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Shimano Hub Service

First time attempt and now can see why they were running rough...

Pretty obvious I guess but new ball bearings needed? And if so, anything else I should think about before reassembling?




Posts

  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,146
    Replacing the balls is unlikely to solve the problem. Cups and cones are likely to be pitted too... hence for a good job, the all unit needs to be changed, which is not a home mechanic job... not even sure it is possible to get hold of spare cups for Shimano.
    I've kind of given up on cup and cone bearings for that reason, I prefer sealed units, that you can replace without too much fuss
  • Thanks Ugo, I've checked them visually and they look OK.

    I'll try reassembling and see if new ball bearings make a difference, if not then I guess it's a new rear hub.

    Shame as mileage is low on this wheelset / haven't been used really and stuck in the shed getting damp which is perhaps why they are so grotty inside.

    Dare I say it but they are Ultegra hubs :)

  • Out of interest what's the likely labour cost to replace the hub with something like a Bitex or Novatec? / the Archetype rims have loads of life in them?
  • arlowoodarlowood Posts: 2,519

    Out of interest what's the likely labour cost to replace the hub with something like a Bitex or Novatec? / the Archetype rims have loads of life in them?

    Have seen wheel builds quoted at between £33 and £50

    https://cyclefix.co.uk/repair-pricing/
    https://thecyclemechanic.co.uk/priceguide/

    That's probably a reasonable ball park with the cost of the new hub and probably spokes on top of that.

    Also for a "budgetish" hub why not look at Miche Primato also. I have them on my Archetype rimmed build from Malcolm at Cycleclinic and I rate them highly. Freehub is quiet noisy though so if that would bother you, look elsewhere
  • mully79mully79 Posts: 311
    Get quality bearings that are the correct hardness for bicycle hubs (otherwise you may wear your cup and cones out.
    I dont know what they supply in hubs as standard but they appear to be rubbish.
    I used Grade 100 Hardened AISI 420 Stainless from simply bearings. The difference is night and day.
  • masjermasjer Posts: 141
    mully79 said:

    Get quality bearings that are the correct hardness for bicycle hubs (otherwise you may wear your cup and cones out.
    I dont know what they supply in hubs as standard but they appear to be rubbish.
    I used Grade 100 Hardened AISI 420 Stainless from simply bearings. The difference is night and day.

    Same here, well almost 440C stainless balls combined with marine grease (calcium sulfonate) = everlasting, low maintenance hubs.
  • Thanks Masjer and Mully79. I have no idea about ball bearings so being a novice I bought some AISI 52100 chrome steel G25 balls from Amazon. Do you think these will suffice?
  • david37david37 Posts: 1,313
    edited 20 February
    G25 which is a grade of variance in size is what Shimano use in duraace hubs. the primary difference in using a chrome steel ball as described is the requirement to keep it oiled. The ultegra hubs are not the best sealed so periodic maintenance and more grease will be required. i.e. every spring.

    in other words the bearings you have are fine. and once youve done the job once it will be straight forward to do it again when or if you next need to.

    However....... if the cups or cones are pitted its game over for the hub youve got if youre looking for perfection.


    so you can service your wheels for £5. far better than buying a cheap hub and a bunch of spokes and paying someone to build a wheel using used rims.




  • mully79mully79 Posts: 311
    They will be fine. The chrome steel are normal. The stainless just resist corrosion better.
  • masjermasjer Posts: 141
    They'll be fine. The only reason to go stainless is to reduce rust. Marine stainless (300 grade) is the most rust resistant but can't be hardened -so wears faster. 400 grade is more suitable for bearings as it can be hardened but is less rust resistant (but more so than chrome steel).
    Maintenance (re-greasing) is the key especially if you cycle in the rain. As is using rust resistant grease.
    If your hubs do feel/sound rough due to pitting on the cups or cones you can replace the cones - SJS cycles stock many different ones. Even if you just ignore any roughness, you won't notice it whilst riding but it might make you 0.005 Mph slower. :)
    When you rebuild (tightening the cones) leave a very slight amount of play. This is important, as when you tighten the quick releases the play is removed-otherwise the hubs might bind.
  • Superb advice - I finger tightened the cone pre load before reassembling. I'll undo and just check I haven't over done it.

    Thanks very much to all of you. :)
  • photonic69photonic69 Posts: 1,135
    Getting the cones tightened to "just so" when you do up the locknut is a dark art. It either goes well or you will re-do it 15 times. The problem is that we don't have 3 hands and the axel turns and tightens the cone further when you are doing up the locknut. I find it best to very slightly over tighten by hand then as you are doing up the locknut to back-off the cone towards the locknut. This usually works for me. Reminds me I have 3 bikes to do later in the Spring.
  • Use grade 10 chrome balls. Rust is a non issue with good greases. Never had any hub i have serviced go rusty with rock n roll super web grease.

    Stainless balls are a solution to a problems which is best solved with better grease.

    Use the grade 10 balls as the rounder the ball the longer the cups and cones last longer. Grade 10 hardened chrome steel ball are the only ones i buy for the shop and every hub runs smoother with them.
    www.thecycleclinic.co.uk
  • masjermasjer Posts: 141
    edited 20 February
    I had huge rust problems with Rock n roll super web grease. It seems to have almost no rust inhibitors. Industrial/marine calcium sulfonate grease stops rust even when submerged in salt water.
    Using stainless balls will help stop pitting on the cones/cups as the balls stay rust free and smooth/shiny . I've used the same set of stainless 440c balls for 10's of thousands of miles and the balls, cups and cone still look new.
    10 grade is fine but really unnecessarily round, the hubs aren't manufactured to such precision. No harm in using them though.
  • So after a few attempts at getting the pre load "just so" I am now happy I've done an OK job. There's still a bit of graininess but nothing like it was. I assume therefore that there is some damage to the cups and cones. But as Masjer said above I think I am just going to live with it.

    To Ugo's point, re cup and cone, I suspect that being close to 100kg doesn't help and nor do winter roads / salt etc.

    Malcolm built these Archetypes for me 4 years ago and they are as true as the day they arrived, so will persevere with them as my winter wheels.
  • david37david37 Posts: 1,313
    100kg shouldnt be an issue. Winter roads and salt very def is. :)
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