Help needed identifying Shimano hub

by jova54   May 24, 2014  

I agreed to replace the 5 speed cassette on my brother's old bike with a 6 speed which is branded Shimano, product of Japan.
I assumed it had a Uniglide style cassette fitted and when I got the bike I found it wasn't.
It is a style of hub I've not seen before.
It is marked as Shimano D C on the hub body which has a small oil hole.
The cassette fits on what looks like a splined drive and the freewheel is inside the cassette.
I had to remove the axle to get the cassette off.
Anyone got ideas what I've got and more importantly can I get at least a 6 speed cassette for it?
The attached photos show the back of the cassette, the spline the cassette attaches to and the hub body

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shimano hub1.jpg64.4 KB
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13 user comments

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It's a 70's uniglide, the first of the free hubs, they are obsolete.

The freehub bit should come apart from the cassette though.

These were rubbish though!

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [455 posts]
25th May 2014 - 8:20

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Cheers Flying Scot.

I managed to find some info on Sheldon Brown, amazing site, and he confirms what you said, even the pictures look like mine.

Looks like he going to have to buy a new wheel that will take a 6 speed screw-on hub.

Can't go any bigger as it's an old Peugeot with down-tube shifters and original Stronglight chainwheel set and a 7 speed chain won't sit properly.

Keep telling him he should buy a new bike and get into the 21st century.

Did Nightrider 2013 for Parkinson's UK, doing it again this year just for the fun of it and to raise more money.

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posted by jova54 [584 posts]
25th May 2014 - 13:44

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As Flying Scot says and you have found out, it is a Uniglide, not totally obsolete though.

I could probably source him a 6 speed cassette, it would just involve removing the freehub from the original cassette. OR, I know where I can get a NOS 5 speed.

It wouldn't be cheap though, you are talking about £50 just for the cassette.

Give me a shout if you need anymore help info@b-kam-cycling.co.uk

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posted by Gkam84 [8681 posts]
25th May 2014 - 14:21

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Ideal if the fella above can source you one.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [455 posts]
25th May 2014 - 15:07

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Cheers Gkam. Got a couple of places to try on Tuesday after the BH who've been good with NOS parts in the past.

Reason for the change is that the current five speed only gives my brother a maximum speed of 23.5mph on the flat and he is overspinning, he's a very fit runner who has taken up cycling due to impact injuries. A six speed will translate to about 27.5mph at his flat road cadence.

We've already got a 6 speed screw-on cassette so probably go for a new wheel with a screw-on hub, but if it's going to be more than £50 might just look at replacing the cassette with a 6 speed.

And if he overspins that he'll have to get a proper bike.

Did Nightrider 2013 for Parkinson's UK, doing it again this year just for the fun of it and to raise more money.

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posted by jova54 [584 posts]
25th May 2014 - 15:30

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Without checking, I think the problem he will have with all the uniglide stuff, it starts at a 13 tooth cog. So if he's spinning that out. He'd be better going for a more modern hub and looking for something that'll give him a bit more.

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posted by Gkam84 [8681 posts]
25th May 2014 - 16:26

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I'm pretty sure the top cog (12, 13, whatever it is) screws on there. You need 2 chain whips to get it off, one to hold the bottom cog to stop the freewheel freewheeling, the other to unscrew the 12.

Uniglide is fine, I still use them in winter. I've not got a hub quite that old but have several Dura Ace AX hubs that originally came as a wide 6 speed. I squeeze 8 on them. Cogs are still available. Try Whiskers.

For any really old stuff, my old mate Steve who runs sdeals.com has old kit going back to his dad's racing days in the 60s, onwards. He certainly has lots of old Shimano, he bought up Middlemore's stock when they gave up their franchise 25 odd years ago.

Oh, btw, the 1976 Shimano Dura Ace EX range introduced the 11 cog. About 20 years before anyone else had them.

posted by racyrich [112 posts]
25th May 2014 - 16:39

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23.5 miles an hour? Just what chainset are you running?

Even it's just a cheap stamped steel job it's going to be 42/52 on an early 80's road bike, if you can't spin that above 23.5mph on the flat then I am afraid it's not the gearing at fault.

A 44x16 will spin out at around 36mph on an incline, on the flat I can get it up to just below 30 mph in a sprint, it will easily cruise above 20 mph.

Stonglight chainsets are in fact quite good quality and new rings can still be sourced for less than £20, not that I think gear inches are the problem here.

posted by MKultra [196 posts]
25th May 2014 - 18:28

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MKultra wrote:
23.5 miles an hour? Just what chainset are you running?

Even it's just a cheap stamped steel job it's going to be 42/52 on an early 80's road bike, if you can't spin that above 23.5mph on the flat then I am afraid it's not the gearing at fault.

A 44x16 will spin out at around 36mph on an incline, on the flat I can get it up to just below 30 mph in a sprint, it will easily cruise above 20 mph.

Stonglight chainsets are in fact quite good quality and new rings can still be sourced for less than £20, not that I think gear inches are the problem here.

A little knowledge being a dangerous thing I'll give you the setup details and you can do the math.

Chainring 52, cassette 16! Max speed at 90rpm 23.5 mph

By comparism he road my Marin which has 50 chainring and only a 12 top gear and clocked 30mph on the flat.

As I said, he is a fit runner who runs 20K just for fun so fitness is not an issue.

Did Nightrider 2013 for Parkinson's UK, doing it again this year just for the fun of it and to raise more money.

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posted by jova54 [584 posts]
25th May 2014 - 18:40

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racyrich wrote:
I'm pretty sure the top cog (12, 13, whatever it is) screws on there. You need 2 chain whips to get it off, one to hold the bottom cog to stop the freewheel freewheeling, the other to unscrew the 12.

Uniglide is fine, I still use them in winter. I've not got a hub quite that old but have several Dura Ace AX hubs that originally came as a wide 6 speed. I squeeze 8 on them. Cogs are still available. Try Whiskers.

For any really old stuff, my old mate Steve who runs sdeals.com has old kit going back to his dad's racing days in the 60s, onwards. He certainly has lots of old Shimano, he bought up Middlemore's stock when they gave up their franchise 25 odd years ago.

Oh, btw, the 1976 Shimano Dura Ace EX range introduced the 11 cog. About 20 years before anyone else had them.

Cheers racyrich Big Grin

I was trying to work out if you could split the stack. The current top gear is only 16 so it's a real pain. I'll take a look at those two sites and see what they've got

Did Nightrider 2013 for Parkinson's UK, doing it again this year just for the fun of it and to raise more money.

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posted by jova54 [584 posts]
25th May 2014 - 18:44

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52x16 top. That was the junior gear limit when I was a lad. At 100rpm it's 25mph. And junior races then were at least that fast, with purges much faster obviously. It's also the gear generally used in 6 Days, which average 30mph.

The trouble with runners, even fit ones, is their cadence is their running cadence.

posted by racyrich [112 posts]
25th May 2014 - 20:38

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The word is "Maths" by the way.

A distance runners cadence is nothing like a cyclists cadence, thinking you can attack the problem by going for more gear inches is just silly as the muscle groups involved differ considerably.

So as you said a little knowledge is indeed a dangerous thing, the abilty to run 20k at a controlled pace is no indicator of aerobic, anerobic or lactate threshold when cycling.

posted by MKultra [196 posts]
26th May 2014 - 19:01

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Isn't the 6 speed hub wider than the 5-speed? I seem to remember running into that problem with my 1973 Raleigh Record, I found out to my chagrin that I couldn't fit a 6-speed on because the axle was too short. Those were screw-on though, maybe the Uniglide is different.

If you want to keep it authentic, a local wheelbuilder could build in a new hub for you for a few quid, probably.

Or if you want to revolutionise it someone on the Bike Radar forum is selling a pair of Shimano wh-r550s for £50. Absolutely bomb-proof wheels with cup-and-cone hubs that you can rebuild easily. Take 8, 9 or 10-speed cassettes.

posted by drmatthewhardy [289 posts]
26th May 2014 - 21:12

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