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Do you grease the freehub?

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Do you grease the freehub?

Old 12-20-15, 07:41 AM
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Do you grease the freehub?

From a Bikeradar tutorial.. do you recommend this before installing the cassette? I've seen a few other tutorials not mentioning this step.
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Old 12-20-15, 07:50 AM
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It's a good idea to keep corrosion at bay but only a thin film is needed. BTW, I mean the external surface only. Injecting grease into the freehub mechanism can cause sticking pawls and sluggish action, particularly in cold weather.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:14 AM
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Whether or not you grease the freehub (I don't, but I'm a fair-weather rider) don't neglect to grease the lock ring threads.
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Old 12-20-15, 12:21 PM
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I do- like HillRider said, just a light coating will do. I've had cassettes that shift around when shifting (individual cogs moving relative to the others) which causes a squeak. It also keeps water out and corrosion at bay.
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Old 12-20-15, 01:24 PM
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I don't. If I did, it wouldn't be big globs of it like in the picture!... Like adding a dirt magnet.
The grease from a shop rag is enough.....at least in So. California it is....maybe you back east or northwest would use more grease?
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Old 12-20-15, 01:45 PM
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If I see raw steel or aluminum during a build, I coat with a thin film. Cassette body, BB spindle, steer tube, even the inside of the frame where I can reach. Even fair weather fliers wash their bikes, I hope.

I was disassembling a bike recently at a shop to swap a defective frame. The owner stopped and held up the parts, as if in shock: "there is grease where there should be!" I guess many DIY don't know about that sort of thing.
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Old 12-20-15, 01:54 PM
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I wouldn't put as much grease, but I certainly would smear a thin film onto the freehub body before installing the cassette, especially if everything was new
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Old 12-20-15, 04:56 PM
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In a perfect world I'd grease the balls and use a med/thick oil on the ratchets, though not much of either. In the real world I just drip FL Wet or Phil oil through all. Andy.
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Old 12-20-15, 06:21 PM
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That's something (the sort of thing) I use Boeshield for. Prevent rust, seizing and provides some lubrication. But grease, oil anything this side of mayonnaise will do and be better than nothing.
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Old 12-20-15, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart
In a perfect world I'd grease the balls and use a med/thick oil on the ratchets, though not much of either. In the real world I just drip FL Wet or Phil oil through all. Andy.
I think we're talking about the outside of the cassette body here.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills
I think we're talking about the outside of the cassette body here.
Yes.. contrary to some advice, the other tutorial that I came across says this (ie. see Step #7 at Tech Tuesday - Cassette Removal and Installation - Pinkbike

"Step 7 - While there is always debate about giving the freehub a light coating of grease or anti-seize, we don't ever recommend doing so. Neither will prevent the cassette from gouging into the freehub body, and a steel cassette and freehub body has very little chance of corroding enough to ever become rusted together (that same goes for aluminum cassettes and F/H bodies as well). What the grease will do, though, is attract dirt and grime and make a mess of things. The only place where a small dab of grease or anti-seized should be used is on the lockring threads to allow it to be loosened easier down the road."
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Old 12-20-15, 10:19 PM
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Yes, oil the inside. Use a thick oil like Phil's Tenacious Oil and insert slowly from the rear of the free hub as you spin it. This is when it is not attached to the hub of the wheel. Listen to the clicking of the ratchets as you spin it. When the clicking suddenly becomes quiet, then you know you're finished and it is oiled.

If you mean the outside where the cassette sits, then no.
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Old 12-21-15, 06:29 AM
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Yes, I was referring to the outside, where the cassette is slipped on. Seems the sentiment is pretty evenly split, meaning I guess that there's neither a right or wrong answer.
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Old 12-21-15, 06:53 AM
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Depends on the location. I have bikes that have not left southern AZ in over 30 years and I only get caught in rain, don't ride in rain and no grease on the outside of a freehub and you will not find a spec of rust anywhere. My Portland OR bike do get "shop rag" type thin coat on most everything.
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Old 12-21-15, 08:17 AM
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Since cassettes completely cover the freehub body, I don't see how a film of grease can act as the dust magnet Sy Reene's reference warns against. There is no freehub body surface expose to the dirt. Water could work it's way in but dirt couldn't. In any event, it's not critical to do so but, in my experience, it isn't harmful either. Just don't slather it on thickly.
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Old 12-21-15, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene
From a Bikeradar tutorial.. do you recommend this before installing the cassette? I've seen a few other tutorials not mentioning this step.
If it would make you feel better to put a thin smear of grease on the freehub's external surface, do so. I don't and while I have replaced misc. bits and bobs on my mountain bike that have corroded due to moisture, the freehub has shown no corrosion.

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Old 12-21-15, 12:10 PM
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I rub a little grease on just about everything I assemble. After snugging down threads wipe off excess. Makes it easier to disassemble things later. I like grease that comes in little squeeze tubes for this purpose.
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