I'm Freewheelin' Now!

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by WayneC, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. WayneC

    WayneC New Member

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    Hey Guys, (long post warning)
    I had been wanting to do this upgrade since I built my 4 stroke RS/CVT cruiser. I finally got around
    to putting on the Grubee HD Freewheel hub kit complete with band brake.
    I tried searching this site for anyone else actually using one of these for some feedback
    and found nothing in that regard. Only a few posts mentioned them and a lot of people
    were/are wanting them but not much feedback so in case I missed something, I'll give you my
    impression.
    I LOVE THIS THING!
    Building/installing wasn't a cakewalk but wasn't difficult either. My first obstacle was reaming
    out the hub flange spoke holes. It comes set up for 12ga. but I have 11ga. and my rim was already
    drilled for the 11s. That hub, in addition to weighing a ton, is tough! I broke 3 drill bits (one of
    which broke and went through my thumb; in-and-out). Gave up on it for a few days and was
    ready to take it to a machine shop when I got the notion to try and use a needle file to open
    them up. Mounted that in my drill and presto! Problem solved.
    Next was the threads of the hub. It came complete with a few nicks that wouldn't let the
    freewheels thread on. Needle file to the rescue again. Cleaned up the threads and back in business.
    This hub takes a scooter freewheel on the crank (pedal) side. My yankee threaded freewheels
    didn't fit so I ordered a Chinese thread one from a scooter place.
    The hub is extremely W I D E so I had to spread my frame. If you do this, pay attention to the hub
    spacing and notice that it is offset to the right side. I spread ONLY my left chain stay to accomodate
    the width.
    Now for the freewheel and brake assembly. I don't think the person that wrote the instructions on
    Grubee's website ever actually put one of these together successfully because they tell you to
    grind off the mounting bolts and "lock" the brake durm onto them to prevent them from backing off.
    ?what? If you do that, there goes any freewheeling!!!??? AND all of the pictures I've seen of this
    hub show the sprocket mounted INBOARD of the freewheel hub. That is BETWEEN the freewheel and the spokes!. Well, once the freewheel is threaded on and the motor torques it down tighter, it ain't comin' off and you're stuck with your selection of rear sproket forever. I mounted my sprocket (56T)
    on the outboard side to allow me to change to the 44 or 48 which I will probably do soon. I had to still grind the bolts down (and the heads as well) to clear the brake drum but it's good now.
    The band brake went OK 'cept for the nut that holds it to the axle has a small shoulder on it and that shoulder was SLIGHTLY too deep which didn't allow the nut to seat against the brake. A few minutes with a file solved that problem and all went well. I added the cable and my brake lever and after a few minutes of adjusting...TADA! However, Grubee or the China factory don't quite get the idea of a pinch bolt. The hole is too far away from the head (should be up against it) so the cable doesn't really get pinched until you really lay into torquing the nut. I may add another layer of cable stop to this in the near future.
    Further impressions... Staying with the brake for a moment, it looked iffy but works surprisingly well. I would put it on par with a "good" side pull caliper brake. I know, kind of an oxymoron. But it stops the bike well and in conjunction with my S/A front drum, I can stop when I need to.
    So! If I may toot my own horn here, I got one heck of a truing job on that wheel. It is so smuuuthe to ride on. Sometimes I scare me. The 56T with the CVT jumps off the line (especially after tuning the CVT to work with the little Subaru) and gets me goining about 25 on the flats. I'll be looking into the 44T-48T for improving that figure as well as further CVT tuning for those sprockets, but that's another thread for another time. The KICKER is when you let off the throttle--the chain stops turning and the motor goes to idle in about 3 seconds and you're smoothly and quietly sailing along at the same 25MPH!!!!!! WHOA! 10 kinds o' cool! This leaves the possibility of a STEALTH maneuver if needed when the man may be around. I.E. kill the engine and ghost pedal at 20MPH hahahaha Then...
    ...reach back when the coast is clear and pull the starter cord and continue on. SBD!
    Now, I don't know if this next thing is due to the freewheel or the CVT or both. When I let off the throttle and coast, then hit the throttle again I can feel a clunk/push in the seat of the pants when the clutch engages about 3000-3500RPM. It's not a BAD type of feeling. It's like a POWER type of thing. If I ease on the throttle it still pushes but smoother. Probably a combo of things including gearing. With the CVT I'm kicking in at 32:1
    The other thing I really like about the hub is the double sealed bearings. That's 2 sets of cartridge bearings on either side of the axle! They are smooth running and (I hope) long lasting. So between the rear hub and the aforementioned S/A hub which also has sealed bearings, I like the ride of this cruiser and hi speed downhills don't worry me so much anymore.
    All-in-all, I give it a big thumbs up.
    If pics, further explanations, or parts sources/locations are needed let me know; I'll do what I can.
    NOW, is anyone else using this hub? Impressions? Ideas?
    WC
     
  2. Venice Motor Bikes

    Venice Motor Bikes Custom Builder / Dealer/Los Angeles

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  3. george_n_texas

    george_n_texas New Member

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    "I broke 3 drill bits (one of which broke and went through my thumb; in-and-out)."
    Dude I want a picture of your thumb too that had to smart
     
  4. ride65

    ride65 New Member

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    Sounds like a nice wheel. What size sprocket do you have on the cvt? What chain are you running. Enjoy it.
     
  5. WayneC

    WayneC New Member

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    Venice Boy-- OK pics to come this afternoon. I wanted to get the rack painted 1st but that can wait.
    George n Texas-- GHOUL! Actually, the thumb healed really fast--can just barely make out the entry and exit. It was a tiny wee bit! Sorry, I'll try to remember pics on the next injury. Oh, there will be more.
    Ride65--I'm running a 12T on the CVT and BMX chain. Used #41 chain in the past but it had too much slop on the sprockets so tried bike chain. Have about 200 trouble free miles so far. Don't use master links though. My 1st trial with bike chain made the end of the driveway and the master link bent and let go. Bike chain seats nice and deep on the sprockets and stays put very well. I figured if 8mm works, then BMX should too.
    Just had an amazing 30 mile ride this AM. Visited 3 county parks. Everything went super well. Smooth ride. Not the least hint of any problems anywhere. Very enjoyable and relaxing. And used ~30oz. fuel. That's around 120MPG. I need to start taking my camera with to document some of my travels.
    Hmmm. Maybe a fall foilage trip to Atlanta area??? If I leave NOW!
    Later Date
    WC
     
  6. skyl4rk

    skyl4rk New Member

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    Thanks for the report. I want a freewheel hub!
     
  7. WayneC

    WayneC New Member

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    Promised Pics

    OK, as promised here are some pics of my new wheel/hub setup.
    Also, my (unpainted) rack mount CVT. I need to do a lot of repainting/touch-up since fine tuning
    requires many times of moving and removing stuff. Some of this was previously used with a different
    rack too.
    WC

    I forgot to mention the two red lines on the large rear sprocket. They were just to point out how deeply and fully the BMX chain seats on the sprockets.
     

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    #7 WayneC, Oct 10, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2009
  8. WayneC

    WayneC New Member

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    Here's a few more pics of the whole bike.
    #6 is my Tach and Speedo. Note this is the actual miles on my CVT. It's holding up well.
    Coming soon will be an instrument panel with Volt and Amp meters.
    WC
     

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  9. ride65

    ride65 New Member

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    Looks like the bike came out real nice. Where did you get the 410 sprocket for the cvt and was it a stock fit?

    Thanks!
     
  10. Humsuckler

    Humsuckler New Member

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  11. skyl4rk

    skyl4rk New Member

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    nice looking bike!
     
  12. WayneC

    WayneC New Member

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    Thanks Ride,
    I got the 12T drive sprocket from Fancy Scooters Fancy Scooter: Gas Scooters and Electric Scooters Retail and Wholesale (Don't let the 12mm fool you, it's 1/2" pitch)
    A little pricey but I had trouble finding anyone that had what I needed. It's a direct fit which didn't require any modifications. I tried a DAX 10T but it needed slight filing to fit the 6 spline shaft AND it didn't last but a couple of weeks and just got chewed to crap. However I did like the extra oomph the 10T provided over the 12T. Two little teeth can make a big difference.
    All that having been said, you can stay with the 8mm as there are more choices for drive and driven sprockets. You would just have to re-drill the mounting holes for the driven sprocket to fit the freewheel.
    WC
     

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