Originally Posted by Aurelius
n00b question: what is a freewheel hub, and how do they break? I've heard of people breaking chains, but never hubs.
Originally Posted by Brton161
Hey man, thanks for the reply. The XT hub is what they were suggesting, and the $200 includes rebuilding the rear wheel with that hub, or $75 for the stock free hub with a rebuild. I would upgrade to a Chris King or similar, but I'm really just looking for something that won't break again anytime soon, I've spent enough cash on this bike as is.
Would you say the CK is worth the price? I was really hoping to spend money upgrading brakes before a freehub. Elixir 1s suck!
For Shimano hubs, you can replace the freehub body:
It's held onto the hub by a hollow allen bolt (10mm?). You have to pull out the axle and bearings, then unscrew the bolt. After that, you drop the replacement on and reassemble. IIRC, there are only a couple of options for shimano freehub bodies - but they are fairly durable. You broke the "dog"s, but they probably trashed the springs and damaged the pockets in the center section.
Here's the DIY: http://sheldonbrown.com/k7.html#transplant
I broke a DT hub this way once, but it failed due to heat treat issues and was warrantied. Got a new hub - I did the wheelbuild. The shimano freehub failures I've seen have all been due to lack of maintenance over time - and it's a PITA to get to the ratchet on these. Best bet is a Morningstar Freehub Buddy, which allows you to push solvent or lube thru the freehub and take care of the ratchet and the two sets of loose ball bearings in there. But you have to strip it down just as far to maintain it as to replace it.