alignment. Everything exactly where it should be with 'about 1mm' of the pin showing.

    What I forgot to do, however, was add oil to the hub. Might give that a whirl tonight.

    It's probably getting to the point where the chain, sprockets and Chainring need replacing again, but I was hoping to get the worst of the weather out of the way first. It's also not going to be that easy this time as I cannot get one of the chainring bolts out and it's going to have to be drilled out.