Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    anders
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Posts
    4

    Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??

    I got my hands on a 1996 merlin xlm, in pieces, and I'm planning to build it into a rigid commuter/all-rounder. Exciting! But I am very confused by this 100mm front hub. It's not symmetrical...





    So, when the wheel sits in the dropouts, it's off center within the fork. I assumed these were the original wheels, but maybe they aren't? I have the battered original fork (Rock Shox Judy) with canti brakes, but the bike was disassembled when I got it so I don't know how the previous rider set it up. But it's not like the cable hanger on the fork is off-center, so...

    As is, the hub will seat into dropouts with 100mm spacing. It came with an unbranded QR skewer that I suspect may be original Hope design as well, and using this I can assemble securely and, I suppose, ride. But... is it normal for the dropout to go right up against the bearing like that (e.g. second pic)? It's not like the dropout touches the bearing (because there is a little metal collar there) but why isn't there a serrated washer to clinch the dropout?

    Because actually, there WAS a dirty old toothed washer, loose with the bike:



    But if I fit this over the axle, of course the wheel can't go in the fork.

    I am so confused!! What am I missing here??
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??-img-0332.jpg  

    Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??-img-0333.jpg  

    Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??-img-0334.jpg  

    Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??-img-0335.jpg  


  2. #2
    Hybrid Leftys aren't real Moderator
    Reputation: MendonCycleSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    16,195
    Far from a mystery, that's a Hope, ti bodied hub.

    I'd venture a guess you can simply reach out to them and get another axle cap, which is all you're missing.

    That's a nice, vintage Salsa QR too....

    Pics of this Merlin, now, dammit!
    Cannondale Lefty and HeadShock servicing, wheel building, etc...


    www.mendoncyclesmith.com

  3. #3
    Ambivalent Luddite
    Reputation: Retro Dude's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    290
    Looks like one bearing is not pressed in completely
    __________________

    inFATuated

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1,569
    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Dude View Post
    Looks like one bearing is not pressed in completely
    That's my guess too. The bearing walked out of the hub taking the axle along for the ride.
    --------------

    [WTB] 1987 Cannondale SM800, 20", Pink with airbrushed graphics.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    648
    Yup, looks like the axle shifted over with the drifting bearing. If the bearing is pushed back in, it should push the axle out the other side and allow the cap to go back on that side. Might want to consider new bearings, and check the body where that drifted bearing came from for damage.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Hurricane Jeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,689
    The OP said that the wheel fits into the dropouts as it sits, meaning that it could not be that the bearing being outside of the hub is the issue. I don't have a solution of what the problem is, but I think the other posters are wrong with their assumptions.
    EXODUX Jeff

  7. #7
    anders
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Posts
    4
    Wow, thanks for the replies!

    You are quite right Mendon, indeed this must be a normal Hope ti glide hub, born to be symmetrical. It seems so obvious now.

    I think there must be multiple things going wrong with it. One is that the flange and spokes on the left side got shoved inwards along the hub body, so part of the cylinder body is sticking out. I didn't realize that could happen! Yikes.

    But that alone cannot explain the weird fact that the wheel sits neatly in the dropouts, even though it currently has only a single serrated washer on one side. I have two hypotheses here. What do you guys think? Pardon my ignorance, I have never worked on a hub before.

    a) Separate from the movement of the spoke flange, the axle (though not necessarily the bearings, which are flush within the hub body) has drifted out to the left. And then, I suppose... seeking to accommodate this and ride on, some numb-nut stuck a single serrated washer on the sticky-outy side of the axle, which happened to even things up.

    This isn't a very parsimonious theory, though, because it means original parts (a pair of washers and/or axle caps?) would have had to have been removed. Because without them, the spacing wouldn't be right.

    b) Both the bearings and the axle have drifted within the hub body. The two serrated washers (one cemented onto the hub with grime, the other loose) both belong to the hub. The reason they don't currently fit together with 100mm spacing is because the bearings have drifted too far outwards within the hub body. If this theory is correct, it means the bearings are supposed to be further inset, not flush at the edge as they are now (which looked kind of normal to me, but what do I know).

    Overall, the displacement of both the axle and the flange could be explained by the wheel being squashed or compressed from the left side. The bearings still spin smoothly and solidly, a testament to this great old hub!

    And I think no matter what, must still be parts missing...?

    Continued advice most welcome. I'd like to sort this myself, but ultimately I suppose I need to find a local wheel builder.

  8. #8
    anders
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Pics of this Merlin, now, dammit!
    Well here is a pic of my favorite bits. Just look at those cable hangers!!

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Vintage mystery hub... what am I missing here??-img-0339.jpg  


  9. #9
    Hybrid Leftys aren't real Moderator
    Reputation: MendonCycleSmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    16,195
    Nice bits, man I love old Merlins....

    So, your title lead me to my comment. You are missing an axle cap. Cartridge bearing hubs have a larger diameter axle a lot of the time, then a cap goes over its end, to become the proper QR or through axle fitting point.

    You're plainly missing one.

    However, I did not address or even note, what the others all did, which is, you have one sides bearing, halfway out of the shell.

    It needs to be pressed back in, axle cap popped on, symmetry will return, and life will be good.
    Cannondale Lefty and HeadShock servicing, wheel building, etc...


    www.mendoncyclesmith.com

  10. #10
    poser Administrator
    Reputation: rockcrusher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    10,179
    Quote Originally Posted by Anders68 View Post
    Well here is a pic of my favorite bits. Just look at those cable hangers!!

    Old Merlins were the business for sure. I also agree with all the others, missing end cap, and displaced bearing. To tap in the bearing use a larger than the diameter of the bearing socket with the flat against the bearing and knock it in. You want even pressure on the races of the bearing proper. You don't want to tap it in hitting only one of the races and leaving the other, it will cause premature bearing failure.

    Hopefully hope still has old stock of end caps! Good luck with the ti build!
    MTBR Posting Guidelines
    calories>electrons

  11. #11
    anders
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Posts
    4
    I'm posting here again to add some additional info. Mystery is not solved! And remains quite a conundrum, at least to me...

    Some facts:


    • The flanges are not symmetrical on the hub body. Right flange is flush against the edge, left flange is set in so that part of the hub body is sticking out. (This is most visible in the third pic.)
    • The "Hope" sticker is centered between the flanges, not on the hub body itself--suggesting the flanges are where they are supposed to be. (Conflicting with what I concluded above.)
    • The wheel fits in 100mm dropouts when the loose serrated washer is left off--doesn't fit when it is on.
    • If we assume that the flanges are correctly placed, then it is the case that the wheel is not dished properly. I.e., as is, the wheel is not centered within the fork.


    Took this to my local bike shop, they had no idea. Took a while for me to explain what was even wrong--then they agreed it was mystifying. They are great guys but I don't think they're the experts to assist with this.

    I've emailed Hope, fingers crossed for a reply.

    If anyone has any further insight, I'd love to hear. Would really love to be able to restore this hub.

Similar Threads

  1. Bar feed bags, what am I missing (or not missing)?
    By westin in forum Endurance XC Racing
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 11-08-2016, 12:41 PM
  2. Hub Width - What am I Missing Here?
    By TrailMaker in forum Fat bikes
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 06-18-2012, 08:33 PM
  3. Mystery Vintage - 80's Rocky/Brodie?
    By donk in forum Vintage, Retro, Classic
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 09-15-2005, 07:35 AM

Members who have read this thread: 46

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.