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Old 03-21-18, 04:16 PM
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RRB #62 is at my left elbow. Not mine, the better half has it.

I remember no sales resistance at all to six speed. On the contrary, everyone wanted to be like Eddy just as soon as possible. The store was definitely thinking about the inventory problem but no one at all was thinking about axles or spokes. That would be later and I just can't recall anyone making the least issue out of it before Shimano started selling cassette hubs. Which was much later.

Yes axles will break simply from fatigue. More likely the dropouts are not parallel. Or there is a bit of slop in the cone adjustment and then the QR bends the axle a bit when clamped tight .These things will happen and they will happen more to those who are a little sloppy and to those with lower end bikes. If you had a late 70s basic Gitane or Nishiki you were not as fussy about dropout alignment or even aware of it and maybe it was a problem for those bikes, I don't know. My axles never broke before having 5000 or more miles and I was bigger than average. From some points of view 5000 miles is short service life. From other POV, 5000 miles doesn't even happen to any but a small sample of bikes. Right now I am too big and am running an FB QR axle that is 80 years old without problem. And yes I have done over 5000 on that ancient part.

Broken spokes should not happen on a six speed with 32 or 36 spokes. It is a well braced wheel, fabulously well braced compared to a 130 wheel with 11 cassette sprockets. Wheels just weren't built as well in the 70s as they are now. Tension meters only arrived at the end of the period we are talking about and there was huge resistance to using them. Unless you were lucky enough to have a wheel by Ron or built your own and just had the touch, 70s wheels were pretty bad. It was not the fault of the OLD dimension. Consistently well built wheels are recent. 32 and 36 wheels are massively overbuilt and understressed when done well. As you must know, Ron built a lot of 12 spoke wheels that had decent service life. And 20 spoke rears built with 70s parts. Or in the case of 20 spoke Scheerens, parts that might have been 30s and definitely not newer than '66.
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