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Old 01-13-2021, 06:35 PM   #16
rcb78
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This has been an on again off again issue with cheap bikes that use freewheels for at least the last 10 years. If you bought it from a shop, take it to them and get them to fix it. If you bought it from a dept store they will usually just swap the bike for a new one if they have it. Use that opportunity to get a refund and go visit a real bike shop.
Or like everyone else has said, just swap the part and be done with it.
New freewheels (last 20-ish years) aren't good candidates for rebuilding, they just aren't worth the effort.
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Old 01-13-2021, 06:54 PM   #17
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What brand and model? Where did you buy it from? Any warranty?
Are there any reputable brands, models, retailers, and serviceable warranties anymore? I expect it's all big box imports now. Some Latin phrasing and it's done.
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Old 01-13-2021, 07:53 PM   #18
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Are there any reputable brands, models, retailers, and serviceable warranties anymore? I expect it's all big box imports now. Some Latin phrasing and it's done.
Sure, there's plenty: Giant, Trek, Specialized, Ghost, Felt, Bianchi, Cannondale, Diamondback, Cube, Fuji, Orbea, Nishiki, GT, Kestrel, Ibis, Norco, Provelo (good kid bikes), Raleigh, Yeti. Basically anything that you'd find in local mom & pop bike shop. Avoid big-box stores like REI or Performance. If anything, buying from good shop guarantees your bike will work. Even the OP's bike, if it had gone through decent shop, their assembly process would've caught the wobbly freewheel.

Real bike shops tend to stock quality brands, because it'll take them less time to assemble and tune. And fewer of them will come back for warranty repairs.

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Old 01-13-2021, 09:28 PM   #19
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I bought a Giant from a local bike shop that I think was around for ~30 years, a few years ago. ~$900. Surely there is no support on that bike. Could I even get a wheel spoke? I think the place is out of business, and not covid. Just the way it was before that. 90 day warranty maybe.
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Old 01-13-2021, 10:15 PM   #20
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Just looking at the 2nd largest gear it's time for new sprockets and chain anyway, or at least theach the kid to shift
This. That gear set is completely shot. Buy a new one. Then teach your son how lubing a bicycle drive chain works. I don't think I've ever seen one so bad.
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Old Yesterday, 01:35 AM   #21
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I bought a Giant from a local bike shop that I think was around for ~30 years, a few years ago. ~$900. Surely there is no support on that bike. Could I even get a wheel spoke? I think the place is out of business, and not covid. Just the way it was before that. 90 day warranty maybe.
Now we're talking about service. Which is where traditional mom & pop real bike shops make their money. As opposed to modern big-box stores which focus on sales for their profits. Find another Giant/Trek bike-shop. With techs that know how to build spoked wheels from scratch.
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Old Yesterday, 06:53 AM   #22
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Do you know how much a place like that charges for a spoke? The guy was asking me what size as I'm holding the wheel? I could tell he didn't really want to sell me a $5 spoke for my 30 year old competition MTB.
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Old Yesterday, 07:58 AM   #23
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This. That gear set is completely shot. Buy a new one. Then teach your son how lubing a bicycle drive chain works. I don't think I've ever seen one so bad.
If you bothered to read the entire thread, you would've seen the bike is 4 months old. It's not worn out.
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Old Yesterday, 08:09 AM   #24
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This. That gear set is completely shot. Buy a new one. Then teach your son how lubing a bicycle drive chain works. I don't think I've ever seen one so bad.
Having built a few MTB wheels myself I would say get a used wheel and call it a day. It is a lot of effort to find the proper parts and then put it all together. Shimano alone always had different lines of products and they changed every few years, so I would expect it to be very hard to impossible to find parts.

Regarding "shot" I have to politely disagree. I don't think it is possible to tell from the photo how "old" these gears are. Even when brand new these teeth look very funny, supposedly to make it easier for the chain to change gears. I have a Rohloff chain and sprocket tool in order to be able to measure the wear, I could not do it by eye.
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Old Yesterday, 08:49 AM   #25
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I disagree with buying a new wheel. If you do that you would still need to buy a freewheel separately, so that doesn't solve the problem.

4 months is enough time to wear out a couple of freewheel cogs if the bike is used a lot, the drivetrain is never lubed, the parts are not good quality, and the rider only uses those couple of gears. I don't know if that's what happened here but it looks like it.

Many (but sure, not all) bike shops will be able to service a bike that is 30 years old, particularly if it was decent quality and has parts that were widely used at the time. The bigger question is whether it will be worth it. Just like moto shops there is a broad spectrum of shops and quality of service. And just like moto shops, good bike shops are becoming rare and deserve your support if you find one.

With bikes, you truly get what you pay for. There are diminishing returns after a certain point, but that doesn't happen until you're into several thousands of dollars.

I was a shop wrench/manager for 15 years and am still involved in the industry, and I'm not the only knowledgeable person here telling you what's up. The last couple of cogs on that freewheel are shot. If the freewheel was still together you might get lucky and find a shop with a couple of replacement cogs, but that's pretty rare these days. Regardless, since it fell apart it's not worth the time or effort trying to rebuild it. Take it back to where you got it or suck it up and buy some new parts. Sorry/not sorry.
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Old Yesterday, 08:55 AM   #26
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The last couple of cogs on that freewheel are shot.
I think the op would need to post a better pic to resolve this question. He says they're not, and I can look past the compression artifacts and lighting effects in that image and it looks fine to me.
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Old Yesterday, 09:35 AM   #27
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Do you know how much a place like that charges for a spoke? The guy was asking me what size as I'm holding the wheel? I could tell he didn't really want to sell me a $5 spoke for my 30 year old competition MTB.
Unless you can replace the spoke and true the wheel yourself it's going to be cheaper to pick up a used wheel for a bike that age. The shop likely wasn't that interested since they knew the labor charge would be about as much as the bike is worth.

3 months ago I could have given you a complete wheelset, but I left the whole bike on the curb to get it out of my basement, stuff that age is cheap or free even if it was expensive at the time.
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Old Yesterday, 03:56 PM   #28
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The new gearset showed up today and it's essentially the same as the original. All the same bevels on the gears, weird cutouts and twisted teeth. I spot checked some teeth with a dial caliper and the new one is the same as the old one. So, no, not worn out.

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Old Yesterday, 04:17 PM   #29
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Those weird features are intended to make shifting smoother
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