Rear wheel- Cog vs freewheel?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Rear wheel- Cog vs freewheel?

    My rear wheel on my 29er SS is getting a little tired. The hub has been reworked several times and the mechanic says she's getting tired! I would like to get a different wheel but an unsure which way to go. The current hub is an off-brand with a self contained freewheel(may be incorrect term) and a cog with a lock ring. I used to have a King rear hub on my 26er with a screw on freewheel which was really sweet. I would like to go in this direction unless there is a reason not to. Any advice?
    Disclamer- I am extremely cheap, I don't want to spend excess cash!

  2. #2
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    Is your freewheel still in good shape? Any possibly of a pic so we can get a better idea of what it looks like ?
    Finally rolling on 29" x 2.0" Schwalbe Big Apples

  3. #3
    one chain loop
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Mushy View Post
    I used to have a King rear hub on my 26er with a screw on freewheel which was really sweet.
    i don't think there is such thing as chris king rear hub that fits freewheel.. they are all made for splined cogs with lockring.

    threaded freewheels are harder to change especially if they are in there good. good quality freewheels are not cheap either and then you will buy the respective freewheel removal tool too.

    so my vote goes to cogs.
    everything sucks but my vacuum cleaner.

  4. #4
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    I agree with cogs.

    I have a WI freewheel on a Paul hub and it is a great setup but it is not very flexible.

    My recommendation would be shimano xt for overall value. XT is not at the quality level of King but it is serviceable and you can rebuild it to keep it running for many years.

  5. #5
    Dinner for wolves
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    Chris King/Hadley/Hope SS with a cog is most flexible, as the others have said. Be it chain line flexibility or cog size flexibility. I have to say, though, if you know exactly what you need, a decent freewheel compatible hub (WI, Paul) with a 72pt freewheel (again, WI Trials - 18t, 20t, 22t) is the poor man's King. I have a WI Eno (used) with a WI trials FW (new) that has been simply bomber for years, and it cost me $165. That is less than half of a King set up. If money was no object, it would be King all day and all night, though.
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  6. #6
    Bro Mountainbiker
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    Cogs. cheaper to change gearing. Welcome to the future.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sheepo5669 View Post
    Cogs. cheaper to change gearing.
    And you can adjust chainline....and have the option of 1x5 or 1x6 setups on some hubs....
    Last edited by rob1035; 11-09-2012 at 05:35 PM.

  8. #8
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    If you go cog, how can you beat $209 WTB TCS set on Chainlove?

    I am using WTB as extra set, but they are probably great quality for the price.

  9. #9
    Dinner for wolves
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    One thing the ENO Eccentric gives you, however, is the ability to use the wheel on non SS specific frames. Where this ranks on the Versatility Scale for you, I don't know, but it's a sweet trick.
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  10. #10
    miwuksurfer
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    Freewheel hubs are for those not afraid of commitment.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by miwuksurfer View Post
    Freewheel hubs are for those not afraid of commitment.
    Haha pretty much. I occasionally wish I had a cassette hub on my karate monkey, but I always end up realizing that I would never actually use it. My rear wheel seems to stay true *much* longer since I went to a SS-specific rear with a freewheel as well - I suspect this is because the wheel doesn't need to be dished nearly as much as it does to accommodate a cassette hub. I am pretty heavy for a biker though, if you're easier on wheels than I am this may not be of use to you.
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

  12. #12
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    Hard to disagree with the ENO. That's what I've run on my old GT Zasker 26 inch single for the last several years and it's been bulletproof! The King hub I owned was used prior to that and that's been around 15 years ago, maybe no longer avaible but what a pretty hub. My generic hob now is a single specific with a cog. If I had a diagram I would tear into it and maybe I should anyway, What's to lose? Thanks for the good advice!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr.Mushy View Post
    My generic hob now is a single specific with a cog. If I had a diagram I would tear into it and maybe I should anyway, What's to lose? Thanks for the good advice!
    The Novatec single speed hub is used by several manufacturers as their "house brand" hub. It might be what you have. Burly and heavy, but stone reliable.

    D252SBT

  14. #14
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    Im running a Surly hub with a WI trials FW. I went with the Surly for two reasons 1) I got it for 1/3rd the cost, 2) it has a threaded axle (my QR wheel would slip). Its laced with DT swiss straight guage spokes to a 26in Velocity Blunt rims. Damn bullet proof!
    ACCESS Stealth 3.0 carbon 29'er
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  15. #15
    Combat Wombat
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    My first dedicated SS wheelset was built with Paul hubs and a WI freewheel. Definitely bulletproof and at the time I bought this set, was the standard in a SS wheelset. Still have them although they have not been used in years, sentimental value as there is a story behind how I ended up with them. Even so, I do think the freewheel design is dated when compared to what is now available in SS hubs using a freehub. The WI freewheel alone weighs more than most hubs and even if you are fine with running only one gear ratio, sooner or later, those teeth do wear out and start to hook. The last time I had my WI freewheel rebuilt with a new cog and Enduro bearing, it was 50 clams plus shipping. That was more than a couple years ago. Cheaper than new for sure, but not when you consider what it would cost just to replace a Surly cog. And unless you are running a goochy front BB that allows you to adjust your chainline, cross your fingers when installing that new crank you bought. Ask me how I know that.

    I would recommend a Hope Trials/SS hub. For not much more than what it would cost to get a Paul hub and a WI freewheel, you get a solid design, easy to service, and adjustable chainline. When it is time to switch gears for whatever reason, you can buy a lot of Surly cogs for the price of one WI freewheel.

  16. #16
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    +1 on Velocity Blunt rims being bulletproof. I'm running cogs because I have many, they are cheap, and if I ever wanted to (I wouldn't) I could go multispeed with my wheel. It is a little easier to resell that way also, because it can appeal to anybody out there, ss or not.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by miwuksurfer View Post
    Freewheel hubs are for those who like to spend $75 on a new freewheel to change cog sizes.
    FTFY

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexCuse View Post
    Haha pretty much. I occasionally wish I had a cassette hub on my karate monkey, but I always end up realizing that I would never actually use it. My rear wheel seems to stay true *much* longer since I went to a SS-specific rear with a freewheel as well - I suspect this is because the wheel doesn't need to be dished nearly as much as it does to accommodate a cassette hub. I am pretty heavy for a biker though, if you're easier on wheels than I am this may not be of use to you.
    You know that there are SS specific hubs with shorter freehub splines so that you can use splined cogs and still get a wider flange spacing, right?

  18. #18
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    Yeah, the ones I've seen built up looked to still be dished on the drive side more than I'd like, but I admittedly haven't seen a lot. I would at least consider trying one of these (or a nicer cassette hub w/ spacers) if I were to have a new set built up, based on some of the responses I've seen in this thread. I suspect there are more quality options on that side (for freewheels its basically ENO or bust it seems). In the meantime my preference remains freewheel though.
    Yeah I only carry cans cause I'm a weight weenie.

  19. #19
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    Part of the reason I find the freewheel attractive is mainly sentimental, I suppose. It's a little like my 26 inch wheel singlespeed which is an ancient GT Zaskar which I still dearly love (my wife wouldn't appreciate this comment!)
    Back to the rear hub- I took the axle out which rode on 2 sealed bearings. I couldn't feel any play in these so I repacked the bearings. It appeared to me that the freewheel body/cassette body (may be incorrect term) had splines or I'm guessing an aprox. 11 or 12 mm hex would have removed it somewhat like removing a cassette body from an old XT hub. I didn't have the allen wrench to fit so I flushed the body with solvent until the solvent was clean and lubed it with Phil Wood Tenacious Oil. It feels good so a new rear wheel is currently off the wish list. Thanks for the info!

  20. #20
    Ride da mOOn Moderator
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    I didn't read the thread...

    ..so excuse me if I missed it, but here's one to consider and I have thread on here somewhere in the SSer forum with more info. Heard stories of made of peanut butter and held together with rubber bands, but I'm into my second week of my 260 lb BigAss trying to break it test, and shes just fine so far!

    Only avail in 16 17 18 though... 30 bucks and 120 POE
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Rear wheel- Cog vs freewheel?-gt-120-fw_900x900.jpg  


  21. #21
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    My first dedicated SS rear wheel was built around a Surly new disc hub with an ACS Crossfire freewheel. It was very heavy and a new gear ratio would always require a new freewheel. The freewheel could not be rebuilt so sustainability was an issue.

    I'm now on my second SS wheels and built them around Fixie Inc. hubs. The rear hub is the Kick-flip, which has a short splined freewheel on the drive side for regular cogs or a small cassette. Saved some weight and added flexibility, and the rim is still pretty much centered between the hub flanges. The hub cost USD 110 at Only Highend , which I think is a damn good deal for the quality that the hub is. Only Highend also sells 6-bolt cogs in case you want to flip the rear wheel and go fixed.

  22. #22
    SSolo, on your left!
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    Oooops! Multi-quote booboo.
    Get off the couch and ride!

  23. #23
    SSolo, on your left!
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoolie View Post
    I am using WTB as extra set, but they are probably great quality for the price.
    Quote Originally Posted by buddhak View Post
    One thing the ENO Eccentric gives you, however, is the ability to use the wheel on non SS specific frames. Where this ranks on the Versatility Scale for you, I don't know, but it's a sweet trick.
    Quote Originally Posted by rob1035 View Post
    And you can adjust chainline....and have the option of 1x5 or 1x6 setups on some hubs....
    Quote Originally Posted by Sheepo5669 View Post
    Cogs. cheaper to change gearing. Welcome to the future.
    Yes to all these.
    Get off the couch and ride!

  24. #24
    SSolo, on your left!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bike Whisperer View Post
    The Novatec single speed hub is used by several manufacturers as their "house brand" hub. It might be what you have. Burly and heavy, but stone reliable.

    D252SBT
    That looks exactly like my Haro Mary hub that I had to tear into without any diagrams....great hub all it needs is a clean out and light oiling occasionally and runs FOUR sealed cartridge bearings! Packed some extra high quality grease in the bearings when I replaced them and they are lasting looong time. Great hub imo. SS specific rear wheel stays true much better and longer than geared wheel.
    Get off the couch and ride!

  25. #25
    SSolo, on your left!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Lumikko View Post
    .....Fixie Inc. hubs. The rear hub is the Kick-flip, which has a short splined freewheel on the drive side for regular cogs or a small cassette. Saved some weight and added flexibility, and the rim is still pretty much centered between the hub flanges. The hub cost USD 110 at Only Highend , which I think is a damn good deal for the quality that the hub is. Only Highend also sells 6-bolt cogs in case you want to flip the rear wheel and go fixed.
    Weight and exploded view?
    Get off the couch and ride!

  26. #26
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    The Fixie Kick-flip is 280 grams sans bolts (weighed it myself).
    No diagrams that I know of. If you find one, please do share it.

    The hub came with a spacer and lockring.

  27. #27
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    I just recently built a SS out of a never been built Dirt Research frame. I decided to buy a Woodman rear hub to build a wheel with because it was fairly cheap, I could adjust the chain line and easily swap cogs. Also because replacement freehub parts were actually available unluck some of the cheap SS hubs. It's been great so far.

  28. #28
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    I am a fan of the mini cassette and really enjoy my Hope Trials/SS hub. However, there is something simple and beautiful about those WI hubs. I enjoy the WI FW too. My next build will probably utitilize an ENO hub and FW, BUT brainstorming on this a little my dream set up would be a cross between the WI FW and this......Lunar Bikes - Single Speed Cogs. Or something along those lines. I'd get my WI reliability, and easy interchangability. Win win.

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