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Old 01-24-12, 08:35 AM   #1
masi61
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Would you go to the expense of building a new set of wheels w/ obsolete Accushift?

Hello, I've stockpiled several nice Suntour Accushift 7 speed rear hubs and some wide range 7 speed cassettes that they are compatible with. I also have some compatible shift levers and both front and rear derailleurs. Currently I already have two bikes with Suntour and I like them both. The more high performance one has Superbe Pro 8 speed accushift rear cassette hub on it and I think the build came out pretty cool. The other uses Superbe Pro down tube 7 speed accushift shift levers with a wide range Winner 7 speed freewheel and and X-1 rear derailleur that does a surprisingly good job at shifting. Both bikes have very firm shifting that I enjoy as an alternative to the much more subdued clicks you get with Shimano.
Now I may just keep my obsolete spares as backup inventory or collectors items. But I wanted to put the feelers out and see how others view this subject. I know on modern road bikes, that use lightweight cassettes, serious riders anticipate a certain amount of mileage out of one before they are replacing it. In all my years of riding I think I can only remember wearing out one individual cog on a freewheel or cassette, never the whole thing.
It appears to me that these early cassettes are very heavy and durable, probably good to go for many, many tens of thousands of miles.
If you're with me this far, I'll close by asking: would you go to the expense of embarking on a "new" wheel build using NOS (obsolete) parts just because?
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Old 01-24-12, 08:41 AM   #2
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Well, how long do you plan to live?
Of that time period, how long do you plan to ride?
Of that time period, which bike?
There you go.
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Old 01-24-12, 08:52 AM   #3
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If it was a high mileage, regular rider and I didn't have back-up parts, then the answer would be no. When I was riding really seriously, a set of cogs would last two, maybe three seasons. By that point, they would no longer mesh properly with new chains. However, if I had the back-up parts, I would. Without back-up parts, I'd do it, but only for an occassional rider.
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Old 01-24-12, 08:54 AM   #4
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Sounds like you've got the parts so the expense is no greater than other drivetrain builds. You also like the Suntour shifting. Those freewheels do last a long time. So...

Buy a Shimano group and fegeddabowdit. Send all wide range accushift freewheels and other sundries to me....please?
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Old 01-24-12, 08:56 AM   #5
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Well, how long do you plan to live?
Of that time period, how long do you plan to ride?
Of that time period, which bike?
There you go.
So many decisions, you're right. I'm going to be 50 this year and already have 5 built up road bikes, this would be for the Austro-Daimler Puch Pacifica that sits out in the garage with lower end wheels. It's almost like one of those cryptic "if you build it they will come" type metaphysical type quagmires. It probably wouldn't be my busiest bike if I did build those wheels but you never know. Another idea I had is to go ahead and build the pretty shiny rear "Microlite" hub up for my Masi Gran Criterium and run 7 speed Powerflo on that since that bike already has the Superbe Pro Accushift levers anyway.

Right now my plans are to ride a lot. A lot this year, and in the coming years. Knowing what unique parts I like for my needs is often justification enough. With something a little spendy like this it might be helpful to know if others feel that there will continue to be a used market for well built Suntour wheels or do I lose most of the monetary investment as a collector's item once its no longer new in the box?
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Old 01-24-12, 09:00 AM   #6
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Nfw
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Old 01-24-12, 09:09 AM   #7
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Nfw
Thanks for your succinct response! Kind of what most people would say. I just think its interesting that many vintage roadie people would go there if it were Campagnolo that we were talking about. I personally almost like to try and verify : how many miles could you conceivably get from a single Powerflo Accushift cassette if you were diligent with your chain maintenance? If I live to be 95 years old and continue cycling every year, and put 500 miles on that wheelset annually, I suspect I'll be a very, very old man by then....
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Old 01-24-12, 09:34 AM   #8
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I would totally do it. But I would run it in friction mode.

Edit: Not due to any specific deficiencies in the Accushift system, real or perceived, but just because I'm a friction guy.
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Old 01-24-12, 09:51 AM   #9
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Do you build your own wheels?

I'm not sure I'd take that old stuff in to the bike shop and pay them to do it. But I would have no hesitation building up wheels myself using that stuff. Personally, I use even older and more obsolete stuff for most of my riding, not to mention old rims and sometimes even used spokes. So the investment is an hour (or two if the rim is ornery) and the expense is negligible.
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Old 01-24-12, 10:09 AM   #10
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I personally almost like to try and verify : how many miles could you conceivably get from a single Powerflo Accushift cassette if you were diligent with your chain maintenance? If I live to be 95 years old and continue cycling every year, and put 500 miles on that wheelset annually, I suspect I'll be a very, very old man by then....
Back in my shop day we had guys from each school of thought, the ride it untill it skips guys and the replace the chain frequently guys. The ride it untill it skipped guys would go 10-12K miles and replace the chain and cassette and replace the chainrings around 25K. The other guys would replace chain every 3-4K miles and a cassette every 10-12K but wouldn't need to replace chainrings. Money wise it was a wash.
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Old 01-24-12, 10:11 AM   #11
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Nfw
quit beating around the bush, Jim....
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Old 01-24-12, 10:12 AM   #12
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" In all my years of riding I think I can only remember wearing out one individual cog on a freewheel or cassette, never the whole thing".

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
You answered your own question. Unless you plan on doing a LOT more riding thhan you have done in your first 50 years, I would not think twice about it.
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Old 01-24-12, 10:50 AM   #13
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I wouldn't, but I like to stay within the times when it's reasonable. If it were a freewheel accushift system, definitely. If it were their cassette systems, no way.
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Old 01-24-12, 10:52 AM   #14
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Remember "Obsolete" is just another word for "RARE" for most C&Vers........

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Old 01-24-12, 10:55 AM   #15
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Interesting, I'm getting a wheel respaced to 130 specifically so I can use Superbe Pro and Command Shift. I suppose I MIGHT as well be dragged forward into the 90s at some point.
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Old 01-24-12, 11:13 AM   #16
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Why would you want to actually wear out a couple of those cassettes from use? IMO there are way better systems out there than suntour 7 speed indexed. You can buy brand new shimano 8 and 9 speed cassettes for dirt cheap. Take your pick of shifters, downtube, STI, barcon, whatever you want. The derailleurs are everywhere and can be had for cheap. The hubs for them are standard and are still produced today, if you're going to actually build a set of wheels IMO it would make sense to go with the better performing and proven shimano 8/9/10 speed stuff.
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Old 01-24-12, 11:15 AM   #17
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I would totally do it. But I would run it in friction mode.

Edit: Not due to any specific deficiencies in the Accushift system, real or perceived, but just because I'm a friction guy.
Wow. Thanks for the vow of confidence to proceed and get some wheels built. But them I'm puzzled when you migrate back to friction for your shifting preference. If I couldn't set up a very slick Accushift indexed rear derailleur and rear cogset, they why bother at all? In my mind, I would do it specifically for this feature. Yes, its a little fussy at first but once you do it up right it stays spot-on for a very long time.

I would not go to the trouble of fooling with the suntour at all if I didn't go the cassette route. If you're just going to run friction and freewheels (and just run an a winner or winner pro index compatible freewheel) you're only sipping the kool-aid at that point, not guzzling it in .
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Old 01-24-12, 11:18 AM   #18
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Wow. Thanks for the vow of confidence to proceed and get some wheels built. But them I'm puzzled when you migrate back to friction for your shifting preference. If I couldn't set up a very slick Accushift indexed rear derailleur and rear cogset, they why bother at all? In my mind, I would do it specifically for this feature. Yes, its a little fussy at first but once you do it up right it stays spot-on for a very long time.

I would not go to the trouble of fooling with the suntour at all if I didn't go the cassette route. If you're just going to run friction and freewheels (and just run an a winner or winner pro index compatible freewheel) you're only sipping the kool-aid at that point, not guzzling it in .
They have SunTour 7 indexed freewheels. I'm sure you know this, but I just want to be clear.
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Old 01-24-12, 11:32 AM   #19
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They have SunTour 7 indexed freewheels. I'm sure you know this, but I just want to be clear.
Yeah, I do know that. And thank you for emphasizing the freewheel aspect. It's always good to know that this for a backup but I'm talking cassette hub here.
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Old 01-24-12, 12:46 PM   #20
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Yeah, I do know that. And thank you for emphasizing the freewheel aspect. It's always good to know that this for a backup but I'm talking cassette hub here.
Sorry, I was just confused by your post. Your post seemed like you didn't want to fool with suntour freewheels because they are equated with friction. Disregard.
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Old 01-24-12, 12:52 PM   #21
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Both bikes have very firm shifting that I enjoy as an alternative to the much more subdued clicks you get with Shimano.


I wanted to put the feelers out and see how others view this subject.
I'm finding that the "firm shifting" in Accushift is not to my liking.
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Old 01-24-12, 01:24 PM   #22
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I'm finding that the "firm shifting" in Accushift is not to my liking.
By "firm shifting" do you mean that it maybe goes "Clack!, Clunk!, Clack!, Clunk!," as you go through the gears??
I've encountered many early indexed systems that went like that and I could imagine how hard it will be to get used to it after the relative silence of friction shifting.....if you do it right....

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Old 01-24-12, 01:26 PM   #23
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Shimano used 5.0mm c-c cog spacing for 7 speed and 4.8mm c-c for 8 speed. Suntour used a goofy combination of both 5.0 and 4.8 on the same casette for both 7 and 8 speed. If you have the hubs and casettes, I would go ahead and build the wheels. I find that I wear out/destroy rear deraillers more frequently than wear out the old wide toothed casettes. If you ever needed to abandon suntour shifting due to derailler wear, you could always grind down the wide suntour casette spacers by .2mm so that c-c deminsion of all cogs matches 8-speed shimano standard and then use the wheels with an otherwise shimano drivetrain. (Probably would work fairly well even without re-spacing). Alternately, re-space the 4.8 c-c casettes up to 5.0 with thin shims and use them on a campy 8-speed drivetrain.

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Old 01-24-12, 01:56 PM   #24
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But them I'm puzzled when you migrate back to friction for your shifting preference.
I never migrated forward to indexing in the first place, so friction is home for me.

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If you're just going to run friction and freewheels (and just run an a winner or winner pro index compatible freewheel) you're only sipping the kool-aid at that point, not guzzling it in .
I don't know what that means.

All I know is, SunTour made sturdy stuff, and if I had some of it lying around, I'd be using it. In friction mode.
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Old 01-24-12, 01:57 PM   #25
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Well, how long do you plan to live?
Of that time period, how long do you plan to ride?
Of that time period, which bike?
There you go.
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