All the gear trouble calls for desperate measures – strip down Sturmey Archer AW hub

After last week’s ride and all the troubles I’d suffered of the chain being thrown every time I freewheeled I was determined to try and isolate/eradicate  the issue!!

The Chopper has never freewheeled very well (lucky if it turned one full revolution) so that made for hard work when pedaling. The problem is these are internal gears of the Sturmey Archer Aw hub and after watching and re-watching videos like this: I must say I was bottling even attempting it. But if I didn’t do it nobody else would (as it’s such specialist job) and I would still have the none freewheeling chucking the chain off machine which had been ‘so grueling to ride’ bike of last week 😦

So I watched the video  a few times more, I printed off in paper format as much linked instructions as I could and I decided to go for it once the children had gone to bed (as they’d want to ‘help’) I also had a bonus of my father in law Alan staying and as an ex mechanic and logical thinker I thought, 2 heads are better than 1 (which proved to be the case at one point). Anyway we setup the Workmate in the kitchen so if anything did fall off it should be easy to spot etc. and off we went.

Sturmey Archer AW Hub

Sturmey Archer AW Hub

This wasn’t going to be rushed as  just needed it to be right and sure where everything went back. We stripped it down very carefully laying everything out depending on left/right side of hub and from out to in so we could reverse the procure for the rebuild.  All the reviews say these are fairly bullet proof needing no maintenance- unfortunately they don’t factor in that grease breaks down over 40 years and needs cleaning and re-greasing which is exactly what we did. We only had one real concern where one of the tiny pawl springs (not much thicker than a human hair) became dislodged and it took quite a bit working out where it went back. We did get it back together and I can say proudly it now freewheels with the best of them so it was a job well done  – thanks Alan 🙂

Next post will be about the test ride….

About barneybear69

'middle aged' cyclist from North East aiming to do the LEJOG in August 2011
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