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Taking apart, cleaning, and lubing jockey pulleys

Kalidurga2010-04-28 12:16:33 +0000 #1
Aside from Oakleaf's old thread about ceramic bushings in jockey pulleys, I couldn't find any general info here about taking apart, cleaning and lubing them. Mine were singing quite a song today, so it seems they need to be done. I've googled directions and it sounds relatively simple. Before I take this next fumbling step in increasing my bike maintenance repertoire, though, I thought I'd check whether anyone here has any good tips or advice. DebW? Anyone?
MDHillSlug2010-04-28 12:31:04 +0000 #2
Quote:

Originally Posted by Kalidurga

Aside from Oakleaf's old thread about ceramic bushings in jockey pulleys, I couldn't find any general info here about taking apart, cleaning and lubing them. Mine were singing quite a song today, so it seems they need to be done. I've googled directions and it sounds relatively simple. Before I take this next fumbling step in increasing my bike maintenance repertoire, though, I thought I'd check whether anyone here has any good tips or advice. DebW? Anyone?

This was covered in this week's Road Bike Rider: www.roadbikerider.com/#TECH
divingbiker2010-04-28 12:46:54 +0000 #3
I don't even know what a jockey pulley is.

Where did you end up riding today?
MDHillSlug2010-04-28 13:03:03 +0000 #4
The jockey wheels are the two little gears that the chain passes over in the rear derailleur.
tzvia2010-04-28 13:58:03 +0000 #5
I've cleaned/lubed the bushings quite a few times over the decades. The nice thing about doing it these days is the quick-detach link that is on many new chains, so using a chain breaker is not always needed. It's a small item that makes drive train service soo much easier.

Make sure you have a clean well lit workspace as you will be dealing with small parts. Remove the chain, and the two derailleur jockey-plate screws. There are two bearing covers on each wheel (one each side). Pop them off and the bearings/bushings are inside. I like to use several small plastic containers for soaking the parts to remove old dirty grease. Once they are clean and dry, I re-lube with a waterproof grease and make sure they spin easily and smoothly before reinstalling the chain. I also take the time to wipe down the two jocky-pulley plates as there is often times dirt in there that you can't get at unless it is apart. The whole thing is actually very easy to do.

Last week I finally replaced the jockey wheels on my old 7700 Dura Ace (about 10 years old), with new red KCNC ceramic ones. I can't tell if they are any smoother than the old ones but they sure are bling . I then cleaned the old ones and put them aside for emergency use.
Kalidurga2010-04-28 14:14:45 +0000 #6
MDHillSlug: Actually, it was reading that article in RoadBikeRider that made me realize I need to do this.

divingbiker: C&O/WMRT loop between Fort Frederick and Hancock.

tzvia: Are there very many small parts under the bearing covers? I think my concern is that I'll lose track of the order in which things come apart and then put them back together wrong. The one thing I haven't found on-line is a diagram of all the components involved.
lunacycles2010-04-28 12:40:12 +0000 #7
Quote:

I've cleaned/lubed the bushings quite a few times over the decades. The nice thing about doing it these days is the quick-detach link that is on many new chains, so using a chain breaker is not always needed. It's a small item that makes drive train service soo much easier.

You don't need to break the chain to clean the pulley(s). If you want to remove it, just take the chain off the crank so it is slack, and then undo the small allen bolt that holds the pulley in place.

Unless they are really dirty, you can usually get away with just squirting some aerosol type lube right at the heart of the pulley. A few miles of riding will allow the lube to work its way into the bearing and silence it, assuming the sound you hear is a "squeak" and not a "crunch." Once it is quiet, just wipe the excess lube on the outer surface away, so it doesn't attract more dirt.
Kalidurga2010-04-28 13:31:31 +0000 #8
It's definitely a squeaky chirp. I felt like a little bird was following behind me through my entire ride. I think I'll try Margot's suggestion first, so I won't have to worry about putting everything back together.

And fortunately, I've got a quick-link so I can remove the chain and clean the plates as well. It does drive me crazy to not be able to get all the mud and stuff out of there during my usual cleanings.

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