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My first Hyperglide - wow!

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My first Hyperglide - wow!

Old 12-14-10, 09:58 AM
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My first Hyperglide - wow!

Hi - new guy here. I'm a retro-grouch. I grew up in the 70s, during the bike boom, and built my first high-quality bike in the 80s, using SunTour friction-shifting components on a Nishiki Tange frame. I scoff at indexing, and I avoid Shimano the same way I avoid WalMart, Microsoft, and McDonald's.

I'm building up an old Raleigh mixte for my wife for Christmas. She, being much more sane than I, doesn't care about technological ideologies, and she doesn't have any brand loyalties. She just wants something that will work without fuss. And that means indexed shifting. And that, in turn, means a Hyperglide freewheel on the Raleigh.

So I put my own personal bias aside, and took my first steps into the world of indexed shift systems. I learned three things:

1. Modern "compressionless" housing is a must.

2. There are vintage derailleurs that have the same 2:1 actuation ratio that is the Shimano standard for indexing to work reliably. I tried several of the derailleurs from my stockpile, and purchased several others on eBay to try out. I tried the Raleigh-branded SunTour 7-GT that came with the bike, and my Cyclone GT and Cyclone Mk-II mid-cage. I tried an old Campy Nuovo Record. I tried two different vintage Shimano 600s. (Short cage is not a problem, since the Raleigh will only have a single front chainring.) Turns out the 7-GT works perfectly after the compressionless housing is installed.

3. Modern ramped sprockets are a must. Since this is a freewheel hub, this means picking up one of the Shimano Hyperglide freewheels, which are thankfully both cheap and plentiful. I chose the 14-16-18-20-22-24-28 version, since we don't have many hills here. I really really tried to get my SunTour New Winner freewheels to work, but at the end of the day I knew I needed the ramps to make it all happen without fuss. And wow - what a difference!

Some of you are probably like me, and like to detest Shimano's domination of the cycle market. We miss the good old days, when men were men and shifters didn't click, and parts could be mixed and matched all day long. But the truth of the matter is that, slick marketing aside, Shimano has developed some impressive technology that just plain works, and that's what normal people want from their rides.

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Old 12-14-10, 10:06 AM
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I took the Regena straight block tooth freewheel off my Guerciotti several months ago and put on a 7-Speed cheap Shimano clone 13-26 freewheel with ramps and I can't believe I struggled with that Regena all this time. Shifts like butter now. I'll keep the Regena for the vintage meet ups.
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Old 12-14-10, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna
I took the Regena straight block tooth freewheel off my Guerciotti several months ago and put on a 7-Speed cheap Shimano clone 13-26 freewheel with ramps and I can't believe I struggled with that Regena all this time. Shifts like butter now. I'll keep the Regena for the vintage meet ups.
The clone, would that be a Sunrace? I'm thinking of giving one a try.
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Old 12-14-10, 01:22 PM
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Sunrace freewheels work great. I've set up a few bikes with them and shifting is indistinguishable between those and the Shimano freewheels.
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Old 12-14-10, 01:25 PM
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I am also just now using my first Shimano Hyperglide freewheel. Stunned at how smooth it shifts.

Now, if only all the other aspects of my build project would go so smoothly!

(Thanks for the tip about the housing, too. Other curmudgeons need to know!)
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Old 12-14-10, 01:58 PM
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Tried shimano but opted for IRD
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Old 12-14-10, 03:09 PM
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There are (3) Shimano products I use... Hyperglide freewheels, SPD pedals (mainly M/A520), and cables...oh, and 600 headsets.
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Old 12-14-10, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by SJX426
Tried shimano but opted for IRD
Hmm, a non-Shimano alternative - how is it, functionally?
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Old 12-14-10, 03:27 PM
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They're expensive. They have a mixed track record at holding up. My LBS hates them.

Supposedly, the current models are much better than earlier ones that (frequently?) failed.

Still, my LBS guy is a very solid bench man. I trust his opinion in these matters.

The Shimano freewheels are solid performers. They're the only Shimano products I own.
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Old 12-14-10, 05:09 PM
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I have not tried index shifting using non-index derailleurs but your results certainly seem logical. However, I regularly use friction shifting using both Hyperglide and Uniglide 6- and 7- speed clusters. I prefer UG over HG on friction shift. The UG has been universally more precise with better feel and feedback. My 74 Masi with original Campy NR (Suntour jocky wheels) and Shimano Dura-Ace EX 6-speed UG cassette is my best shifting vintage bike, closely followed by my 78 Trek with Suntour Vx on Shimano 600 UG freewheel. By comparison, both my Sequoia Cyclone GT on 7-Speed HG freewheel and Eisentraut Campy NR on 7-Speed Dura-Ace 7400 HG cassette are balky, and often cause more overshift and trimming needed (sorry Frank Berto). I am ready to try some Dura-Ace 7400 jockey wheels on the HG setups to see if that helps. BTW, don't need compressionless housing - don't need housing at all - except short run of SS spiral wound around AR. I use SRAM PC-870 on all bikes.

I prefer Suntour components over Shimano any day, but for me UG is the exception. I know it's just friction shift technique, but this retro grouch wishes there were more UG cassettes out there!

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Old 12-14-10, 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by RavingManiac
The clone, would that be a Sunrace? I'm thinking of giving one a try.
yup exactly! I can't remember where I got it online now but it was cheap.
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Old 12-14-10, 05:44 PM
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I do like the new style freewheels. I'm still kind of grouchy about that last SIS bike I flipped. Everything was wrong with it. I took it apart and put it together a dozen times and it still wasn't shifting right. First the RD hanger was bent then the RD was funky, then the cables then the housings then the little thingys that hold the housings then the shifters themselves. Every last detail of that system was funky and every last detail needed to be right for it to shift.
I shoulda given up and gone friction on that one but I'm stubburn and had to win.
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Old 12-14-10, 08:36 PM
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i think the sunrace freewheels are of similar quality to the shimanos, but i want to see/hear how they hold up in the long run. I've heard many tales told of early pawl failure on the ird freewheels. Even if they've fixed that issue, they seem too pricy when compared to the competition.

-rob
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Old 12-14-10, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by leaping_gnome

I prefer UG over HG on friction shift. The UG has been universally more precise with better feel and feedback.
The UniGlide was a basic twisted-tooth shape, right? If so, then it's rather similar to my SunTour New Winner freewheels (though the SunTour teeth are not twisted), and yes, I do like the tactile "clunk" that signals a shift with traditional friction shifters. That's my setup, for the last 25 years, and it's sturdy and reassuring.


BTW, don't need compressionless housing - don't need housing at all - except short run of SS spiral wound around AR. I use SRAM PC-870 on all bikes.
I do. I'm running a SunRace 7-speed indexed thumbshifter on the Raleigh, which requires housing from the handlebar to the downtube. Using "traditional" spiral housing resulted in imprecise derailleur movement, while the modern stuff was more accurate. Chain is an SRAM PC-850. Love the quick-link.
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Old 12-14-10, 10:58 PM
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OMG, I applaud your very limited desire to try new things. But a hyperglide freewheel? I look for the opportunity to dump freewheels. Heavy, clunky, and unnecessary. Wait for the rush when you get into cassettes.
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Old 12-15-10, 12:23 AM
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When I switched my Fuji Tiara from 6 speed UG to 7 speed HG the difference was astounding. No comparison my my mind.
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Old 12-15-10, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by RFC
OMG, I applaud your very limited desire to try new things. But a hyperglide freewheel? I look for the opportunity to dump freewheels. Heavy, clunky, and unnecessary. Wait for the rush when you get into cassettes.
We should convert all of our C&V bikes to cassettes? I'll get right on that.
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Old 12-15-10, 08:35 AM
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How do you spin a cassette on to a threaded freewheel hub?
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Old 12-15-10, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by surreal
i think the sunrace freewheels are of similar quality to the shimanos, but i want to see/hear how they hold up in the long run. I've heard many tales told of early pawl failure on the ird freewheels. Even if they've fixed that issue, they seem too pricy when compared to the competition.

-rob
Just popped into this thread cause I ride a lot of bikes with freewheels... I'm running a Sunrace 7-speed on my commuter MTB, it's got well over 1000 miles on it, maybe more like 1500-1800. The original Shimano fw bearings self-destructed so I put on the Sunrace 13-25T, and I've had no problems with it at all. No problems index shifting with it, and it seems to last longer (teeth wear) than the cheap brown Shimanos.
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Old 12-15-10, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Grand Bois
We should convert all of our C&V bikes to cassettes? I'll get right on that.
LOL. You can help me.
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Old 12-15-10, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by RFC
OMG, I applaud your very limited desire to try new things. But a hyperglide freewheel? I look for the opportunity to dump freewheels. Heavy, clunky, and unnecessary. Wait for the rush when you get into cassettes.
Troll?

Weight should be comparable. Size too. Unnecessary - can't see how that could be true...

The only benefit that cassette hubs bring is moving the drive-side bearing towards the end of the axle. An improvement, to be sure, but I'm not about to re-build all of my wheels to get it...
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Old 12-15-10, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by ctmullins
Troll?

Weight should be comparable. Size too. Unnecessary - can't see how that could be true...

The only benefit that cassette hubs bring is moving the drive-side bearing towards the end of the axle. An improvement, to be sure, but I'm not about to re-build all of my wheels to get it...
Watch who you call a troll.

Have you ever compared the weight? Have you ever handled an alloy cassette?

I don't have time to rebuild wheels and am not suggesting it. I just tend to transition my C&V bikes to newer wheels as the opportunity presents itself. Older freewheel wheels tend to leave with sold bikes.
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Old 12-15-10, 09:47 AM
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As hard as it can be to admit for those of us with vintage tastes, a lot of the new stuff just works better.

There's something to be said for being able to operate machinery that isn't super easy to use though, so there's room for everyone!

I personally like bikes that look "vintagy" but serve their purpose well. And cross-compatibility. This has resulted in quite a few Shimano cassettes, chains shifters and derailleurs on multi-speed bikes, and freewheel hubs on single speeds and townies.


Originally Posted by Grand Bois
We should convert all of our C&V bikes to cassettes? I'll get right on that.
I don't think he said anything about what other people should do, just what he likes to do.
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Old 12-15-10, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by ctmullins
The UniGlide was a basic twisted-tooth shape, right? If so, then it's rather similar to my SunTour New Winner freewheels (though the SunTour teeth are not twisted), and yes, I do like the tactile "clunk" that signals a shift with traditional friction shifters. That's my setup, for the last 25 years, and it's sturdy and reassuring.
I will have to revisit my drawer full of New Winner and Pro cog sets someday. Just wish SHRAM was closer to Sedisport!

My personal limitation is 126 OLN because I refuse to cold-set any of my frames. It's nice to have an OT sense of values to cling to...but,
I want to try an 8 0f 9 on 7 Sheldon Brown conversion so have been looking for a 13-T HG locking cog for my Sequoia. Any help?
I am trying to build a 13-34 cog set for mixed-terrain brevet.

126 OLN, friction, and lugged steel Them's my rules. - Jim
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Old 12-15-10, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by tashi


I don't think he said anything about what other people should do, just what he likes to do.
Some people take this stuff much too seriously.
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