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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:15 am 
Newbie

Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:05 am
Posts: 5
Location: North East and North Yorks depending on the day.
Hey all, newbie here to cause problems!

I'm busy stripping down a late 70s/early 80s Triumph racing frame and its components. On attempting to remove the freewheel, its apparent that none of my freewheel tools are suitable, whilst I have a 12 spline tool, its too big, and I can't seem to find a smaller tool online - any clues as to where to buy/borrow such an item, or how to remove the freewheel without a tool?

Based on the small freewheel tool being necessary, am I right in thinking that, short or rebuilding the wheel with a new hub, I'm limited by this size as to what I can replace the freewheel with? i.e., I can't just buy another 5 speed 'standard' freewheel, it will have to have a smaller threaded diameter.

Cheers, Kez


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 10:56 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 12:21 pm
Posts: 5785
Location: Lost in Translation
paddles wrote:
I'm busy stripping down a late 70s/early 80s Triumph racing frame and its components. On attempting to remove the freewheel, its apparent that none of my freewheel tools are suitable, whilst I have a 12 spline tool, its too big, and I can't seem to find a smaller tool online - any clues as to where to buy/borrow such an item, or how to remove the freewheel without a tool?

Do you have a well-established local bike shop? Assuming nothing's seized, freewheel removal only takes a minute or two and shouldn't cost more than a pound or so.

It sounds as though the tool you need may be the old Shimano TL-FW20 (previously sold as the TL2022). I couldn't find one for sale online in the UK, but here's one on eBay USA:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... 0273242801

Quote:
Based on the small freewheel tool being necessary, am I right in thinking that, short or rebuilding the wheel with a new hub, I'm limited by this size as to what I can replace the freewheel with? i.e., I can't just buy another 5 speed 'standard' freewheel, it will have to have a smaller threaded diameter.

The removal tool format doesn't affect the thread size. It's almost certain that your hub has a standard BSC thread


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:27 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:11 pm
Posts: 303
Is there any indication on the freewheel of a manufacturer or a model name? It would really help identify the necessary tool.

Have you tried here? http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/tools-casset ... t827_pg1/#

I've got a variety of freewheel tools, but I'm not sure what they all fit. Having been caught out in the past I tend to pick them up from bike jumbles and the likes when I see them cheap. It's very useful when I get some obscure clunker.

Failling getting the right tool there is the old trick of dismantling the freewheel in situ then grasping the remains in a bench vice and turning the rim. OK so sometimes it won't work, but if you're stuck with a non-functional freewheel that you can't remove the hub is effectively scrap anyway.

However, if the freewheel you have works then the only reason to remove it would be that you want to change the gearing. So if it works and there's no reason to change the gearing you'd be best leaving it be.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:08 pm 
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:44 pm
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Location: at my computer
If you have a 5-cog doohickey, it is a freewheel. If it were to have 6 cogs, it could be either a freewheel or a free hub which is more complicated.Taken for granted that it is indeed a freewheel, you need a freewheel remover that works with your specific brand of freewheel. Do verify the brand that is legible on the freewheel lockring. Most older freewheels required two prong freewheel removers. They come with different spacing and different sizes, as well as male and female versions. If you instead have a splined version, there a number of different splines. Just going from memory, there are distinct splined versions from Shimano, Regina, Zeus and Normandy/atom. They are not interchangeable. Some of them are thin walled that allow you to fit the remover over any axle assembly. Others require that you remove the axle lock nut and some times the cone. If you can't read a brand name, you are indeed better off bringing the wheel to a well-established shop that was around in the 70's with old-timer mechanics.

Once removed, you will then need to determine what type of freewheel threading you are dealing with. Indeed there are different threadings. The English and Italian threadings are more or less interchangeable with the difference being more than anything else the profile of the thread, with one having a deeper "V" shaped cut to the thread, whereas the other has a "U" shaped cut to the thread. If you have a French threaded freewheel, you will have greater difficulty replacing the freewheel as French-threaded freewheels have no longer been widely made for over 25 years.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:27 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
Posts: 2094
Location: Sheffield, top city
GarethPJ wrote:
if the freewheel you have works then the only reason to remove it would be that you want to change the gearing. So if it works and there's no reason to change the gearing you'd be best leaving it be.

or replacing spokes/rebuilding the wheel


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:32 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:11 pm
Posts: 303
pigman wrote:
GarethPJ wrote:
if the freewheel you have works then the only reason to remove it would be that you want to change the gearing. So if it works and there's no reason to change the gearing you'd be best leaving it be.

or replacing spokes/rebuilding the wheel


OK, you're right about that. I was assuming that the wheel on a thirty year old Triumph wouldn't be worth rebuilding, but then I suppose it might not be the original wheel.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 2:03 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 2:11 pm
Posts: 303
A few more thoughts:

If it's the OE wheel don't worry about the thread, it will be the standard English thread. Indeed if the bike has never left Britain I would say that a replacement wheel is very unlikely to have any other threads. If you are mixing an matching threads then you will find that American threading is slightly larger bore than British and Italian slightly larger again, but with the same thread pitch. It's possible that a freewheel from one of the smaller sizes would bind on a hub from one of the larger sizes. French threading is the problem since the thread pitch is different so it will bind even though the bore is very similar.

If it's a peg type freewheel it is normally quite easy to remove one with a hammer and drift. I've even managed to do it without marking the freewheel slots too much. Certainly I've managed to reuse freewheels removed by this method.

I even once managed to remove a splined freewheel by cutting slots in the inner body with a dremel and using the hammer and drift method. It's worth mentioning that the freewheel was already scrap so there were no plans to reuse it. It was a very small spline size that I've never seen before or since, barely any clearance between locknut and splines. The damn thing had to come off and we couldn't see any way of striping it down. When we got it off we found the only way to strip it down was to remove a circlip on the back. Weird thing and no makers name.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:25 pm 
Newbie

Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:05 am
Posts: 5
Location: North East and North Yorks depending on the day.
Thanks for the help so far folks.
I got a half day at work today, so on the off chance popped the wheel to my local bike shop to see if they had any clue (plus I wanted some other bits) and amazingly the owners father was in, who reckons its a Regina freewheel, can't be certain as there's no branding anywhere on it; but he's pretty sure its the "kinda thing I spent the 80s fettling."
So, the bike shop has offered to order a tool for me which is grand, as I like putting even a little business their way rather than the faceless interweb, so we'll wait and see if he's right. I hope so, not only for my benefit, but I like the old guy, he's a real cyclist!

And, nope not the original wheels, still 27 inchers but not originals, and definitely in need of a new hub. Otherwise I'd be tempted to leave them alone.

Interestingly, people keep telling me to abandon this project because its a 30 year old Triumph, but I like it!


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