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Old 05-12-12, 05:03 PM   #1
AlphaDogg
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Rear hub not rotating smoothy, feels "notchy"

I got a new bike (Fuji Roubaix 1.0) a month ago and already put 400 miles on it. When I got it, I noticed the rear hub was not rotating smoothly. I just took my rear wheel off to clean the cassette and spun it in my hands. It still feels notchy. What do you guys think is the culprit? The last thing I want is to have to prematurely replace the hub. I'm also afraid that this is making me less efficient. When I go in to volunteer at the local co-op next weekend (after another ~100 miles), I can use their wrench set to adjust my hub. Just tell me what to do, and I'll do it. Thanks all!

Last edited by AlphaDogg; 05-12-12 at 05:10 PM.
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Old 05-12-12, 05:09 PM   #2
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Assuming it is not a cartridge-bearing type hub, it sounds like mis-adjusted bearings.
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Old 05-12-12, 05:30 PM   #3
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Even with cartridge bearings, depending upon the design, there can be some axial-play to make up for axle-compression when the QR is tightened. You just wouldn't feel any radial play like with ball-bearings.
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Old 05-12-12, 05:47 PM   #4
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I feel like an idiot, I accidentally wrote "rotation" instead of "rotating" in the title. Oops...

Anyway, the wheels are Alex ALX-200. I hear they aren't very good, but I want 3000-5000 miles on them before I get something nicer.
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Old 05-12-12, 05:53 PM   #5
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Never, never ignore something you think is not right on a new bike. The sooner it is attended to the better. The specs say "precision ground hubs" - real informative! But that means a traditional cup and cone, not cartridge. The culprit is undoubtably lazy assembly, either as shop practice or by the individual who prepped your bike. Bearings are almost never properly adjusted when they arrive a the bike shop, and I've never seen them adjusted loose. Yours are adjusted way too tight, and proper wear-in of the surfaces may have already been compromised.

Immediately get to the shop where you bought it. My position would be that they owe you a new, properly adjusted wheel, and need to have the head mechanic go over every adustment, lubrication point and bolt on the bike.
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Old 05-12-12, 06:17 PM   #6
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This sounds like an assembly or adjustment issue. If still under warrenty I would take it back to the shop that sold it. If not you can try desasembling the hub and reasembling the the hub you may be surprised I have seen ball and cone hubs new that had the wrong number of bearings. With the way most modern bikes are assembled at the factory or shop even high end ones you just can't assume or that everything is assembled and adjusted correctly.
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Old 05-12-12, 06:26 PM   #7
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Parts are under warranty for a year, so that shouldn't be a problem. I'll head back to the shop tonight.
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Old 05-12-12, 07:43 PM   #8
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Rear hub not rotation smoothy, feels "notchy"

Just got back from the shop. The mechanic who was there was great and loosened it up. Now it's as smooth as butter. He said the factories like to really crank down on them. He also said that when he builds bikes, he loosens them up, but there are other people who bulld bikes there who don't. I guess a mechanic who doesn't loosen them up built my bike. I then proceeded to have a very nice and lengthy conversation with him about bikes, co-ops, home wrenching, etc. It really was very nice.

Do you guys think I might go faster now?
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Old 05-12-12, 08:12 PM   #9
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LOL, bearing drag doesn't add up to much. Consider the leverage.

Now imagine how tight a hub would have to be before you noticed it on the bike... you'd have to be destroying bearings.

But yes, obviously you'll go faster now. Only by less than the difference between a good day and a bad day.
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Old 05-12-12, 08:42 PM   #10
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It won't help much with the speed factor but it will help greatly on the wear issues concerning the drive train. A smooth running drive train will last twice as long overal than one with issues if not more. Very good call on your part to get it corrected before it started to effect offer stuff.
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Old 05-12-12, 08:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlphaDogg View Post

Anyway, the wheels are Alex ALX-200. I hear they aren't very good, but I want 3000-5000 miles on them before I get something nicer.
The wheels will be fine. I wore out my original heavy wheels after 15,000 miles. The back wheel was getting cracks around some spoke holes. But they ran fine until then.

My new wheels have strong hubs and rims, so they should last. They are also almost 400 grams lighter. The main difference I notice is that they have a faster steering response. I don't really see any faster climbing or top end speed.

Fancy wheels would be nice, but the differences are subtle.

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Old 05-12-12, 10:14 PM   #12
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I have Alex rims on my personnel ridder they have great ride quailty and hold true decent wieght. Have road true for six months of urban riding 50 miles plus a week no issues. Got them from the bike coop for free because they had never been setup spaced dished for anything set the dish and spacing right they are rock solid. Alex are very under rated rims.
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Old 05-13-12, 02:00 AM   #13
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personnel ridder
That makes me think of stuff like water cannons and guns and stuff...
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Old 05-13-12, 08:51 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by AlphaDogg View Post
Just got back from the shop. The mechanic who was there was great and loosened it up. Now it's as smooth as butter. He said the factories like to really crank down on them. He also said that when he builds bikes, he loosens them up, but there are other people who bulld bikes there who don't. I guess a mechanic who doesn't loosen them up built my bike. I then proceeded to have a very nice and lengthy conversation with him about bikes, co-ops, home wrenching, etc. It really was very nice.

Do you guys think I might go faster now?
...and what else do those other people not do when assembling bikes?? Proper adjustment is not a personal preference. I hope it was not a head mechanic who said that. What he should have said was that he would make sure the manager knows that proper assembly was not done on that bike, and possibly on others, so that a repeat is avoided for other customers. When I was service manager we knew who assembled every bike, and I regularly pulled random assemblies to check them.

Hopefully the fact that it feels smooth now means there was no damage, as the bearing parts are quite hard. I still maintain that you should request of the store owner/manager that an experienced mechanic go over your bike carefully. There are both potential maintenance and safety issues with a poor assembly.

You will coast a little easier - I wouldn't count on telling the difference otherwise. Ride more, go faster

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