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  1. #1
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    Frozen Freehub, Common Occurence?

    I had my freehub refuse to engage during one commute last year toward the end of winter. It effectively brings your ride to a halt (unless the remainder of your ride is downhill). This was likely caused by condensation due to the fact I use indoor parking at the university.

    Has anyone else had this happen? Any tips for preventing this or dealing with frozen freehub pawls should it occur on the road?

  2. #2
    Senior Member wolfchild's Avatar
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    If it's a Shimano freehub then it's possible to take it off and dissassemble it, clean the insides out, put some very light grease on the bearings and some light oil on the pawls and then assemble it back together. Most people don't do this and it's not reccomended by Shimano.. but it can be done. The easiest thing to do is to buy a new freehub body, they're not very expensive.

  3. #3
    Senior Member bhchdh's Avatar
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    Easy fixes for Shimano and a few others can be found here.
    http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...reehub-service

  4. #4
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    I've had it happen with a Shimano freehub. I didn't totally disassemble the freehub; I just removed it, and pulled the back gasket. Then I used tons of WD-40 on it to displace the water. I blew it out with an air compressor, then let it dry. The next morning I squirted oil in, and replaced. That was 1 1/2 winters ago (the first winter on the hub), and I haven't had any problems since.

  5. #5
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    A freehub on a different bike started getting clunky at -3C the other day, and even more at -12C. So I removed the hub and gave it a good cleaning and it was fine yesterday.

    One important thing I discovered a few years back, don't use very much oil inside the freehub (a few drops should be enough). I put too much in and it leaked out into the drive side bearing race dissolving all the grease. Eventually the bearings stopped rolling and started to disintegrate.

  6. #6
    Senior Member chriskmurray's Avatar
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    I would just flush out all the old grease and relube your freehub with Dumonde Tech's freehub oil. It works in extremely cold areas and does not thicken up like a lot of greases can.

    PRO X Freehub Oil | Dumonde Tech | Bicycle Chain Lube | Motorcycle Oil | Bike Lube | Chain Lubricant|

  7. #7
    Fahrradfahrer jwarner's Avatar
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    That seems pretty warm to me for this to happen, but the grease on the pawls inside the freehub body can freeze, and stop them from engaging. Often, if you pedal like a madman, they will eventually catch until you coast again. Obviously, you can't ride your bike like this.

    Follow this link for some good info on how to solve this problem.

    Winterizing Your Freehub
    Strange things are done in the land of the midnight sun by those that bike in the state bought by oil

  8. #8
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    One other thought; you can get "freezing" of the pawls due to corrosion as well. I just dealt with that in the hub that is on my (winter included) commuter. Needed to let is sit in solvent for a while, then re-oiled it. So while it may be warm for actual freezing (of intruded water), it is never too warm for rust.

  9. #9
    back in the saddle bent-not-broken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fotooutdoors View Post
    I've had it happen with a Shimano freehub. I didn't totally disassemble the freehub; I just removed it, and pulled the back gasket. Then I used tons of WD-40 on it to displace the water. I blew it out with an air compressor, then let it dry. The next morning I squirted oil in, and replaced. That was 1 1/2 winters ago (the first winter on the hub), and I haven't had any problems since.
    My solution as well. I don't know if it is old grease getting stiff or moisture, but the WD-40 flush worked for me on 'old' freehubs. The fact it didn't reoccur makes me believe it was old grease.
    Bent

    When the earth is covered with 2/3's beer, then I'll buy bottled water!

  10. #10
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gecho View Post
    A freehub on a different bike started getting clunky at -3C the other day, and even more at -12C. So I removed the hub and gave it a good cleaning and it was fine yesterday.

    One important thing I discovered a few years back, don't use very much oil inside the freehub (a few drops should be enough). I put too much in and it leaked out into the drive side bearing race dissolving all the grease. Eventually the bearings stopped rolling and started to disintegrate.
    I like to give mine a good flushing with a lot of oil, and then let them sit on one end until all of the excess has dribbled out before reinstalling.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
    RUSA #7498

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