Jockey wheels; Bearing or not?

Kryton521

Senior Member
Took the jockey wheels off/out, gave them a really serious clean, probably way over due although they get the brush & degreaser on a regular basis.

Anyway, my question is, do jockey wheels have bearing in them or just run on the spindle in the centre? Short of pulling one of them to pieces, which I didn't think a good idea, it's hard to tell.
 

Jody

Veteran
Anyway, my question is, do jockey wheels have bearing in them or just run on the spindle in the centre? Short of pulling one of them to pieces, which I didn't think a good idea, it's hard to tell.
They can be both. Although I believe most normal jockey wheels run on a spindle with a bush.

What mech are they from?
 

Gunk

Über Member
Location
Oxford
The older Shimano pulley wheels just have a couple washers and a SS shim, but it seems to work quite effectively, newer fancier mechs have pulley wheels with sealed bearings. Both seem to work fine, I don't have a preference.
 
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Kryton521

Kryton521

Senior Member
Sorry yes. 2017/18 Domane. Shimano Ultegra, think that's the 6800? Cable not E. Just from my cleaning, if there are bearings in there they are well hidden/sealed.
 
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Kryton521

Kryton521

Senior Member
It's just a bushing and some side plates, there's not a huge advantage to having bearings in jockey wheels, they spin well enough without if kept clean.
Good. Thought, after I'd done it, that if mine had bearings as expensive ones do, then I'd need to replace them sooner rather than later as to give them a decent clean I'd left them in a bath of degreaser!

Still considering what sort to get as replacements for the standard though. Hope or C-Bear
 

derrick

The Glue that binds us together.
Nah.. you simply have to have a set of these.... bargain at an RRP of only £379.99

View attachment 520502

Guaranteed to increase riding speed, reduce effort, and make you irresistible to the opposite sex*







* not actually a guarantee.
10 out of 10 for looking sexy, As for the rest of it :laugh:
 

Ajax Bay

Veteran
Location
East Devon
BBB or Tacx jockey wheels have little bearings in them, and are inexpensive. Friction Facts (owned by CeramicSpeed) seem to show that bearings are better than bushings, which I think you get on all Shimano RDs except DuraAce. @Yellow Saddle has separately suggested that a bushing works better for the top (guide) wheel to allow chain/sprocket accurate alignment.
Once my OEM 105 jockey wheels (@ ?15,000km) wore out I replaced them with Tacx ones from my friendly LBS and before installation, on their advice, prized off the little plastic shield (pops off) to insert some light grease on the bearings (and then popped the shield back in (obv)). When they get an occasional (?5000km) deep clean I repeat this.
Losses in jockey wheels (which are small anyway) depend on bearing/bushing performance, chain return span tension (which itself depends on cage spring tension/design) and chain articulation (inversely depends on number of teeth /size of jockey wheel). The first is the most 'important' wrt power loss but the last is important 'cos it's only by having a noticeably (preferably coloured) large tension jockey wheel that other riders can see how awesome you are / how much effort you've put in to maximise drivetrain efficiency.
 
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fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
And if SRAM you've got to look after them as they tend to run out of grease and seize up. Shimano are mainly bushings. You can replace them with bearings - I've had two sets of Tacx jockey's on my XT mech after the originals wore out. Still shift fine even without the 'float'.
 
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