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  1. #1
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    new hub -not so smooth

    I just bought a new wheel set for my Trek 330.I found a cheap pair that would fit on a 126mm axle.The front hub is Shimano 2200 and seems fine but the rear is an unnamed alloy hub that if I spin the wheel I feel some resistance like I feel the bearing,s it's not completely smooth.Is this normal and acceptable for a new and lower grade hub?Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    It's normal, but it's not acceptable.

    If you don't have a cone wrench, get one and learn how to perform this fundamental task.

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    Hollow axle hubs should have a little play in the bearings that goes away when the quick release is closed and compresses the axle. Often new wheels need the bearings adjusted.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
    It's normal, but it's not acceptable.

    If you don't have a cone wrench, get one and learn how to perform this fundamental task.
    +1. Cup-and-cone hubs, even good ones, are often set up a bit tight when new and some have an inadequate amount of grease. A good bike shop will check and readjust them as necessary on any new bike.

    For aftermarket wheels I usually have to readjust the bearings. This was needed even for new Campy Chorus hubs so cheaper hubs are even more likely to require it.

    Cartridge bearing hubs are usually not adjustable so if they are tight initially you just have to hope they will smooth out with use.

  5. #5
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Sometimes? Often? I have yet to come across a new wheel or hub that isn't too tight. Get a cone wrench and go with Sheldon's page of instructions that kimmo gave you a link for.

    Some higher end hubs may be the exception but even the XT hubs I bought and built up needed adjusting. Of course cartridge bearing hubs are different but the topic is cup and cone.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Seems they are usually shipped tight, the wheel building process is aided by the resistance, so One will need to do the Cone adjustment.
    Hundreds of new bike assembly jobs getting the Hub adjusted properly is part of the work.

    Note: wheel axle is compressed by tightening the QR skewer, so you will need to have a little play ,
    when the wheel is not in the frame, and the QR not tightened, so It will be in adjustment when the QR is properly tightened.

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    Well it's to the bike shop for me,when I do mount these wheels.I don't trust myself adjusting alone especially with how precise it has to be according to Mr.Sheldon.My front wheel was shot and is already mounted and is a great improvement.Thanks all for the feedback.As always I learned alot.

  8. #8
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    It's really not that bad. You've already felt what it's like when the axle is too tight. Sort of a "coggy" like indexing feel to it? And when barely just acceptable it will spin freely with no noticable drag. When it's just right for the preload it'll be just a littel draggy compared to the "barely no slop" setting but not so tight that it gets back to the cog'y indexed sort of feel.

    To do the job right it's just guessing unless you use a collection of special washers to allow you to have a tightened skewer already in the axle. On the end you're not adjusting a set of washers that fits over the axle is right and on the end you are adjusting a "thick" washer that fits over only the skewer is the way to go so you leave the one axle nut and cone free for adjusting. The total difference from "play just gone" to "indexing and too tight" is about 1/4 to 1/3 turn. And yes the axle nut being tightened to jam the cone really does seem to mess things up. That's why you want to loosen the axle nut enough to move the cone and then tighten the two together. It's a bit of an art form the first time you ever do it but once you get the feel for moving the nuts around it gets far more simple. For example one trick is to hold the cone in place while just breaking loose the axle nut by maybe an 1/8 turn. Then retighten the axle nut but this time force the cone to move with it part way. This makes for an effective way to do fine adjustments.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

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    Wonderful precise explanation,BCRider!I'll try it!

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    Bike mechanics usually isn't hard, but some jobs take a little patience. Adjusting hub bearings is one of those jobs.

    Being able to maintain your wheels yourself is valuable - you save money on maintenance and you can generally help yourself if you have trouble with them on a ride.

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    Thread is a little old now but happy to report I bought the cone wrenches and freewheel remover and did the adjustments on the hub and it now spins freely and smoothly as it should!!Though councilled to leave some play which the skewer would eliminate I was too afraid of over loosening so I didn't detect any play before remounting the wheel.The difference however is quite noticeable and the wheel spins with no resistance.Thanks for all the feedback!

  12. #12
    Senior Member Chombi's Avatar
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    Very common for no-name and/or cheaper hubs to come with bearing cones too tight at the hubs. You just have to adjust them before you but them on the bike. I always had to do this with the loer level Peugeots, Gitanes and Motobecanes with low model Maillard and Atom french hubs my brother and I owned in the 80's. It's good anyway to service the hubs before using them to make sure that they are properly greased and not too tight, so the bearings races and cones do not frag out on you too soon...

    Chombi

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