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strange freewheel mounted on Cranks

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strange freewheel mounted on Cranks

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Old 04-09-10, 01:50 PM
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mrhedges
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strange freewheel mounted on Cranks

Does anyone know about this?

About a year ago I was tinkering with an old chicago made Schwinn caliente, I had a coaster wheel laying around so I decided to make it a sorta crusier. Much to my disappointment and confusion You couldn't stop on the damn thing cuz the freewheel was mounted on the cranks. I tried to switch out the cranks for a regular set but then I got pretty frustrated by the entire endeavor (50 pound schwinns are not that exciting) and gave the bike to a friend who just mounted a front brake on it.

Anyway I just moved to New Orleans and strangely enough my new roomate has a Panasonic tourist with the same feature and my girlfriend has a Panasonic roadbike with the same feature.

I suppose its so you can shift gears while coasting, but why? I mean I've never while riding a bike been, "I just wish i could shift gears without pedaling"
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Old 04-09-10, 02:02 PM
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Its one of those things where they come up with a solution to a problem that doesn't exist and then try to convince you that you need that solution.

The Front Freewheel Systems are just as pointless as you think they are, and they weigh a ton....and they make it difficult to install a new, regular crankset.
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Old 04-09-10, 02:14 PM
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But besides that, they are great, right....

Originally Posted by Zaphod Beeblebrox View Post
Its one of those things where they come up with a solution to a problem that doesn't exist and then try to convince you that you need that solution.

The Front Freewheel Systems are just as pointless as you think they are, and they weigh a ton....and they make it difficult to install a new, regular crankset.
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Old 04-09-10, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by mrhedges View Post


Much to my disappointment and confusion You couldn't stop on the damn thing cuz the freewheel was mounted on the cranks.
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Old 04-09-10, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by sonatageek View Post
But besides that, they are great, right....
Oh they're wonderful....I've got two installed on my Death-Fork Viscount
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Old 04-09-10, 03:33 PM
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I guess they are pretty good........to put on 50+ pound Schwinns and similar bikes.....
I still don't know what could happen when you are coasting down a hill with one of these and something causes the chain to fall off the chainwheels and jam against the gears and the frame...

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Old 04-09-10, 05:28 PM
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It's the Shimano Front Freewheel System. Gloss here from Sheldon Brown http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gloss_e-f.html

Allows shifting while coasting. If you've ever played with a bike having this system, you'll find that it uses a special "freewheel" in which the rear cogs (as well as the chainrings) do freewheel, but independently of one another, and rather stiffly.

Maybe Chombi is thinking that the cogs are fixed, but they actually aren't.

I've always thought it would be cheeky to set up a bike with a fixed wheel and front freewheel. You'd need brakes, of course.
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Old 04-09-10, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Roll-Monroe-Co View Post
It's the Shimano Front Freewheel System. Gloss here from Sheldon Brown http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gloss_e-f.html

Allows shifting while coasting. If you've ever played with a bike having this system, you'll find that it uses a special "freewheel" in which the rear cogs (as well as the chainrings) do freewheel, but independently of one another, and rather stiffly.

Maybe Chombi is thinking that the cogs are fixed, but they actually aren't.

I've always thought it would be cheeky to set up a bike with a fixed wheel and front freewheel. You'd need brakes, of course.
I thought the rear cogs are fixed and the front chainrings are the ones that freewheel, opposite of "normal" systems. At least that's what I remember with my brother's entry level Motobecane in the 80's with this Shimano FFS system. If the rear cogs are indeed fixed, what will prevent crazy chainwrap from happening if the chain falls off the front chainrings? I'm thinking that the rear cogs will keep pulling at the chain at the bottom and will try to feeding it back to the front of the bike??
Maybe I'm just worrying too much.....
Like Grand Boise might say, I might be talking mostly B.S....
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Old 04-09-10, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Chombi View Post
I thought the rear cogs are fixed and the front chainrings are the ones that freewheel, opposite of "normal" systems. At least that's what I remember with my brother's entry level Motobecane in the 80's with this Shimano FFS system. If the rear cogs are indeed fixed, what will prevent crazy chainwrap from happening if the chain falls off the front chainrings? I'm thinking that the rear cogs will keep pulling at the chain at the bottom and will try to feeding it back to the front of the bike??
Maybe I'm just worrying too much.....
Like Grand Boise might say, I might be talking mostly B.S....
The rear cluster of gears is a Very stiff clutched freewheel, it takes a chain whip on most to move them, but under load it is designed to keep the works from clobbering itself.

When the Shimano reps came by the shop to promote the system in was it '74 or '75? they indicated in Japan they had prototyped a Dura Ace level FFS, providing the ability to shift in a corner while coasting, so a racer could select the gear he wanted upon exit.... I guess the prototypes stayed just that, as we never saw THAT.
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Old 04-10-10, 04:05 PM
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someone should put together a book of the all the hairbrained bad ideas in the history of the bike world, I seem to come accross quite a few of them just looking at this forum.
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Old 04-10-10, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Chombi View Post
I thought the rear cogs are fixed and the front chainrings are the ones that freewheel, opposite of "normal" systems. At least that's what I remember with my brother's entry level Motobecane in the 80's with this Shimano FFS system. If the rear cogs are indeed fixed, what will prevent crazy chainwrap from happening if the chain falls off the front chainrings? I'm thinking that the rear cogs will keep pulling at the chain at the bottom and will try to feeding it back to the front of the bike??
Maybe I'm just worrying too much.....
Like Grand Boise might say, I might be talking mostly B.S....
Yes, like repechage says, they do move. I've taken them apart before and totally cleaned them up. The move a bit more freely when not clogged with grime, which is their natural condition.

Actually, until your comment, Chombi, I never understood why FFS had both front and rear freewheels. But that must exactly the reason (again, as repechage says).

Dura Ace FFS! Knock me over with a feather! Boy, somewhere at Shimano Labs there is a closet with some interesting stuff in it.
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