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  1. #1
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    I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping

    I built up some new wheels with new I9 Torch hubs in Aug. 2017.

    I thought the slipping was due to a worn chain, so I replaced the chain. Then I replaced the cassette even though the cassette was only about 5 weeks old. Then I thought it must be the front chainring, so I replaced that. When those repairs didn't cure the slipping, I opened up the rear hub expecting to see some broken pawls or something, but everything looked okay to me, so I cleaned everything--including the pawls and springs. Then, I relubed the pawls with Dumonde Tech Liquid Grease, and I relubed the drive ring with Dumonde Tech Freehub Grease. The rear hub still slipped.

    So I took my bike into a shop, and the mechanic pushed on my pedals with his hand, and he heard the bang when the freehub slipped. He said that was good news: he said that I either needed new pawls or if the pawls had worn the pawl pockets then I needed a new freehub body. I ordered a new freehub body($180), and today I replaced the freehub body, and the rear hub still slips.

    That leaves the teeth/drive ring, right? I checked the outside of the hub for cracks, and it looks fine. I9 said to send them my wheel, but I'm on a road trip.

    Any suggestions? Do you need a special tool to install a new drive ring?

  2. #2
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    I haven't replaced my I9 drive ring but I expect the answer to you question is "yes" -- a special tool may well be required.

    Any chance the pawl springs went missing somehow? It's been over a year since I replaced my I9 freehub body (steel for aluminum) and upped my pawls from 3 to 6 but anyway IIRC the springs are tiny and easy to misplace. Without them, slippage would surely occur.
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  3. #3
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    It's possible part of the leading edge of a pawl has sheared off and then been jammed into the corner of the drive ring tooth. Can be easy to miss by just cleaning with a rag. It would be worth it to take a dental pick and just swipe through each tooth to make sure there isn't anything preventing the pawls from engaging correctly. Sounds a little tedious, but I have found pieces of metal when others hadn't and it can be the difference between having to rebuild your wheel or not.
    Drive rings are a pain in the arse to get out in my experience. The more mileage the worse they are. We have a couple of 4 ft. breaker bars and I can put all 150 pounds of me on it and it won't budge. Other times, they have come out with just a little bit of strain. We sell the tool to remove it on our web store

    Did you put your old pawls in the new driver or order it complete with new pawls?
    How old is the wheel?

  4. #4
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    ^ Use a magnifying glass to inspect each tooth of the drive ring. If the drive ring is faulty (rare) reach out to I9.

  5. #5
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    Please follow up with what you find. I built a wheelset earlier this year using torch hubs manufactured in 2017. I have that same 'bang' problem, and I can tell something is amiss. I couldn't find the issue either, so I'm really interested in what you find.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the responses.

    Any chance the pawl springs went missing somehow?
    Nope. With the original freehub body, I removed and cleaned the pawls and springs, then I reinstalled them, then I lubed them with Dumonde Tech Liquid Grease, then I checked the action of each pawl as I worked the liquid grease down into each pocket.

    Did you put your old pawls in the new driver or order it complete with new pawls?
    I did not use my old pawls. The new freehub body came with pawls, so I just removed the old freehub body and put the new one in.

    How old is the wheel?
    I built the wheelset in August 2017, so the wheelset is about 1 year and 3 months old.

    It's possible part of the leading edge of a pawl has sheared off and then been jammed into the corner of the drive ring tooth. Can be easy to miss by just cleaning with a rag. It would be worth it to take a dental pick and just swipe through each tooth to make sure there isn't anything preventing the pawls from engaging correctly. Sounds a little tedious, but I have found pieces of metal when others hadn't and it can be the difference between having to rebuild your wheel or not.
    Okay, I'll try that. If that doesn't work, I'll check if the shop has a drive ring and the tool. If not, I'll order the drive ring and tool from I9 and have it overnighted to me.

    Use a magnifying glass to inspect each tooth of the drive ring.
    Okay, I'll do that too.

    Thanks for the suggestions!

  7. #7
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    It's been my understanding that once the drive ring slips inside the hub shell, the I9 hub is toast. This happened to a friend recently, on an older one.

    Something about the metal in the drive ring being harder than the metal in the hub shell, or vice-versa, so once it slips, it's a full failure and can't be replaced.

    I could be wrong, but that's what I remember him saying.Industry 9 has top notch service, I'd reach out by phone and explain the issue.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man View Post
    It's been my understanding that once the drive ring slips inside the hub shell, the I9 hub is toast. This happened to a friend recently, on an older one.
    Okay. Thanks for the info. Hopefully, the drive ring isn't slipping!

    Something about the metal in the drive ring being harder than the metal in the hub shell
    The drive ring and the pawls are made out of hardened tool steel and the hub shell is aluminum.

    Just so you know, shaquille_o'wheel is I9.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    Okay. Thanks for the info. Hopefully, the drive ring isn't slipping!


    The drive ring and the pawls are made out of hardened tool steel and the hub shell is aluminum.

    Just so you know, shaquille_o'wheel is I9.
    Your hub is "skipping" not "slipping" if you spin the drive ring there is no abrupt noises, pops or bangs. The cranks would turn and the rear wheel would do nothing - nice and smooth no power flow dead hub.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen View Post
    Your hub is "skipping" not "slipping" if you spin the drive ring there is no abrupt noises, pops or bangs. The cranks would turn and the rear wheel would do nothing - nice and smooth no power flow dead hub.
    It could definitely be both. The drive ring rarely completely unthreads, that'd be catastrophic.

    While he's probably checking the pawls, it could also be the pawls engaging the drive ring and having intermittent drive ring slip.

    This would end up loading and unloading the drivetrain, creating a pop or a bang, especially if it's happening while shifting or under load.

    Either way, happyriding probably has some watt-cannon legs. Too much powa!

  11. #11
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    No luck. I slid a pick along each tooth twice, and I examined the teeth with a magnifying glass, and as far as I can tell there's no sheared off metal lodged in any of the teeth. Also, after I cleaned everything--including the pawls and springs--I relubed with just Dumonde Tech Liquid Grease everywhere, omitting the Dumonde Tech Freehub Grease on the drive ring, so the oil would be thinner.

    I'm out of endcap o-rings!

    I wonder if a new drive ring will solve the problem. I'm headed to the bike shop to see if they have one in stock.

  12. #12
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    The I9 bike shop doesn't have a new drive ring or the I9 removal tool, so I'm out of luck at this point. I thought about ordering a new drive ring and tool from I9, but the way things have been going with this hub, I don't have any faith that I would be able to remove the old drive ring with I9's tool, and it's not even certain that a new drive ring will cure the problem.

    So I guess I'm shopping for a new hub to rebuild my rear wheel.

    A few months ago, I started hearing an occasional bang from my drive train, which I thought was the chain resetting itself on the chainring, so I think my rear hub problem started some time ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    The I9 bike shop doesn't have a new drive ring or the I9 removal tool, so I'm out of luck at this point. The way things have been going with this hub, I don't have any faith that I would be able to remove the old drive ring with I9's tool, and it's not even certain that a new drive ring will cure the problem.

    So I guess I'm shopping for a new hub to rebuild my rear wheel.
    You gotta do what you gotta do. Did you say sending the wheel to I9 is not an option? I wasn't paying adequate attention.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    You gotta do what you gotta do. Did you say sending the wheel to I9 is not an option? I wasn't paying adequate attention.
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    I'm on a road trip, and I haven't ridden in a week due to my rear hub problems, and mailing my wheel to I9 will be expensive and it will take some time to get it back, and I don't want to miss another week of riding, so I think the quickest way to get back riding again is to get a new hub overnighted to me and rebuild the wheel.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    I'm on a road trip, and I haven't ridden in a week due to my rear hub problems, and mailing my wheel to I9 will be expensive and it will take some time to get it back, and I don't want to miss another week of riding, so I think the quickest way to get back riding again is to get a new hub overnighted to me and rebuild the wheel.
    Best of luck getting on with it!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    The I9 bike shop doesn't have a new drive ring or the I9 removal tool, so I'm out of luck at this point. I thought about ordering a new drive ring and tool from I9, but the way things have been going with this hub, I don't have any faith that I would be able to remove the old drive ring with I9's tool, and it's not even certain that a new drive ring will cure the problem.

    So I guess I'm shopping for a new hub to rebuild my rear wheel.

    A few months ago, I started hearing an occasional bang from my drive train, which I thought was the chain resetting itself on the chainring, so I think my rear hub problem started some time ago.
    I have spun a few drive rings and as I mentioned it was an easy diagnosis. When my first ring spun manufacture wanted evidence of slipping. I used a paint pen and marked the side of one ring tooth and the hub flange. Did a quick spin on a hill and sure enough the marks clock positions changed. Once the drive ring spind hub is toast.

    Do you have another rear wheel you can install to make certain it is a hub issue?

  17. #17
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    Sucks to spend so much on a high end hub and have it break like this.

  18. #18
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    Many times the Drive Ring is spun into the hub so tight it cannot be removed. Then the hub is replaced. I have done this twice since 2010 on my classic I9's

  19. #19
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    I posted a few days ago about my ratchet ring slipping, different brand of hub but same outcome. I extracted it with a tool and could see that the threads on the hub side were shredded but the ratchet ring, made of harder metal was fine. In that discussion thread, someone recommended green Loctite 680. Bought a bottle but havenít tried it yet. Iím moving back to DT Swiss 240s.

    By the way, my slipping was very smooth, not clunking.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Schulze View Post
    Sucks to spend so much on a high end hub and have it break like this.
    That is why you buy Chris King!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schulze View Post
    Sucks to spend so much on a high end hub and have it break like this.
    Uh, yeah.

    Quote Originally Posted by backinmysaddle View Post
    I posted a few days ago about my ratchet ring slipping, different brand of hub but same outcome. I extracted it with a tool and could see that the threads on the hub side were shredded but the ratchet ring, made of harder metal was fine. In that discussion thread, someone recommended green Loctite 680. Bought a bottle but havenít tried it yet. Iím moving back to DT Swiss 240s.

    By the way, my slipping was very smooth, not clunking.
    People - typically heavy, powerful people- have toasted the DT Swiss 54T star ratchet by chipping teeth. Smaller teeth and more points of engagement leads to an interface that can't handle as much torque.

    But this is not the ratchet and pawls. This is the inner hub coming apart, which I believe, DT does not do. There have been major, wide-spread issues with other hubs like Novatec and Stans. Maybe this issue with I9 is much more uncommon?

  22. #22
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    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    That must be list price. My I9s Torch hubs were $485 before tax, and my Onyx were about $500 flat before tax.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keen View Post
    I have spun a few drive rings and as I mentioned it was an easy diagnosis. When my first ring spun manufacture wanted evidence of slipping. I used a paint pen and marked the side of one ring tooth and the hub flange. Did a quick spin on a hill and sure enough the marks clock positions changed. Once the drive ring spind hub is toast.
    Thanks for the info. I think I read one of your posts in another thread where you said you marked the drive ring to test whether the drive ring was slipping.

    Do you have another rear wheel you can install to make certain it is a hub issue?
    No, but I replaced the chain, the cassette, and the chainring, so all the parts in the drivetrain are brand new except the rear hub, cranks and derailleur; and I don't see how it can be a crank or derailleur problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    Thanks for the info. I think I read one of your posts in another thread where you said you marked the drive ring to test whether the drive ring was slipping.

    No, but I replaced the chain, the cassette, and the chainring, so all the parts in the drivetrain are brand new except the rear hub, cranks and derailleur; and I don't see how it can be a crank or derailleur problem.
    I'd send the wheel to I9.

  26. #26
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    To show how things can snowball when you are on a road trip: UPS overnight delivery was delayed due to a sorting error. Another day without a bike...

    Lesson learned: always carry a spare rear hub as well as the correct spoke lengths to rebuild a wheel. I didn't have room for my Park truing stand, so I'm going to rebuild on the frame. Are there any portable truing stands that are worth a damn?
    Last edited by happyriding; 3 Weeks Ago at 04:37 PM.

  27. #27
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    I'd call I9 before spending any more money, they have GREAT customer service

  28. #28
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    Do Shimano XT hubs ever break? I don't understand why breakage like this is acceptable.

  29. #29
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    Do Shimano XT hubs ever break? I don't understand why breakage like this is acceptable.
    Ha! I was just thinking about that. On a 40 spoke rear touring wheel that was built with a Shimano XT hub, I had some unsolved, slight slipping after 3,000 miles. My LBS replaced the chainrings and cassette, and it still slipped. A few years ago, I read something that made me suspect it was the hub.

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    Yeah, but they are $100

  31. #31
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    Yeah, but they are $100
    The don't just slide in and out of your wheel.

  32. #32
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    XT ratchet system is completely in the freehub. You buy a new one for $40 and screw it on with a 15mm hex.

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    And for the coup de grace: I started to rebuild my rear wheel today, but when I removed the tire I found a big dent in the sidewall. I could straighten that easily enough--although a rippled sidewall would make truing the rim more difficult, but the dent extends into the bed of the rim. After examining the rim for a few minutes, I decided not to try to build a new wheel with a rim that I won't be able to true laterally or radially, so now I'm waiting for a new rim to be delivered on Tuesday, which will mean I will have been dealing with this problem for 14 days.

    I guess I'll service my fork and seatpost while I'm waiting. I already did the shock.

  34. #34
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    The drive ring has several pieces, and I made three pencil marks on the outside of the hub to line up with three of the drive ring edges then I reassembled the hub, and I pedaled my bike about 50 feet with moderate pressure on the pedals and my drivetrain slipped 3-4 times. Then I opened up the hub again, and the pencil marks still lined up with the drive ring edges, so the drive ring didn't slip.

    I sent some pics of my rear hub to I9 and the preliminary diagnosis is cracks in the drive ring and damage to the drive ring teeth, so my hub needs a new drive ring. I'll mail my hub to I9 in a couple of days, and I'll know more in a week or so.

    teeth1 by happyriding, on Flickr
    pawls3 by happyriding, on Flickr

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    You made a whole thread on this when the drive ring is obviously cracked and the teeth are chipped or worn away. I mean, I can see it obviously in the pic, so in person it's even more obvious. This is just ridiculous.

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    Yup. Ring is broken to bits. It's the first thing I noticed in the pictures. The takeaway is that in the future, post pictures right away and you'll have your problem solved in minutes.

  37. #37
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    It looks like it's in 6 or more pieces. Wow.

  38. #38
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    Those are NOT cracks and it is NOT broken

    You guys are apparently are not familiar with I-9 hubs or the pressed ring gear.

    The marks that you think are cracks are not. I think they are are machining press or die marks, but they are not cracks.

    Note this almost new I-9 Torch hub and you can clearly see the same die marks.

    I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping-20161107_194112-i.jpg
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    I'm guessing here, but...

    Looking at another photo of Happyring's Freehub (from his Flickr), it appears, but I can't really determine that your pawls might be worn a bit.

    My freehub photo isn't as good as Happyriding, but look at the pawls on mine compared to yours. Do my pawls appear slightly sharper?

    I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping-20170122_160944-i.jpg I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping-worn-pawls-maybe-i.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    Do my pawls appear slightly sharper?
    Sure as shit.
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    I'm thinking this Freehub is just worn out...

    Take a look at the Pawl Pivot Slots and compare them to mine. This just looks like it's worn out. How may miles do you have on this and what has been your maintenance intervals?

    I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping-20170122_160944-i.jpg I9 Torch boost rear hub is slipping-worn-pawls-maybe-ii.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    Take a look at the Pawl Pivot Slots and compare them to mine. This just looks like it's worn out. How may miles do you have on this and what has been your maintenance intervals?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Wondered that, too. OP's is obviously an aluminum body. C2L, is yours steel?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    You guys are apparently are not familiar with I-9 hubs or the pressed ring gear.

    The marks that you think are cracks are not. I think they are are machining press or die marks, but they are not cracks.
    Pretty sure that the pockets are machined in there with the purpose of helping get the pawls inside the drive ring. That's why you spin as you insert, the pawls drop down in the pockets and then slide into the teeth portion smoothly.

    FYI: From the Legacy service guide:

    "To ease reassembly of the drive mechanism, there are six slots milled into the circumference of the drive ring (fig 15) . These accept the pawls and simplify the reengagement of the pawls in the drive ring."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    Wondered that, too. OP's is obviously an aluminum body. C2L, is yours steel?
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    Yeah, mine's aluminum too.

    I'm not sure of the mileage when this image of mine was taken, but I'm guessing this freehub has about 3,100 miles at the time photo was taken.
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    Quote Originally Posted by teamdicky View Post
    Pretty sure that the pockets are machined in there with the purpose of helping get the pawls inside the drive ring. That's why you spin as you insert, the pawls drop down in the pockets and then slide into the teeth portion smoothly.

    FYI: From the Legacy service guide:

    "To ease reassembly of the drive mechanism, there are six slots milled into the circumference of the drive ring (fig 15) . These accept the pawls and simplify the reengagement of the pawls in the drive ring."
    DING, Ding, ding....

    You beat me to it! I did some research, but did not find what you did, so I dropped an email to I-9 and here's their reply (it only took 15 minutes to get their answer to my email!)...

    Those are the "gates" to allow all 6 pawls to simultaneously depress enough to slide into the drive ring. Without them it would be fairly difficult to install the freehub mechanism.
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  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    The drive ring has several pieces, and I made three pencil marks on the outside of the hub to line up with three of the drive ring edges then I reassembled the hub, and I pedaled my bike about 50 feet with moderate pressure on the pedals and my drivetrain slipped 3-4 times. Then I opened up the hub again, and the pencil marks still lined up with the drive ring edges, so the drive ring didn't slip.

    I sent some pics of my rear hub to I9 and the preliminary diagnosis is cracks in the drive ring and damage to the drive ring teeth, so my hub needs a new drive ring. I'll mail my hub to I9 in a couple of days, and I'll know more in a week or so.

    teeth1 by happyriding, on Flickr
    pawls3 by happyriding, on Flickr
    The freehub has scoring before every pawl. In my experience this would be from excessive bearing clearance causing the freehub to contact the drive ring. Any radial movement and the pawls are going to go haywire - crunch, boom and bang. Hub needs a full rebuild.

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    Ok so its not cracked. But the teeth are clearly worn off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    Yeah, mine's aluminum too.

    I'm not sure of the mileage when this image of mine was taken, but I'm guessing this freehub has about 3,100 miles at the time photo was taken.
    My freehub body is steel. Okay so it's looking like the problem may not be the body but rather the pawls themselves. It appears they may be worn at both ends -- the circular portion that pivots in the pockets in the body as well as the engagement teeth. What are the chances that somehow the OP got some counterfeit or improperly cast pawls? Or some other such wonkiness?
    =sParty
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  49. #49
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    ^^^^ I dunno...I'm not think'n counterfeit...

    I suspect this is perhaps ridden hard, high-mileage, minimal servicing, but I really dunno.

    The OP hasn't chimed in, but this is the kind of wear you might see on road bike application.
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen View Post
    The freehub has scoring before every pawl. In my experience this would be from excessive bearing clearance causing the freehub to contact the drive ring. Any radial movement and the pawls are going to go haywire - crunch, boom and bang. Hub needs a full rebuild.
    Worn bearings. More specifically, the drive side bearing that is pressed in the hubshell (the one closest to the drive ring), would be my suspicion.

    I've seen this on a BHS hub. The driveside hubshell bearing was toast. The pawl pockets got worn as well, but I don't what was the chicken and what was the egg.
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  51. #51
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    In the op,

    I ordered a new freehub body($180) [which came with new pawls], and today I replaced the freehub body, and the rear hub still slips.
    Maintenance history: I serviced the hub after 1 month to silence some creaking that I could hear when the drivetrain was under load. By process of elimination, I began to suspect the hub. After servicing the hub, I never heard the creaking again. I serviced the hub again 6 months later as part of my regular maintenance schedule. I use Dumonde Tech Freehub grease on the drive ring teeth and Dumonde Tech Liquid Grease on the pawls.

    I estimate the hub has 500-600 hours on it.

  52. #52
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    Every hub shell I have used (hope, I9, Cho sen) with that style of drive mechanism has had those marks after some use (less then 200 miles). That is why I am such a fan of Onyx and CK (no experience with other hubs), load is spread much more evenly across the parts of the hub that transmit power that you don't have to worry nearly as much about tolerance build up and bearing slop.

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonshonda View Post
    Every hub shell I have used (hope, I9, Cho sen) with that style of drive mechanism has had those marks after some use (less then 200 miles). That is why I am such a fan of Onyx and CK (no experience with other hubs), load is spread much more evenly across the parts of the hub that transmit power that you don't have to worry nearly as much about tolerance build up and bearing slop.
    I have owned and serviced many hubs a would definitely say that is not a normal phenomenon to have any scoring on the inside of hub shell. If the shell in contacting the drive ring the pawl alignment / contact is incorrect and it's going to skip, pop, bang, grenade etc. I would suspect bearings , clearances or less common would be axle flex.

  54. #54
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    OP... Are these I-9's on a road bike?
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  55. #55
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    Look like freehub bearings were worn, as a result there is excessive play which is also having a wearing effect on paws.

  56. #56
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    There's all kinds of things worn on this, not just the double 3803 bearing.

    and, they don't need replacement very often. In fact, almost never.
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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    OP... Are these I-9's on a road bike?
    No. The rear hub was on an Ibis HD3.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyriding View Post
    And for the coup de grace: I started to rebuild my rear wheel today, but when I removed the tire I found a big dent in the sidewall. I could straighten that easily enough--although a rippled sidewall would make truing the rim more difficult, but the dent extends into the bed of the rim. After examining the rim for a few minutes, I decided not to try to build a new wheel with a rim that I won't be able to true laterally or radially, so now I'm waiting for a new rim to be delivered on Tuesday, which will mean I will have been dealing with this problem for 14 days.

    I guess I'll service my fork and seatpost while I'm waiting. I already did the shock.
    Im sure your issue is long past, but why not buy an XT wheel so you can at least ride? Every bike shop would carry a rear wheel.

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    There's all kinds of things worn on this, not just the double 3803 bearing.

    and, they don't need replacement very often. In fact, almost never.
    OP - did you wash the bike frequently, with a pressurized hose?

    bearings typically don't die early through normal means.

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