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Freewheels. More than 7speeds? 34t?

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Freewheels. More than 7speeds? 34t?

Old 10-15-20, 02:24 PM
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Freewheels. More than 7speeds? 34t?

Just wondering. I've never seen more than a 7sp freewheel, or seen a larger big ring beyond 34t. I know there won't be anything like the 11-12speed cassetts with 50t big rings, but have the basic freewwheels become available with more range?
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Old 10-15-20, 02:33 PM
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Sunrace Freewheel 8 Speed 13-34 Teeth

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Old 10-15-20, 03:46 PM
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I seem to recall a SunTour freewheel with 38 teeth, but 34 was certainly more common. Freewheels with as many as eight sprockets are still available, but in my experience, anything over seven sprockets unacceptably increases the risk of axle breakage. If you really need more than seven sprockets, use a freehub-based wheel.
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Old 10-15-20, 09:44 PM
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I believe there are options up to 36 teeth.
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Old 10-15-20, 11:10 PM
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You also need to realize that you can’t just replace the 7 speed freewheel. You will need to add a spacer to the drive side and remove the same amount from the non-drive side to compensate for the wider freewheel.

Depending on the rear hub, there might be wider spacers and you may need to get a number of different widths and mic-n-match to get it correct. You’ll also need to re-dish (re-center) the wherl since the spacers have thrown that off.

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Old 10-16-20, 12:33 AM
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Back in my freewheel days, which are now, we used a triple. So no real need to go bigger than 32. And 28 with a double works great until you get to the mountains.
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Old 10-16-20, 01:45 AM
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There are lots of 8 speed or more freewheels but these tend to come from low end manufacturers. You see awful low end mountain bikes and ebikes with 8, 9 speed or even 10 speed cogsets which at first you assume are freehubs and cassettes but turn out to be these low end freewheels. Freewheels wobble due to the poorly aligned threading on many cheap rear threaded rear hubs and the internal threading of these cheap freewheels so can be a nightmare to keep lets say a 3x9 drivetrain with such a component as the tolerances are so tight and with the added wobble they have very poor quality shifting. Some hub motors have much thicker rear axles which are unlikely to bend and so they can have improved shifting compared to the more basic axle that can get slightly bent with use which makes shifting worse again. Personally I find 6 speed freewheels better than 7 speed. They seem to have better more reliable shifting due to requiring the lowest shifting tolerances and even then I prefer them in a 1x configuration to increase shifting reliability again. This is about modern freewheel components though as many classic bikes had higher quality threaded rear hubs and freewheels, before freehubs and cassettes there were many premium high end threaded rear hubs and freewheels.

Also if you have a freewheel with 11-32T on a ebike hub because the ebike hub is also propelling the bike forward wear and tear on the freewheel is far less and less intense too so such freewheels make more sense on a ebike than a conventional bike where they can have short lives and need replacing frequently. Obviously there are many variables, weight and strength of the rider, size of front chainrings etc.

So in summary they are available but personally I wouldn't use them. I'm no bike snob but they are not what I would call a well engineered component and below the acceptable standard for me. I've seen youtube videos where they couldn't even get them shifting reliably in a 1x setup even when they have fitted a higher quality rear derailleur and used fresh high quality cables.

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