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Rear Wheel Free Spin

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Background: Most of my time on 2 wheels up until the last year has been spent bicycling. In a sport where the human engine is what propels the machine forward, we do everything to minimize friction: ceramic bearings at both wheels, bottom bracket and derailleurs; paraffin coated chains; perfectly matched tire width and tire pressure; even taking painstaking efforts to reduce wind drag.

Current Issue: I bought a new set of wheels recently. After installing the rear wheel I noticed that it would not spin freely or without friction/binding. In this video you will first see the free spin of my buddy's Tusk wheel set and then my new wheel set. 

I have spent a fair amount of time on the phone and via email with the company that produces my new wheel set. Initially I was asked to take measurements of the spacers, seals and bearings. Then I reseated the bearings and replaced the spacers. Next I was sent a rebuild kit (axle nut has always been properly torqued.). Nothing I have done has improved the wheel's free spin and I'm now being told by the wheel maker that's about as good as it will get and that this is normal, just ride it and see if it frees up a bit.

Questions:

Does free wheel spin really vary this much from wheel maker to wheel maker?

Does this type of binding and friction really matter. If yes, how does it effect my bike's performance?

Other than replacing the spacers, are there other solutions? 

Do I just need to shut up and ride?

 

 

Edited by Daveed

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Your D/L does not work.

In any case, 'spin tests' must be done with the chain off and confirming the brake pads do not touch the rotor. Try the test with the axle loose and then tight (should be the same) After a few hours of use, a wheel will loosen up some and spin easier. If you greased the bearings, you may of over greased them as well.

Unless your wheel will not rotate more than 1/2 a turn, the drag does not matter.

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1 minute ago, William1 said:

Your D/L does not work.

Apologies, I believe I have correctly updated 

1 minute ago, William1 said:

In any case, 'spin tests' must be done with the chain off and confirming the brake pads do not touch the rotor. Try the test with the axle loose and then tight (should be the same) After a few hours of use, a wheel will loosen up some and spin easier. If you greased the bearings, you may of over greased them as well.

Unless your wheel will not rotate more than 1/2 a turn, the drag does not matter.

With each step in the troubleshooting process I always tested the wheel without the chain engaging the sprocket and the break pads not touching the rotor. I would first check the spin with the axle nut finger tight, then again at 25% of spec torque, 50%, 75% and then 100%. The wheel started to bind once I torqued over 50% of spec.

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Just now, Daveed said:

Apologies, I believe I have correctly updated 

With each step in the troubleshooting process I always tested the wheel without the chain engaging the sprocket and the break pads not touching the rotor. I would first check the spin with the axle nut finger tight, then again at 25% of spec torque, 50%, 75% and then 100%. The wheel started to bind once I torqued over 50% of spec.

In your video, the second bike, the chain is way too tight.

Free spin, while not ideal, not bad. If tightening the axle makes it works, that tells me the center spacer is too short or the bearings not seated or the hub not machined properly.

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Seals and bearings are packed with grease add a lot of friction and need to break in. It's a dirt bike with 20 + HP, a little friction isn't the end of the world. I didn't watch your video but it is normal for a tire to only spin a few rotations before it stops IMO, especially with new bearings, seals, and spacers. As long as it springs smoothly and is not binding I would just run it and see if it breaks in.  I would probably care more if I was racing. 

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6 hours ago, Daveed said:

Do I just need to shut up and ride?

yes....lol

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17 minutes ago, mxer95 said:

yes....lol

You're prolly right. It's hard when I only get to ride 1 day a week. It's like football season: play the game on Sunday then talk about/prep for the next game for 6 days... (sigh)

Edited by Daveed

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Judas can you not see the cake of mud on the sprocket rubbing on the inside of the swingarm? LOL Powerwash it clean,  loosen and lube the chain, bet she spins a lot better.

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19 minutes ago, kdxyardsale said:

Judas can you not see the cake of mud on the sprocket rubbing on the inside of the swingarm? LOL Powerwash it clean,  loosen and lube the chain, bet she spins a lot better.

Yeah, I debated on showing that video because of the mud. The other video shows the wheel with the same bind after a solid cleaning and having just installed the new bearings and seals

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18 hours ago, Daveed said:

You're prolly right. It's hard when I only get to ride 1 day a week. It's like football season: play the game on Sunday then talk about/prep for the next game for 6 days... (sigh)

I feel your pain I really only get 1 day a week for real riding out on the trails these days.  I do practice small stuff around my house, there is a flat patch of dirt I can work on slow wheelies, balance techniques stuff like that but actual ride time is once maybe twice a week if I'm lucky

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