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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Less than 100 yards from reaching the top of House Mountain, on the really steep part of the climb that most people walk, I heard this big popping sound. Next thing I know, my freehub body no longer freewheels. We are about to drop down Three Hour Wash and I only have 3 options left for coasting:

1. Sit on the saddle, with my feet off the pedals and let the cranks spin wildly.
2. Lock the rear wheel, which allows my cranks to remain in one position until I let off the rear brake again, at which time I'd best be instantly pedaling at almost exactly whatever speed the bike happens to be rolling.
3. Coast with my feet on the pedals, but for no more than about half a second, or the chain will continue to wrap around my cassette, until it rips my rear defailleur off the frame.

Three Hour Wash is a very technical assault on the senses that rarely lets up for more than a few seconds at a time.

And can you guess how long it typically takes to ride down it?

I must now pedal constantly, virtually the entire way down, no matter what the terrain I am riding over. This includes rolling down very steep sections and knee high drops. I cannot pause my pedaling for a moment right before a wheelie drop, to get the timing right, or it just gets a whole bunch of slack in the top row of the chain; and then when I try to accelerate to lift the front wheel, all that happens is that my feet spin wildly, with no resistance, as I merely take up the slack in the chain and the front end nose-dives off the drop.

Once we get to the bottom of the wash, it's another hour and a half ride back.

The next few hours start to look interesting.

By the time we get to the confluence of Three Hour Wash and Oak Creek, my hub had separated enough that the steel drive ring is stripping out, so I must now pedal as smoothly as possible, because even the slightest spike in power output makes the drive ring spin inside the hub shell.

And now we begin several hundred feet of climbing, to get back up to the rim.

And every time I over-power the drive ring and make it slip, it strips out the hub shell just a bit more and makes it slip even easier from then on out.

I end up jogging up all of the steep parts, pushing my bike.

I run out of water.

I finally reach the top. Now it's just a few miles of old jeep trails over rolling hills to reach the road. And I now have a cell signal again, so I call Jamie, for a rescue. She says that she will come pick me up, but she has the Kia, and it can't handle the jeep trail. I tell her that's fine, I'll just meet her at the road.

The drive ring keeps slipping easier and easier. Now it takes total focus just to be able to keep forward motion on level ground. The feeling kind of reminds me of when we were kids and we would take our BMX bikes to my friend, John's house in the winter and ride them on his frozen pond.

Finally, the road. I arrive at the same moment Jamie does. When she finds out that Kiva and I have been without water for such a long time, she apologizes for not bringing any. I tell her that's O.K. and that I'm just glad after nearly six hours that I'm done.

And then... I find a full bottle of water in the back of her car that she has had in the trunk for so long that she forgot it was even there!

I've got to quit pedaling so hard, this is the second hub I've stripped the drive ring out of the hub shell in just two months...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
This one was a Hadley 12 x 150. The last one was an Azonic 12 x 150
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Here's some photos...I hope...

I'm not much of a computer geek, but I think I can make this work...
 

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Damn that sucks. Were both your hubs hadley? I was under the impression that they were some of the strongest available.

If I were in your shoes at the top of "three hour wash" I would have taken off the chain and coasted down.

Good tale to tell anyways:cool:
 

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old broken downhiller
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Damn D, you need to back off the throttle there. How old was that hub?

Sounds like you're still having those same ol' adventures! I miss that sh!t...
 

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Wow! Do you have any idea when or how the hub body broke? It sounds like it was broken before you even started riding which it was probably broken on a previous ride? How long have you had the hubs?

I have the same Hadleys on both my bikes and this scares me a little.
 

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gnar, brah
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Chainless DH is super gnar. I would have felt safer taking the chain off.

I had a similar problem once. I was at the very top of Poison Spider Mesa and a freak thunderstorm was rapidly approaching. I was sprinting, and the der. hanger snapped, and my der. went into the spokes. As I was frantically trying to work on the bike, a benevolent Swede in his 4x4 drove over and offered me a ride down. It was my first time offroading too, really cool. In exchange, he asked that I help the next person I find stranded in the desert. :thumbsup:
 

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Answer the question... why didn't you just take off the chain. I did it once in a race.
 

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A friend of mine blew up his freehub on a ride we did a few weeks ago.

I was behind him as he was trying to power up a pile of rocks that let you ride up on top of a boulder when I heard BANG! & that was the end of his freehub, his below completely so the pedals just spun, no drive at all.

Luckily, we were only a few miles from the trailhead so me & another friend took turns towing him on the fire roads by having him hold onto our camelback straps with one hand (which actually worked pretty well since the climbing on the way back was minimal).

Going to have to carry some rope in the future for such occasions, having both of us tow him at once would have been much easier, lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
We're not talking about a fire road here...

Three hour wash is a typical Sedona wash. Most of it is a constant barrage of soccer ball to medium television sized boulders, with plenty of front wheel sucking holes scattered throughout, requiring constant vigilance and the occasional wheelie. It would be difficult to coast continuously for even as much as 100 feet anywhere except for one huge slickrock roll-in right near the top, and even there you could maybe coast 500 to 600 feet max. There are many places where it is so chunky and technical, and requires so much pedaling effort to go DOWN the wash, that it is totally exhausting to ride down this thing on a perfectly functioning bike. To try and coast / hike-a-bike the entire wash chain-less, would probably have added at least another hour to an hour and a half to the trip.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
This hub is three years old. It has been through a lot of stuff, but this is the first hub shell I've ever actually cracked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The last one was an Azonic 12 x 150

I just spun the drive ring inside the hub shell on that one. It's actually at Azonic for warranty replacement as we speak.
 
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Why didn't you just take that ch--oh...ok, then.

My first time DH'ing my chain blew up (right at the powerlink <---not SRAM's faulter, user error). I had to rely on my newly discovered DH/no brake/pumping like a mad man/skillzzz, needless to say, I had LOTS of fun.

DH without drivetrain for the win.:thumbsup:
 
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