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Sturmey TCW hub -- coaster brake problems -- fixable / worth it?

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Sturmey TCW hub -- coaster brake problems -- fixable / worth it?

Old 12-06-09, 01:25 PM
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Sturmey TCW hub -- coaster brake problems -- fixable / worth it?

Hey, all. My fiancee's 1957 Raleigh Sports has the original SA TCW 3-speed/coaster-brake hub. This is the one Sheldon calls "unreliable." The drive components still work fine, but the coaster brake is starting to go bad -- you can rotate the cranks a full turn backward and not get much resistance, and then sometimes when it _does_ brake, it suddenly and unpredictably loses braking force. There also seems to be some sand in the hub somewhere -- I can hear the roughness. Hard to avoid, here on the NC coastal plain. I'm told that these hubs are very difficult to work on. Does anyone know whether this kind of problem is fixable? What's involved?

Alternately: if I wanted to keep the original shell, and avoid rebuilding the rear wheel, would it be difficult to swap the guts from an AW hub into the TCW shell, and add a rear caliper brake?
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Old 12-06-09, 05:56 PM
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I have never worked on a TCW, so take this for what it's worth. I have overhauled a S-A AW hub, using Glenn's Complete Bicycle Manual (1973 edition). It was easier than I thought. It has step-by-step instructions for disassembly, overhaul, and reassembly of the TCW III. Try to find a copy at your local library, or buy one from one of the main used booksellers on the internet.

If you have a digital camera, snap pictures as you take the hub apart to aid you in reassembly.

I don't know if the AW guts will fit in the TCW shell, so I can't help you there.
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Old 12-06-09, 07:16 PM
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I am aware of the problems with this hub. However, my Dad, owned and operated his own bike shop for 27 years and disassembled these hubs. I never remember him stating that they were terrible and totally unreliable. If he did , I would have remembered this and he probably would have stopped selling any bikes so equipped due to insurance reasons.
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Old 12-06-09, 07:45 PM
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A link to assembly/repair instructions for the TCW can be found on this page: https://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~ha...samaintind.htm

They're not more difficult to pull apart and put back together than the AW as long as you have a vise and some basic tools (e.g., hammer, punch, adjustable wrench). I sorta remember that their shell is not compatible with the AW innards, but I can't say for sure and don't have one around the parts bin to check.

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