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14-28T vs 14-34T freewheel

Old 02-23-24, 11:29 PM
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO
Sunrace 13-34 and 14-34 freewheels have a 28t.
The 14-34 looks decent and I almost ordered one for my wife's Electra Loft 7D, until I realized that -- while I own 3 cassette lock ring tools, a cassette wrench, and a chain whip -- I don't have freewheel pliers!
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Old 02-24-24, 12:41 AM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
The 14-34 looks decent and I almost ordered one for my wife's Electra Loft 7D, until I realized that -- while I own 3 cassette lock ring tools, a cassette wrench, and a chain whip -- I don't have freewheel pliers!
Freewheel plierizers? I've seen big pliers in place of chain whips, but always used a splined socket (similar to cassette lockring splines) for removing a freewheel. Do you mean pin spanners for the outer screw cap that holds the freewheel inner and outer bearings and pawls together? When I was little, I once undid that, big mistake, tons of tiny bearings dropped out, but the freewheel was rusted toast anyway.
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Old 02-24-24, 01:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Duragrouch
Freewheel plierizers? I've seen big pliers in place of chain whips, but always used a splined socket (similar to cassette lockring splines) for removing a freewheel. Do you mean pin spanners for the outer screw cap that holds the freewheel inner and outer bearings and pawls together? When I was little, I once undid that, big mistake, tons of tiny bearings dropped out, but the freewheel was rusted toast anyway.
Oh! I did not realize that.
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Old 02-24-24, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
The 14-34 looks decent and I almost ordered one for my wife's Electra Loft 7D, until I realized that -- while I own 3 cassette lock ring tools, a cassette wrench, and a chain whip -- I don't have freewheel pliers!
1 tool needed for a freewheel
https://www.parktool.com/en-us/categ...ette-freewheel
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Old 02-24-24, 08:55 AM
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Just an observation to complete the picture - Shimano, at least, provides rear derailleur specs for the maximum tooth difference between the front chain ring and the freewheel or freehub, as well as maximum chain wrap. The front -to-rear difference limits your rear derailleur choices and may or may not be important. My sense is that it only produces a marginal shifting improvement, or perhaps it's related to some peculiarity of Shimano derailleurs.
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Old 02-25-24, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by dedhed
The SunRace 14-34 7-speed freewheel 70sSanO mentioned, does it also fit the Park Tool FR-1.3 (Shimano, etc.)?

Swapping the freewheel on my wife's Electra Loft 7D may be worth buying one freewheel tool; it is certainly not worth buying two.
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Old 02-25-24, 01:31 PM
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A 7-speed 14-16-18-20-22-24-28 freewheel is one of my absolute favorites, followed closely by the 13-15-17-19-21-24-28 variant, which is slightly better for bikes with a smaller main chainring. I have been reasonably happy with the 14-16-18-20-22-24-34 "Megarange" (or knockoff) variant, especially with single-chainring bikes like cruisers, but the 24-34 jump is a bit disconcerting in terms of cadence change, even with the shifting ramps that make it practical - such a jump on a pre-Hyperglide treewheel typically sounded like a truck driver who was too busy to push in the clutch.

I actually like the 20-22-24 jumps on the 14-28, especially in the large chainring, as it allows fine adjustments in effort at a common slight-uphill cruising speed.

On my single-chainring 1x9, I actually had to trade out the 11-13-15-17-20-23-26-30-36 for a custom 11-12-13-15-17-19-21-26-34, as the 11-13 jump, albeit only two teeth, was so big I was always wanting something in between, especially at the speeds on group rides where I'd be using those cogs.
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Old 02-25-24, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
The SunRace 14-34 7-speed freewheel 70sSanO mentioned, does it also fit the Park Tool FR-1.3 (Shimano, etc.)?

Swapping the freewheel on my wife's Electra Loft 7D may be worth buying one freewheel tool; it is certainly not worth buying two.
It should* fit.

* This is not a guarantee or warranty of compatibility. Manuafacturers' recommendations and spline patterns may vary. Please do not use in bathtub or in flammable atmospheres. Batteries not included. Not tested on animals.
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Old 02-25-24, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills
My bike has a 24 tooth chainring and a 34 tooth cog.
Get off my lawn.
For a few years in the early 1990s, I was running a 20 tooth granny small front with a 14-38 custom 6-speed Suntour freewheel, first on my recumbent (can't stand up and stomp), then on my touring cruiser. Twiddling up ridiculously steep grades wasn't fast, but it was fun.

(pulls up rocking chair) "Now these kids are spoiled with the newfangled "1x" contraptions with a zillion gears on one freewh, er, cassette, and big cogs that are the same size as the rear tire!!" (shakes fist, turns off hearing aid)
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Old 02-25-24, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
The SunRace 14-34 7-speed freewheel 70sSanO mentioned, does it also fit the Park Tool FR-1.3 (Shimano, etc.)?

Swapping the freewheel on my wife's Electra Loft 7D may be worth buying one freewheel tool; it is certainly not worth buying two.
​​​​​​

Park Tool FR-1.3 Freewheel Remover

Park Tool offers a full range of tools for removal of bicycle freewheels. The FR-1.3 fits 12 spline 22.6mm diameter tool fittings - the most common tool fitting found on 5-10 speed bicycle freewheel systems, including many models made by Shimano, Sachs Aris, SunRace, and DNP Epoch. Features an enlarged thru-hole to accommodate 14mm solid axles. The 1" hexagonal base can be used in conjunction with a socket, wrench, or bench vise. Heat treated alloy tool steel construction for a lifetime of use.

The FR-1.3 has 12 splines that are approximately 22.6mm across at the widest point. Center bore for axle clearance is 15mm.
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Old 02-25-24, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by RCMoeur
For a few years in the early 1990s, I was running a 20 tooth granny small front with a 14-38 custom 6-speed Suntour freewheel, first on my recumbent (can't stand up and stomp), then on my touring cruiser. Twiddling up ridiculously steep grades wasn't fast, but it was fun.
I found that the 24/34 low gear was usable on my loaded touring recumbent on a 15% slope. My wife just got off and pushed hers…
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Old 02-25-24, 11:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills
I found that the 24/34 low gear was usable on my loaded touring recumbent on a 15% slope. My wife just got off and pushed hers…
I toured on a LWB 'bent with a road triple, but I had to walk up hills that were not even half as steep as where I live now, not low enough gear, but my guess is it had a 25 or 28 low in back (mid-1990s, I still have that bike, but deep in storage). I had thought I would have to fit a "Limbo Spider Adapter" that was reputed to allow fitting a small cog as a 4th inner chainring, but now I could find a crank and cassette combo that would be low enough. Loved the comfort of the 'bent on flat land, especially my hands (underseat steering), and the safety of it in a crash (never experienced). But I now ride a conventional, and have learned better how to climb out of the saddle. But for stability at downhill-speed when pulling a loaded single-wheel trailer that pivoted behind the rear tire, the LWB 'bent was far above anything else.
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Old 02-26-24, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills
I found that the 24/34 low gear was usable on my loaded touring recumbent on a 15% slope. My wife just got off and pushed hers…
I have read that the mega gap was useful for those touring. Might make more sense with a triple as a true bailout.

John
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Old 02-29-24, 07:21 PM
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My 1973 Raleigh 5d had 46 x 14/ 28T. After 40 years I finally figured out that it was MORE USELESS than my SA X-RD3. 47/ 63/ 84 GI.
My friend never used anything but his 3 speed.

Last edited by GamblerGORD53; 02-29-24 at 11:49 PM.
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Old 03-01-24, 01:48 AM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
My 1973 Raleigh 5d had 46 x 14/ 28T. After 40 years I finally figured out that it was MORE USELESS than my SA X-RD3. 47/ 63/ 84 GI.
My friend never used anything but his 3 speed.
How’s that? It has a wider range and more graduated steps doesn’t it?
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Old 03-01-24, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by choddo
How’s that? It has a wider range and more graduated steps doesn’t it?
Ooops, I just had another look, it actually only had 14/ 24T >>> 51.8/ 59.1/ 65.4/ 73.1/ 88.7
3 speed with same high has 2" lower low. No wonder I always felt like I was struggling with the Raleigh. I rode it 12 or 16,000 miles, never more than 52 mile days.
4th gear would be the only advantage.
My same year 1973 CCM is a joy on 100 mile rides. The CCM is a far better made bike besides, regardless of the cheaper frame.

Last edited by GamblerGORD53; 03-01-24 at 11:33 AM.
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Old 03-01-24, 12:07 PM
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Speedreading this thread from o.p. to last post was interesting. Hopefully the o.p. has not yet spent money. The fact that the OEM freewheel is 14-28 tells you all you need to know. This could have been a very short thread! @AndrewRStewart asked the salient question(s) as usual. Mainly: can the rear derailleur handle the change? It cannot. End of story. Not only can it not handle the increased chain wrap needed, it is also likely that the upper jockey wheels will sit too close to the teeth of the 34T big cog. The 14-28 7sp harkens back from the days of front doubles (I'm betting op bike is an older model) with a 10 tooth spacing and the 14 - 34 is from a couple decades later when front triples are common, and the total wrap needed means long cage rear derailleurs are now de rigueur. So, unless the plan to also upgrade the chain (as discussed) also includes plans to replace the RD (not discussed) I don't think the 14 - 34 can work. Was it mentioned that a new chain should be considered any time the freewheel is changed, even if the same overall tooth count remains the same?
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Old 03-01-24, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
... The 14-28 7sp harkens back from the days of front doubles (I'm betting op bike is an older model) with a 10 tooth spacing and the 14 - 34 is from a couple decades later when front triples are common, and the total wrap needed means long cage rear derailleurs are now de rigueur. So, unless the plan to also upgrade the chain (as discussed) also includes plans to replace the RD (not discussed) I don't think the 14 - 34 can work.
I had not considered the possibility that OP's bike is a vintage model with a front derailleur, as many recent "leisure" bikes (e.g., Electra cruisers) also come equipped with a 7-speed freewheel. If more chain wrap is necessary (due to 2x), an RD upgrade is not that expensive?

Originally Posted by Leisesturm
Was it mentioned that a new chain should be considered any time the freewheel is changed, even if the same overall tooth count remains the same?
I think so.
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Old 03-01-24, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Clegg2
...what's the benefits of either 14-28T vs 14-34T freewheel over the other?...​​​
For my bikes I routinely have made the transition to 34T. Some times it requires a change to a Long Cage Rear Derailleur. It also may require getting a longer chain or just adding a few more links to your chain.

But the only problem I have had with having that 34T Cog is having to admit how much time I spend in it...
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Old 03-01-24, 04:20 PM
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I went in the opposite direction for one of my road bikes. I seldom go up very long and very steep grades and in rolling hills where I want to maintain my speed on the uphill sections as much as possible I wanted the closer gear spacing of the 14-28 cassette.

Another option is to replace the 28 tooth cog with a 32 cog one and have a granny gear to use to grind your way up long grades. When I was touring my freewheel had a 28 tooth large cog in place of the 24 tooth one for normal local riding without any camping gear on the bike. There was a dramatic difference of having a cog with a few more teeth for the long grades.

Another option is a smaller front chainring on the bike. I don't like doing this as I like to pedal on the downhill sections at times to gain speed and momentum for the next uphill section of road.
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