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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone had any problems with the durability of the freehubs on the Vuelta wheelsets? I tried to remove my cassette from a XRP Pro Superlite this weekend and it was on solid. After some not-so-pretty removal techniques, I was finally able to get it off.

The cassette had embedded itself pretty good, and given it is made up of 4 separate gears, 1 double and 1 triple clusters, I had to fight to get every piece off. More shockingly was how soft the material was when i tried to file it smooth again...I am guessing untreated aluminum.

I was able to get it back together again, but I'm sure it wont last long. Anyone else experience this, and if so, what did you replace it with?
 

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I replaced my cassette last week and didn't have any problems removing the cassette from the hub. Once the lockring was removed, all the pieces of the cassette slid our fairly easily. I have the XRP Pro Super Lite wheel set as well.
 

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Steve: You are not alone. Because I live around flatland XC and often ride my FLY on steep mountain logging roads, I switch cassetts among my bikes often. The Vuelta freehub body is soft and deforming, making it difficult to remove the cassette(s). I'll have to replace the freehub body in the future, but I don't think I'll have problems getting through this season and the 24 hour race I am doing this weekend.

Let me know what you come up with. I'll look closer (when I have time) to see if one of my cassettes is the cause of the problem and let you know what I think.

G.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
****** said:
Steve: You are not alone. Because I live around flatland XC and often ride my FLY on steep mountain logging roads, I switch cassetts among my bikes often. The Vuelta freehub body is soft and deforming, making it difficult to remove the cassette(s). I'll have to replace the freehub body in the future, but I don't think I'll have problems getting through this season and the 24 hour race I am doing this weekend.

Let me know what you come up with. I'll look closer (when I have time) to see if one of my cassettes is the cause of the problem and let you know what I think.

G.
I think the design of the cassette and the soft-as-butter freehub together are the problem. In order to save weight, Shimano have made the cassette out of multiple individual pieces, and did not riveted them together. Instead of the load being distributed across the full width of the cassette, hi torque creates a spot load on just one gear that enables it to deform the soft freehub. The worst damage was under the high gears, with the low gears (three riveted together) showing very little damage.

The solution is either to switch to a different cassette, or a stronger (thus heavier) freehub body. I was wondering if anyone has found a light/strong freehub?
 

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I have two sets of Vuelta Team SLs. On one the freehub got pretty chewed up and I had a hard time getting the cassette off. The other is slightly worn, but not very bad. The main thing is the design of the cassette. If the cassette has a body that the sprockets attach to it is much easier on the freehub, but if they are individual sprockets held together by a rivet, they tend to shift more and damage the freehub. I got a replacement one from bikesisland and it was steel, and is much stronger. Unfortunately it is 80g heavier, which kind of defeats the purpose of a lightweight wheelset.
 

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SSteve F said:
I think the design of the cassette and the soft-as-butter freehub together are the problem. In order to save weight, Shimano have made the cassette out of multiple individual pieces, and did not riveted them together. Instead of the load being distributed across the full width of the cassette, hi torque creates a spot load on just one gear that enables it to deform the soft freehub. The worst damage was under the high gears, with the low gears (three riveted together) showing very little damage.

The solution is either to switch to a different cassette, or a stronger (thus heavier) freehub body. I was wondering if anyone has found a light/strong freehub?
The cassettes made out of separate pieces are actually heavier but they are cheaper to make. The gouging problem will happen with any aluminum freehub when combined with a cassette with separate cogs. The unfortunate conclusion of these two facts is that you have to buy the more expensive cassettes to avoid problems with that freehub.

SLX has the 3 largest on a common carrier,
XT has the 5 or 6 largest on a common carrier (depending on the cassette size)
SRAM does the same thing

IMO the root cause is that the bike was poorly speced by combining a cheaper cassette with a hub that can't handle it
 

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Plenty (all) of high-end hubs with aluminum shells have the same problem. Aluminum is aluminum. My Hope Pro 2 wheels came with a warning about that and advised to use only cassettes with a carrier, which I do anyway. American Classic has a neat solution with steel inserts.

I have seen a thread about making you own inserts from carpenter staples. I should try it one day, but so far my Vuelta hub holds up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Curmy said:
Plenty (all) of high-end hubs with aluminum shells have the same problem. Aluminum is aluminum. My Hope Pro 2 wheels came with a warning about that and advised to use only cassettes with a carrier, which I do anyway. American Classic has a neat solution with steel inserts.

I have seen a thread about making you own inserts from carpenter staples. I should try it one day, but so far my Vuelta hub holds up.
I also have the Pro 2 singlespeed hub and have around 10,000 km's of serious mashing on it with no signs of damage. Most the singlespeed cogs I use are a little wider on the bottom (around 5mm?), but still, with that concentrated load you would expect some damage. I am guessing the higher-end hubs are anodized.

I will keep an eye on it and probably switch both the cassette and hub at the same time. Anyone know if the hub is special, or can I use any other manufacturer's?
 

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SSteve F said:
Most the singlespeed cogs I use are a little wider on the bottom (around 5mm?),
That's plenty to disperse load, usually problem is with single thin steel cogs, especially with large ones - 24t+ that generate more torque.

It does not look to me that the surface on Hope Pro 2 or Kings or old American Classic is appreciably harder then the one on Vuelta's.
 

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I agree with the single cog argument, there is virtually no damage where the cogs on a carrier sit. I'm not sure what I'll do about it, probably upgrade the cassette and file down the cuts when I do. I never liked the shift cables on the bike, now I've got a double excuse to upgrade.

I'm still impressed with the overall quality of the frame and wheelset. I ran my Fly through a 24 hour race (smooth, urban course) a couple of weeks ago and it did really well. Had I known I would have purchased the titanium model.

G.
 
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