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Rebuilding Shimano Freehubs(7 posts)

Rebuilding Shimano FreehubsAtombomber
Jun 14, 2003 11:03 AM
I have searched this whole world wide web (wwww) and have found nothing to this regard, other than Harris Cyclery's listing of a discontinued tool for the job. I know it is possible to do the service, but special tools are required. I have an XTR freehub that was abused in nasty weather, and even with regular service, still developed pitting on the bearing cup (the hub bearing race was fine due to better seals). I also have an XT freehub where the guts are pooched, but the bearing cup is still excellent. My plan was to take the good XT bearing cup and and put it into the XTR freehub body, and then end up with a fully working XT^2*R freehub body to be used when needed. I figure that if I save a bit of money on required stuff, I squander money on the less important things.

re: Rebuilding Shimano Freehubscurlybike
Jun 14, 2003 12:13 PM
Frequently the corresponding parts in Shimano freehub bodies are not interchangeable. You can use a flat piece of metal about 3mm thick and as wide as the recess in the body to remove the outer race for the body bearings. You will have to remove the outer grease seal first. You can make a hook and reach in behind it and gradually work it out of the recess. When you take it all apart you will find a bazillion 1/8 ball bearings, which are a pain to replace. You will need some good grease to hold them in position while it goes back together. Use dental floss to hold the pawl(s) down.
Jun 14, 2003 2:51 PM
Jun 14, 2003 8:40 PM
I can never remember if the inner race is threaded RH or LH, sorry
Complete SuccessAtombomber
Jun 15, 2003 2:59 PM
The bearing cup exchange opperation was a complete success. Once I manufactured a tool to fit into the spline of the cup, and then figuring out that the threading was reverse, disassembly was a snap. I was smart enough to work over a small Tupperware container (one for each freehub so not lose track of what parts came from which unit) to collect the falling 50 ball bearings and other tiny components. Both the XT and XTR had the exact same cups, so there was no problem with rejection of the part. The dental floss trick worked perfectly, though I actually used dental tape because my dentist says it is better the floss. I very sparingly greased the bearing surfaces with a Teflon grease, and carefully placed the balls where they belong, closed everything up, and then lubed the whole thing with a compatible Teflon lube from the same manufacturer. Slick as butter, and a Chris Kinglike racket.

Thanks for the advice. Now, what should I get with the money saved?
Complete Successcurlybike
Jun 15, 2003 3:58 PM
A new cassette or chain.
Depends.Spoke Wrench
Jun 16, 2003 8:02 AM
If you figure that you saved an XTR titanium freehub body, the regular retail is about $150.00. If it's just an XT, the regular retail is only about $40.00. There are advantages and drawbacks to whichever figure you tell your wife.