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Old 05-19-12, 12:50 PM   #1
robtown
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Odd 4 cog freewheel removal

I picked up a 72ish Royce Union with a Sminano freewheel today. The freewheel looks like it might use the current Shimano removal socket but that socket is too big. It doesn't have the other common 2 or 3 slots. I'm wondering if it takes a special socket. Any advice?

Sorry, it's 5 cogs.
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Old 05-19-12, 03:00 PM   #2
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Given it's age, it probably needs the old Shimano splined remover. This is similar in shape to the current version, though with a smaller diameter.

Shimano enlarged the removal spline diameter some time in the eighties, so that a thin walled remover could be slid over the axle. On yours, you'll need to remove either the axle lock nut and right hand spacers (often there will be an second locknut deeper inside so the bearings won't need readjusting. If you cannot remover enough spacers on the right, you'll need to disassemble the axle from the left side and slide it out.

BTW- if you're planning or replacing the freewheel, let a bike shop do it since it should cost $5.00 or so (bring only the wheel), which is less than the remover. Otherwise if you need to buy the remover, I might have one to sell and it would be less than what you see in the link. Only problem is I won't know for sure until I go to work on Monday.
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Old 05-19-12, 07:15 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
Given it's age, it probably needs the old Shimano splined remover. This is similar in shape to the current version, though with a smaller diameter.

Shimano enlarged the removal spline diameter some time in the eighties, so that a thin walled remover could be slid over the axle. On yours, you'll need to remove either the axle lock nut and right hand spacers (often there will be an second locknut deeper inside so the bearings won't need readjusting. If you cannot remover enough spacers on the right, you'll need to disassemble the axle from the left side and slide it out.

BTW- if you're planning or replacing the freewheel, let a bike shop do it since it should cost $5.00 or so (bring only the wheel), which is less than the remover. Otherwise if you need to buy the remover, I might have one to sell and it would be less than what you see in the link. Only problem is I won't know for sure until I go to work on Monday.
Thanks. I've mostly stripped the frame - it's not bad once the low-end heavy stuff (e.g. cottered crankset) was removed. I'm considering making it a single speed but since the ss crankset is 44T I might leave the current freewheel and install the chain to a bigger rear cog. The wheel is in desperate need of cleaning and new grease so removing the freewheel is necessary.
The bike does have some interesting Diacompe brake levers with white grip half-covers.
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Old 05-19-12, 07:41 PM   #4
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I had a Royce Onion back in the day. Not a real bad bike. Took constant attention to keep it working.

That cottered crank was razorblade sharp right where your ankle bone pokes out. When I rode in sandals or without socks, it would neatly plane off the skin about the size of a quarter. It seemed that it always happened just as the old injury was about healed.

With a set of decent rims, better brakes, and a shifter that didn't slide down the frame tube instead of moving the derailleur, it wouldn't be a bad piece. Post pics if you have any.
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Old 05-21-12, 10:44 PM   #5
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I had a Royce Onion back in the day. Not a real bad bike. Took constant attention to keep it working.

That cottered crank was razorblade sharp right where your ankle bone pokes out. When I rode in sandals or without socks, it would neatly plane off the skin about the size of a quarter. It seemed that it always happened just as the old injury was about healed.

With a set of decent rims, better brakes, and a shifter that didn't slide down the frame tube instead of moving the derailleur, it wouldn't be a bad piece. Post pics if you have any.
I have a Maxy three-piece crank, some Suntour components, and alloy stem/dropbars. If I can get the wheels serviced it'll make a reasonable beater bike. I'll post pics.
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Old 05-27-12, 07:24 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
Given it's age, it probably needs the old Shimano splined remover. This is similar in shape to the current version, though with a smaller diameter.

Shimano enlarged the removal spline diameter some time in the eighties, so that a thin walled remover could be slid over the axle. On yours, you'll need to remove either the axle lock nut and right hand spacers (often there will be an second locknut deeper inside so the bearings won't need readjusting. If you cannot remover enough spacers on the right, you'll need to disassemble the axle from the left side and slide it out.
I bought the socket and it worked perfectly. The wheel is in good shape now. The rebuild is moving along & I'll post pictures soon.
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