Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
Brucey
Posts: 42204
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Brucey » 8 Dec 2020, 10:13pm

very possibly you have dislodged a roller from one of the roller clutches, or (worse) one of the roller clutches (probably the main one which drives the hubshell in all gears apart from 1,2,7 (?) has lost its spring preload and will no longer engage properly.

Once shimano IGHs have a few miles on them the roller clutch assembly (on a loose internal) can often slip round "by one tooth" and if they do this there is no longer any spring preload. And/or the spring can simply come unhooked.

For the one millionth time on this thread; you should not use ATF in an alfine hub; it has a very good chance of ruining the seals, and it is a markedly inferior lubricant.

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Karx
Posts: 6
Joined: 8 Dec 2020, 4:20pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Karx » 9 Dec 2020, 12:11am

Thank you Brucey for your input and remarks.

In terms of actually making this work again, do you think you could point out part numbers from image below indicating which could be the culprit of the problem?
Image


In the event this is not something that can be fixed by myself I would probably try to get serviced at the shop but I'm afraid the costs won't justify my project as viable..


Thanks,

Brucey
Posts: 42204
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Brucey » 9 Dec 2020, 12:17am

the roller clutches I suspect of being faulty are part of item #7.

Good luck!

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

zeluzel
Posts: 22
Joined: 27 Jan 2020, 11:38am
Location: Wrocław, PL

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby zeluzel » 9 Dec 2020, 8:19pm

Brucey wrote:And/or the spring can simply come unhooked.

@Karx
If it's just that, than here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynHJIGTvcwg&t=1851s you have a nice video, showing how to put a psring back - maybe it'll give you some confidence.

User avatar
simonineaston
Posts: 4047
Joined: 9 May 2007, 1:06pm
Location: ...at a cricket ground

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby simonineaston » 9 Dec 2020, 10:15pm

Jeepers - those net curtains... :shock:
byyeee,
SiE

Karx
Posts: 6
Joined: 8 Dec 2020, 4:20pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Karx » 9 Dec 2020, 10:21pm

zeluzel wrote:@Karx
If it's just that, than here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynHJIGTvcwg&t=1851s you have a nice video, showing how to put a psring back - maybe it'll give you some confidence.


Thank you so much for your reply, I get the picture of what is actually involved. Hopefully I do not need to go deeper inside. For now as you and Brucey suggested this should be the very fist gear module starting from non-sprocket side.

Will report back once I get to it!

regards,

zeluzel
Posts: 22
Joined: 27 Jan 2020, 11:38am
Location: Wrocław, PL

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby zeluzel » 10 Dec 2020, 12:10pm

simonineaston wrote:Jeepers - those net curtains... :shock:


Welcome in Eastern Europe xD

Karx
Posts: 6
Joined: 8 Dec 2020, 4:20pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Karx » 11 Dec 2020, 8:46pm

Ok, I had time to flush fresh oil out and take the internals out again. I did not see any visual issues with the internals of the hub, so went ahead and carefully took major parts apart, please see pictures link below (sort A to Z)
https://ibb.co/album/SRfgxQ

All the roller clutches (3 of them, forgive me if my terminology is off) are preloaded with spring tension and do spring back if twisted and released.
None of the rollers seem to have any wear, all edges are fine expect the one which is closest to the sprocket, I tried to circle it in the photo above. Also all the rollers spin freely but top 2 modules with rollers in photo 1 do spin up to the point and then stop, 3rd one spins continuously around.
The pawl does not seem to have any wear, at least to a newbie eye like mine, haha.

I am considering to put everything back again, but not sure if this would solve the gear issue. One thing that’s bothering me is the wear on the part that I showed with yellow marks above, could this be responsible for gear engagement?

Any suggestions or remarks are appreciated!

Regards,

zeluzel
Posts: 22
Joined: 27 Jan 2020, 11:38am
Location: Wrocław, PL

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby zeluzel » 13 Dec 2020, 8:02pm

The part you circled is a clutch, which engages in gears 7-11, so it being faulty on its own shouldn't cause symptoms you wrote about. If I understand correctly, the gears in that part with 2 roller clutches spin up to a point and then get stuck, right? My guess is, that metal parts from worn clutch got stuck between gears there and that's what prevents it from spinning freely. Did you try further disassembling that part or flushing it more thoroughly to free any shrapnel from there?

Brucey
Posts: 42204
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Brucey » 13 Dec 2020, 9:42pm

Karx wrote:... One thing that’s bothering me is the wear on the part that I showed with yellow marks above, could this be responsible for gear engagement?...
,


this?

Image

that is the sliding clutch (which moves in the 6 to 7 shift) and yours is broken. This kind of damage will occur if this shift is made under high load, or the hub is ridden when badly adjusted. As zeluzel points out above, as worrying as the absence of metal from the clutch is where the pieces have ended up. IME the tolerances in shimano IGHs are pretty tight and a lump of metal only ~0.5mm dia won't pass between gear teeth and is likely to jam them solid.

I have rescued components from gears which have had lumps of shrapnel inside and it often takes what seems like forever to make them good again. The whole gear has to come apart and every tooth valley needs to be scraped clean. Usually you find that as well as shrapnel embedded in the gears, there are damaged gear teeth too. Pieces of swarf which have been squashed in gear teeth are sometimes squashed so thin that you can't see them with the naked eye, only with a good magnifier or when they are scraped free perhaps.

Even a simple gear like an SA 3s has 160 teeth to clean inside. I have never counted them all up in an A11 gear but I would expect it to be around three times as many.

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Karx
Posts: 6
Joined: 8 Dec 2020, 4:20pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Karx » 13 Dec 2020, 9:45pm

zeluzel wrote:The part you circled is a clutch, which engages in gears 7-11, so it being faulty on its own shouldn't cause symptoms you wrote about. If I understand correctly, the gears in that part with 2 roller clutches spin up to a point and then get stuck, right? My guess is, that metal parts from worn clutch got stuck between gears there and that's what prevents it from spinning freely. Did you try further disassembling that part or flushing it more thoroughly to free any shrapnel from there?


That’s a good suggestion.
I will take it apart once again, but before I did dissemble it just by taking off major modules, not actually taking apart sun gears themselves as I am slightly afraid not being able to time the gears correctly afterwards.
Would you be able to confirm if module 1 and module 2 gears should have a free travel all the way round continuously? Module 1 stops when the two tabs of the spring meet. Module 2 stops for reason that I can’t indicate. Maybe there’s a piece of metal shaving from the clutch unit impairing the movement as you are saying.

Thanks!

zeluzel
Posts: 22
Joined: 27 Jan 2020, 11:38am
Location: Wrocław, PL

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby zeluzel » 14 Dec 2020, 1:57am

I haven't yet worked on Alfine 11, so maybe it's better to wait for Brucey, but just to clarify - these modules don't turn all the way when everything is assembled, or you can't make the gears turn freely in each module, when it's disassembled? If it's the latter, then it's definitely a sign of something blocking it.

In case you didn't use it, here's Shimano's official manual for disassembly:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RiLlH5 ... sp=sharing

Hope it helps ;)

jb
Posts: 1044
Joined: 6 Jan 2007, 12:17pm
Location: Clitheroe

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby jb » 14 Dec 2020, 11:29am

Brucey wrote:
Karx wrote:... One thing that’s bothering me is the wear on the part that I showed with yellow marks above, could this be responsible for gear engagement?...
,


this?

Image

that is the sliding clutch (which moves in the 6 to 7 shift) and yours is broken. This kind of damage will occur if this shift is made under high load, or the hub is ridden when badly adjusted. As zeluzel points out above, as worrying as the absence of metal from the clutch is where the pieces have ended up. IME the tolerances in shimano IGHs are pretty tight and a lump of metal only ~0.5mm dia won't pass between gear teeth and is likely to jam them solid.

I have rescued components from gears which have had lumps of shrapnel inside and it often takes what seems like forever to make them good again. The whole gear has to come apart and every tooth valley needs to be scraped clean. Usually you find that as well as shrapnel embedded in the gears, there are damaged gear teeth too. Pieces of swarf which have been squashed in gear teeth are sometimes squashed so thin that you can't see them with the naked eye, only with a good magnifier or when they are scraped free perhaps.

Even a simple gear like an SA 3s has 160 teeth to clean inside. I have never counted them all up in an A11 gear but I would expect it to be around three times as many.

cheers


As the mating sprag for that clutch has only half the number of teeth and every other tooth seems to be damaged it would appear to be a one off event that caused it. Also as not all of those teeth are damaged (as seen from one of the other photos) it would suggest cockeyed alignment happened.
If its assembled & used as is with the damaged clutch, whenever that set of teeth are doing the driving there will be a chance of slipping.
Cheers
J Bro

Karx
Posts: 6
Joined: 8 Dec 2020, 4:20pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby Karx » 15 Dec 2020, 5:06am

Ok, one more round of taking hub apart and spending considerable amount of cleaning all the gears I actually did find the participles from clutch unit in between the teeth of planetary gears in module 2:

6B8003F8-95E1-4C96-B92C-9FA82B3A3489.jpeg

82C4DC5E-364A-4323-8977-8BE26DE8B6C9.jpeg


Once I cleaned all that I possibly could I put it back together, aligned the yellow marks and everything seems to be spot on. I will try to go for test ride one of these days to see how it performs with the slight load on. I’ve ordered clutch unit which I’ll consider replacing if slipping is present.

Thanks all for helping to troubleshoot the issue

mart430
Posts: 3
Joined: 2 Jan 2021, 1:23pm

Re: Shimano Alfine 11 - Longer term reliability

Postby mart430 » 4 Jan 2021, 10:37am

Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum. I've been running an Alfine 11 on my mtb for about 8 years now and I have found this forum to be an invaluable source of information.

I wonder whether anyone could explain or show how to strip the drive-side of the Alfine 11 axle unit. I need to fit a new axle unit because pawl number 1 has broken. I have followed the instructions previously posted to strip the non-drive side (parts 1-13) and have successfully removed parts 25 -21 on the drive-side but I'm not sure how to remove parts 20-15?

Many thanks

Martin