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Pars 06-23-10 06:13 PM

Freewheel/chain rec. for Campy NR/SR equipped bike
Any recommendation (and where I can find it)? Looking for 6 speed or ultra. & speed might work, but I seem to recall an Ultra7 rubbing the small cog on the stay. It is 126mm spacing. Hyperglide seems to be favored, but I can't see anything around in a 13/14-24. Current setup is a Suntour Winner Pro Ultra6 (I think it is narrow spacing) with a Sedisport chain. It shifts pretty good, but not great.

I have a Shimano 600EX uniglide FW, but it didn't shift as well as the Suntour does. I don't really need it, but the HG freewheels I see (other than IRD) seem to be 13/14-28, which I'm not sure the SR rear can handle.

Charles Wahl 06-23-10 06:35 PM

I have a bike with 126 mm rear spacing and SR RD, and originally built it with Suntour Ultra-7. No cog clearance problem, but my stays have a flat on the side facing the cogset, too. Shifted fine, but that was when I used a Sedisport chain. Having replaced that with an SRAM PC 58 or 870 (which I like because it's easy to break the chain for cleaning), it has a sort of “hitch” on the middle cog that bugged me, so I've replaced it with a Suntour 6-speed. Shifting is really good, slightly better than the Ultra-7 I think, and no more hitch. I don't know whether the new FW is Ultra-6, or not, but the spacing of the middle cogs is just slightly larger than on the Ultra-7. I was tempted to try a Wipperman chain on the Ultra-7, but they're more expensive, so maybe some other time.

Largest cog on either FW is 26, and the RD has no problem at all moving smartly onto that, so I'd bet that 28 would be no problem. Of course, upper cog capability also has to do somewhat with the height of the dropout offset, and where, exactly, the axle is WRT the RD mounting hole.

John E 06-23-10 07:46 PM

I have mixed results w/ 7-speed freewheels on 126mm overlock hubs. I usually need to add a spacer on the right, recenter the axle, and redish the wheel.

zacster 06-23-10 08:02 PM

I have a bike with NR rear and a 10sp Shimano Ultegra cassette and chain. The bike is 126 spacing but the wheel is 130. The shifters are downtube NR. The crank and chainrings are Chorus 10 speed.

This works better than any other combination I've ever used, both indexed and non-indexed. My all Chorus 10speed setup does not shift as well. You gently push or pull the shifter a small amount and it shifts silently. You don't get stuck in between gears as the spacing is so small. It is all dead silent, both while pedaling and while coasting.

10 speed cassettes and chains shift much better than the old stuff because of the cog profiles. They work as a system. The 126 spacing is easily spread to take a 130 wheel. I wouldn't bother with re-centering the rim or adding spacers or cold setting. The only problem I have is that I can't use the largest cog as the derailleur goes into the spokes no matter how I adjust it. In that case I have 9 speeds 12-23 instead of 10 speed 12-25. I could get a different cassette, but it isn't important.

It is important to use new cables and housing to get this to work as old cables just won't shift smoothly enough. Even the slightest binding will make for poor shifting.

SJX426 06-23-10 08:48 PM

1 Attachment(s)
IRD 28t, SR RD, 126

No problem if I don't cross chain with 28/52.

Pars 06-23-10 09:45 PM

Interesting, both SJX and zacster. I don't really want to switch to a cassette system on this bike; I have always loved the NR hubs and don't want to put that much into it right now for a new wheel/cassette.

SJX: what are you using for a chain on that? Shimano HG (92 is it)?

John E: if I went to a 7 speed FW, couldn't I just add a spacer on both sides, maybe 1mm or so? Avoid redishing that way?

The bike is a 73 Raleigh RRA; Campy vertical dropouts on the rear. It came with a std. 6 speed FW (Maillard? can't recall what it had on it new).

SJX426 06-23-10 11:00 PM

OK this is a freewheel not a cassette. I curently replaced my chain (SACHS) with a SRAM870. Really smooth shifting given that it is friction. VERY quiet.

More pics here:

SJX426 06-23-10 11:00 PM

OK this is a freewheel not a cassette. I curently replaced my chain (SACHS) with a SRAM870. Really smooth shifting given that it is friction. VERY quiet.

More pics here:
and here:

zacster 06-24-10 04:10 AM

I came to 10sp conversion by accident. At the time I didn't know that everything had changed so much, that spacing was wider. I bought a pair of wheels from a local bikeforum guy because my old clincher wheels were basically shot. It was cheaper to buy a good used pair than to have the old ones rebuilt. The new used pair were Velomax Tempests, and these are so much lighter than any old wheel I had, clincher or tubular. I put a cassette and chain on and was amazed at how much better these were, lighter, smoother rolling, and SOOOO much better shifting. No more clunk and grind, just a smooth quiet transition with a touch of the downtube shifter. With all of that they felt faster too. There was no going back.

Pars 06-24-10 07:48 AM

Nice bike SJX, and thanks for the recs. I may just replace the chain first and go from there and will probably give the SRAM you mentioned a shot. Is SRAM what became of Sedis, or was that Sachs?

It appears that if I want to go with a new freewheel in 24 or so, that IRD is the only game in town. I have a couple of pretty new (or new) Suntour Winner or Winner Pros, and the 600EX freewheel. I don't think the chain has that many miles on it, but I can't remember when I bought it, so it must have been awhile ago. I'm somewhat getting back to riding

embankmentlb 06-24-10 09:36 AM

Impressive bike SJX! I like it!

JML 06-24-10 01:12 PM

Dura Ace 7400 6-speed and a Regina America SuperLeggero! Not that such a combo would be easy to find...

SJX426 06-24-10 02:06 PM

embankmentlb: Thanks for the kind words :)
Pars: I too have a SunTour 7 spd but it is a Accushift(sp?). I also tried the Shimano which was closer to the IRD. In the end the IRD is better. I just returned to biking after 30 something years with steady biking in 2008 on a Specialized Rockhopper. Had too cause I have a step hill to get home with one very short section that is 20%+ and the rest at 10%. Needed the lower gears. In fact, had to walk the first week!

Come to think of it, I also have a Regina America that looks nearly new, but a 6 spd.

I am of the mind that 6 speeds are plenty. I just need to get up the hill! I also have Suntour Ultra 6 that I bought in 197x with the chain. Used that on a 72 Moto Le Champ.

Now that I am in better shape, I can make it up with the 28/42 on the 'Nago. I changed chains cause I read somewhere that it would make a difference. It did, slightly. It is nearly as smooth as zacster describes. Certainly a lot better than what I was riding the 60's and 70's!

I think Sach was bought by SRAM, can't remember (age thing) but it is on there site, I think. I typically look at Universal Cycle cause they are in town and with the good prices, it is an easy pick up for most consumable items. I didn't think paying much more for the 890 was worth it for me.

I have more vintage chains that are still good than I know what to do with!

1 Lugnut 06-24-10 05:20 PM


I have a Superissimo just like yous! I think the color's called 'Azzuro Blue' if I'm not mistaken? Comfortable ride & very road worthy. Mine's setup w/ 8-sp Ergo-Power & Cobalto brakes. You don't see many Superissimo's in this color. In fact, I've only seen one other one in the 30 years I've owned it! Cheers...:thumb:

58 cm...

Pars 06-24-10 07:18 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Those are both beautiful Colnagos. I like the blue.

This is my Raleigh RRA, which I traded a 73 International frame for and built up with the Campy NR and a pair of SR derailleurs, plus some Campy NR speed modulators.

tatfiend 06-24-10 07:57 PM

I am running a 7 speed 13-28 Shimano HG freewheel on my about 84 Colnago with a SR rear derailleur. Running an old Sedis chain. Nice silent shifting so far. According to Frank Berto the SR rear derailleur was good for up to 30 teeth max on the freewheel. Capacity was dependent on the position of the rear wheel in the semi horizontal Campy dropouts.

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