Bearing & Freehub Overhaul

Please note: We do not sell bearings as these are available in so many different qualities and prices to suit your needs.

We do recommend genuine SKF bearings. eBay is usually a good place to start looking for these.


Freehub Removal and Replacement (Wheelsmith Hubs only)


Removal Instructions:


  • Insert 5mm allen key in each end of hub

  • Untighten anti-clockwise

  • Take 1 end cap fully off


If end cap is left on drive side (this does not apply to disc hubs):

  • Insert 10mm allen key into non drive side axle

  • Untighten drive side end cap and remove

  • Remove freehub

  • clean gently with lint free dry cloth, regrease and refit


If the seal stays in the hub:

  • Prise it out gently with your nail or a flat blade screwdriver

  • Refit to freehub body from drive side

  • Make sure the thin membrane fits into the groove properly


(Note 1mm washer.  Do not lose)


Re-assembly Instructions:


  • Slide new freehub onto axle

  • Rotate and push until it locates in hub shell properly

  • Re-fit end caps on both sides tightly but not overly so


Wheelsmith hub bearing replacement:




  • (as above) 1x5mm allen key in each end.

  • Undo whichever side comes off first and fit 10mm into axle to remove the other end cap.

  • Remove freehub body by pulling. Clean well.

  • Tap axle out firmly from right to left, removing left bearing with it (61802).

  • Tap out right side bearing with drift or screwdriver from left. Support hub flange over a hole in wood or something similar.

  • Using a bearing press or suitable tool, press in the right side bearing (61902)

  • Refit axle from left to right.

  • Fit new bearing by hand in left side.

  • Put freehub on and both end caps.

  • Tighten end caps to press in left bearing.


Freehub bearings are 61902 for Shimano and 61802 for Campag and can be drifted out from left to right. But replacement requires a press.


You can make a press up with 12mm threaded rod, nuts and washers.



Front hub bearing removal & replacement (Wheelsmith & Novatec Hubs)

Hub type identification - Top uses 699 bearings, Lower uses 6900 bearings.

















Removal Instructions:


  • Insert 5mm allen key in each end of hub

  • Untighten anti-clockwise

  • Take 1 end cap fully off

  • Insert 6mm allen key in that end

  • Take the other end cap off

  • Screw 1 end cap back in 2 turns only

  • Gently hammer the end of the cap to remove the adjacent bearing

  • Repeat for other side

  • If the bearing is corroded or tight for some reason, support the flange over a 30mm hole in a piece of wood in a vice.



Refitting Instructions:


  • Place 1x bearing in as flat and straight as possible

  • If you don’t have a press, insert end cap and tap lightly with plastic mallet

  • Replace inner tube and repeat with other bearing

  • Replace both endcaps and use them to tap bearings a little more

  • Tighten each endcap fully against each other to seat bearings fully

  • If they won’t catch thread, tap a little bit more with the mallet



Do not overtighten or force anything.


If bearings don’t go in flat at first, remove and refit.