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SunTour Freewheel Questions.(7 posts)

SunTour Freewheel Questions.czardonic
Feb 14, 2002 1:04 PM
Can anyone confirm that SunTour freewheels circa 1978 use 1/8" bearings?

Bonus Question: How many bearings sit in each race? I was very careful about not losing any bearings, but there seems to be a gap large enough to fit one extra. Is this normal, or did I let one get away?

re: SunTour Freewheel Questions.Spoke Wrench
Feb 14, 2002 2:14 PM
I have no idea what the correct number is, but generally with loose cup and cone bearings, when it looks like there's room for just one more, you've got the right number.
re: SunTour Freewheel Questions.czardonic
Feb 14, 2002 4:58 PM
Good to know. Thanks again.
Counting ballsKerry Irons
Feb 14, 2002 4:44 PM
Freewheel balls were, in that era (and always, as far as I know) 1/8". As to counting them, well that seems a bit extreme, since there are so many. Missing one can't possibly be a problem, but having one too many will ruin the unit.
Counting ballsczardonic
Feb 14, 2002 5:07 PM
There were 35 lined up nearest the outside of the hub, and 40 on the indside. Since they were loose and all, and there was no grease left holding them onto the races, I figured that counting was the only way that I was going to get them back in correctly.

Thanks for the info. I was formerly inclined to err on the side of having one too many, as long as there was still some breathing room. My thinking was that under load from the chain, there was a danger of the bearings being bunched to the opposite side, puting the unit out of alignment.

Should I be worrying about something else?
Feb 14, 2002 5:48 PM
Yes, you should worry about something else, but I know where you're coming from. Went through the same thoughts years ago when I rebuilt a Suntour FW. Since you've got so many it doesn't hurt to have the gap. Also, recognize that under load the unit is not rotating (i.e. "free wheeling") and when it is free wheeling there isn't any real load.

Putting something into a race that's not supposed to be there or leaving out the lubrication are good ways to kill it.
Feb 14, 2002 6:08 PM
Makes sense. I hadn't thought about the fact that it's not freewheeling under load.

Thanks for the info.