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  1. #1
    We have met the enemy...
    Reputation: paredown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    SuperSphere Wheel side play in bearings...

    I've been riding on some SuperSphere's I picked up on eBay--they seem decent enough (one survived a good hard whack in a dreaded NYC pothole marks for durability).

    My question is bearing side play--when I clamp the QR (about as tight as I would with an older-style Campy clamp) the rear wheel will move under heavy load. This seems to be partly because of the allen-head axle design (allen-head bolt from either end forms the axle) and not-very well designed washer that sits against the frame...

    If I clamp it up really, really tight (almost too hard to close the QR lever), the wheel stays in place.

    But, even with the wheel clamped super tight, if I 'thunk' the wheel, or bump it--I get that unmistakeable sound of slightly loose bearings (I tried to describe this to the LBS and got the dreaded blank look...) Not enough play that you can feel it, but enough to know it's there...

    Is this typical of "factory" sealed bearing wheels--that there is no way to adjust side play, & typically they are cannot be set up as well as an old-style bearing and cone hub/wheel?

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004

    checking bearing play...

    The place to check bearing side play is between the brake pads, if the rim moves easily from side to side, then there's excessive play. The majority of cartridge bearing wheels are adjustable. Mavics can even be done while the wheel is on the bike. Ideally you'll have only the slightest perceptible play between the pads.

    Unfortunately your wheels can't be adjusted. That might be OK if theres a spring washer applying an appropriate preload, but there's nothing you can do to change it.
    Last edited by C-40; 09-06-2007 at 09:42 AM.

  3. #3
    We have met the enemy...
    Reputation: paredown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Exactly--the factory rep told me that the play was set, & other than that it was new bearings from them...

    I just rechecked & there is no obvious movement between the brake blocks (other than some wheel flex).

    I also have them clamped down really really hard, which I wasn't doing at first, so maybe that has taken up the little play that was there. I'm just not real happy about having to use so much force on the QR.

    I'm probably just being anal...

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