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Tightened Chain - clicking freewheel

Discussion in 'Fixed Gear and Single Speed' started by dhd.evans, 10 Dec 2017.

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  1. OP
    OP
    dhd.evans

    dhd.evans Über Member

    Location:
    Dundee
    Yeah, this was the collision:



    I couldn't quite believe that the chap just drove into me, much less that it might cause the bike damage. Shifter knocked to a right angle and now the chain jumping along with freewheel acting like a fixie... perhaps this is the cause.
     
  2. Cycleops

    Cycleops Veteran

    Location:
    Accra, Ghana
    Aluminium is a fairly soft metal so it’s more than likely things are bent somewhere, most probably in the rear triangle. Sight down the tubes and see if you can see anything out of shape.
    Put the bars straight and run a straight edge or length of string between the wheels to see if they line up.
    If the frame is bent it’s junk so you’re going to need a new one. Hope you got the drivers details.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    dhd.evans

    dhd.evans Über Member

    Location:
    Dundee
    LBS is having a look today; they reckon (at first sight) that the lock nut has come loose and that the wheel is out of true. Oh, and the ridiculous concentric bottom bracket just needs tightening. Squeaky bum time to see if they can sort that before i head home tonight.
     
    Cycleops likes this.
  4. OP
    OP
    dhd.evans

    dhd.evans Über Member

    Location:
    Dundee
    The consensus is that the freehub has gone (with 487mi on it). I've had the bike for 1 month, 18 days.

    So off to Evans with the guarantee it is!
     
  5. Cycleops

    Cycleops Veteran

    Location:
    Accra, Ghana
    Maybe Evans using cheaper inferior components in an attempt to buoy up their sinking profits.
    Let us know how you get on.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    dhd.evans

    dhd.evans Über Member

    Location:
    Dundee
    Evans actually doing good; dropped them an e-mail on Friday saying that the freehub was clicking, sticking and generally knackered. They offered to take a look in store. Unfortunately my nearest store is ~70mi away so they have agreed that my LBS can check it over, write a report for the cost of the work and then they'll sort out payment.

    I've got to cover 122mi in the next week so it'll get done after that :smile:
     
  7. EasyPeez

    EasyPeez Über Member

    Without wishing to derail the thread, what is correct/good chain tension for a SS bike?

    I've got about 1.25-1.5" play (available horizontal movement) in the middle of my chain. This means that there is a bit of chain rattle if freewheeling over rough ground. I've tried to go for more tension but anything tighter than this (I have track style drop-outs so achieve greater tension by pulling the wheel back and then securing with the tensioning bolts that screw backwards into the dropouts) and the chain doesn't feel like it's running so smoothly when I have it up on the stand and rotate the cranks.
     
  8. 3narf

    3narf For whom the bell dings

    Location:
    Stroud
    It's experience really. You'll notice there are tight spots with the cranks in certain positions (due to uneven wear on the chain) so you want a minimum of free play with the cranks in those positions.

    1.5 inches seems a bit much; I think you would have obvious visible sag with that amount of free play. You just need to have enough that the chain actually has a bit of movement at its tight spot and isn't under tension.
     
    raleighnut and EasyPeez like this.
  9. Cycleops

    Cycleops Veteran

    Location:
    Accra, Ghana
    This is what the master, Sheldon Brown has to say on the matter:

    Once you have the chainrings centered and secured, adjust the position of the rear axle to make the chain as nearly tight as possible without binding. Notice how freely the drivetrain turns when the chain is too loose. That is how freely it should turn when you are done, but with as little chain droop as possible.

    If the chain is badly worn, adjusting it so it is just short of binding will result in rough running and low efficiency, because it will not engage the teeth of the sprocket evenly. Check the chain for wear, and replace it as needed.
     
    EasyPeez likes this.
  10. EasyPeez

    EasyPeez Über Member

    Hmmm. There is a hint of visible sag, wouldn't call it obvious. But both @Cycleops & @3narf 's responses seem to confirm my instincts that the tension ought to be increased. I just don't seem able to find a spot where it's any tighter than it is currently without the chain running less smoothly (not really noticeable while pedalling, but certainly noticeable on the workstand).

    The bike and components are second hand; based on the stated mileage when I bought it (was told 400miles + another 850 that I've put on since buying it) there's no way the chain should be badly worn.

    I'll pop the chain wear tool in tonight and see what it's saying.

    I plan to put a new freewheel sprocket on next month so will get a new chain then regardless and have another go, see if it makes a difference with the new components.

    Cheers.
     
    Cycleops likes this.
  11. 3narf

    3narf For whom the bell dings

    Location:
    Stroud
    Bear in mind that when you're pedalling the freewheel won't be doing anything, so a bit of tightness and roughness isn't the end of the world when freewheeling.

    Also, I'll most likely be cheap tat if it's the one the bike came with! Freewheels, by their nature (springs forcing pawls in contact with inner hub) are going to wear out, so I wouldn't worry too much about a bit of roughness and noise. Spray some lube into it and adjust so you have just a little play and it's not throwing the chain, and replace the freewheel with a Shimano DX one when it starts annoying you.

    Or a White Brothers one if you have more money than you know what to do with!
     
  12. EasyPeez

    EasyPeez Über Member

    It's more a roughness with the way the chain pulls through the sprocket and chainring than a roughness with the freewheel itself. The increased tension just seems to mean the chain doesn't mesh quite so perfectly with the teeth. As I say, it's not really noticeable while riding, but you can feel it when turning the cranks with the bike up on the stand.

    I'm getting a White Industries one after payday. Silly price but everyone seems to rate them and the outer sprocket can be replaced without sacrificing the inner freewheel.

    I can only think the current chain is slightly too long, given the fact that the wheel is already pulled nearly as far back as it can go in the dropout and I've still got over an inch of play at the mid point.

    Currently everything is running smoothly and I have no problems with chain coming off etc. just a clunking noise coming from the freewheel which is there regardless of tension, which others have reported with this particular component, and which is (I think and hope) due to poor bearings.

    So my plan is just leave it for now and see how things sit with more tension once I have installed a new (non-clunking) freewheel and new, slightly shorter chain.

    Cheers.
     
    3narf likes this.
  13. OP
    OP
    dhd.evans

    dhd.evans Über Member

    Location:
    Dundee
    An update: LBS replaced the BB and rebuilt the wheel with a Shimano Deore rear hub. Total cost of work was £250. Evans reimbursed me the same day. Job done!
     
    EasyPeez and si_c like this.