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  1. #1
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    Add a freehub body to a fixed/free flip-flop hub?

    Forgive me if I'm missing something here. I like a set of wheels that are predominantly for fixed-gear bicycles, the Eighth Inch Julian ones. I want to run them on a bicycle that has a Shimano 105 group on it.

    Can I buy those wheels, purchase a compatible freehub body (or remove the freehub body from my existing wheels) and run them? I understand that I'll have to adjust the spacing, but here's what the site says about that and some other specs:

    32 Black Stainless spokes
    Formula Sealed Bearing hub
    Fixed/Fixed Hub on Non-Machined wheels, Fixed/Free on Machined wheels.
    Front and rear pair
    Sleeved & Pinned Seams
    100mm front spacing, 120mm rear
    You can space the rear wheel to 126mm or 130mm


    I would obviously be buying the machined wheels for the braking surface.

    Thanks, and I appreciate advice/tips/etc.

  2. #2
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    You'd need to replace the whole hub.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  3. #3
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Freehubs fit onto a special mount on freehub hubs. The flip flop hubs are threaded on the freewheel side for the old/cheap style freewheels. So yes you can put multiple speed freewheels on the hub but not freehubs and cassetes.

    For pictures that show this stuff check out www.parktool.com/repair .
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

  4. #4
    over the hill juls's Avatar
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    A freewheel will screw on-but you will have to dish the wheel for it.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by juls View Post
    A freewheel will screw on-but you will have to dish the wheel for it.
    And likely re-space the axle.

  6. #6
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Buy or build another wheel, for the 105 road bike setup,
    cassette freehubs are vastly different from fixie flip flop hubs.
    hang the other one on a hook .

    100mm front spacing, 120mm rear
    You can space the rear wheel to 126mm or 130mm
    actually its .. you should just buy another bike, entirely..
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-03-12 at 07:09 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Buy or build another wheel. for the 105 road bike setup,
    THis is a better answer. 105 components made after ~1994 or so require 8, 9, or 10 speed cassette/freewheels to match the number of clicks and spacing of the shifters. THere used to be 8 speed freewheels available, but I have never seen 9 or 10 speed freewheels. To get 9 or 10 cogs on the back you will need a different hub or completely different wheel (likely the simpler of the two options).

  8. #8
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    The manufacturer also sells bare rims. What about taking the hub from the 105 wheel and having it laced to the new rim if the spoke holes match?

    How much might that kind of job cost me? Or is it worth learning how to build wheels? This is for a non daily-rider, a total project bike.

  9. #9
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eyeheartny View Post
    The manufacturer also sells bare rims. What about taking the hub from the 105 wheel and having it laced to the new rim if the spoke holes match?

    How much might that kind of job cost me? Or is it worth learning how to build wheels? This is for a non daily-rider, a total project bike.
    Probably about $1.50/spoke and I see all kindsa prices, from $60/wheel - $150/wheel labor. Wheelbuilding is a nice thing to know. Need a good shop to help you find right length spokes and not gouge you for spoke prices.

    ANOTHER OPTION:

    EA50s @ nashbar. Not quite as deep, machined brake surface and $40 more than the Julians...
    Wouldn't look so bad after stripping the stickers.
    http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...15_-1___202478
    Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 04-03-12 at 12:03 PM.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    FWIW....

    I have seen someone that used a freehub/disc specific wherein there was multispeed cassette on the freehub side and a fixed gear cog attached to the disc brake flange on the other. Don't know/remember how many cogs were on the freehub side, though. Pretty neat set up. He just shortened the chain or ran a different chain......one of the two......when fixed riding was anticipate.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Probably about $1.50/spoke and I see all kindsa prices, from $60/wheel - $150/wheel labor.

    ANOTHER OPTION:

    EA50s @ nashbar. Not quite as deep, machined brake surface and $40 more than the Julians...

    Wouldn't look so bad after stripping the stickers.

    http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...15_-1___202478
    I'm definitely looking for something deeper. It's a build idea I have-- sort of a ratbike/future-Tokyo thing. Suggestions?

    I was inspired by one of these motorcycles from Deus. I am planning on stripping this frame down to the aluminum, doing some funky stuff with the control setup, doing a matte powdercoat on cranks and other parts, etc. Total long-term wacked-out project, but the wheels are part of it.


  12. #12
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    For a cleaner look you should stick with singlespeed, fixed, or an IGH. Any hub can be laced to any rim, provided they have the same number of spoke holes.

  13. #13
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    DNP and Sunrace make 9-speed freewheels and DNP just came out with 10-speed freewheels.

    But they're all 32 or 34 big cogs. Dunno if they're rebuildable with old smaller cogs (this would make shifting a little less smooth also). A Shimano 105 GS RD can handle 32s according to techdocs, if you don't mind the big range.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    Thanks for that Info, Lester! I had no idea!
    However, the reason why freewheels became extinct/endangered was that the freewheel hub design leaves a long unsupported length of axle on the driveside that was prone to bending and breaking. Freehubs have the drive side bearing supporting the axle much closer to the end, so the problem was mostly eliminated. For freewheels, the higher the number of cogs, the longer this length of unsupported axle and the more likely the failure. 6 speeds occaisionally bent, but it wasn't a major problem; 7 speeds bent quite a bit more often and freehubs pretty much started to take over when this was the standard; 8 speed freewheels bent quite easily and never caught on. 9 and 10 speed (Shimano and Sram spacing) is the same width as 8 speed, so I suppose the chance of bending or breaking the axle is similar. However, the chance of bending or breaking an axle on an 8 speed freewheel hub is quite high. I would suggest using an 8, 9, or 10 speed freewheel only if the bike is primarily for show and durability is not a concern.

    It would be much much easier to find an inexpensive freehub and build it with your choice of rim.

  15. #15
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Yeah, I've bent/broken my share of axles with 6 and 7 speed FWs, only a couple on road bike though. Just broke a solid axle on a 7-speed freewheel mountain bike a few months ago.

    I wonder if anyone makes a really strong solid axle that can actually hold up to big freewheels + abuse.

    Standard hollow axles hold up fine for me for quite a while before bending/breaking with semi-cautious road riding and 8-speed freewheel. I'm only 150 lbs, though. Only tweeked a couple of road axles lifetime.

    Definitely something to think about.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  16. #16
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I went over to Phil Wood freewheel hubs [still made],
    and Bullseye hubs, [no longer sold]
    and that eliminated ever having any hub trouble at all ..

    Bullseye is what I have now. they are held together by 2 wee setscrews
    and the axle QR itself . standard cartridge bearings ..

    New Field serviceable Phil may be easily worked on too.

    I took that bike fully loaded on several trips to Europe hauling camping gear
    never an axle problem.

    I swapped in a set of Enduro, 90% ball fill bearings, on the Bulls eye set.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-03-12 at 03:37 PM.

  17. #17
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    http://www.velocityusa.com/default.asp?contentID=699

    Velocity has a wide range of rims that might fit your needs. These can be laced to any hub you wish to use.

  18. #18
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I was thinking the 43s were a good match for this query also. I thought for sure some built wheels with freehubs would come up in a search, but nope, not readily anyway.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  19. #19
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Note the Red Line mono-cog 29er has a single cog wide, freehub now.

    wide spaced flanges so nothing like a road cassette hub.

    120 wide rear , 3 or 5 speed IGH.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-03-12 at 07:11 PM.

  20. #20
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    If you don't care about weight at all (and you really can't with deep aluminum rims) then I agree, Velocity B43s would be my choice too. Super deep and just about any color you can imagine. Lace them to some road hubs and you'll be all set. It'll be expensive but if you're after that look you won't do much better.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  21. #21
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DCB0 View Post
    the reason why freewheels became extinct/endangered was that the freewheel hub design leaves a long unsupported length of axle on the driveside that was prone to bending and breaking. Freehubs have the drive side bearing supporting the axle much closer to the end, so the problem was mostly eliminated.
    Proper freehubs have the drive side axle bearing outboard of the freewheel bearings. Only Shimano makes actual freehubs; the rest share the same problem as screw-on hubs, but proudly display their splines, saying, look at me, I'm a freehub.

    No dice, b*tches. License Shimano's design, or don't call it a freehub. All the pretenders are just cassette hubs. The freewheel on those is not a structural element of the hubshell. On many if not most (I'm looking at you, Campy), the drive side axle bearing is actually inboard of the hub flange, which is far worse in terms of sensible design than a screw-on hub. I'd rather throw away a ratchet with my old cogs than move my more important axle bearing between the flanges...


    *Observant readers will note that a couple of days ago I was pouring scorn on Shimano for STI, and heaping praise on Campy for Ergo. No prejudice here.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    I was thinking the 43s were a good match for this query also. I thought for sure some built wheels with freehubs would come up in a search, but nope, not readily anyway.
    The only issue with the 43s is the lack of a braking surface...otherwise I'd be jumping on those.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by FastJake View Post
    If you don't care about weight at all (and you really can't with deep aluminum rims) then I agree, Velocity B43s would be my choice too. Super deep and just about any color you can imagine. Lace them to some road hubs and you'll be all set. It'll be expensive but if you're after that look you won't do much better.

    What do I do about the lack of braking surfaces? I'd love a black B43 wheelset but not if it's going to end up not working because of the braking issue...

  24. #24
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    Thanks for all the good explanations, by the way-- always appreciate learning.

  25. #25
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Hmmm, yeah, B43s are pretty slanted where the brakes would hit, not good.

    Here's another 30mm rim. Flat black like the Julian, and after you peel the stickers off there's a nice brake track.

    http://coghouse.com/leaderxalexrim.aspx
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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