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EDR
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10,045 Posts
Discussion Starter #21
I had a 240s with the 54t star ratchet. It “spun” in the first 10 rides.
Well that certainly was a shity experience. I've got to believe there was something wrong with the machining of the ratchets or spring pressure. Goes without saying that that should never happen.
 

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EDR
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10,045 Posts
Discussion Starter #22
I've got two rides on the new 18 tooth hub now and I'm a bit surprised how I feel about it. I fully expected hate it, but I don't.

I admittedly don't ride nearly as much ratchet-y terrain as I used to but unexpectedly where I do notice the difference is when coasting and then going to re-pedal. The slop before engagement is noticeable for sure in that circumstance. Not a deal-breaker though just different. Love how quiet it is though, absolutely silent on the trail.
 

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Ride Fast Take Chances :)
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3,331 Posts
I killed a 54 after about 2000 miles on it. I had to file it just to keep it alive the last 100 miles and it finally wouldn't hold any power in the big gears. Back to the 18.
 

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mtbrer
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969 Posts
Well that certainly was a shity experience. I've got to believe there was something wrong with the machining of the ratchets or spring pressure. Goes without saying that that should never happen.
Agreed. My overall feeling, despite many of these hubs living long healthy lives, is that a tiny little spring is just not enough to keep these ratchets engaged. A look at the CK system shows a helical spline driving the rings together. A heavier and more costly hub, perhaps, but a more robust design.
 

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EDR
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10,045 Posts
Discussion Starter #25
Agreed. My overall feeling, despite many of these hubs living long healthy lives, is that a tiny little spring is just not enough to keep these ratchets engaged. A look at the CK system shows a helical spline driving the rings together. A heavier and more costly hub, perhaps, but a more robust design.
I don't have my ratchets in hand at the moment of course, but I wonder if they are machined in a way that they kind of grab at each other and 'lock' together, not needing much spring pressure. I've got to believe the engineering design of the springs is simply to push the two pieces together slightly, allowing the shape and cuts of the ratchets to engage themselves fully.... it would seem silly to rely on spring pressure to keep the two ratchets together.

The inherent problem with that design would be that as the edges of the teeth get worn then of course they'll start to slip as massive spring pressure is not pushing them together. Anyhow pure conjecture on my part.
 

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35 Posts
For those of you with those unreliable 54T that could break if you sneeze and pedal at the same time let me know, I'll trade you an 18T, no cost!
 

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EDR
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10,045 Posts
Discussion Starter #29
Couple more rides now on my 18T. Still not hating it. Totally surprised. Love the silence.

I'll probably upgrade anyway because that's what we do.
 

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5 Posts
Broke my first/original 54Tooth gear set in my 350 hub tonight. This has been my go-to 29er rear wheel across several bikes, over the last 6 years or so. I can’t complain. It’s the 5th hub I’ve broken in the past 8-9 years of riding. The other hubs were the standard 3-pawl designs, they just don’t hold up. I ride steep, rocky and root my NorthEast terrain, and have cracked a few frames as well. Not a light rider, but put down a lot of torque as I love the hard, technical climbs.

All that said, I’m buying another 54T ratchet set. No idea how many thousands of miles and millions of hard pedal strokes, but overall it’s the most reliable hub I’ve used. I have the 350 hub/54 tooth gears on two other bikes, they are worth the money I feel.

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52 Posts
When I converted from the 18T to the 36T I put the 18T set in my pack. I'm am very glad I did. I blow out the 36T then purchased another 36T and blow it out.

I went back to the 18T then when the 54T came out I was not willing to spend the $$ since I had such bad luck with the 36T.....

Fast forward a year and I dropped the coin on the 54T and have been loving them for the past 3 years.

Here is what I believe is going on (which is most likely my fault)....

The 18T has large ramps and if you fill them full of grease they don't mind.

The 36T has smaller ramps but you can still fill them with grease and I believe this keeps them from fully engaging. Once the top of the contact point gets a little damage (and I mean just a little) from not fully engaging then it is all over.

The 54T has such small ramps that even when you fully pack them with grease it mostly gets pushed out by just putting the hub together and spinning it. This keeps the grease from allowing the ramps to obtain full contact.

I've been very happy with the 54T however I still have a set of 18T in my pack because I would rather ride than walk most days...
How did you break the 18T star ratchet?
The strongest star ratchet is reportedly the 24T from the Hybrid to e-Bike hub.
 
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