Will I get a 30 year old freewheel off?

swee'pea99

Legendary Member
Last time I tried to get an ancient freewheel off it was so stuck on I ended up breaking the pegs off the remover tool. Am I on a hiding to nothing with a 30 year old jobbie? Is there anything I can do to ease it? (Is it possible to get lube in, and if so, where?)
 

GrasB

Veteran
Location
Nr Cambridge
Get a METAL bowl that the freewheel fits in & fill with penetrating fluid. Suspend the freewheel in the penetrating fluid for a few days before trying to remove.
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
This won't make any difference. penetrating fluid works once the bond has been broken to ease the movement of stiff components but it won't make it any easier to get the stuck part moving. Best way is to set up a foolproof arrangement so that the tool can't slip then apply maximum leverage. Once it goes you'll feel and hear the "crack".
 

youngoldbloke

The older I get, the faster I used to be ...
I always (used to) put the tool in a securely fixed heavy bench vice and turned the wheel itself to generate leverage.
 
Location
Leicester
I always (used to) put the tool in a securely fixed heavy bench vice and turned the wheel itself to generate leverage.

Indeed that's the way I used to do it and indeed the only way I managed to get them off. Don't miss frewheels, casettes are far easier to deal with!

I do remember once, nothing would budge and the tool broke, so I disassembled as much as I could (removing teeth, and frewheel bit leaving just the inner ratchet surface), put the rest in a vice, and managed to remove it.
 

GrasB

Veteran
Location
Nr Cambridge
This won't make any difference. penetrating fluid works once the bond has been broken to ease the movement of stiff components but it won't make it any easier to get the stuck part moving. Best way is to set up a foolproof arrangement so that the tool can't slip then apply maximum leverage. Once it goes you'll feel and hear the "crack".
If this is true then please explain why this method has consistently worked for making ceased on freewheels & cassette lock rings easy to remove.
 
OP
swee'pea99

swee'pea99

Legendary Member
I'm wiling to try anything, but what is this 'penetrating fluid' of which you speak? (Any chance of a link?)
 
OP
swee'pea99

swee'pea99

Legendary Member
Thanks for that. The Plusgas certainly looks like the kind of thing...but how would that work with a freewheel? Where would you actually spray it? (You certainly couldn't 'Suspend the freewheel in the penetrating fluid for a few days before trying to remove'.) Is there a fluid you'd recommend? Or should I go with this, googled from another site:

Low heat (so you cn touch it) with a hot air gun rather than a blowtorch, then soak with this potion.

As Mrs Beaton would say....

First mix 1 part lub oil (15-40) or hydrolic, 2 part petrol, then add 4 parts diesel.

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Keep in closed container, NO SMOKING
violent5.gif


Have used this mix 40+ yrs beats wd-40 plusgas etc
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Sounds pretty radical!
 

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Globalti

Legendary Member
I've been bodging bikes for 45 years and Land Rovers for 12 years (everything rusts solid on them) and I've dealt with plenty of stuck parts. One of the earliest lessons I learned was that when you cover something dry like alloy parts or a rusted steel nut & bolt with penetrating oil then disassemble, there is never any sign of the penetrating oil having actually penetrated, especially when the parts are fused together by oxidation. You can unscrew a nut and bolt and find the threads inside depressingly dry and free of any sign of the oil. Once you have overcome the initail stuckness though, penetrating oil is excellent for easing the movement of the two parts as you separate them.

In certain applications heat can help, shock will often free a part (works well on the small bolts holding side covers onto alloy motorcycle engines) and the ultimate solution - go and buy a replacement part before the shops shut then set to work carefully destroying the stuck part.
 

e-rider

crappy member
Location
South West
It won't come off!

If it had loads of grease applied it might but most people/factories use an absolute minimum.

Tip: always used stacks of grease when fitting them; that way it'll come off in 25 years time!
 
Give it a try, sweepea. You have nothing to lose. You never know; it might come off quite easily.

PlusGas or penetrating oil is worth a try. It will be difficult to soak the whole hub/freewheel in it, but it's intended to be quite oozy and creep into small gaps even when only squirted on. I tend to agree that it probably won't do any good, but it won't do any harm either.

Got a serious vice fixed to something very immovable?
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
I've had fun in the past with removing a freewheel......

Tried and tried with a 12" adjustable spanner on the remover - didn't budge. WD40's the thread side (near the spokes) nothing....

Attached said 12" spanner to a garden rake - rammed the tool into a 'flattened end of the rake (the rake still has a squashed end to this day)........

Tried and tried..........with this new 5 foot lever...nothing...........

Suddenly, it slipped, and I went flying backwards over the drive head over heals.......... Barsteward.......... threw the lot in the garage....:evil: Off to the LBS tomorrow..... :blink:

Got up next day, temper having gone........ went out got wheel, oh one last go, the thing was loose............:biggrin:
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
Just dismantle the whole freewheel, removing the pawls and the bearings leaving just the back body part that's screwed to the hub . Then trap the two recesses for the pawls in a very big vice and turn the wheel the correct way. It will let go with a bang or a creak.
 
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