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Old 03-20-18, 11:40 AM
  #12  
The Golden Boy 
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Waukesha WI
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Bikes: 1977 Trek TX700; 1978/79 Trek 736; 1984 Specialized Stumpjumper Sport; 1984 Schwinn Voyageur SP; 1985 Trek 620; 1985 Trek 720; 1986 Trek 400 Elance; 1987 Schwinn High Sierra; 1990 Miyata 1000LT

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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post

So why the switch? Was it to go to 6 speed, and Ultra 6 was just something that came later to keep 120mm hubs relevent? Or was "Ultra 7" part of the deal, even though it didn't become common until over a decade later? When did the first 7 speed freewheel become available? Or was there some completely different reason that 126 came on the scene?
My guess is that 6 speed worked best at 126, so that's the way things moved. People still had 120-125 freewheel hubs, but wanted to have 6 speed rear ends- so that opened the Ultra spacing. The wheels are the most expensive part of the bike- no need to HAVE to replace them if you don't have to.

BTW- my 78 Trek came with one of the Arabesque 6 speed free hub/cassette hubs.
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