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  1. #1
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    First wheel-build

    So, I'm currently in the process of selecting the components for my first wheel-build. The most complicated part thus far has been figuring out what I should do with my rear wheel. My first big question is:

    - Is getting an off center rim for the rear a MUCH better idea than getting a normal symmetric rim?

    I want something that is strong and capable of lasting for years. Also, I think I'm going with Velocity. Is the Aerohead OC rim a strong choice?

    Second, I decided the other night that I was going to go with a freewheel rather than a freehub. The thing is, my bike currently has a 5 speed setup (oldie), but I would like to upgrade that to a 7, 8, or 9 speed in the future. This brings me to my second big question:

    -If I get an 8 speed freewheel hub, can I use spacers on the cogs to run 5 speed until I have the money to upgrade the rest of the drive train? More succinctly, will an 8 speed freehub accept a 7, 6, or 5 speed freewheel?

    I think I want to lay down the cash and get a phil woods road/touring freewheel hub.

    Thanks in advance for the advice!

  2. #2
    Mr. Dopolina Bob Dopolina's Avatar
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    Well. You have opened a LARGE kettle of fish. There are issues like frame width and axle length to consider. These may be an issue for your project. There are ways to overcome them but it will be a PITA.

    Can you include some pictures so members can make some constructive comments? It might help answer a few questions.

  3. #3
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    Yeah, I can post a few pictures tomorrow. I've never measured my rear dropout width, but I've got a steel frame, so I can adjust if I need to. Also, I read some more and it sounds like 7-8 speed freehubs are no good, so perhaps I won't go for the freewheel. In which case I definitely wouldn't go for the phil woods freehub ($300+).

  4. #4
    Senior Member Deanster04's Avatar
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    Sheldon Brown covers this topic is Shimano Hubs http://sheldonbrown.com/k7.html. If you do the correct spacing you probably can emulate the 5 spd freewheel on a freehub with spacers. Might be a little tricky. The OC Rim is good as any. A Mavic Open Pro or DT Swiss RR1.1 are non-OC and are quite durable as well. Which ever one you like. Phil Wood Freehubs will last you forever. If you take care of the hub with annual maintenance I have seen Shimano 105 hubs last a VERY LONG TIME. Phil Wood are more robust in the elements.

  5. #5
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    An 8/9 freehub would be the better choice.

  6. #6
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    Unless you have index shifting (and with a 5-speed freewheel, this is VERY unlikely) you can use your current friction shifters with any 6,7,8,9 or 10-speed cassette. You will need the cassette and a chain of appropriate width but the shifting should be fine.

    -If I get an 8 speed freewheel hub, can I use spacers on the cogs to run 5 speed until I have the money to upgrade the rest of the drive train? More succinctly, will an 8 speed freehub accept a 7, 6, or 5 speed freewheel?
    This puzzles me. If you are considering a Phil Wood hub at over $300 right now why can't you use the same money to upgrade the drivtrain with good but less exotic components?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
    Unless you have index shifting (and with a 5-speed freewheel, this is VERY unlikely) you can use your current friction shifters with any 6,7,8,9 or 10-speed cassette. You will need the cassette and a chain of appropriate width but the shifting should be fine.



    This puzzles me. If you are considering a Phil Wood hub at over $300 right now why can't you use the same money to upgrade the drivtrain with good but less exotic components?
    Well, the Phil freehub runs at over $300, but the freewheel is only $150. So, if I went with a freewheel, I'd go for Phil. If I went with a freehub, I would not.

  8. #8
    Curmudgeon Wil Davis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dufflespank View Post
    Well, the Phil freehub runs at over $300, but the freewheel is only $150. So, if I went with a freewheel, I'd go for Phil. If I went with a freehub, I would not.
    I agree with HillRider's comment, but I still don't understand your reply… (sorry…)

    - Wil
    "" - Marcel Marceau

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