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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Confused about freewheels

    I have a bike with a very rusty and worn freewheel. How do I tell what replacement type to get? This is an old made in Taiwan bike with a 6 cog rear (12-speed bike). The rear deraileur is Shimano Tourney. Also the round plastic thingy which goes alongside the large cog is chewed up, is that a standard replacement part. I noticed some bikes have a metal ring instead of plastic.

    Does the fact that this is a Shimao derailleur mean the freewheel is Shimano? Could I replace a 6 cog freewheel with a 5 or 7 cog one? Is the width of the hub a factor? Short of going into a bike shop, is there any way to figure out what I need?

  2. #2
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    There are two types of 6-speed freewheels: standard, which require a 126mm (over locknuts dimension, O.L.D.) rear axle, and "ultra," which can be used with a 120mm rear axle. To figure out which you have, simply remove your back wheel and measure the distance between the inside faces of the rear dropouts. If you have a 120mm rear axle and friction shifter, you may substitute a 5-speed freewheel. If you have a 126 and friction shifter, you may substitute a 7-speed, particularly if you toss that damaged plastic spoke protector. (You can probably find a replacement spoke protector if you really want one; I never use them.)
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
    Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
    Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
    Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069

  3. #3
    Not-so-Senior Member
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    Since your derailer is Shimano, I'd definately suggest you get a Shimano freewheel. I'd be surprised if Suntour or any other make would shift as well as a Shimano one (unless you have friction shifters (no clicks), in which case they'll all probably work).

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