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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 06-06-03, 09:21 AM   #1
c.j.
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Help! rear wheel not staying straight

Hi, I'm really hoping someone here can help.

I recently had to replace the rearwheel of my mountain bike.

I put it back together, but now I've noticed that after about a mile or so the rear wheel moves out of alignment and the tyre rubs against the rear forks.

The reason seems to be on the 'gear side' there is a bolt (part of the gear mounting) to hold the axle about halfway down the 'slot' it slides into.

But on the other side I don't see how to fix the axle to the same position (in the slot on that side) and keep the wheel in-line. I've tried tightening-it right-up but I'm sure it needs something to stop gradual movement down the slot.

Any advice would be hugely appreciated.

P.S. apologies for the duff terminology.
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Old 06-06-03, 09:28 AM   #2
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What kind of bike are we talking about?

Usually, you can align the wheel with your eyes, up and down, front and back, and tighten the mounting nuts. The problem is that it requires a lot of tightening since there's no "guide" on the left side mounting slot, like you said. I've seen this on lower end bikes. My old Magna used to have this problem. I just tightened it REALLY TIGHT and it'd work.

Another trick is to use lock washers on the nut, with a plain washer to protect the frame side. Just go to Orchard or any hardware store and take your axle stud with you so you can match the size.

EDIT: I've also seen my friend's Litespeed road bike with this setup. What he had was a screw on the back of each slot and the screws would hold the position of the axle stud. Do you have a hole for screws like these?
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Old 06-06-03, 09:39 AM   #3
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I had this happen to my bike as well. The knurled bearing cups on the hubs had flattened out and would no longer hold the wheel. When I torqued the cranks it would force the wheel forward.

I also had to file and sand the drop-out. There was a groove from this happening and I had to remove it.

I ended up ordering some new bearing cups. Or whatever you call the things that cover a sealed bearing.

L8R
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Old 06-06-03, 09:41 AM   #4
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The bikes an Apollo Plateau (It's around ten years old). Which I guess is more of a cross in todays terms.

Can you explain what you mean by a 'lock washer'?

and Thanks for the quick response.

Cheers.
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Old 06-06-03, 10:37 AM   #5
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I would suggest replaceing your standard wheel nuts with larger "track nuts". These are designed for indoor track racing, and have an integral knurled washer. They are very large and will hold the wheel firmly in place. They are best tightened with a ring spanner (US= wrench) rather than an open-ended crescent spanner. A standard workshop length one is sufficient. You can apply some foot presure to torque the nut, but not too much.
You can get track nuts from better bike shops, but take your bike so you get the correct thread type.
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Old 06-06-03, 11:30 AM   #6
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I don't thinks a question of tightening. I tightened-it right up and it only lasted a few hundred yards(?) before it was rubbing again.

I can't fit washers (or use larger nuts) inboard of the forks there isn't enough width.
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Old 06-06-03, 08:48 PM   #7
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Is this a bolt on wheel? Sounds like it might be. If it is not and has a quick release check and see if the axle sticks far enough out of the dropout that the quick release touches it before it tightens to the frame.
If it is a bolt on wheel make sure all the serrations in the axle nut and bolt facings are clean and then wring that sucker on there.
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Old 06-07-03, 04:02 AM   #8
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Yep, is this a quick-release wheel. If so are you using the quick-release mechanism correctly.
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