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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 03-15-11, 09:42 PM   #1
BikeArkansas
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Free wheel

I am new to single speed bikes. Getting into it quickly. I mostly ride road bikes and some on a touring bike. Bought a stock single speed bike, but I have never ridden a truly stock bike very long, so some changes are coming soon.

The first change I want to address is the free wheel. Friends tell me that White Industries makes "THE" free wheel. Is that correct?
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Old 03-15-11, 11:23 PM   #2
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Bummer...expected another raffle.

But yes, White Industries makes the premier freewheels. They are definitely more expensive, borderline botique, but have a solid reputation and make a ton of freewheelin' racket. There's plenty of videos showcasing the "angry bees" on youtube, here..

Have you tried a fixed gear, yet? If not, I recommend taking the leap. It's addictive, to say the least.

Last edited by rustybrown; 03-15-11 at 11:30 PM. Reason: making sense
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Old 03-16-11, 05:31 AM   #3
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Strictly single speed for me. One very short trial on a fixie was enough to satisfy my curiosity. Just having a little fun with the single speed.

I posted a question on the freewheel because I cannot identify the one that came on my bike and the shop owner said it definitely was not a top quality freewheel. Someone told me White Industries had a very good one. I thought when I posted it could be confirmed or denied. If denied someone would suggest the brand of a good one. Evidently this is not the case.
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Old 03-16-11, 05:35 AM   #4
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Ride the one you have until it needs replacing.
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Old 03-16-11, 05:55 AM   #5
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I only clicked on this because I thought someone was giving away a free wheel. ****.
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Old 03-16-11, 07:20 AM   #6
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Old 03-16-11, 07:59 AM   #7
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I only clicked on this because I thought someone was giving away a free wheel. ****.
Me too....
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Old 03-16-11, 08:04 AM   #8
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I took off my WI freewheel and opted for a Shimano. There's always one I guess. (I don't like noisy freewheels.)
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Old 03-16-11, 08:10 AM   #9
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There's always one I guess. (I don't like noisy freewheels.)
I like riding up behind someone then freewheeling while backpeddaling at top speed with my King rear hub.

It's like the dogs with bees in their mouths, so when they bark they shoot bees at you.
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Old 03-16-11, 08:36 AM   #10
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I clicked here because I wanted to Free Wheel.
Free Mumia!
Free Peltier!
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Old 03-16-11, 08:55 AM   #11
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White Industries are the best, in kind of the same way that Ferraris are the best car.

Shimano are Hondas, ACS are Hyundais.
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Old 03-16-11, 09:05 AM   #12
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I wouldn't spend the cash on a WI freewheel after seeing this.


I have $20 shimano freewheels that are rounder than that and have worked smoothly and quietly for thousands of miles. What is the point of spending 4-5 times more for something that isn't any better?
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Old 03-16-11, 09:36 AM   #13
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I ave personally destroyed several of the shimano and acs freewheels and soo I went and bought a white industries freewheel about 4 years ago for my bad weather bike it has been thru every bad rain storm since and even been submerged a few times I have never once cleaned or lubed he drivetrain and it has never once caused a problem
and as far as sound I like loud prawls that means they have strong springs and wont slip under weight and force

but to each their own
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Old 03-16-11, 10:14 AM   #14
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wait you have NEVER cleaned or lubed the drivetrain of your "bad weather" bike? I call schenanigans.
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Old 03-16-11, 10:20 AM   #15
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never not once in the 4 years I have owned the bike ride it for the winter hang it up in the garage ride my spring summer bike bad weather comes air up the tires make sure the brakes work and go

actually last season I broke the cranks finally so I guess its time for a new chain and maybe a little cleaning when I put the new crankset on next winter
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Old 03-16-11, 10:22 AM   #16
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Thank you Zacked. The information you gave is the type I was needing. A few other good ones also. It is worth reading through all the "remarks" to get some good information.
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Old 03-16-11, 10:26 AM   #17
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you can't believe anything you read on an internet forum.
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Old 03-16-11, 10:41 AM   #18
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you can't believe anything you read on an internet forum.
I don't beleive you.
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Old 03-16-11, 10:43 AM   #19
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I wouldn't spend the cash on a WI freewheel after seeing this [video].

I have $20 shimano freewheels that are rounder than that and have worked smoothly and quietly for thousands of miles. What is the point of spending 4-5 times more for something that isn't any better?
I'm a bit confused at what is 'out of round' in the video, since the teeth are stationary. Do you believe it to be the freewheel internals, and not his hub, or axle, or something else? Do you have a video which compares that to a cheaper freewheel?

It is good that your $20 freewheels have lasted so long. However, if I had a preference for WI freewheels (for any reason), the variation I see in that video wouldn't give me very much pause against them.
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Old 03-16-11, 12:00 PM   #20
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The noise has no detrimental effect on coasting speed?

That's some wild **** about the not cleaning the drivetrain comment.
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Old 03-16-11, 12:06 PM   #21
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I'm a bit confused at what is 'out of round' in the video, since the teeth are stationary. Do you believe it to be the freewheel internals, and not his hub, or axle, or something else? Do you have a video which compares that to a cheaper freewheel?
Like cogs and chainrings, freewheels are bound to be somewhat eccentric as well. If it is the hub or axle, it would affect the wheel as well and not just the fluxing of chain tension. The outer portion of that particular freewheel is most likely to be eccentric, it is the only place matter. If it's somewhere else causing the problem, like the paws or something, then you would here some unholy sound coming from the freewheel.
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Old 03-16-11, 12:38 PM   #22
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I don't beleive you.
see, you're learning
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Old 03-16-11, 01:00 PM   #23
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I have a Dicta. works fine. smooth. I flipped to fixed after a few months riding.. its silent.. now i can ninja draft behind ppl and overtake them!
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Old 03-16-11, 01:29 PM   #24
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The outer portion of that particular freewheel is most likely to be eccentric, it is the only place matter. If it's somewhere else causing the problem, like the paws or something, then you would here some unholy sound coming from the freewheel.
It's actually irrelevant if the outer portion of that particular freewheel (where the teeth are cut) is eccentric. The outer portion could be egg-shaped or even a triangle and it wouldn't do what is happening in that video.

In other words, the eccentricity is coming from somewhere else, whether another part of the freewheel (like between the inner driver and the outer ring) or another part of the bike entirely. I am curious as to where.

In any case, in the absence of a reference video with a cheap freewheel or evidence that what happens in the video makes any difference under pedal load I'm still disinclined to say that a WI freewheel 'isn't any better'.
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Old 03-16-11, 01:57 PM   #25
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The eccentricity is coming from inside the freewheel..not exactly sure of the names of the internal parts and it probalby doesn't matter anyway. ACS freewheels have the same problem, only worse than the WI industries freewheel in the video. I have never noticed it in a Shimano freewheel, using the same hub, but am not saying that all Shimano freewheels are perfect.
None of this really effects the performance of the freewheel anyway as long as the eccentricity isn't too severe. But if I'm going to spend that much on a freewheel it had better be perfect.

My main gripe with WI freewheels is not that they are poor quality (they are not) but just that they are overkill. The internals of a basic freewheel are really quite simple and easy to overhaul if necessary. I have never had a cheap freewheel fail, and I've ridden them in some pretty ****ty weather, and I have never overhauled a single freewheel. There isn't really a need for sealed bearings..the bearings only spin when coasting anyway..they don't do anything when under a load. In my experience the teeth shark-fin before the freewheel fails...even if the bearings last for infinity, the cog, just like any other cog, will eventually need to be replaced after several thousand miles. Any freewheel should easily last that long.

The WI trials freewheel on the other hand, may have other advantages due to the greater number of engagement points...giving it a tendency to engage faster, which is notable when riding with a really low gear. On a high-geared road SS, I don't think the number of pawls really makes much of a difference.

Last edited by mihlbach; 03-16-11 at 02:07 PM.
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