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Why do my back gears just spin?

Old 11-29-19, 03:45 PM
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Why do my back gears just spin?

This is a 2016 Norco Yorkville hybrid.
I broke my deraileur and replaced it.
The bike works but the rear gears would sometimes make a clunking sound.
Now I tried to take it for a spin and thats all that happened.
the rear gears spin but the hub/wheel stays still.
please tell me the simplest way to get back on the road.🤗
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Old 11-29-19, 03:59 PM
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Chain routed correctly? Look at another bike & compare.

IF the cogs are spinning, but no drive, the Free Hub body is defectice. A possiblr flushing may fix.

IF the chain is riding over the cogs, the RDER adjustment you did sucks.

Pics?
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Old 11-29-19, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
This is a 2016 Norco Yorkville hybrid.
I broke my deraileur and replaced it.
The bike works but the rear gears would sometimes make a clunking sound.
Now I tried to take it for a spin and thats all that happened.
the rear gears spin but the hub/wheel stays still.
please tell me the simplest way to get back on the road.🤗
Where in Canada are you?
Yes, an image of how you've run the chain would really help. It's surprising that if nothing was changed except the derailleur that now the cogs spin.

Cheers
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Old 11-29-19, 05:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
Chain routed correctly? Look at another bike & compare.

IF the cogs are spinning, but no drive, the Free Hub body is defectice. A possiblr flushing may fix.

IF the chain is riding over the cogs, the RDER adjustment you did sucks.

Pics?
The bike has a freewheel. The pawls might be stuck and flushing with oil might work but all of the free wheels Iíve run across that needed flushing didnít freewheel...i.e. the pawls stuck against the teeth inside the freewheel.

PdalPowr: Drip oil into the gap between the inner and outer part of the freewheel while spinning the wheel backwards. Youíll see where the gap is when you spin the wheel. Any oil will do. Triflow or 3-in-1 oil or even motor oil will work. Motor oil is the last choice since it is a bit thick.
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Old 11-29-19, 06:17 PM
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+1 (on the above response)
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Old 11-30-19, 02:11 PM
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Is the chain on the front chainring properly ?
If at some point the chain did not shift completely by the front derailleur, it may not have engaged the teeth, and allow the crank to turn while the chain "surfs" between chainrings.

Can you post pictures of front & rear gears ?
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Old 12-01-19, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
The bike has a freewheel. The pawls might be stuck and flushing with oil might work but all of the free wheels Iíve run across that needed flushing didnít freewheel...i.e. the pawls stuck against the teeth inside the freewheel.

PdalPowr: Drip oil into the gap between the inner and outer part of the freewheel while spinning the wheel backwards. Youíll see where the gap is when you spin the wheel. Any oil will do. Triflow or 3-in-1 oil or even motor oil will work. Motor oil is the last choice since it is a bit thick.
Now that sounds interesting.
The chain is definitely routed right as I drove it for a month before this happened. Would keeping the bike outside in bad weather contribute to this gumming up? I guess wd40 is a bad idea to flush out the hub even if I oiled it up afterwards. Is jigaloo out too? If necessary I will go get some thin lubricating oil and git it done. At least I will be doing something.😉

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Old 12-01-19, 04:17 PM
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How cold does the bike get when stored? If water gets inside the ratchet (be it a freewheel or cassette) and then freezes it can cause either full lock up or spinning both rotational directions, as the pawls can freeze in their position.

When I had my shop in Cleveland the whole bike messenger thing was getting going strong. My shop was the closest to downtown (where most of the deliveries were being made) and close to where some of the messengers lived. So they would sometimes stop by on their way home. They would ask about why their bike didn't freewheel or not catch forwards when earlier in the day it ran fine. My shop had a classic hot water radiator right by the front door and I would motion the riders to park their bike by the door (as the bikes would be crusty with salty slush and would drip down when warm). They would come to the counter and describe their problem and I would say I can fix the bike without touching it if given a few minutes. Sure enough they would find their coasting/catching worked fine in a few minutes, as the puddle under the cog set grew Flushing our the internals and adding as thick a lube as we could would offset the freezing issue for a while. Andy
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Old 12-01-19, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
How cold does the bike get when stored? If water gets inside the ratchet (be it a freewheel or cassette) and then freezes it can cause either full lock up or spinning both rotational directions, as the pawls can freeze in their position.

When I had my shop in Cleveland the whole bike messenger thing was getting going strong. My shop was the closest to downtown (where most of the deliveries were being made) and close to where some of the messengers lived. So they would sometimes stop by on their way home. They would ask about why their bike didn't freewheel or not catch forwards when earlier in the day it ran fine. My shop had a classic hot water radiator right by the front door and I would motion the riders to park their bike by the door (as the bikes would be crusty with salty slush and would drip down when warm). They would come to the counter and describe their problem and I would say I can fix the bike without touching it if given a few minutes. Sure enough they would find their coasting/catching worked fine in a few minutes, as the puddle under the cog set grew Flushing our the internals and adding as thick a lube as we could would offset the freezing issue for a while. Andy
Thank you on the scads of observational experience.😀
Unfortunately it is colder than can be described here. It will warm up a bit the snow will melt and the next day freaking freezing again.🤗 I can also echo the messengers experience. The bike was fine when I pedalled home but the gears spun the next morning. There is just no room to bring it inside. I wonder if storing it under a tarpaulin would help. Whatever,tomorrow the rear hub gets the lubrication job. I asked if wd40 or jigaloo would work. I have those but will get tri oil if I have to.
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Old 12-01-19, 05:16 PM
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While winter riding calls for thinner lubes then the hot summers do in this case it's the presence of (first) lube and it's barrier to water penetration (second) that help offset repeating of the freezing inside the mech. Hence for this issue thicker lube works longer/better.

WD40 isn't meant to be much of a lube (WD is for "Water Displacer"). It's best attribute is the low cost and the ease of application. Neither do much for the long term need for lube. "jigaloo" isn't something I know about, off to Google... Andy

Back from G Land- Jigaloo looks to be one more thin spray lube with grand claims. Silicone lubes have never done well in the bike world.
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Old 12-02-19, 09:12 AM
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Thanks for the info.
Agreed on the WD40. It has its uses.
There is very little actual lube in there.
Jigaloo has a bit more lube and sticking power than WD.

I was going to use the W.D. to flush out water contaminated crud.
Then oil up after. I have a good feeling that water/crud is the culprit as was suggested.
The front fork/handle bar bearing didn't want to turn. When I put on a bit of pressure
I could see fracturing ice stick out from the bearing.
I am going to make a tarp shelter that can be folded down over the bike.
It takes care of me. I should take care of it.😉
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Old 12-02-19, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
While winter riding calls for thinner lubes then the hot summers do in this case it's the presence of (first) lube and it's barrier to water penetration (second) that help offset repeating of the freezing inside the mech. Hence for this issue thicker lube works longer/better.

WD40 isn't meant to be much of a lube (WD is for "Water Displacer"). It's best attribute is the low cost and the ease of application. Neither do much for the long term need for lube. "jigaloo" isn't something I know about, off to Google... Andy

Back from G Land- Jigaloo looks to be one more thin spray lube with grand claims. Silicone lubes have never done well in the bike world.
WD40 is better as a lubricant than it is at displacing water. Itís chemical composition is completely nonpolar. It also contains about 25% mineral oil which remains after the solvent evaporates.

Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
Thanks for the info.
Agreed on the WD40. It has its uses.
There is very little actual lube in there.
Jigaloo has a bit more lube and sticking power than WD.

I was going to use the W.D. to flush out water contaminated crud.
Then oil up after. I have a good feeling that water/crud is the culprit as was suggested.
The front fork/handle bar bearing didn't want to turn. When I put on a bit of pressure
I could see fracturing ice stick out from the bearing.
I am going to make a tarp shelter that can be folded down over the bike.
It takes care of me. I should take care of it.😉
You are incorrect in thinking that the WD50 will flush out any thing that will dissolved in water. It simply doesnít have the capacity to dissolve the water based material. The lubricant in WD40 isnít all that different from any oil that you could put into a freewheel.

Work on trying to get the freewheel working but donít spend a whole lot of time on it. Freewheels are cheap.
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Old 12-02-19, 05:58 PM
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Where in Canada are you?

I've had more problems with a freewheel free spinning after taking it from inside to outside. If I knew my winter beater wouldn't be stolen or stripped I'd leave it outside at night. Taking a bike from warm inside to cold outside can cause condensation inside the freewheel which then freezes. Leaving the bike outside should stop that from happening.

One bike shop years ago used WD-40 (water Displacing, Formula #40 ) on both my chain and my freewheel and that resulted in both rusting very quickly.

If your freewheel is free spinning I'd think it's because the lube inside the freewheel is too thick. I've flushed freewheels with a Varsol type solution then applied a light oil to them after letting the solution fully drain. that seemed to work fine for me in Toronto Canada where I rode all year.

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Old 12-02-19, 09:16 PM
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The fractured ice that PP references suggests that water penetration, not too thick a lube, is the source of his problems.

Some areas don't use road salt like the Great Lakes region does. The salt turns dry snow into slush and thus allows greater penetration of salty water into the bike's insides. In those salt free areas the issue is more lube dependent. Here in the Rust Belt we see more problems of freezing water pushing lube out of the internals and with it's salt far faster corrosion. Andy
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Old 12-03-19, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
WD40 is better as a lubricant than it is at displacing water. Itís chemical composition is completely nonpolar. It also contains about 25% mineral oil which remains after the solvent evaporates.



You are incorrect in thinking that the WD50 will flush out any thing that will dissolved in water. It simply doesnít have the capacity to dissolve the water based material. The lubricant in WD40 isnít all that different from any oil that you could put into a freewheel.

Work on trying to get the freewheel working but donít spend a whole lot of time on it. Freewheels are cheap.
All those who said frozen/gunked pawls were the issure were correct. It was milder yesterday. I was going to spray jigaloo to use pressure to penetrate. I decided just for shiggles to spin the pedals forward. The pawls were working just fine.😀 That means either the ice in there melted or the gunk thinned. I looked where you would apply lubricant and it was filthy. The jigaloo washed that off right down to the metal. After riding my baby today I will spray more jigaloo,ride it the next day then apply a true penetrating lubricant.
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Old 12-03-19, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
All those who said frozen/gunked pawls were the issure were correct. It was milder yesterday. I was going to spray jigaloo to use pressure to penetrate. I decided just for shiggles to spin the pedals forward. The pawls were working just fine.😀 That means either the ice in there melted or the gunk thinned. I looked where you would apply lubricant and it was filthy. The jigaloo washed that off right down to the metal. After riding my baby today I will spray more jigaloo,ride it the next day then apply a true penetrating lubricant.
Since you seem to have water penetration, you might want to look into better ways of keeping the water out. One way would be a Stein Grease Injector like in this thread. They show up on Fleabay occasionally.

You might also want to use a thicker oil like Phil's Tenacious Oil. It's got a much higher viscosity than other bicycle lubricants. I'd try the thinner oils first and see if they work but if the problem persists, use thicker stuff.
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Old 12-03-19, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Since you seem to have water penetration, you might want to look into better ways of keeping the water out. One way would be a Stein Grease Injector like in this thread. They show up on Fleabay occasionally.

You might also want to use a thicker oil like Phil's Tenacious Oil. It's got a much higher viscosity than other bicycle lubricants. I'd try the thinner oils first and see if they work but if the problem persists, use thicker stuff.
very,very interesting.
Would it flush out gunk?
Yes maybe "as is" the grease is too thick.
Something to think about at the very least.
Are pawls spring loaded?

I have to take care of my rear rim/hub.
The rim at least is heavy duty as I was breaking spokes on the stock one.
I am two hundred and seventy five pounds.🤗

thanks for the ideas.😀
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Old 12-03-19, 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
very,very interesting.
Would it flush out gunk?
Yes maybe "as is" the grease is too thick.
Something to think about at the very least.
Are pawls spring loaded?
The grease injectors fill the cavity with grease and any excess is pushed out the front of the freewheel. It's like greasing an old car suspension where you pumped in grease until it squeezed out of the joint.

Yes, the pawls are spring loaded. That's why they "click". The pawl is springing back into the teeth on the freewheel. But sometimes the pawls get stuck because of contamination. Fresh oil will usually free them up. If it doesn't, just get a new freewheel. They are cheap.

Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
I have to take care of my rear rim/hub.
The rim at least is heavy duty as I was breaking spokes on the stock one.
I am two hundred and seventy five pounds.🤗

thanks for the ideas.😀
Two issues here. First let's talk about the hub. At some point you are going to bend the axle in the hub. You may even break one. That's not a maybe, it is going to happen. Freewheel hubs have too much axle sticking out from the bearings with too much load on them. They will bend and the more weight they have to carry, the sooner they will bend. In fact, you might check that now because that could interfere with the spinning of the hub and the freewheeling of the freewheel. Spin the axle with the wheel off the bike and see if the axle is moving up and down on the drive side.

It would be better to convert to a freehub hub in the future when this axle fails. The freehub design puts bearings out on the ends of the axle which makes them much less prone to bending. I've yet to see a bent freehub axle. That doesn't mean it can't bend but it's just a lot less likely.

Second, the rim has very little to do with wheel strength. Rims are a convenient place to put spokes and make using a tire easier but from the standpoint of strength, the spokes do all...as in completely, as in the whole enchilada, as in totally...hard work of keeping the wheel strong. This picture illustrates how the spoke react to weight, cornering, acceleration and braking.

wheel by Stuart Black, on Flickr

It shows (in an exaggerated form) how the spokes are reacting to the forces placed on it. The rim is just along for the ride. Make the spokes strong and the wheel will be strong. I'm not your weight but close. I also load my bikes up with a bunch of stuff for camping and ride both on- and off-road while doing so. I use DT Swiss Alpine III spokes which have a thicker head which increases their strength by about 50%. I use super light rims and strong spokes without spoke issues I used to experience when I use lighter gauge spokes. The upshot of this is that you don't need heavy rims to have a strong wheel.

DT Swiss Alpine spokes aren't cheap but they are worth the extra cost if you aren't replacing spokes and/or wheels all the time.
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Old 12-03-19, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
The grease injectors fill the cavity with grease and any excess is pushed out the front of the freewheel. It's like greasing an old car suspension where you pumped in grease until it squeezed out of the joint.

Yes, the pawls are spring loaded. That's why they "click". The pawl is springing back into the teeth on the freewheel. But sometimes the pawls get stuck because of contamination. Fresh oil will usually free them up. If it doesn't, just get a new freewheel. They are cheap.



Two issues here. First let's talk about the hub. At some point you are going to bend the axle in the hub. You may even break one. That's not a maybe, it is going to happen. Freewheel hubs have too much axle sticking out from the bearings with too much load on them. They will bend and the more weight they have to carry, the sooner they will bend. In fact, you might check that now because that could interfere with the spinning of the hub and the freewheeling of the freewheel. Spin the axle with the wheel off the bike and see if the axle is moving up and down on the drive side.

It would be better to convert to a freehub hub in the future when this axle fails. The freehub design puts bearings out on the ends of the axle which makes them much less prone to bending. I've yet to see a bent freehub axle. That doesn't mean it can't bend but it's just a lot less likely.

Second, the rim has very little to do with wheel strength. Rims are a convenient place to put spokes and make using a tire easier but from the standpoint of strength, the spokes do all...as in completely, as in the whole enchilada, as in totally...hard work of keeping the wheel strong. This picture illustrates how the spoke react to weight, cornering, acceleration and braking.

wheel by Stuart Black, on Flickr

It shows (in an exaggerated form) how the spokes are reacting to the forces placed on it. The rim is just along for the ride. Make the spokes strong and the wheel will be strong. I'm not your weight but close. I also load my bikes up with a bunch of stuff for camping and ride both on- and off-road while doing so. I use DT Swiss Alpine III spokes which have a thicker head which increases their strength by about 50%. I use super light rims and strong spokes without spoke issues I used to experience when I use lighter gauge spokes. The upshot of this is that you don't need heavy rims to have a strong wheel.

DT Swiss Alpine spokes aren't cheap but they are worth the extra cost if you aren't replacing spokes and/or wheels all the time.
Now that you mention it my old bike shop told me my new rim had much better spokes.
Thanks for those diagrams. They clued me in on spoke dynamics.
It has been a year and no broken spokes. Then again there are not near as many potholes in my new town.
Am I reading this right. Can I change the mechanism inside a hub without changing the hub itself?
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Old 12-03-19, 03:56 PM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
Now that you mention it my old bike shop told me my new rim had much better spokes.
Thanks for those diagrams. They clued me in on spoke dynamics.
It has been a year and no broken spokes. Then again there are not near as many potholes in my new town.
Am I reading this right. Can I change the mechanism inside a hub without changing the hub itself?
For a freewheel, you can just put on a new freewheel but that doesn't solve the problem of the axle. If you want a freehub, you have to get a new hub but they are fairly cheap for just the hub and not too expensive for a wheel with a freehub.
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Old 12-04-19, 08:33 AM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Where in Canada are you?

I've had more problems with a freewheel free spinning after taking it from inside to outside. If I knew my winter beater wouldn't be stolen or stripped I'd leave it outside at night. Taking a bike from warm inside to cold outside can cause condensation inside the freewheel which then freezes. Leaving the bike outside should stop that from happening.

One bike shop years ago used WD-40 (water Displacing, Formula #40 ) on both my chain and my freewheel and that resulted in both rusting very quickly.

If your freewheel is free spinning I'd think it's because the lube inside the freewheel is too thick. I've flushed freewheels with a Varsol type solution then applied a light oil to them after letting the solution fully drain. that seemed to work fine for me in Toronto Canada where I rode all year.

Cheers
I am in Ontario.
It has been just about proven that gunked or frozen pawls were the problem.
I have found a place under an overhang to suspend my bike out of the worst of the elements.
Of course that doesn't stop it from gunking up on the road.
Now and next year I will do preventitive maintenance to minimise this issue.
How did you apply that varsol to flush out the pawls/mechanism?
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Old 12-04-19, 09:32 AM
  #22  
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Why don't you fix it?
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