Sturmey archer 3 speed problem

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  • hello all,

    not a fixed problem, so I don't know if people can help but i thought I'd try anyway.

    My lovely ladies shopper bike got a puncture in the rear tyre. We took it off, fixed the tube and put it back together,

    However, the chain that comes out of the 3 speed hub seems to be at the wrong angle now and is a bugger to reconnect. the obvious solution is to rotate the axle around, but it's one of those weird axles with flat bits and wedged washers so that it slots into the rear drop outs rather than being able to twist around.

    it looks a bit like this one:

    any clues? Can you loosen off something to rotate the axle and chain within the hub?

  • Hi BP,

    The chain is on a threaded rod and doesn't need to be fully tightened - turn it all the way in, then out a half turn. This should allow you to have it exit at the right angle.

    The barrel adjuster sleeve on the cable that micro-adjusts the tension should rotate freely on its cable - if it has seized you can unbolt the gear change lever and just turn the whole cable until it is tight enough - I usually have that adjuster half-way up.

    Adjust 3 speeds in 2nd or 3rd gear.

    Once it's all connected put the lever in 2nd and just loosen the fulcrum clip and move it back or forth until the hub is right in 2nd gear, and tighten it up again. This should make 3rd and 1st right too. If not, put the lever in 3rd, and move the fulcrum clip until the chain is only just under tension, then tighten. It should go into 2nd and 3rd correctly. You can then use the barrel adjuster to fine-tune.

    If you still have trouble I can fix it for you.

  • I had the same problem. It was working fine until I had to change a puncture.

    I have found that the looser the gear cable the better. Try moving the wheel forward a little in the dropouts and allow the cable to slacken a little and see if that helps.

    If not then I shall leave you in the capable hands of Sheldon
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/raleigh.html­

    Good luck

  • I love you guys

  • Good time to dredge this baby up.

    My lady bought herself a bike the other day and the cranks occasionally jolt forward (like the chain is skipping forward or something?) when she's riding in second gear. What the happy-hap?

    When it's in third gear the 'ickle chain (official SA terminology) is pretty slack. Should it be like that?

  • Neil - I keep reading your post over and over again and it's just not making any sense to me. Could you explain it again in simpleton speak please?

  • OK,
    the 'ickle chain' is called the indicator chain, though what it's supposed to indicate is anyone's guess.
    It disappears into the hub on a threaded rod which should be tightened up all the way, then backed off half a turn to allow the chain to go in the right position.

    Still at the back of the bike, the ickle chain is connected to a narrow barrel adjuster: a thread and a locknut, to fine-tune the cable tension.

    The next point of contact is the fulcrum clip. This is where the bare cable enters the plastic sleeve. On older bikes this is a metal band which can be loosened and slid up and down the chain stay to give you coarse tension adjustment. On modern kit there is a fixed length arm bolted on to the dropout, a proper cable clamp, and a bigger barrel adjuster, as you'd find on brakes.

    What's happening with your better half's bike is that the tension is too slack and it's enough to slip the gear momentarily into neutral when she gives it the beans.

    If there is no tension at all (the loose chain) then it will be in 3rd gear. Really you want the chain to be just under the slightest tension in 3rd. This should make 2nd and 1st engage perfectly and not slip. Use the big adjuster at the fulcrum clip to get it near enough, and then fine-tune it with the narrow barrel adjuster

    Sturmey's official instructions say adjust it in 2nd, but initially doing it in 3rd is easier, and you can fine-tune it in 2nd.

  • Cheers for that mate. The majority of that makes sense but there's always plenty of scope for me to fuck these sort of things up. I'm useless with instructions - the better half can vouch for that. I'll give it a try when I get in after work. No doubt I'll be back here. Possibly with pictures for you to kindly annotate. :)

    lol @ 'gives it the beans'. Ha! That's exactly what's happening.

    OK,
    the 'ickle chain' is called the indicator chain, though what it's supposed to indicate is anyone's guess.
    It disappears into the hub on a threaded rod which should be tightened up all the way, then backed off half a turn to allow the chain to go in the right position.

    Still at the back of the bike, the ickle chain is connected to a narrow barrel adjuster: a thread and a locknut, to fine-tune the cable tension.

    The next point of contact is the fulcrum clip. This is where the bare cable enters the plastic sleeve. On older bikes this is a metal band which can be loosened and slid up and down the chain stay to give you coarse tension adjustment. On modern kit there is a fixed length arm bolted on to the dropout, a proper cable clamp, and a bigger barrel adjuster, as you'd find on brakes.

    What's happening with your better half's bike is that the tension is too slack and it's enough to slip the gear momentarily into neutral when she gives it the beans.

    If there is no tension at all (the loose chain) then it will be in 3rd gear. Really you want the chain to be just under the slightest tension in 3rd. This should make 2nd and 1st engage perfectly and not slip. Use the big adjuster at the fulcrum clip to get it near enough, and then fine-tune it with the narrow barrel adjuster

    Sturmey's official instructions say adjust it in 2nd, but initially doing it in 3rd is easier, and you can fine-tune it in 2nd.

  • A seasoned SA user writes... The indicator rod screws in and is then backed off half a turn to make sure it's not bottomed out on the thread and can still turn. That's the only reason to back it off half a turn. In second gear - assuming you have a 3-speeder - the shoulders on the indicator rod should be flush with the end of the inner axle, visible through the hole in the axle nut. Use the knurled adjuster to achieve this and then lock it with the bigger knurled adjuster. It's really very simple.

    Almost ALL faults with Sturmey Archer gears are to do with poor adjustment. They pretty much never fail unless badly treated by being used out of adjustment for some time, by someone with zero mechanical sympathy.

    Sheldon Brown, normally 100% reliable, goes down this track of adjusting by tension. He knows what he's talking about, but it doesn't come across very well. The knurled adjuster is for adjusting. If it's seized up, get another one, even a whole cable. Take the old one to the shop so you get the right one. The rods, with adjuster, cost about £3. The indicator rod is for indicating correct adjustment, that's why it's called what it's called.

    This ain't rocket science. They've been making them since about 1910 and they are wonderful, and VERY easy to adjust. They ALMOST NEVER go wrong. I've got one built in 1920 and it still runs perfectly.

    PM me if you like and I'll send you a page of the Brompton manual to make it clearer.

  • Hi guys.

    I recently changed my girlfriend's tyres over on her 3 speed raleigh chiltern and now the bike makes a terrible clunking sound whilst coasting and the pedals try to go round as if it is fixed! It feels like something is catching in the hub. Is this something serious (like wear internally) or is it as simple as lubricating with some oil as recommended in other posts?

    Also, the chain on the indicator rod is twisted. Should I replace? Would this cause an issue?

  • If the wheel is reinstalled it will usually be in a slightly different position in the drop outs. The cable to the indicator rod will then be tight or slack: out of adjustment. Needs to be checked and adjusted each time the wheel is removed.

  • I'd hope he's fixed it in the 7 years since his post. ;)

    Welcome to the friendliest forum on the internet. x

  • I noticed that it was old but thought the comment might be useful for people using Google search.

    You can delete this

  • No worries, dude. Doesn't need to be deleted. Just puzzled by the dredge. Assume you found here via Google? Someone else might just do the same and find it.

    Stick around. Hope I've not put you off.

  • I have a folding Twenty, doesn't have the proper chain stay cable clamp or whatever goes there. Tried using 2 zip ties, but I think it moves, can't get 1st gear, sometimes spins the crank as in, not in any gear...

  • Have you adjusted the chain toggle (it screws up to tighten the cable)? Sturmey AW3 hubs have a ‘neutral’ spot and it sounds like you’ve hit that. If you adjust the cable, it should be fine.

  • But you’re right. It would be easier also with the cable stop (available loads of places - e.g. SJS).

  • I had it adjusted, but because the zip ties probably shifted, it looses the setting. I'm not sure what to even call, chain stay shifter cable clamp?? Is there supposed to be a fitting with a flats that clamps in that the cable passes through, aa well? I don't know SJS, I'll google it thanks for replying.

  • Yes it fits on the chain stay usually about 130mm from the hub,the clamp (cable stop) come in various sizes they come up on eBay all the time

  • I believe the term is fulcrum clip. You’ll need to get one the right size for the chainstay diameter.

    https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/hub-spares/s­turmey-archer-fulcrum-clip-34-inch-cable­-stay-hsj753/

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Sturmey archer 3 speed problem

Posted by Avatar for bristlypioneer @bristlypioneer

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