You know when you want to do something but you know you won’t enjoy it as there is something niggling you in the back of your mind. Well that how I felt last night about my Sunday ride. I had already decided where I wanted to ride but after yesterday little trundle around Hurn I was not happy on the bike, the dreaded creak has returned!! Just when I thought I had cured it it rears its ugly head again, not only that my back wheel had become suspiciously quiet or more exact the Hope Pro 2 rear hub (that the new Evo version mine is the older standard version). You can always tell a bike with a Hope Pro 2 rear hub, it sound like your bike did when you were a kid, when you stuck a bit of cardboard into the spoke of the wheel to make it sound cool as you went down the road. So by the time I went to bed last night I had convinced myself that I was not going for a ride in the morning I would sort my bike out and go in the afternoon.
I already had a YouTube video (made by Hope) on how to dismantle and reassemble the rear hub and a couple of other useful web links so I felt I was ready to do battle. Fortunately the fog started to clear as I went out to the shed everything was going well until I got to removing the second seal (which in affect is the only the second item to take off the hub), it refused to move. I huff puffed and resorted to verbal abuse but it remained in place.
The wife wanted to go to the shop so I opted to drive her to the shop and I would pop into a local cycle shop that was open Sunday mornings, except that they now don’t open on Sundays any more. So I had to drive to another cycleshop which I knew would be open. I asked the mechanic there if he would kindly clamp the end of the seal in a vice and remove it for me (it that simple, watch the video 24 seconds in if you don’t believe me). Well he huffed and puffed for a couple of minutes and could not get it off. He said he could do it but would have to be booked it in as a proper job as it was going to take sometime and cost me money, which I don’t have at the moment.
The mechanic suggested that I try knocking the axle through from the other side, so I did that when I got home. This accomplished two things, it separated the freewheel part of the hub (that the gold bit in the link above) off the main body of the hub and secondly revealed why my hub was quieter than normal. One of the springs that hold the pawls in place had broken so only three of the 4 pawls were working. Unfortunately the end seal was still attached to the freewheel body. By now it was lunch time and any hope (no pun intended) of going for a ride this afternoon was disappearing quickly. I soaked the seal in WD40 and left while I had lunch.
My renewed attempts to get the seal off after lunch failed, it was time for another plan. At the least I was going to have to buy a new set of pawls and springs so I was not going to be getting that hub back on the bike any time soon. I decided to take the back wheel (which is identical to the one I am having problem with) off my other bike (which I have mothballed till the spring) and use that. It not quite as simple as take it off one bike fit it onto the other bike as things like brake disc and cassette have to be changed, but other than that it is a straight swap.
The seal was once again soaking in WD40 and I decided to have one last try, a brute force and ignorants approach, metal bar and big hammer. Being that the freewheel body is some type of ally I have been reluctant to hit it to hard. But with the axle clamped in the vice I placed the metal bar on the freewheel body and gave it a couple reasonable taps, the second tap glanced the edge of the bar and narrowly missed making contact with my thumb, I swung the hammer in frustration at the metal bar and the result was the freewheel body parting company from the axle. I was fortunate enough to find all the parts that fell out on the floor. The top bearing in the freewheel body does not look to good, the axle has a horrible rust like mark on it where the seal was stuck on (the axle is ally of some type so can’t be rust). So a new set of bearing and seals, a new set of pawls and springs and a bill I could do without just before Christmas.
A quick ride up and down the road showed everything was working ok and that I still have to find that damm creak………..
As I mentioned yesterday I have been on creak finding duties again. I have spent the day dismantling the back-end of my bike, from the crank back everything was removed, cleaned and refitted, I started just after the rugby finished (well done New Zealand) and finished at about 4pm after a ride up and down the road revealed no more creaking. I did not find anything definitive but I felt that the cassette was not as tight as it should of been (I did not have to put a lot of effort in to moving the locking nut) when I came to remove it from the rear wheel. I had not checked the cassette up until that point as I only refitted it a few weeks ago when I fitted a new one to replace the worn one. I always tighten cassette up with a torque wrench so if it was loose I am not sure why.
It never ceases to amaze me when I am working on my bike how many tools I end up using, this is all the more obvious when you come to put everything away. I don’t have a shed or garage to work in, so I work outside (thankfully the weather was good if a bit windy) so I have to put it all back in the shed when I am finished. Add to the list of tools all the other bits like rags, cleaning liquids, lubrication, bike stands the list is endless and it all has to go back in the shed.
I am a motorsport fan, I like watching 4 wheels and two wheel sport (3, 6 and 8 wheeled as well). But it has not been a good time for motorsport this past week. We lost Dan Wheldon in that big Indy car crash last weekend and we have lost Marco Smoncelli in the MotoGP this morning. They will both be deeply missed from there chosen sport. On a positive note Poole Pirates Speedway team won both the league and knock Out cup this year.
Well I am out of here, roll on Wednesday when I am on holiday……..