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By Lennard Zinn
I don’t know about all of you, but I’m getting tired of talking aboutchains, even though the mail keeps pouring in about them. I do want toadd, though, that Shimano’s Wayne Stetina just told me that he would neveradvise flipping over a 10-speed chain, so this method is only for 9-speedand lower.Leaving chains, here are a couple of related questions to which a singleanswer might suffice.
LennardFreeing up my freehub
I have your “Zinn& The Art of Road Bike Maintenance” book but would like to knowwhere I can find or purchase specific instructions on how to remove theMavic Freehub from my rear Mavic Ksyrium SSC-SL so I can lube the pawls.
I have a pair of Mavic Ksyrium SSC SL’s I use for races. They are lessthan a year old and have less than 1500 miles on them. The problem thatI have been experiencing with them is that the free hub is so tight! Ieven sent them back to Mavic where they looked at them and lubed it up.It is so tight that when coasting it seems as though I have the brakeson. When I have my bicycle in a repair stand and turn the cranks counterclockwise(backwards) the wheel starts going backwards too. What do I do to alleviatethis problem? Do they still need to be broken in? How can I make the free-hubmore “free?”
ShaunDear Shaun and Larry,
Remove the axle on the non-drive side by pulling it out. Insert a 10mmhex key in the non-drive end of the axle and a 5mm hex key in the driveside, unscrew counter-clockwise and remove the axle. With the drive sideup, rotate the freehub body counter-clockwise and pull up to remove, watchingfor flying pawl springs. Clean everything. Replace the pawls and springs,drip 10-20 drops of lightweight oil, like Mavic mineral oil M40122 intothe freehub and reassemble. You should be good to go.
LennardWhat about my Rolfs?
I´m in a rural part of Venezuela and own a pair of Rolf Sestrierewheels and would like to re-lubricate then after three years of race-onlyuse, but can’t come up with a way to take the hubs apart with out possibledamage. They are both working very well, but after such a long time, I’dlike to conserve their smooth running condition. Can you tell me how toget some lube in or are they so well sealed that I should not worry?
If your wheels run smoothly, it would be best not to disassemble them.The bearings are sealed and no maintenance can de performed on them exceptfor replacement. Special tools are required for this, and these can bepurchased from DT-Swiss, the hub manufacturer, or perhaps from Trek, whomade that wheel.If you want to lubricate the freewheel mechanism, access to it can begained by pulling off the left side axle end cap by clamping this end capin an axle vice and pulling the hub in line with the axle. The end capis held by a friction-fit O-ring between the axle and the end cap. Withthe left end cap off, the axle can be pulled through the hub, exposingthe freewheel mechanism. DT recommends TWO separate special in-house greasesfor lubrication. One is for the mechanism itself and the other is for seallubrication. The free-wheel mechanism is of robust design and not sensitiveto wear and the seals are good. Still, with time and miles, the noise emanatingfrom the mechanism can de reduced by cleaning and re-lubing with the properDT-Swiss greases.
LennardI was just riding along and…
The other day I was out on my long ride and when I traveled over aspeed bump the front cap on my right shifter (Shimano 105) was jarred loose.At first it made just a rattling noise when I rode over anything that wasn’tsmooth. However, today during my ride it almost completely fell off, stillheld on at the point right above where the lever reaches it so that ithad spun around and was facing downward. This created a nice problem whenI wanted to ride on the hoods because I could not comfortably hook my fingersonto the front of the lever unless I spun it around every time, and thenI’d have to squeeze the brake to move it back into place. Is there anyway to fix this? I can’t pop it back in. I’ve been riding it for threeyears so I’m not sure about warranty either.
Welcome to the club! I don’t suppose there are any other readers outthere who have had this happen with their 105 or Ultegra levers, are there?Be happy you got three years!You actually have to pry that plastic cover off of the little pieceit snaps over, before the screw holding the underneath piece unscrews completely,and they both fall off. There is a tab on the top and on the bottom thatsnaps it on. Pop the cover off, screw the mounting plate back down, andclip the cover back on. Be forewarned that the plastic is brittle, andyou can easily break it in the process.
LennardCold weather riding on a budget
I read with interest of all the high-tech expensive ways that peopleuse to keep their jewels warm.My method is quick, easy and cheap – stuff a plastic grocery bag downbetween tights and shorts! Spread it out so that it covers the lower abdomen,upper thighs and tuck it nicely under the jewels.It works just as well as expensive wind tights and costs nothing.
Ontario Canada (where we know cold)Cold carbon
This question is for John Harrington of Easton Sports, as he answeredan original related question, but in case there are cyclists other thanme dumb enough to ride in a sub-arctic winter I’ll pose the question toyou on the off chance it gets posted on VeloNews and informs others.Mr. Harrington says “There would be a small amount of performance lossif one actually tried to use the (carbon fibre) component at -67 degrees.The stress induced by riding the bar at this temperature could cause somelevel of distress to the resin system that holds the fibers in place”.What sort of distress are we talking about, and what are the results ofsaid stress? I regularly ride carbon components — including a CannondaleScalpel with carbon chainstays — in the winter, and where I liveit can get to -67 F if you include the windchill.It doesn’t happen often mind you, but I have ridden in thoseconditions. It can also get to be more than 100 F here, and I don’t knowif the extreme variations in temperature could pose a problem either.Am I risking serious damage to my ride? I’d never really consideredit an issue before.
Winnipeg CanadaFrom John Harrington of Easton
First, Mr. Wiebe need not worry about the wind chill factor.There are two reasons for this.First, the performance drop I mentioned is very slight and would nothave an appreciable impact on the strength of the carbon product.Second, wind chill is a combination of moisture, cold and wind. A humanperceives an accelerated drop in temperature because of the moisturepresent on his or her skin. Inanimate objects like a composite frame orcomponent do not share the same experience.Without moisture the composite does not get colder. The ambient temperaturein the air is as cold as it gets. There is no increased probability ofbreaking a composite bicycle component used in cold weather.
Technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder (www.zinncycles.com), a former U.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikes and bike maintenance including the pair of successful maintenance guides “ Zinn & the Art of Mountain Bike Maintenance” and “Zinn & the Art of Road Bike Maintenance.”Zinn’s regular column is devoted to addressing readers’ technical questions about bikes, their care and feeding and how we as riders can use them as comfortably and efficiently as possible. Readers can send brief technical questions directly to Zinn. Zinn’s column appears here each Tuesday.