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Freer wheel ratchet that can lock????

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Freer wheel ratchet that can lock????

Old 01-05-21, 04:44 AM
  #1  
Swarf
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Freer wheel ratchet that can lock????

I have searched all over for a free wheel ratchet that has the option of being set to a fixed position. Is such a thing available in the biking world.??
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Old 01-05-21, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Swarf View Post
I have searched all over for a free wheel ratchet that has the option of being set to a fixed position. Is such a thing available in the biking world.??
Not that I'm aware of, but that's an interesting premise.

I did find this thread and it might be of interest to you.

theory of locking up the pawl in a freehub to create a fixed gear wheel

Last edited by TugaDude; 01-05-21 at 07:41 AM. Reason: added info
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Old 01-05-21, 11:04 AM
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Its out of production but check out SRAM Torpedo Hub
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Old 01-05-21, 11:14 AM
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if you did this with a standard freewheel, the freewheel would thread itself right off if you set it to a fixed position. this is why track hubs have lock rings.
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Old 01-05-21, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by IAmSam View Post
Its out of production but check out SRAM Torpedo Hub
Thanks Sam, That is a very interesting hub. I was thinking more of a separate unit that you could put anywhere in your gear train.
Perhaps i may have to incorporate a simple dog clutch.
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Old 01-05-21, 11:29 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by mack_turtle View Post
if you did this with a standard freewheel, the freewheel would thread itself right off if you set it to a fixed position. this is why track hubs have lock rings.
Yes, it would but only if you put reverse force on it .I tacked the thread as well knowing that I would only ever need that wheel with that sprocket. So it a permanent bodge up !!.
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Old 01-05-21, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Swarf View Post
Yes, it would but only if you put reverse force on it .I tacked the thread as well knowing that I would only ever need that wheel with that sprocket. So it a permanent bodge up !!.
if you ride a fixed gear setup, reverse force is going to be put on it one way or another. if you pedal any slower than the speed at which the drivetrain is moving, it will put reverse force on the hub. there is no practical way to avoid putting any such force on the drivetrain on a fixed gear bike, which is how the "suicide hub" earned that name. you need a reverse-threaded locknut or a more permanent attachment to the hub like rotor bolts or a modified freehub (Surly Fixxer or by bodging it with sketchy spacers in the a freehub).
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Old 01-05-21, 12:07 PM
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No advice here. I grew up being told about the durability of the old Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hubs. My dad and his friends rode all over New England during the Depression as crazy teens. Later I worked in a bike shop with a mechanic who was friends with Sheldon Brown. Sheldon would come over after hours and trade fix gear stories, often involving the S-A fix gear 3-speed hubs which they both had.

Many years later, I watched a friend start the rest of her life as a wheelchair bound person. She invited me to the Mount Wilson Observatory. We went up the ramp. Now, we'd known each other from childhood. She was the athlete, I was the klutz. She wouldn't let me push her anywhere despite her just being 10 days out of the hospital. I watched her struggle to get up the ramp to the telescope. 20' vertical. No landings. Standard wheelchair grade. Twice she stopped and held onto the rail. It then took everything she had to get rolling again.

I watched and thought - she's in too big a gear. I've ridden fix gear on real hills! That is exactly what I am looking at. But they made gears long ago. Geared hubs. Sturmey-Archers. Why couldn't a wheelchair have a geared hub? With more thought and more observation of how she used her chair to get around (including many transfers from chair to car and back), I realized that hub had to be 1) fix gear, 2) quick-release, 3) no more than 2 pounds and 4) reliable as the old Sturmey-Archer or a Willis Jeep because young, strong crazy men were going to take these hubs to places they could never get to before and failure would mean not being able to get out of the wilderness and dying.

Now, obviously the Sturmey-Archer isn't that hub and cannot be made to be. But it is made to the standards that hub would need. Now you want another evolution of some of these concepts - fixed to free and back! Cool! (And like me, you have to consider both how do you do it at the hub end and how/where do you put the shifter? Fun! Keep us posted!
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Old 01-05-21, 12:29 PM
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Really, all that is needed is a conventional spring loaded friction clutch that in normal released mode yields a direct drive for fixed gear mode. To obtain a freewheeling mode, a lever operated release cable would be actuated to disengage the clutch. The lever would require a lock to maintain it in the freewheel position, probably some sort of hook to keep it from slipping.
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Old 01-05-21, 01:46 PM
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B.S.A. made the DP hub, a two-speed fixed/freewheel unit from the mid-30s until around WWII. It is apparently a very rare bit of kit. I first read about them in a vintage British cycling manual written right after the war, and it was apparently among the books I parted with. Still, someone should consider putting those back in production - they were allegedly smoother than the Sturmey Archer ASC and its modern descendants.
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Old 01-05-21, 02:55 PM
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Good read:

https://lovelybike.blogspot.com/2014...sa-dp-hub.html
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Old 01-06-21, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by rustystrings61 View Post
B.S.A. made the DP hub, a two-speed fixed/freewheel unit from the mid-30s until around WWII. It is apparently a very rare bit of kit. I first read about them in a vintage British cycling manual written right after the war, and it was apparently among the books I parted with. Still, someone should consider putting those back in production - they were allegedly smoother than the Sturmey Archer ASC and its modern descendants.


Seeing as how this discussion has veered into multi-speed fixed I just would like to add that I was foolish enough to spring for one of those S3X's from a few years ago and it was a nightmare. That is all. .
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Old 01-06-21, 08:06 AM
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There have been wheels with a freewheel on one side and a fixed sprocket on the other. You can go from one to the other by turning the wheel around.
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Old 01-06-21, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
No advice here. I grew up being told about the durability of the old Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hubs. My dad and his friends rode all over New England during the Depression as crazy teens. Later I worked in a bike shop with a mechanic who was friends with Sheldon Brown. Sheldon would come over after hours and trade fix gear stories, often involving the S-A fix gear 3-speed hubs which they both had.

Many years later, I watched a friend start the rest of her life as a wheelchair bound person. She invited me to the Mount Wilson Observatory. We went up the ramp. Now, we'd known each other from childhood. She was the athlete, I was the klutz. She wouldn't let me push her anywhere despite her just being 10 days out of the hospital. I watched her struggle to get up the ramp to the telescope. 20' vertical. No landings. Standard wheelchair grade. Twice she stopped and held onto the rail. It then took everything she had to get rolling again.

I watched and thought - she's in too big a gear. I've ridden fix gear on real hills! That is exactly what I am looking at. But they made gears long ago. Geared hubs. Sturmey-Archers. Why couldn't a wheelchair have a geared hub? With more thought and more observation of how she used her chair to get around (including many transfers from chair to car and back), I realized that hub had to be 1) fix gear, 2) quick-release, 3) no more than 2 pounds and 4) reliable as the old Sturmey-Archer or a Willis Jeep because young, strong crazy men were going to take these hubs to places they could never get to before and failure would mean not being able to get out of the wilderness and dying.

Now, obviously the Sturmey-Archer isn't that hub and cannot be made to be. But it is made to the standards that hub would need. Now you want another evolution of some of these concepts - fixed to free and back! Cool! (And like me, you have to consider both how do you do it at the hub end and how/where do you put the shifter? Fun! Keep us posted!
with a wheelchair there's no way to change the gear ratio except by changing the wheelsize. They're turning the wheel at the rim not at the hub. Now a hub that can be locked and unlocked to be able to stop and rest on a ramp would be an interesting idea. Because of the need to back up it can't just be a freewheel system, but some hybrid of it. Maybe a button at the axle that allows the pawls to engage/disengage.
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Old 01-06-21, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
with a wheelchair there's no way to change the gear ratio except by changing the wheelsize. They're turning the wheel at the rim not at the hub. Now a hub that can be locked and unlocked to be able to stop and rest on a ramp would be an interesting idea. Because of the need to back up it can't just be a freewheel system, but some hybrid of it. Maybe a button at the axle that allows the pawls to engage/disengage.
Actually running a gear ratio between the hand rim and wheel isn't hard. Instead of clipping the handwheel to the rim, run chainring-like spiders to the hub so the rim acts as a big cog. Incorporate internal gearing and its done. It'd be little different to operate. In a non 1:1 gear, the hand rim and wheel turn at different speeds.
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Old 01-06-21, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by alo View Post
There have been wheels with a freewheel on one side and a fixed sprocket on the other. You can go from one to the other by turning the wheel around.
OP may be aware of this, but this is the simplest answer. I am not sure where a hub that can be suddenly switched from fixed to free would be useful. Obviously SRAM thought it was a good idea and either the market didn't agree, or it was poor execution of the design. anyone know enough about that hub? either way, it's not hard to flip the wheel around when you want to switch and it's unlikely that you'll have a fit over switching often enough for it to be not worth the hassle.
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Old 01-06-21, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Actually running a gear ratio between the hand rim and wheel isn't hard. Instead of clipping the handwheel to the rim, run chainring-like spiders to the hub so the rim acts as a big cog. Incorporate internal gearing and its done. It'd be little different to operate. In a non 1:1 gear, the hand rim and wheel turn at different speeds.
So you're thinking the wheels as the hubs, the hub being equivalent to the axle, the rim being the outer shell and the gearing running between them. That would be an interesting concept. With a clear outer covering to protect fingers from the plenary gears that could really look sweet to boot.
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Old 01-06-21, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Actually running a gear ratio between the hand rim and wheel isn't hard. Instead of clipping the handwheel to the rim, run chainring-like spiders to the hub so the rim acts as a big cog. Incorporate internal gearing and its done. It'd be little different to operate. In a non 1:1 gear, the hand rim and wheel turn at different speeds.
It has been done. But I probably can't find a link to it.
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Old 01-06-21, 09:44 PM
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So what I recommend is going fixed on one side and freewheel on the other and if you are me probably not switch often. My first Langster that had a freewheel only swapped to fixed and near the end of its life I went to freewheel as my Cinelli Work frame was fixed and then when I got the new Langster that is only fixed (never bothered with the freewheel) and the Work is freewheel as it made more sense. I don't really ever want to swap immediately between the two and if I did it would take the fun out of riding fixed and the fun out of riding freewheel. If this was a great idea it would have stuck around more and you could find it often, the Torpedo from Sachs (now SRAM) and the B.S.A. would be the two options but not a lot in existence though you are more likely to find a Torpedo hub NOS somewhere probably in Germany in some crusty old bike shop but honestly pick one side of the wheel to ride on and enjoy.
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Old 01-06-21, 10:11 PM
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Originally Posted by alo View Post
It has been done. But I probably can't find a link to it.
Wheelchair Wheels With Power Assist from Magic Wheels Go the the video on the right. Those wheels are excellent. Probably the only ones out there that meet the criteria I realized when I watched my friend. I spent a day on a pair at their unveiling. Never got to Barry's (Barry of the video) level of skill(!) but was very impressed.
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Old 01-06-21, 10:29 PM
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And to the topic, bicycle wheels. I've ridden the week long Cycle Oregon 5 times on my fix gear with a flip-flop hub. Carried a chainwhip so I coult put on a civilized cog for mountain descents. It works. But 2 minute (the flip) or 5 minute (unscrewing the cog) stops gets old. You lose the people you were riding with, you cool down and it's time not riding or sightseeing. And I still didn't have a freewheel. The idea of a 2-speed, flat and hill fixed, plus the freewheel for descents like that DP hub? Cool! Cool! Cool! I love it.

Those who poo-poo it do not have my love of fix gears, my miles and my age. And just because it is relative on this thread, I'll post my logo blown up - taken on a 14% grade, day 3 of Cycle Oregon, a 5000' foot day. I didn't realize that hill was the big one and didn't stop to flip the wheel until it was too late to stop and start in traffic and have it be a good experience. (You hard core fix gear riders get what I am talking about.) So I was muscling a 42-17 n the photo. You can see my forearms tight as a drum. When I touched them with soap later, it hurt! If I had been riding the DP, it wold have been the dream. Easy shift, even under load. Get to the top and just shift to free!

My custom fix gear, designed to run any cog between 12 and 24 teeth on the same length chain. You can see the 23 tooth over on the left. Chainwhip on the top tube.

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