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Prevent breaking the axle in a freewheel hub [Solved]
The most common bikes with gears use a freewheel hub. Some bikes with gears have other types of hubs.

Axles may bend and break in freewheel hubs.

Heavy riders are more likely to bend and break axles than light riders.

People riding on rough tracks are more likely to bend and break axles than people riding on smooth roads.

Axles are more likely to bend and break in hard tails, than bikes with rear suspension.

Axles are more likely to bend and break in FAT bikes, than bikes with narrow hubs.

Following is how an adapter can be made to prevent bending and breaking the axle in a freewheel hub.

You need a large washer and two nuts.


They need to be welded together in this position. It is easiest if they are on a spare axle during welding.


After welding.


On the axle.


On the wheel.


On the bike. The inside of the dropout of some bikes is flat, so you just put the wheel on as normal. The inside of the dropout on some bikes is not flat, so you need to use a spacer between the frame and adapter. When an axle bends, the wheel goes up and forward. So the spacer only needs to be to the top and front. In the picture, there is a spacer between the adapter and frame.

After using these for some time, it has become clear that the effectiveness of this adapter depends on the rigidity of the bike frame.

I have one bike with rear suspension. The seat stays are attached to the chain stays with a pivot joint. On this bike, the chain stays are not completely rigid, but flex to some extent.

The axle has bent to the extent that the chain stays flex. It bent less than when not using the adapter, but it has bent a little.

On a strong, rigid bike frame, this adapter might stop the axle bending, or reduce it to a very tiny amount. On a bike where the frame flexes, the axle might bend to the extent that the frame flexes.

All bike frames flex to some extent. But some frames flex much more than others.
I also found out, even if the axle does not bend, the cones still wear out rapidly.
Since I started this topic, I have come up with a much better way. That is to put in stronger bearings and axle.


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