Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

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Graham
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Graham » 12 Mar 2019, 9:07pm

KM2 wrote:Were Normandy hubs also called Milremo?

Yep, see Brucey's original post ^. A photo too !!

Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 13 Mar 2019, 12:16am

'Milremo' was Ron Kitching's brand name that was applied to various stuff that he imported from (exclusively?) Continental manufacturers.

Maillard hubs -under the 'Milremo' brand name- were listed in the 'everything cycling' catalogue for at least twenty years, using descriptions that were virtually unchanged. The 1984 catalogue is reproduced on the 'Disraeli gears' website with Milremo hubs here;

http://www.disraeligears.co.uk/Site/Ron_Kitching_Everything_Cycling_-_1984_page_18.html

1963 (complete) and 1984 (tools only, no hubs) catalogues are available via the VCC library.

http://www.veterancycleclublibrary.org.uk/library/?action=search&items=16&searchtext=kitching&action.x=11&action.y=6&action=search

In 1963 the 'Normandy' type hubs are offered with drilled flanges and the top 'competition' model (equivalent to the Maillard 700 series I think) had slotted flanges; a relatively new style then. The top model is referred to as 'professional' in 1984. In both 1963 and 1984 in 'Normandy' equivalents the nutted hubs are called Milremo 'sport' and the QR versions are called Milremo 'super sport'. In 1963 the 'super sport' hubs are offered in 28/28 drillings, but I have not seen this drilling in the later slotted version of this hub.

It is interesting to note that choosing LF over SF in the 1984 'professional' hubs cost another £3, about +10% of the cost of the hubs. However in choosing LF over SF, and QR over nutted axles the cost of more basic hubs shot up from less than £5 a pair (for nutted SF hubs) to nearly £13 a pair (for QR LF models). The bulk of the cost increase lies with QR axles.

With slotted flanges Normandy hubs are usually marked with in three rows 'NORMANDY', 'ww yy' (date mark), 'Made in France'. The equivalent Milremo models were marked in two rows 'MILREMO' , 'ww yy' (date mark), with 'MILREMO' in the same typeface as 'NORMANDY'. If the hubs are older than a certain date (about 1970 I think) there is no date mark. Below is a mismatched pair, one with a date mark and the other without.

Image

cheers
Last edited by Brucey on 13 Mar 2019, 8:51am, edited 1 time in total.
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Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 13 Mar 2019, 7:31am

Image
SF Maillard 'Atom' hubs with Milremo branding.

Image
'Excelto' branded LF hubs

Image
'LeTour' branded LF hub. [NB 'Letour' branding was also applied to some Japanese made hubs, I think]

Image
'Schwinn-approved' Maillard SF hub

Image
'Schwinn- Approved' Maillard hubs, 4-72 dated

Image
early Normandy hubs

cheers
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Brucey
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slotting pattern vs drilling pattern

Postby Brucey » 13 Mar 2019, 8:41pm

Slightly esoteric this, but it won't have escaped your notice that the slotting pattern could be implemented in several different ways, in relation to how the slots in the right flange line up with the left slots, and line up with the spoke drillings. I have built enough of these hubs to know that this alignment varies too. I have never been sure if it has varied by date or randomly. However I recently purchased four NOS front hubs, all from the same batch with the same production date code on, and I was interested to see if they were all the same or not.

So there are six cutouts and (taking one flange in isolation) if the hub is 28, 32 or 40 drilled then there can be no consistent relationship between the spoke drilling and the slotting (because 14, 16, and 20 are not divisible by 6). However in 36h, the spoke drilling can be oriented consistently vs the slotting. Looking at about 25 examples or more it seems to be the case that the spoke drilling is centred over the slotting pattern in every case, i.e. there is always a spoke drilling centred over every slot.

This being the case, there are three possible orientations of slots in one flange vs the other. Note that the spoke drillings are at 20 degree intervals in each flange and are offset by 10 degrees from one flange to the other. This means that the slots can be offset in the following ways vs one another

a) near flange offset 10 degrees CW vs far flange
b) near flange offset 10 degrees ACW vs far flange
c) 30 degrees offset (in either direction)

c) leaves a 'spoke' between slots in one flange exactly opposite a slot in the opposite flange. in the hubs below

Image

you can see that the LH hub is type a) and the RH hub is type c).

In the batch of four identical hubs, three were type a) and one was type c). Looking at more hubs of random date, it seems that type b) is the least common. Possibly type a) was the intended orientation when the batch of four was made, but this wasn't always the case, and it wasn't always done perfectly either.

Does this matter anyway? I hear you ask.... well it does with standard spoking (if you are a perfectionist) and it certainly does if you use a spoke pattern (eg Spanish spoking) which uses clusters of three spokes on each flange. Type a) and type b) hubs will suit rims of different handedness too.

cheers
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Chat Noir
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Chat Noir » 14 Mar 2019, 11:35am

Thanks (again) for an informative read.

Helicomatic?

Recently acquired a pair of Maillard Professional 700 hub wheels dating from 1983 with helicomatic rear hub, not well used and very smooth, even before stripping and re-greasing. The freewheel is equally smooth and so easy to remove. Yes, these are quirky, were short-lived but there are still plenty of spare parts out there and these particular wheels aren't going to get a lot of hard use, just on retro bike rides without too many hills. Part of the fun of old bikes is coming across something new and trying to work out how it works.
Dawes Galaxy 1979; Mercian 531 1982; Peugeot 753 1987; Peugeot 531 Pro 1988; Peugeot 653 1990; Bob Jackson 731 OS 1992; Gazelle 731 OS Exception 1996; Dolan Dedacciai 2004; Trek 8000 MTB 2011; Focus Izalco Pro 2012

iandusud
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby iandusud » 14 Mar 2019, 11:56am

The Helicomatic system was a great idea. Easy freewheel removal and, above all, the gearside bearing moved to the outside. Unfortunately for Maillard Shimano introduced the freehub and, as they say, the rest is history.

Ian

Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 14 Mar 2019, 12:21pm

I hadn't intended to get into Maillard 700 or helicomatic hubs but this is as good a place as any. Maillard 700 hubs were of course almost as good as campag NR but they were French-made which meant that Peugeot-sponsored pros etc could ride 'all French' without having any penalty. BITD a pair of Maillard 700 LF hubs cost x2.5 vs a set of Normandy LF hubs in QR form and a dizzying x5.5 more than the nutted LF hubs! The Helicomatic system was offered in several quality levels of which the 700 was the least common.

Practical issues in running a helicomatic system today include
- hub spares (some are unique to the Helicomatic hubs)
- freewheel bodies (of which there are several types)
- sprockets (many of which are unique to Helicomatic freewheels)

The freewheel bodies are not as strong as a conventional threaded freewheel body, and to fit everything in, IIRC they use a different (narrower) pattern of shim to adjust the bearings. Compared with the number I have dealt with, I'd say I have had a greater proportion of helicomatic freewheel bodies that have given trouble.

One of the common issues with Helicomatic hubs is that the hub bearings are small and (esp the RH one) both see quite a lot of load and are fairly undersized; they use 3/16" balls and unless set up very carefully and kept well-lubricated etc, are a not infrequent source of trouble. Some hub models use special cone parts in these bearings which are now getting very difficult to source. It is possible that the Pelissier SF hub pictured upthread offers a source for Helicomatic bearing cups, since this rear hub also uses 3/16" bearings.

The other thing that is a bit crazy is that, speed for speed, the wheel dishing was often worse with a helicomatic hub than a standard threaded hub. And there is practically no means of adjusting/improving it, either, other than simply increasing the OLN on the left side. So Helicomatic hubs are just about OK, but helicomatic wheels are often a bit crap. An idea that wasn't bad, but was imperfectly executed and perhaps badly timed. A chum ran helicomatic stuff in the 1980s and he struggled to get spare parts then. Even today with an internet full of spare parts, I wouldn't describe it as a system that is suitable for putting many miles into.

Helicomatic hubs are fairly well documented (eg. info in previous threads here). However the more basic Maillard/Normandy products, being less unusual, are not terribly well documented, and are in danger of slipping through the cracks as it were. This thread was intended to redress that balance. Weird isn't it? -hardly anyone who started riding in the 1960s, 1970s or early 1980s wouldn't have used these hubs at some point yet they are very easily ignored or forgotten....

cheers
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Bonefishblues
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Bonefishblues » 14 Mar 2019, 12:49pm

Indeed - albeit it's taken another 36 years to appreciate that had I continued to ride them, they might have got smoother!

Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 14 Mar 2019, 1:12pm

Bonefishblues wrote:Indeed - albeit it's taken another 36 years to appreciate that had I continued to ride them, they might have got smoother!


I wrecked several sets of cones in QR hubs of this sort until I worked out that I needed to adjust the hubs to allow for the QR compression. Also, I abandoned using these hubs for bikes with derailleur gears because I broke so many axles, but I know how to fix that now! I continued to use these hubs for fixed gear road use/training/hill climbs and I still broke axles and smashed bearings up, but not so often that it put me off entirely. I learnt a lot through all this.... :wink:

To add to the info already posted, here are some hub weights;

where SFF = small flange front, SFR = small flange rear, LFF = large flange front, and LFR = large flange rear. Date mark as indicated. Where two weights are given, it is without/with QR or track nuts + washers as appropriate. All LF hubs are slotted type.

SFF Solid Axle 14-91 138/159g
SFR QR Axle 36-86 228/320g

LFF QR axle 28-87 164/251g [revised type hubshell]
LFF QR axle 19-77 156/243g [non-standard cones and locknuts]
LFF QR axle 31-80 161/247g
LFF solid axle 15-77 183/204g
LFF solid axle NA 189/210g [Pelissier without date mark]
LFF solid axle 04-80 182/204g

LFR solid axle NA 294/316g [early slotted Normandy shell, no date mark, spaced to 130mm OLN ]
LFR solid axle NA 289/311g [ Pelissier with revised type hubshell, no date mark, 126mm OLN]
LFR solid axle 25-81 282/314G [converted to M10x1 solid axle, up to 130mm OLN possible, no (Al) spacers yet fitted]
LFR QR axle 26-81 250/342g [130mm OLN, aluminium spacers fitted]

in summary, choosing LF over SF 'costs' about 20-40g per hub in hub weight (but you might save some of that back again if you are able to use shorter/thinner spokes) and choosing QR over solid axles also costs about 40-50g per hub with standard QR skewers.

In a front wheel built 36x3 LF spokes are each ~6mm shorter than a SF wheel. If built x2 the bracing angles are still better than in a SF hub but each spoke is ~15mm shorter. Thus (with 2mm dia spokes weighing ~0.04g/mm) you get 8.6g lighter spoking in a x3 build, and ~20g lighter spokage in a x2 build. If torsional loads are high, a LF build might offer scope for lighter weight spokes to be used. Thus using LF hubs is very slightly heavier, about neutral, or appreciably lighter than building wheels with SF hubs, depending on how you go about it. Needless to say cracked spoke holes in LF hubs are less common than in SF hubs.

cheers
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Bonefishblues
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Bonefishblues » 14 Mar 2019, 1:36pm

Probably just as well I bought something sturdier them :)

Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 14 Mar 2019, 1:45pm

I was just glad I'd done my learning on stuff that didn't cost a lot of money. You can (and will) break posher hubs in an identical fashion.

I used campag NR hubs as well; I'd learned how not to wreck the bearings but my chums wrecked them through bad adjustment. We all broke axles, all the time.

cheers
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nigelnightmare
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby nigelnightmare » 15 Mar 2019, 10:28am

The slotted ones look like the "Campagnolo record Mk1's" I used to have, sans the oil port in the middle.

Brought back some fond memories.
Thanks Brucey. :D

JohnW
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby JohnW » 15 Mar 2019, 10:49pm

nigelnightmare wrote:The slotted ones look like the "Campagnolo record Mk1's" I used to have, sans the oil port in the middle.

Brought back some fond memories.
Thanks Brucey. :D


The Normandy hubs made three changes to my cycling life :
1). - they taught me to carry spare rear hub spindles, because they kept breaking. (about after 3-4,000 miles)
2). - they taught me to remove the bearing cups from the left-side bearings, when the block-side bearings had collapsed making the hubs useless, and carrying the salvaged bearing cup to replace the next collapsed block-side cup if it died on a run. This happened twice to me.
3). - they converted me to the idea of affording Campag Record hubs - turned out cheaper in the end, and I've still got Campag Record hubs from the 1970s - still in use - smoothly serving to this day.

And I found that Normandy spindles bent after a couple of hundred miles...................even without panniers or laden saddlebags.

And no - my frames were not distorted.

Brucey
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby Brucey » 16 Mar 2019, 7:56am

John's experience is pretty close to my own, but I never broke a DS bearing insert in a geared bike, only when running fixed gear. I think that (esp when running gears) whether or not the DS cup suffers is very sensitive to bearing adjustment. If the replacement cup is fitted on a bed of epoxy (as suggested upthread) the chances of failure seem somewhat reduced.

The 'old type' (silver all over) Campagnolo axles were not that much stronger than the maillard ones; I used to bend both types, and both types used to break by fatigue too. I got pretty handy at straightening axles, and checking them for cracks. The later campagnolo axles (black all over) were stronger than the earlier type, and didn't bend so easily, but they still broke via fatigue. Shimano axles seemed stronger and more fatigue resistant than others; whether this was because of the material quality or the design (notably the absence of the tab washer groove) I am not sure.

I have already described upthread how easy it is to remove bearing inserts from 'revised' Maillard hubshells. However it isn't that easy to remove them intact from earlier versions of the hubshells. The easiest way to remove a broken cup insert (from any hub or pedal) -where there is no access to the back of the insert- is to MIG weld a bolt head to the insert. It is then easy enough to hammer it out.

Many of the issues with freewheel type hubs BITD are shared with (basic) modern hubs that accept screw-on freewheels too. It seems that the design of yer average cheap taiwanese hub was 'inspired' by the likes of Maillard hubs; the bearing inserts are made almost exactly the same diameter (in rear hubs) and the cones are a very similar profile too. Unfortunately they have not used improved materials for the cups or the axles, so they break even more often than Maillard hubs did BITD.

To be clear, I don't hold up Maillard/Normandy hubs as examples of cycling perfection by any means; it is more that they were -for most folk- just about good enough; good enough to be made the same way for about thirty years, and they cost a tiny fraction vs the best hubs. Without equipment like that plenty of people wouldn't have been able to afford a half-reasonable lightweight machine, and very few riders didn't use these hubs at some point. Time has sadly blurred my memory but IIRC a set of campagnolo nuovo record hubs cost between £50 and £70 when a set of QR LF normandy hubs cost just £13. At the same time as that a set of nutted SF maillard hubs cost less than £5; by rights it would be a miracle if the Maillard hubs were even half as good.

cheers
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tatanab
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Re: Normandy hubs; maillard in many guises....

Postby tatanab » 16 Mar 2019, 8:25am

Brucey wrote: Time has sadly blurred my memory but IIRC a set of campagnolo nuovo record hubs cost between £50 and £70 when a set of QR LF normandy hubs cost just £13. At the same time as that a set of nutted SF maillard hubs cost less than £5; by rights it would be a miracle if the Maillard hubs were even half as good.

Bike Riders Aids 67-68 http://classiclightweights.net/united-k ... ds-1967-8/ show Record LF at 135 shillings a pair (£6.75 for those who have forgotten that there were 20 shillings to the pound), Nuovo Tipo LF at 90 shillings (£4.50) and Le Tour LF solid spindle at 27/6 (£1.38). An enormous price difference, especially to a 15 year old with just less than £1 weekly income from a paper round. Interestingly, the illustration of the Le Tour have round cutouts. My memory of my first of these hubs in early 68 is of slotted cut outs.

I used these style of hubs extensively into the 1980s, better hubs on racing machines. I used them for club riding and touring as well as commuting -always solid axle. It must have been around the late 70s, early 80s, that tales of breaking axles reached me and I took to carrying a spare when on tour. I never broke or bent one and never met anybody who had done so, but I am quite light on my equipment.