Tool making and hub overhauling day

We have plenty of our Clicker Hubs in stock, out of which I picked a few and stripped them to try some idea I just got on.

This hub can be taken apart without intricate tools, except one part.

There is a rugged steel ring screwed onto the hub shell (which is a common construction). And I want to take everything apart this time. I’ve never really heard of a process to remove this ring, let alone special tools to do the job. The ring usually stays there for life. It’s under constant tightening force whenever the rider pedals, and there is no structural reception of the force if one tries to untighten it. Okay, time to make a tool.

At first I thought it might be quite time consuming to make a tool out of some thick steel plate. Then the idea came to me that when you make a tool, it’s quicker to make it out of a tool. A quick look into the tool box netted me a freewheel remover from ACS. Perfect item to chop up as I hadn’t used it in a decade. Also perfect that it had four pawls. Two is not stable. Three is impossible to measure the diameter of.

Felt as if the god of crafts had a visit. I just whipped out the hand grinder, and voila, it’s done, with precision. There should be no excessive play, nor hammer-in tight fit. I’d thought zero to 5/100 tool clearance. And it somehow just happened that way.

It’s easy to use on a vise. These rings are not super tight on new hubs right out of box, so turning with hands usually does the trick. If not, applying some heat to the hub shell helps, as the aluminum shell has larger coefficient of thermal expansion than the steel internal.

So I ended the day with these beautiful bare shells. Pretty excited to think about what to do with them next.

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