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Upgrading to quick-release axles vs. carrying a wrench?

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Upgrading to quick-release axles vs. carrying a wrench?

Old 01-26-17, 04:37 AM
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Upgrading to quick-release axles vs. carrying a wrench?

Hi people,

So, my Vybe D7 runs on standard axles with 15mm nuts. During last night's ride, I realized that if I got a flat, I couldn't change a tube because I had no way to take the wheel off.

Now, the quick, simple, cheap solution is to just keep a 14-15mm of any type in my saddlebag (14mm for adjusting the saddle; 15mm for the axle nuts.)

The more expensive, labor intensive, but also more sensible, elegant solution is to upgrade to quick-release axles, which means that I need to buy replacements to both axles, plus the skewers.

What would you do?
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Old 01-26-17, 05:32 AM
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I would carry a wrench, a 15mm stubby boxed end or a PDX 3Wrencho. You have to carry the patch kit and spare tube anyway, so throwing in a wrench wouldn't be that difficult and certainly less expensive. I wouldn't carry a 14 for a saddle, as you won't need that very often.
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Old 01-26-17, 05:38 AM
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Wrench.
You need to change all the cones too, not just the axles. In my experience there is a slight difference in the thread or in the diameter between quick release axles and axles that use a nut and you can't mix them.

Of course if it's even a cup and cone hub...
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Old 01-26-17, 06:40 AM
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Personally, I would do the axle change and go with quick-release. It's a significant time saver. You'd probably need to carry TWO wrenches for the wheel nuts so that you can hold the other side from slipping. Perhaps FOUR...are the front and read axle nuts the same size? Interesting that this bike, with all its convenience of folding, and quick-release fasteners for adjusting that it doesn't come with quick-release wheels.

Dan
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Old 01-26-17, 06:59 AM
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If you carry a stubby wrench be sure that you use it to tighten the nuts. If you use a long wrench to tighten them you may not have enough leverage to remove it with a short one. This is exactly why I insist that my auto shop use a torque wrench instead of an impact wrench to tighten my lug nuts.
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Old 01-26-17, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Facanh
Wrench.
You need to change all the cones too, not just the axles. In my experience there is a slight difference in the thread or in the diameter between quick release axles and axles that use a nut and you can't mix them.
Most hubs axles are threaded M9x1.0 for front and M10x1.0 for rear hubs. There are a few odd ball diameters and threading pitches but, unless the OP is unfortunate, this won't be an issue and a hollow qr axle will be a direct substitute for the solid ones.

That said, it could be an expensive change to buy the two replacement axles and skewers and, unless he can do the swap himself, have a bike shop make the conversion. A cut down, cheap 15 mm open end is a low cost alternative.
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Old 01-26-17, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Facanh
Wrench.
You need to change all the cones too, not just the axles. In my experience there is a slight difference in the thread or in the diameter between quick release axles and axles that use a nut and you can't mix them.

Of course if it's even a cup and cone hub...
Only if you get the wrong axle. I've done the conversion from one to the other several times and never had a problem.
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Old 01-26-17, 09:18 AM
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I have bikes with quick release and nuts, not really worth the effort to convert, don't take the wheels often enough to justify it.
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Old 01-26-17, 09:22 AM
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Fixie? grip power may not be hard enough with a QR..

you probably need tire tools to fix a flat, and an un punctured tube,
have to carry those as well, right?





Last edited by fietsbob; 01-26-17 at 09:27 AM.
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Old 01-26-17, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
Fixie? grip power may not be hard enough with a QR.

My thoughts exactly.

If the OP is running 15mm axle nuts then it is likely a fixed gear or single speed bike.

Modern quick release skewers are not going to provide enough grip strength on the rear wheel. The wheel will pull forward under hard acceleration.

Old steel quick release skewers might have enough strength however.


-Tim-
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Old 01-26-17, 10:35 AM
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Over time on my fixies I've carried 15mm shorty wrench, a small (6" Craftsman) adjustable wrench and a Trixie wrench by Pedro's. The small adjustable wrench is my fave as it can be used for other fasteners and it's jaws are thin enough to work as a pedal wrench too. Fits in a seat bag.
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Old 01-26-17, 11:10 AM
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@fietsbob @TimothyH @veloz A Vybe D7 is a derailleur-shifted, seven-speed folding bike - hence the D7 in the name.

@blakcloud God knows I needed one last night! I was about a third of the way through a 32-km outing when I realized that the cheap Indonesian saddle I was trying out (which, by the way, was more comfortable and chafed me less than Dahon's saddle) was set too far forward, so I was pedaling slightly backwards instead of straight up and down, which killed my knees.

@_ForceD_ Two wrenches might be veering a bit into the insane, but to carry four is diabolical! would be I've never had a problem with the axle spinning while I'm trying to tighten it. And yes, the nuts securing both wheels are 15mm.

@dsbrantjr Thought of that too. Thanks.

Anyway, I went out and got this:



A lightweight (compared to "standard" adjustable wrenches, that is) wrench that fits rather nicely in my saddlebag and weighs a little less than my SuperB multitool. Another good thing about it is that the end of the race is rounded off (again, compared to a standard wrench) so it won't eat its way through the bag or the replacement tube inside:



So I guess I'm good - for now. Thanks gents!

Last edited by sjanzeir; 01-26-17 at 06:08 PM.
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Old 01-26-17, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by sjanzeir
@fietsbob @TimothyH @veloz A Vybe D7 is a derailleur-shifted, seven-speed folding bike - hence the D7 in the name.
Awsome!

I used to carry a stubby 15mm combo wrench on my fixed gear. IIRC it was a Husky from Lowes.

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Old 01-26-17, 12:18 PM
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I have a 15mm box end wrench in the tool bag on my Brompton..

a 36-15 open end combo also gets me a Headset wrench

an IGH with a QR axle,? Only Rohloff AFAIK,

and then you have to Order it like that in the beginning.




...

Last edited by fietsbob; 01-26-17 at 12:21 PM.
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Old 01-26-17, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by _ForceD_
Personally, I would do the axle change and go with quick-release. It's a significant time saver. You'd probably need to carry TWO wrenches for the wheel nuts so that you can hold the other side from slipping. Perhaps FOUR...are the front and read axle nuts the same size? Interesting that this bike, with all its convenience of folding, and quick-release fasteners for adjusting that it doesn't come with quick-release wheels.

Dan
In my 45+ years of cycling, much of which on bikes with nutted axles, I've never needed more than one wrench on a wheel. Generally speaking, you can tighten one side well enough that it grips the dropout, then you tighten the other side, then bring them both up to decent uniform torque. It takes a few seconds.

Why choose nutted axles? I have a couple bikes with IGH's, and those all use axle nuts. A couple more of my bikes have no lawyer lips, so I'm nervous about the wheel falling off. In those cases, the same wrench fits both wheels. In the past I carried a little crescent wrench, now a 15mm cut in half.
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Old 01-26-17, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Gresp15C
A couple more of my bikes have no lawyer lips, so I'm nervous about the wheel falling off.
Actually, a proper QR skewer, tightened the correct way, is more secure than axle nuts. QR skewers "cam over-center" as the lever is closed so to remove them you actually have to use more force to open them initially and get past that maximum before they really loosen.
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Old 01-26-17, 03:41 PM
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In the olden days I bought a set of wing nuts for my old gas-crisis 10 speed and I thought they looked cool. Worked great, though they might get in the way depending on your folder's fold. I'm also not sure anyone still sells such things.
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Old 01-26-17, 04:38 PM
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It looks like this problem has been worked out, but I thought I would throw my solution in. This is what I have carried on any bike that has nutted axles in the last few years. Works great and can easily fit in whatever bag my other tools/repair kits are in.
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Old 01-26-17, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by HillRider
Actually, a proper QR skewer, tightened the correct way, is more secure than axle nuts. QR skewers "cam over-center" as the lever is closed so to remove them you actually have to use more force to open them initially and get past that maximum before they really loosen.
True, but on a nutted axle, both nuts have to fail in order for the wheel to eject. I'm comfortable with QR's on my newer bikes, which both have lawyer lips.

Granted, I haven't done a thorough engineering analysis, but I doubt that anybody has. I'm just using a rule of thumb, that a two fault failure is less likely than a single fault failure.

Still, my main point was that you only need one wrench.

Last edited by Gresp15C; 01-26-17 at 06:00 PM.
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Old 01-26-17, 07:34 PM
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I just carry a stubby wrench
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Old 01-26-17, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by FrankHudson
In the olden days I bought a set of wing nuts for my old gas-crisis 10 speed and I thought they looked cool. Worked great, though they might get in the way depending on your folder's fold. I'm also not sure anyone still sells such things.
I had wingnuts on several of my bikes, and they are available on eBay.
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Old 01-27-17, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Neese
I had wingnuts on several of my bikes, and they are available on eBay.
Wingnuts and cold weather are the reason Tullio Campagnolo invented the quick release.
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Old 01-27-17, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Facanh
Wrench.
You need to change all the cones too, not just the axles. In my experience there is a slight difference in the thread or in the diameter between quick release axles and axles that use a nut and you can't mix them.

Of course if it's even a cup and cone hub...
+1
QR cones fit the solid axle (sloppily but it works) but the reverse isn't true.
1mm (or 25.4 TPI) pitch vs 26 TPI.
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