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Old 07-27-07, 12:34 PM   #1
mathletics
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Amateur Overhaul Surly Track Hub

Hello all,

I some questions about overhauling my Surly track hub. My back wheel is barely spinning anymore, and since I'm broke and fairly handy, I would like to clean up my hub to see if it helps. So, I'll list my questions below:

1. Do I need special tools to open my hub, or can I just use a some adjustable wrenches?
2. Once open, what do I do besides clean out and apply clean grease to the bearings and inside of the hub (if that's even right)?
3. Is this worth doing, or is it likely that my wheel is spent? Is this the sort of thing that is too difficult for someone who isn't a trained mechanic?

Also, if any of you are mechanics in the Boston area, let me know what shop you work in so I can come in and say hello. I just moved to the area, and I see a lot of fg/ss cyclists around but haven't met anyone yet.

Thanks for your help, and my apologies if this is a redundant post.

- Evan
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Old 07-27-07, 12:59 PM   #2
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It's totally possible, and pretty simple. Not sure if Surly's hubs have always been sealed bearing; I know mine are. You'll need a cone wrench of the right size, in addition to an adjustable or a set of metrics. If you plan on doing this often, the tools are worth the investment. If not, take it to the LBS. Replace the bearings, or just adjust them.
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Old 07-27-07, 01:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathletics View Post
I some questions about overhauling my Surly track hub. My back wheel is barely spinning anymore, and since I'm broke and fairly handy, I would like to clean up my hub to see if it helps. So, I'll list my questions below:

1. Do I need special tools to open my hub, or can I just use a some adjustable wrenches?
You need cone wrenches for that. 15 mm (preferably two of 'em) and 17 mm.

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2. Once open, what do I do besides clean out and apply clean grease to the bearings and inside of the hub (if that's even right)?
These are cartridge bearing hubs, you don't overhaul them, you replace the bearing cartridges, which cost about 6 bucks each.

These use the very common 6000 size bearing cartridges. You can get them at better bike shops, or bearing specialty shops.

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3. Is this worth doing, or is it likely that my wheel is spent? Is this the sort of thing that is too difficult for someone who isn't a trained mechanic?
It's not all that hard.

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Also, if any of you are mechanics in the Boston area, let me know what shop you work in so I can come in and say hello. I just moved to the area, and I see a lot of fg/ss cyclists around but haven't met anyone yet.
We're out in the 'burbs, Newton borders on Boston. We're singlespeed/fixed-gear specialists! Drop on by!

Sheldon "Coasting Is A Pernicious Habit" Brown
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Old 07-27-07, 07:06 PM   #4
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To the OP: since you are in Boston you have the finest resource in the bike world right in your back yard. Go see Sheldon at Harris Cyclery!

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Old 07-27-07, 08:40 PM   #5
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I believe Surly has updated the bearing they use to an angular cartridge rather than a standard ball cartridge, and these new bearings fit the older hubs. This is a good idea because Surly does not use a spacer between the bearings to prevent to much side load when assembled.(This is how I think Surly got kind of a bad rap for their hubs)

The 6000 bearing is designed to take most load radial, they really don't like being pushed sideways to hard(Outer race and inner race pushed in opposite directions). The new angular bearing has the races "offset" more like a traditional cup and cone so they can take a radial and side load pretty good.
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Old 07-27-07, 08:48 PM   #6
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Sorry. The updated hubs use a 7901 bearing which is a different size than the 6000.
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Old 07-27-07, 08:54 PM   #7
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FWIW: if you're real broke you can overhaul cartridge bearings. Most have plastic dust covers; if you use a heavy needle or a sharp awl you can pry one off and clean the bearings and re-pack with new grease.

Snapping the cover back in place can be tricky; re-installing the cartridge with the open side in will eliminate the need to do so.
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Old 07-28-07, 12:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Sorry. The updated hubs use a 7901 bearing which is a different size than the 6000.
How do you know if you have the updated hub or not? I have the "new" track hub, bought it a few months ago.
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Old 07-28-07, 01:58 PM   #9
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Look on the seal of the bearing. It will have the number RS6000 or RS7901(The letters might be different or in a different spot but the numbers will be the same.
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Old 07-29-07, 05:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Rev.Chuck View Post

The 6000 bearing is designed to take most load radial, they really don't like being pushed sideways to hard(Outer race and inner race pushed in opposite directions). The new angular bearing has the races "offset" more like a traditional cup and cone so they can take a radial and side load pretty good.
there's no real axial load on a hub, it's almost all radial
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Old 07-29-07, 07:50 PM   #11
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there's no real axial load on a hub, it's almost all radial
There can be quite a bit of axial load on a hub when you overtighten the axle nuts, that adjust freeplay, and there is no bearing spacer. And that is the problem when you use a radial bearing, like the 6000 rather than an angular bearing(or radial and tapered roller bearing in combination like the full floating axles in a large truck)
If you ever look at a worn out cone/race hub you will see that the wear, on the cones and races, is not "radial" but at an angle.
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Old 07-30-07, 02:27 AM   #12
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i've never seen a hub that runs cartridge bearings that doesn't have a spacer. if they really don't have a spacer/shoulders then they need headshotting
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Old 07-30-07, 07:46 AM   #13
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That is what I thought the first time I took one apart.
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Old 07-30-07, 08:32 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Rev.Chuck View Post
There can be quite a bit of axial load on a hub when you overtighten the axle nuts, that adjust freeplay, and there is no bearing spacer. And that is the problem when you use a radial bearing, like the 6000 rather than an angular bearing(or radial and tapered roller bearing in combination like the full floating axles in a large truck)
If you ever look at a worn out cone/race hub you will see that the wear, on the cones and races, is not "radial" but at an angle.
That's because cone-and-race bearings have angular contact geometry by design, so the wear is on the contact point. Not that the rest of your point is off, by the way. There are 2 reasons to use angular contact bearings: you can adjust them (by varying the amount of pre-load) and thus complensate for wear, and they can withstand axial loads better (which are still there on a bike, think about climbing out-of-saddle for example).
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Old 07-30-07, 10:37 AM   #15
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That's because cone-and-race bearings have angular contact geometry by design, so the wear is on the contact point. Not that the rest of your point is off, by the way. There are 2 reasons to use angular contact bearings: you can adjust them (by varying the amount of pre-load) and thus complensate for wear, and they can withstand axial loads better (which are still there on a bike, think about climbing out-of-saddle for example).
that's what i was talking about - those aren't axial loads
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