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  1. #1
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    Sachs Aris 6 Speed Freewheel : Question

    Dear Forum Members:

    I am restoring a vintage early 90's Ritchey Mountain Bike with MAVIC Hubs (hubs made in France) and Sachs Aris 6 Speed Freewheel (made in France) and have a question (see picture attached).

    I want to replace the Sachs Aris 6 Speed Freewheel - is it worth it to find a new NOS, Sachs Aris 6 Speed Freewheel on eBay?? I am looking for a quality freewheel as I spent much time finding the NOS, Ritchey Logic Compact crankset (i.e., replacing existing Shimano XT 48T Cranks)

    Note: My new drivetrain setup will have existing Deore XT Thumb Shifters and a new Ritchey Logic Compact Crankset, existing MAVIC hubs

    Any advice. Please help!

    Thanks,

    Casey

    SachsFrance6S_web.jpg

  2. #2
    I love the rolling hills. ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Unless the hub is French-threaded, I wouldn't bother. A new Shimano FW would be far cheaper and shift far better.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
    RUSA #7498 / PBP 2015 frame number P204: http://suivi.paris-brest-paris.org/P204.html

  3. #3
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    The sach aris freewheel is very good freewheel. You may be able to find one through this website for a lot less than ebay. It's shimano compatible so Scott has it right and a shimano 6 speed freewheel will work as well but I'm not so sure that it will shift far better.

  4. #4
    verktyg verktyg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
    Unless the hub is French-threaded, I wouldn't bother. A new Shimano FW would be far cheaper and shift far better.
    1. By the mid 80's French threaded hubs were history. The Mavic catalogs don't even mention the freewheel threads. Sachs ARIS freewheels came out about 1989 so they're ISO thread.

    2. Au contraire mon ami... I have Sachs ARIS freewheels on a number of bikes as well as a whole bunch of Shimano Hyperglide cassettes.

    The ARIS freewheels were some of the best made! In my experience they shift just about as well as Shimano Hyperglide sprockets! They're sealed and long lasting too!

    Unless the cogs are worn out or the body is toast, or you are looking for different cogs, I'd clean and lubricate the ARIS FW and keep using it.

    BF member pastor bob rebuilds freewheels if that's what you need:

    FreeWheelSpa; The Home of Happy Bicycle Freewheels (and so much more)! - Freewheel repair, service and restoration

    I built an off road lugged 700c trekking frame with heavy gage Reynolds 531 for myself in 1992. I used Phil hubs so I had to use a freewheel. I picked a 6 speed ARIS FW. The bike has a Shimano Deore rear deraillerur with Shimano 7 speed thumb shifters.

    That freewheel is still going strong! They can be re-lubricated but you have to remove the sprockets to access the oil port.

    MTB1.jpg MTBRightSideUpdate2.jpg MTBRightSideUpdate.jpg MTBCrownCropped.jpg MTB-ForkCrown 014.jpg

    The bike looks clean because all of the bearings are sealed and I hose it down when it gets dirty.

    verktyg

    Chas.
    Last edited by verktyg; 08-11-15 at 03:03 PM.
    Things aren't always what the seem... Don't believe everything you think!

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  5. #5
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    Verktyg,

    Good point. I should try to salvage existing Sachs Aris Freewheel. Since I am having the entire wheelset rebuilt, I'll take a closure look at condition of that Freewheel.

    Next question: I am replacing the old rims with new NOS rims. Option (1) go with exact match Vintage NOS NEW Ritchey Vantage Comp 36h clincher rims MTB 26" (circa late 80s, the rims that won the 1989 Norba Worlds competition) or Option 2. RITCHEY ROCK COMP 26" MTB RIMS 32H VINTAGE (circa 1997)

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Casey

  6. #6
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    For freewheels I don't think I'd look farther than just getting an IRD Classica:

    Classica Freewheels 5/6/7-Speed ? Interloc Racing Design / IRD

    IRD had problems with the Defiant freewheels (was it the Mark IIIs?) and many people had failures with those. I'd never consider an IRD Defiant because on eBay you can't tell whether the freewheel is from the "bad" batch or not. The new IRD Classica looks like they will take over the role of being the best freewheels ever made. They should shift better than any vintage freewheel, Sachs or otherwise.

    You can get the 6-speed in a 14-34. For me that's perfect to put on a Mavic 135 mountain bike freewheel hub for a vintage Klein with XT thumb shifters.
    Last edited by mtnbke; 08-11-15 at 08:23 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbke View Post
    For freewheels I don't think I'd look farther than just getting an IRD Classica:

    Classica Freewheels 5/6/7-Speed ? Interloc Racing Design / IRD

    IRD had problems with the Defiant freewheels (was it the Mark IIIs?) and many people had failures with those. I'd never consider an IRD Defiant because on eBay you can't tell whether the freewheel is from the "bad" batch or not. The new IRD Classica looks like they will take over the role of being the best freewheels ever made. They should shift better than any vintage freewheel, Sachs or otherwise.

    You can get the 6-speed in a 14-34. For me that's perfect to put on a Mavic 135 mountain bike freewheel hub for a vintage Klein with XT thumb shifters.
    As far as an adequate new freewheel, I agree. But I think the Sachs are among the best FW designs ever - one who has one should keep it going - why buy anything, anyway?

  8. #8
    Ride, Wrench, Swap, Race dddd's Avatar
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    It does seem that IRD is trying to maintain a decent assortment of freewheel ratios for all of the three main platforms, 5, 6 and 7-speed.

    There is also Sunrace producing some great 7s freewheels in the 13-25t and 13-28t flavors.

    The contemporary tooth profiles on these freewheels are best for any indexed shifting application, but I prefer older Uniglide and Suntour freewheels for the greater feedback that they provide when using friction shifting.
    I wouldn't assume that any freewheel can be expected to "take over the role of being the best freewheels ever made" without some years of severe use as proof of that possibility. I would have to assign that title to the old 7sp Dura-Ace and Sante freewheels, and If you have had one in your hands you would at least see/feel/hear what I mean. Certainly the old 600 6sp freewheel is a good design/quality target to shoot for, but talk is cheap and I don't see any presence of the sealing ring that 600 S.I.S. freewheels always had, to say nothing of the internal seals that the Dura Ace and Sante 7s freewheels had going on.
    Last edited by dddd; 08-13-15 at 05:43 PM.

  9. #9
    verktyg verktyg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by volkswagentruck View Post
    Next question: I am replacing the old rims with new NOS rims. Option (1) go with exact match Vintage NOS NEW Ritchey Vantage Comp 36h clincher rims MTB 26" (circa late 80s, the rims that won the 1989 Norba Worlds competition) or Option 2. RITCHEY ROCK COMP 26" MTB RIMS 32H VINTAGE (circa 1997)

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    Casey
    I only have one bike with 26" wheels so I can't comment....

    My 1987 Colnago Master-Ibex MTB has 26" wheels. The frame is Columbus Gilco tubing and it has a complete 1987 Shimano Deore XT gruppo. The bike is pretty but it handles terribly both on and off road! Some folks should have stuck to road bikes!

    Colnago1987MTB-RightSide.jpg Colnago1987MTB-LeftSideHeadTube.jpg

    My off road ridding was on 700c wheels (THEY'RE 700c NOT 29er's!!!). I used cyclocross sewups on good trails and up to 700x47c clinchers in rocks and bad terrain.

    ContinentalCyclocrossTread.jpg

    I'm sure others can chime in with a recommendation. Good luck!

    @mtbbke The IRD Classica freewheels look good. I'm going to try one the next time I need a freewheel (it will be awhile, I have a box full of good old FWs).

    I tried a Sunrace FW about 6-7 years ago. It was the worst piece of junk I've ever used. Returned it for credit after 1 hour of riding! I guess that they've cleaned up they act by now.

    verktyg

    Chas.
    Last edited by verktyg; 08-12-15 at 01:30 AM.
    Things aren't always what the seem... Don't believe everything you think!

    Chas.

  10. #10
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    Verktyg,

    How do I know if my Sachs Aris Freewheel needs an overhaul ?

    Note: I would just roll with my Sachs Aris Freewheel as is, but my Ritchey Crankset is new, NOS and I don't want anything to get screwed up in DriveTrain

    Please advise.


    thanks,

    Casey

  11. #11
    Member Camplex's Avatar
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    Vintage clinchers.

    The Aris is a great freewheel, comparable (or close) to the Dura Ace in my opinion. I actually like the "twisted" teeth too. Watch some YouTube videos on how to take a freewheel apart or have a LBS do it, then clean/soak all the parts, replace the ball bearings or clean them and re-lube, clean each cog and re-install... Your teeth look to be in decent condition. I would keep it or replace it with a similar FW. These aren't that expensive on eBay, considering what you have and your objectives.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by verktyg View Post
    I tried a Sunrace FW about 6-7 years ago. It was the worst piece of junk I've ever used. Returned it for credit after 1 hour of riding! I guess that they've cleaned up they act by now.
    I just put one on a Miele and it had a horrible growl when freewheeling. You could feel it through the whole bike. Made sure I bought a Shimano next time.

  13. #13
    Is a real super guy. Henry III's Avatar
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    Most bike shops won't rebuild a freewheel let alone half the kids ever take one apart. You can still buy NOS Arias Freewheels on ebay for a really reasonable price. But if it's rebuildable then I would just repack it and move on.

  14. #14
    verktyg verktyg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Camplex View Post
    The ARIS is a great freewheel, comparable (or close) to the Dura Ace in my opinion. I actually like the "twisted" teeth too.
    The ARIS freewheels are sealed - really sealed! There's an oil hole in the body under the cogs but getting them off is a real bear plus forcing lube into the little hole can be a problem (because of the seals it can't get easily out).

    I suspect that Sachs used some kind of light synthetic grease in those ARIS FWs. I have a bunch of them. They're ~25 year old and still spin smooth and quiet.

    Sachs has been a major player in the transportation field since 1895 when they set up shop making ball bearings and bicycle hubs. The ARIS freewheel wasn't their first rodeo!

    Sachs introduced ARIS (Advanced Rider Index System) in 1990. They were a much bigger player in the European market than in the US.

    Aside from some bad Regina freewheels that I ran across in the mid 70's and the Sunrace I tried, about the only ones that I've had problems with are the Shimano Uniglide twist tooth models - both FWs and cassettes.

    It was more of a chain issue. A number of times I bent links with SRAM PC-850 chains when doing a hard shift to the bigger sprockets. I attribute it to the expanded side plates getting hooked on the twisted teeth and bending when I stomped on them while shifting with Shimano index derailleurs. Chains with flat side plates aren't a problem.

    verktyg

    Chas.
    Things aren't always what the seem... Don't believe everything you think!

    Chas.

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    Verktyg,

    Where do you reside in the Bay Area? I grew up on the S.F. Peninsula, went to Burlingame H.S.. I hang my hat in the Southeast now.
    Bought my Ritchey Mtn Bike in Palo Alto in early nineties. My friends told me, a long time ago, to hang the bike on the wall, because it is old technology. But instead, I started riding road bikes and beach cruisers.

    In any event, I am pushing forward with 'Ritchey' Restore Project and will send the Sachs Aris Freewheel to Bob at Free Wheel Spa. It will slow the project down a little but what the heck. I don't feel good about recycling such a good freewheel.

    Thanks for your help so far. I'll keep you posted.

    I plan to ride my Ritchey through a singletrack on a Civil War battleground when I have the bike up & running

    Casey
    Last edited by volkswagentruck; 08-15-15 at 11:06 AM.

  16. #16
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by volkswagentruck View Post
    In any event, I am pushing forward with 'Ritchey' Restore Project and will send the Sachs Aris Freewheel to Bob at Free Wheel Spa. It will slow the project down a little but what the heck. I don't feel good about recycling such a good freewheel.

    Thanks for your help so far. I'll keep you posted.

    I plan to ride my Ritchey through a singletrack on a Civil War battleground when I have the bike up & running

    Casey
    First off, a big thanks to @verktyg for the endorsement! I do appreciate you mentioning me.

    VW Truck, welcome to BF and Classic and Vintage. Glad you came here for assistance and inspiration. Don't forget to post pictures of your Ritchey when you have completed the work.

    Your decision to stick with tha Sachs is a good one. In your picture it looks as if it is in fine shape. If you send it to me I will remove and clean all the cogs, disassemble the inner and outer bodies, and completely clean the interior. It will then go back together with new synthetic grease which has a huge temperature range, is very water and salt resistant. Unless you ride it through extreme conditions, this service should be good for many years to come.

    Verktyg mentions that the Sachs Aris is a sealed freewheel, which some are, but your freewheel is not. I've actually never seen a 6 speed Sachs that is sealed, only the 7 and 8 speed models. Even then, I'd use the term loosely.

    These Sachs freewheels use a plastic bearing cage, which also acts as a seal between the outer race/retaining ring and the outer body on the top outside, and the inner and outer bodies on the hub side. These are red when clean, but often black after years of use. I'll post pictures later today.
    Bob
    Riding the Dream during Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
    FreeWheelSpa.com orpastorbobnlnh.com

  17. #17
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Seals/cages installed in outer body.



    Cages/seals.

    Bob
    Riding the Dream during Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
    FreeWheelSpa.com orpastorbobnlnh.com

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