Friday, February 10, 2012

Bike Tech: Removing and Cleaning Your Bike's Cassette

A bike that is always ridden, always gather dirt in its drivetrain in particular, its cassette (gears). This shows how easy it is to remove your bike's cassette in preparation for cleaning.
The tools you will need are a chain whip tool and a cassette lockring removal tool.
The chain whip tool can be bought at your local bike shop that carries Park Tools Chain Whip Tool or any Taiwan made tool shown in the figure below.
Chain whip tool

The Cassette Removal Tool is used to remove the "gears" or cassette of your bike's rear wheel assembly.

Cassette Removal Tool with integrated handle

Step 1. Remove your bike's rear wheel.
Remove your bike's rear wheel

Step 2. Place the chain whip as shown in the figure below.
Correct placement of the chain whip tool
Step 3. Place the Cassette Lockring Removal Tool in the center of the hub, taking care to align the teeth of the Removal tool with the teeth of the lockring.
Place the Cassette Lockring Removal tool, carefully aligning the center pin and the teeth of the lockring with the tool.

Step 4. Grasp the Chain whip Tool with your left hand, grasp the LockRing Removal Tool with your right hand. Give the Lockring Removal Tool a counterclockwise turn until the lockring loosens. The chain whip is used to provide a counter torque, otherwise, you cannot unfasten the lockring.
Turn the Lockring Removal tool counterclockwise to loosen the cassette lockring
Step 5. Remove the lockring.
Remove the lockring
Step 6. Remove the cogs.
9th speed cog
8th speed cog
7th speed cog
The 6th to 1st cog is a one-piece assembly

Step 7. Immerse the cogs in kerosene to remove all dirt and grease. Scrub clean.

That is how you remove and clean your bike's cassette. To reinstall, do the reverse. Tighten the lockring with the Removal tool clockwise. This time, you don't need the chainwhip to counter-torque. The freewheel hub will provide resistance.

Total time: 30 to 45 minutes including cleaning.

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