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Why are some wheel hubs so loud?

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Why are some wheel hubs so loud?

Old 04-01-09, 07:51 PM
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Why are some wheel hubs so loud?

So on regular group rides, I notice a lot of really nice wheels. It seems like the nicer the wheel, the louder the hub. I know of a couple friends, one has a set of fulcrum race 7's, and another with a set of bontrager wheels, not sure which model. It just seems like a quiter hub would be more of a luxury than the annoying crank sound that these hubs make. I really would love to get a nicer set of wheels, but I'm scared of a set of more expensive wheels that annoy me. The specialized hubs that came on the stock wheels on my Allez Elite are smooth, and super quiet.

Is there a reason for this? Safety of some sort to make you aware when someone stops pedaling in front of you?
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Old 04-01-09, 07:52 PM
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Hit'im one time, Sheldon:

Pawl

A spring-loaded part that engages a set of teeth when moving in one direction, but slides over them when moving in the other direction. The pawls in a freewheel make a ticking sound when a bicycle coasts. Most freewheels have two or three pawls.
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Old 04-01-09, 07:52 PM
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It's just the way the ratchets are designed inside of the hub.
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Old 04-01-09, 07:57 PM
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Aluminum Freehub body = loud clicker. Steel = not very loud or hardly noticeable.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:01 PM
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Don't coast... problem solved.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:03 PM
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Rolf!
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Old 04-01-09, 08:04 PM
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My Mavic Helium wheels are pretty loud, but I think the bearings in the back wheel are shot.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:04 PM
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Also, most new freehubs have external pawls, where the older steel ones usually have internal.
The bumps on the one on the right aren't the pawls --they 'grip' onto the hub shell when it's screwed on -- the pawls are under the seal.
External pawls click right onthe hub shell, so it probably reverberates through the shell and even the spokes




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Old 04-01-09, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka
Rolf!
Somebody let that stupid dog in.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:08 PM
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You should hear my CK hubs when they start to BUZZZZZZZ
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Old 04-01-09, 08:10 PM
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my Hed.3 has that loud pawl...does not bother me.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:13 PM
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I've noticed Mavics are loud. My Ksyriums certainly are. My Eastons are a bit quieter. If memory serves, I can't hear the freewheel over the disc noise on my HED disc.

I used to have a pair of Shimano 550's that were almost silent. Kinda liked that. I always associated a quiet bike with everything being in order and properly adjusted.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by BHBiker
my Hed.3 has that loud pawl...does not bother me.
I think part of that is that it reverberates through the carbon fiber. I had one when it was made by Specialized, and it used a freewheel that was not very loud on my traditional wheel, but plenty noisy on the trispoke... and the Zipp disk I used before that.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:30 PM
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Loud pawls save lives.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:43 PM
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My fulcrum's are dang loud. My shimano's were silent. I kinda like it though.
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Old 04-01-09, 08:44 PM
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I think the reason why a lot of wheels are loud is because there isn't enough grease where the pawls are located. I took apart my hub and found out that it was lubricated well but the grease was very light and thin. I added some more synthetic grease and the difference is night and day now.
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Old 04-01-09, 09:01 PM
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Have you ever heard Chris King hubs?
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Old 04-01-09, 09:19 PM
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higher end wheels, in general, have more pawls and stronger springs which make more noise.

spin a new high-end wheel at the bike store and hear the thunder. it is not lack of grease.
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Old 04-01-09, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by wideAMG
higher end wheels, in general, have more pawls and stronger springs which make more noise.

spin a new high-end wheel at the bike store and hear the thunder. it is not lack of grease.
This is the answer I received at my LBS when I asked this same question. The bike tech told me the nicer/higher end rims (Dura Ace, etc) will click louder when free spinning b/c of the gearing mechanisms in the hubs. He also said if you keep pedaling you don't here it LOL.
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Old 04-01-09, 09:38 PM
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yea..fulcrums are "loud". i like it. but dont have it.
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Old 04-01-09, 09:46 PM
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My training buddy's Rolfs are hella loud. Is kinda nice when we're trying to pass folks. Same reason chopper folks like their loud bikes...
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Old 04-01-09, 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Nikolai
My training buddy's Rolfs are hella loud. Is kinda nice when we're trying to pass folks. Same reason chopper folks like their loud bikes...
I hate my hub being loud, because sometimes I want to just relax and enjoy the sounds of nature. But I've also always wished I could find a bell that makes that same "fishing reel" sound that the noisiest hub I've ridden made for when I'm passing people on the bike path...
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Old 04-01-09, 11:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Chucklehead
Aluminum Freehub body = loud clicker. Steel = not very loud or hardly noticeable.
Definitely not true as a rule. My fulcrum racing 5s came with a really loud steel freehub body and the new aluminum one is a lot quieter.
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Old 04-02-09, 12:16 AM
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my powertap hub is pretty loud, but nothing like a chris king "angry bee" hub!
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Old 04-02-09, 01:02 AM
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I kind of like loud wheels. It's a more subtle way of letting slower riders know you are there than the ubiquitous "on your left" that half the time causes the Freds of the world to react erratically.
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