Wheel Part Salvaging - Page 2 of 16
When you are known as the neighborhood bike building person, you will often receive all sorts of bike part donations from friends and neighbors, and many times, you will find a lot of surface rust on bolts and exposed steel parts. Fear not - surface rust can usually be cleaned up with minimal effort, and even the most badly twisted or rusted cycle will yield an abundance of reusable components for your own designs.
If you cannot unscrew the axle nuts by hand due to a damaged thread or surface rust, then you will need to use a pair of wrenches in order to hold the axle from turning as you loosen the hub nut. Place one wrench on either lock nut (the nut closest the hub) and then loosen the axle nut by turning it in the counter clockwise direction. If the threads are well worn or rusted, you may not be able to remove the axle nut on either side, which means that you will have to cut the axle in order to salvage the hub or freewheel. In the case of a really stuck nut, the cone nuts and locking nut bay start to unscrew instead. If this happens, try the axle nut on the other side instead.
Once the axle nut has been removed, most of the surface rust will have been removed as well since the nut will cut a new path through the rust and grime, leaving the bare threads. One way to clean up a rusted axle or one with slightly flattened threads is to run the axle nut up and down the threads a few times by screwing it on and off, making it act like a thread cutter. The remaining surface rust can be removed using a wire brush and some Varsol once the axle nuts have been removed.
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You can build it yourself from our easy to follow DIY plans!