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Ultegra Hub Overhaul Went Bad!

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Ultegra Hub Overhaul Went Bad!

Old 07-21-21, 10:30 PM
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Kokiafan
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Ultegra Hub Overhaul Went Bad!

I have been wrenching my bikes for 40 years, and I have never run across this issue before.

I have a set of Ultegra hubs and axles, and finally decided to do an overhaul, after 2000 miles of wet weather riding.

I pulled the axle out, degreased everything, then dried it all out. I regreased the bearings with phil wood grease, and reassembled.

These are the 6800 ultegra hubs, and they use the preload bearing setup where you adjust one side of the axle to get everything snug on the hub.
I tightened it down properly where it felt snug but not binding, and I assembled it all back together. I put the wheel on the bike and the wheel was looooose on the hub. I mean it moved a good quarter inch at least at the top, and it was not doing that before I regreased everything.
I took the axle back out, made sure everything was properly assembled, and put it back on again. I tightened the cone all the way down, and it felt like it was binding. I put the wheel back on and sure enough, no play. I took the wheel back off, and turned the adjustment out a quarter turn. It still felt like it was binding, and I put the wheel back on anyway...and it had slop again.

I do not know where to go from here. The wheel never had slop before, and it turned smoothly before I regreased the bearings.

What am I missing? If I put it back on when it is tight enough to not slop, it feels binding. If I make it spin smoothly in my hands, it slops around when I put it on the bike. Aaaahhggg! Help!
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Old 07-21-21, 10:36 PM
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CliffordK
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I was working on a 6800 wheel a while ago. I think it had a little funky ratchet lock for the cones.

Anyway, like you, it felt good, assembled it, put it on the bike, and it was loose. So I tightened it up by a notch or two, and all was good.

My interpretation was that the Labyrinth seals are tighter than one would otherwise expect, and thus going by simple feel is inadequate.
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Old 07-22-21, 02:26 AM
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I have 6600 and 6700 hubs which are basically the same and never had a problem. It almost sounds like one of the seal rings isn't flush against the bearings but I don't know how that would be possible unless one is damaged. I say that because I had a headset with the too loose/too tight issue and it was because the lower bearing race wasn't flush against the fork crown. Also happened on a BB30 crank because one of the bearings wasn't flush against the c clip inside the shell. I'd take the seal rings off and inspect.
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Old 07-22-21, 04:51 AM
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Maybe this will help. https://si.shimano.com/api/publish/s...003-06-ENG.pdf
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Old 07-22-21, 06:40 AM
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When adjusting hub bearings the difference between too tight (binding) and too loose (play at the rim) is a tiny fraction of a turn. Your 1/4-turn change was way too much. You have to "sneak up" on the correct setting a degree or two at a time.
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Old 07-22-21, 09:21 AM
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I have the same hubs on 2 wheelset. What i find is that i have to adjust them so that the feel is tighter when hand twisting the axle than what i would do for the classic cone and hub bearing. you really need to make sure the axle has no lateral play
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Old 07-22-21, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I was working on a 6800 wheel a while ago. I think it had a little funky ratchet lock for the cones.

Anyway, like you, it felt good, assembled it, put it on the bike, and it was loose. So I tightened it up by a notch or two, and all was good.

My interpretation was that the Labyrinth seals are tighter than one would otherwise expect, and thus going by simple feel is inadequate.
matches my experience
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