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Suntour V-GTluxe Question

Old 04-12-22, 06:51 PM
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JacobLee
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Suntour V-GTluxe Question

Hey Everyone,

Iíve been doing my best to set up a V-GTluxe on a Ď74 International with a 14-32 freewheel. Iíve got it working pretty well after fiddling especially with axle position and chain length, but I still feel a bit off. One of my concerns is the big, elephant ear cage above the upper pulley. It seems to want to hit the derailleur body in the small cog, and the second largest cog when in the big cog. I must be doing something wrong, but Iím not sure what. Is that just an idiosyncrasy with these? Any sage advice would be appreciated. Thanks!



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Old 04-12-22, 07:19 PM
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Do you have the B screw all the way in? That’ll give you maximum clearance between RD and freewheel. If so, they might just not be a good match.
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Old 04-12-22, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
Do you have the B screw all the way in? Thatíll give you maximum clearance between RD and freewheel. If so, they might just not be a good match.
I was thinking the same thing. It looks like the B screw has a lot of threads left in that pic, so screwing it in some should helpÖ


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Old 04-12-22, 07:44 PM
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That derailleur hanger doesn’t look to be as low hanging as some others relative to the axle. Perhaps this bike was designed with tighter gearing in mind and small cage derailleurs. As noted earlier, it may be a more troubling match.
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Old 04-12-22, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by sd5782 View Post
That derailleur hanger doesnít look to be as low hanging as some others relative to the axle. Perhaps this bike was designed with tighter gearing in mind and small cage derailleurs. As noted earlier, it may be a more troubling match.
I think you're on to something. I just measured my campy dropout and C-C axel to hanger bolt is about 23mm, I also measured a V-GT luxe with factory supplied hanger and the C-C distance is 32mm
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Old 04-12-22, 08:29 PM
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Try a Wolftooth Roadlink, a bolt on hanger extender. Shown below on my modern bike with a 12-27 cassette but works well with an 11-32.


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Old 04-12-22, 08:52 PM
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Aha! So, itís back to sew-ups and corncobs!

I wouldnít have suspected the dropouts, but that makes sense. I think the solution is a freewheel with fewer teeth. Anybody looking for a Shimano UG 14-32?

I tried burying the b screw, and positioning the axle as far forward as possible, but the cage still hits the 4th cog when shifting into the 5th.
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Old 04-12-22, 09:00 PM
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I don't like Uniglide freewheels.

I would study chain length and shifting the axle back, counterintuitive but in will draw the cage back.

what are the front ring counts?
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Old 04-12-22, 09:23 PM
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Iím beginning to not like them either! This is a recent acquisition which Iím overhauling.

Front rings are 53-44-34



I tried moving the axle back, but the 14t cog wants to rub the chain against the seatstay, which I think has already been compromised by this set up.

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Old 04-12-22, 11:01 PM
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Plug & Play Setup



When you hear hoof beats, think horses not Zebras!!!

BITD, Installing a Suntour V-GT long arm derailleur was a plug an play operation done at shops all over the country (US) during the Bike Boom and for a number of years after that. They sold for $7.00 retail in 1973-74. Many mid range and better quality bikes came with "racing gears" which usually meant a competition oriented FW with a 23T, 24T or 26T large sprocket. Lower priced bikes came with "alpine" gearing which used a 14-28T FW with 52-42T chainrings.

Most riders were just out for fun and wanted/needed, lower gears especially if they lived anywhere near some hills. Replacing the racing FW with a 14-30, 32, or 34T FW and switching from an RD with a 26T or smaller capacity to a Suntour V-GT was SOP (Standard Operating Procedure)... A 15-20 minute job and out the door!

I picked up this 1971 Raleigh Competition several years ago for Eroica CA. It was supposed to have been completely overhauled so I figured that I'd just have to check over everything, switch FWs and I'd be all set. Silly me!

The only 2 things on the bike that weren't totally hosed were the cartridge BB and the wheels! I'll spare you the details...

The bike had a Raleigh branded Suntour V-GT or a cheaper equivalent. The FW was something like a 13-21T 7 speed. The dropouts where cheap Zeus stamped steel with the same dimensions as Campy stamped or forged models. Most folks were unaware of any differences in gear hanger lengths.... Just throw a V-GT on and rock-n- roll!



I had to overhaul the top pivot, the shaft was completely worn: reassembly is a 3 handed job. I mounted this Suntour Pro Compe 6 speed 14-32T FW which was just about a plug and play procedure. Just needed to adjust the travel stops! Worked perfect first time. I also changed the chain while I was at it.



Now to diagnose problem JacobLee is having...

1. It's hard to tell for sure but it looks like the derailleur hanger is not parallel with the dropout - top to bottom, front to back. That can keep the chain from properly aligning with the sprockets.

2. As noobinsf suggested, the "B" may need to be tightened all the way in which will slightly rotate the pulley cage to give additional clearance between the inside of the pulley cage and the sprockets.

3. The chain may be 1-2 links too long. Shift the RD onto the largest sprocket and the FD onto the large chainring. The pulley cage should be almost straight out - a combo you should avoid. Also make sure that it's not worn out.

4. You may have to move the position of the hub forward or back in the dropouts to get the best results.

5. Shimano Uniglide "twist tooth" FWs were great and are still in high demand. The were about the best shifting FWs until Shimano introduced their Hyperglide design with ramped teeth on the sprockets.

Those are the things that I'd check out first.

Good luck!

Addendum: I just noticed that the inside bottom of the seat stay is chewed up indicating that the chain may be be catching when shifting up off of the smallest sprocket.

The old fix for that was taking a small flat file and removing some material. We had to to that or add a spacer to the axle on a lot of new bikes we were assembling. With better quality bikes we took the time to fix them right.




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Old 04-12-22, 11:38 PM
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Originally Posted by verktyg View Post
Addendum: I just noticed that the chain appears to be catching on the inside of the bottom of the seat stay. The problem happens shifting up off of the smallest sprocket.

The old fix for that was taking a small flat file and removing some material.



verktyg
Chas, I had that same problem with a recent Raleigh International build that I wanted to use a 7 speed freewheel on. It has chrome socks, so I didn't want to shave down a bit of metal. My solution was to add 1mm of spacer on the drive side axle stack. Didn't even bother to redish the wheel it as so minor. Couldn't hit my 13t cog without noise before, now it shifts perfectly.
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Old 04-13-22, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
Chas, I had that same problem with a recent Raleigh International build that I wanted to use a 7 speed freewheel on. It has chrome socks, so I didn't want to shave down a bit of metal. My solution was to add 1mm of spacer on the drive side axle stack. Didn't even bother to redish the wheel it as so minor. Couldn't hit my 13t cog without noise before, now it shifts perfectly.
This is what the dropout looks like, so I expected it would be a problem. I think an extra washer would be a good idea. Then again, it seems like a freewheel with fewer teeth would solve everything.

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Old 04-13-22, 09:20 AM
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I would check the dropout and hanger alignments. I think hanger is out, but it also could be the derailleur is tweaked.
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Old 04-13-22, 10:57 AM
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Thanks for the input, Everyone!

I should really be going to work, but thereís no rush when thereís an alignment to be checked.

Chain checker shows a consistent .75, so close, but should be okay for a bit.

Dropouts are aligned, minor tweaking, but nothing big. DS dropout a little tight, but the alignment tool went in with a little push, so probably fine. It wouldnít change the dangle of the hanger that much if I opened it, so fine.

Hanger was pretty darn close, a little rotation by pushing the gauge toward the crank. Pretty minor.

I removed the derailleur and made sure all of the washers were there at the pivot. Thin washer behind bolt head, thicker washer between pivot and hanger. Made sure b-screw was all the way in. Re-attached. Iíve never liked how these attach to the frame. It seems like you have to get them really tight, or else they are floppy. Maybe thatís a worn pivot? My little collection has a later version with a different pivot bolt, but the parallelogram is floppy on that one, and the pivot bolt is not interchangeable.



After all that, with the b-screw all the way in, and the wheel pulled almost all the way back (no room for springs on the dropout adjustment screws) it clears the big cogs in back. Chain is too short to handle big-big, but Iím not too worried about that. I just need to add a washer to space the 14t off the frame.
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Old 04-13-22, 12:09 PM
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Chain Length

Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
After all that, with the b-screw all the way in, and the wheel pulled almost all the way back (no room for springs on the dropout adjustment screws) it clears the big cogs in back. Chain is too short to handle big-big, but Iím not too worried about that. I just need to add a washer to space the 14t off the frame.
Sounds like you did a thorough job checking everything out.

Try putting an extra link in the chain, You may need to put in 2 ??? Trial and error. The shims between the dropout hanger and the derailleur body allow getting a close fit. The derailleur should swing back and forth smoothly with no slop. The other thing, there is usually a thin lock nut that goes on the pivot bolt on the inside of the dropout.

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Old 04-13-22, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by verktyg View Post
Sounds like you did a thorough job checking everything out.


Try putting an extra link in the chain, You may need to put in 2 ??? Trial and error. The shims between the dropout hanger and the derailleur body allow getting a close fit. The derailleur should swing back and forth smoothly with no slop. The other thing, there is usually a thin lock nut that goes on the pivot bolt on the inside of the dropout.


verktyg

Hmm, I think you may have solved a big part of the problem. I have three of these V-GT's; two have the same hanger bolt, with only a couple of washers and no lock nut. One of these used to have a claw hanger on it, but I stole the claw for my Super Course. The third has a different hanger bolt and the thin lock nut you mentioned. The body of this third derailleur has a recess that the lock nut fits into. I wonder if the two that are similar are both meant to have a claw hanger, and are therefore not designed to be attached to a dropout? When I tried to use that derailleur a few years ago, I didn't like that it didn't pivot, but I hadn't bothered to figure out why.


Either way, I installed the third V-GT (the one with the thin lock nut) and all of the problems seemed to go away. I'm not exactly sure why because the dimensions all seem the same, and the pivot isn't really pivoting in the work stand, but there's no rubbing and no interference. It does have a floppy parallelogram, so it's probably pretty worn out, but it looks good for now. I wonder if anyone has ever tried to press out the roll pins and rebuild? Probably not a good idea.


Thanks again! I really appreciate it!
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Old 04-13-22, 02:21 PM
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I was looking into derailleur servicing a few weeks back and found you can disassemble the parallelogram, not going to try it myself unless I really have to.
Here's the link: https://euphras.blogspot.com/2011/10...accushift.html
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Old 04-13-22, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
I’m beginning to not like them either! This is a recent acquisition which I’m overhauling.

Front rings are 53-44-34
How about a smaller outer ring? Maybe 49-44-34 or, what I used on my PKN-10, 48-45-34 / 13-15-17-19-21-24, which I made work with a short cage SunTour Cyclone II.
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Old 04-13-22, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by John E View Post
How about a smaller outer ring? Maybe 49-44-34 or, what I used on my PKN-10, 48-45-34 / 13-15-17-19-21-24, which I made work with a short cage SunTour Cyclone II.
Itís true, I have no use for a 53t big ring. I also suspect that I have no use for a triple with a 34t granny. Maybe these go 32t? Doesnít look like it. Iím going to get it dialed in as well as possible, ride it, and go from there. I have another International that I really like, so this might be a short term relationship. Still, I really like getting to know a bike, so Iím looking forward to trying the gearing as-is.
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Old 04-13-22, 10:48 PM
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I didn't read all the replies so someone may have said this already. You can space the derailleur out with washers between the hanger and derailleur body, I used to run that derailleur on a bike with no integral hanger. Started with the deep SunTour one but was using a 19 tooth low so I went in the other direction and made my own minimum drop hanger. (2mm higher than yours. Body hit the QR nut.) I never thought about the cage ear hitting the body because the derailleur was another 3/16" outboard on the hanger. Now, moving the derailleur outboard also buys you some vertical distance as the parallegram swings lower as it reaches in further to get to your biggest cog.

So the first thing I'd try if I were you is go to an Ace Hardware or such with the derailleur in hand and buy the best fitting washers for the mounting bolt. Doesn't have to be metric and you could even buy an undersized English washer and drill it out. Buy several. Now replace the derailleur with one washer between it and the hanger. (You might have to file/cut/grind a little washer away to clear the QR or raised portion of the dropout.) Take a look. Try two. You will run out of sufficient threads at some point. A longer bolt could be made or might exist but if you are lucky, you won't need it. And if this works, you spent what? $1.35?
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Old 04-14-22, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
I didn't read all the replies so someone may have said this already. You can space the derailleur out with washers between the hanger and derailleur body, I used to run that derailleur on a bike with no integral hanger. Started with the deep SunTour one but was using a 19 tooth low so I went in the other direction and made my own minimum drop hanger. (2mm higher than yours. Body hit the QR nut.) I never thought about the cage ear hitting the body because the derailleur was another 3/16" outboard on the hanger. Now, moving the derailleur outboard also buys you some vertical distance as the parallegram swings lower as it reaches in further to get to your biggest cog.

So the first thing I'd try if I were you is go to an Ace Hardware or such with the derailleur in hand and buy the best fitting washers for the mounting bolt. Doesn't have to be metric and you could even buy an undersized English washer and drill it out. Buy several. Now replace the derailleur with one washer between it and the hanger. (You might have to file/cut/grind a little washer away to clear the QR or raised portion of the dropout.) Take a look. Try two. You will run out of sufficient threads at some point. A longer bolt could be made or might exist but if you are lucky, you won't need it. And if this works, you spent what? $1.35?
Those are great suggestions. The pivot bolt certainly seems to be the crux of my problem, but you bring up the lateral adjustment that's possible as well. Thankfully, these derailleurs are easy to remove and screw around with! Thanks!
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Old 04-14-22, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
Those are great suggestions. The pivot bolt certainly seems to be the crux of my problem, but you bring up the lateral adjustment that's possible as well. Thankfully, these derailleurs are easy to remove and screw around with! Thanks!
A thought I had later - the bolt for SunTour hanger might be longer for a nut on the back. And it might even have the same threads. So they might be out there and solve the enough threads issue easily. I do not know this. Yes I owned one, but that was 48 years ago. If SunTour did make such a bolt, they might have made thousands. I used a nut with mine. I wasn't going to trust my drivetrain to my threading attempt on a 1/4" plate. What I used for a bolt is in the lost files.
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Old 04-14-22, 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
A thought I had later - the bolt for SunTour hanger might be longer for a nut on the back. And it might even have the same threads. So they might be out there and solve the enough threads issue easily. I do not know this. Yes I owned one, but that was 48 years ago. If SunTour did make such a bolt, they might have made thousands. I used a nut with mine. I wasn't going to trust my drivetrain to my threading attempt on a 1/4" plate. What I used for a bolt is in the lost files.
I think I pulled it off! I went back to the der with the tighter parallelogram and no locknut. I found a washer in my stash that I had to sort of thread into the hanger bolt. I added the original washer over that. The original washer just wasnít catching enough on the shoulder of the hanger bolt to let the der body swing. I installed it, and everything is good. Here are the different hanger bolts:




I still think this setup would be happier with a 14-28, but Iíll try it like this, and see what happens. I got the axle in a good spot, chain length will do big-big, no rubbing on frame, no rubbing on cogs, fingers crossed. I still donít get why the cage has to be so tall above the guide pulley. Thanks again for the help!



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Old 04-15-22, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
I still donít get why the cage has to be so tall above the guide pulley.
What chainring are you in up front? If you're in the big ring, the chain is too long. In the big/big combination the r.der. cage should be canted forward about 45 degrees or so. That rotates the top of the cage to a flatter section that doesn't interfere with the large cog on the freewheel. Just a thought. Of course that wouldn't help in the small ring as the cage would then would then rotate back more to the position that you show in your pics.
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Old 04-15-22, 07:19 AM
  #25  
Mr. 66
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With your set up, The b-screw does not look like it engages the stop very well the double washers are pushing the body outwards. It does look better than it did. I think if you are to draw the wheel further back in the dropouts that will help, you have a lot of room.
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