Onyx Vesper Hub Problems

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Posted: Oct 25, 2020 at 17:53 Quote
brinkerhoff150 wrote:
Anyone had issues with Onyx Vesper hub causing the rear cassette to bind up (not spin freely) while backpedaling? Brand new hubs and when the rear axle is torqued (~12nm) the hub completely binds up. Works fine when not torqued. Also the binding is not constant - part of the friction during rotation is more noticeable at certain points in the stroke.
This is usually caused by the bearings being exposed to some pretty high side loads. In most cases this is caused by a missing spacer within the hub body or use of the wrong end cap.

Posted: Oct 26, 2020 at 0:54 Quote
Sounds like it could be a an axle bolt torque issue as stated above though I will say that my own previous Onyx non Vesper hib did something similar after a while, it become very very draggy back pedalling and sometimes had sloppy engagement, like a rubber band effect rather than instant. Never bothered warrantying them or knew if the problem arose from wear and tear, lack of maintenance, jetwashing or the grease I was using, also had the axle seize to the hub and had to hammer it out. Never bought another Onyx at 460g that hub was heavy as hell and it was noticeable, the carbon ti hub I have now weighs 180g

Posted: Oct 26, 2020 at 9:06 Quote
brinkerhoff150 wrote:
Anyone had issues with Onyx Vesper hub causing the rear cassette to bind up (not spin freely) while backpedaling? Brand new hubs and when the rear axle is torqued (~12nm) the hub completely binds up. Works fine when not torqued. Also the binding is not constant - part of the friction during rotation is more noticeable at certain points in the stroke.

@btinkerhoff150 - Someone approached me with this exact issue not long ago. Turns out his drive side end cap was a little off axis when he installed the hub, cocking things up a bit and this caused lock up and drag. Uninstall the axle, take the wheel out, make sure you end caps are on straight and flush, reinstall wheel being careful that things stay straight and flush as you insert the wheel, and retorque. Please let me know if this works for you?

@ajax-ripper - I don't recall there being any spacers in Onyx hubs to go missing.

@Danzzz88 - Onyx classic hubs are heavy, but not that bad in real world application. I just weighted a boost Classic (the heavier version) as 420g. About 100g heavier than the Chris King that went on the scale after it. Vespers are much closer to a king. I'm sure your Carbon Ti hubs is lovely, and maybe you are sensitive enough to notice the difference, but most people aren't. Weight at the hub makes very little difference to the feel of the wheel in terms of how easy it is to get rotating. What people will notice though, is the engagement, low drag, and silent operation. Some people talk about spring/unsprung weight, but again most people just are not that sensitive. If you had issues with drag that developed over time, any number of the things you listed may contribute. All hubs will develop drag if you don't look after them. Jet washing is the #1 way to kill hub engagement, and make things seize up. Using the wrong grease in the sprag clutch is another way to ensure you create slip - matter of fact, you are better to run them dry without lube at all in the clutch, than using the wrong grease. Kluber Isoflex A is what you need. And no jet washing!!! =)

Posted: Oct 26, 2020 at 9:29 Quote
It's not rotating weight at the centre of the wheel I am concerned about by opting for a lighter hub, it's unsprung mass, knocking nearly 300g of hub weight, 50g in rotor weight, 75g in rim weight and 50g in cassette weight makes a massive difference to the unsprung mass to my previous setup that was running Onyx hub, dt511 and an eagle cassette, that was a lot of mass on the tail. My previous bike you would pick it up from the centre of the top tube and it was a lot more rear heavy, you could feel the unbalance greatly, the new bike everything feels pretty much 50/50. After watching videos of the Zerode and gearbox equipped Nicolais with their better sprung to unsprung mass ratios it was evident that minimal weight on the back end makes a huge difference. The instant engagement was nice on the Onyx but not worth the weight penalty, also bare in mind instant engagement means more chance of pedal kickback at low speeds. The anodising was also sub par, orange anodized looked more like a washed out mango/copper colour. Sound wise silent is good for a bit, definitely for cruising the streets trying to be stealth and not attract unwanted attention, at the bike park however the hub sound zipping is part of the thrill imo.

Posted: Dec 2, 2020 at 14:08 Quote
I appreciate all the feedback. Update to my Onyx Vesper Hub issues... I purchased a set of wheels (onyx vesper hubs) and revel carbon rims back in September and have yet to get a mile on them because of the issues. First, the binding that I described back in my original post. Onyx stated that it probably needed a some grease or to remove some part of the internals. Didn't want to screw anything up since they were unridden so took it to my local bike shop. They had mentioned someone had a similar complaint a while back. Well removing the internals didn't fix anything. Next, Onyx said it was an endcap issue and there was not enough clearance on my frame (2020 ibis ripmo). Now they say that my frame may have too much paint around the axel and to try to remedy it by removing some paint. Not happening - no issues with the stock. wheels that came with the bike. Next the end cap clearance issue is apparently on their radar and they then said they would engineer a new endcap. Well that didn't work. Sent wheels back to the reputable shop that I got them from. They are saying similar thing that it seems like there was a lot of load put on the axel (maybe in shipping) and onyx wants to have the wheel sent to them to look at it because they think its an anomaly with my set of hubs. At what point to they just send a new hub? Maybe its those 100 ceramic bearings that I wasted money on Smile Long story short, it's December and I have yet to see an end in sight to this issue. Unlikey to have the wheel set back in December so going on 4 months. Basically $2500 wall art right now. Pretty disappointed with the whole process and onyx in general. I'm worried something else will pop up as soon as I get a few rides on them and then be out the cost of a new hub. I'm asking the shop if I can just replace the vespers for king hubs.

Posted: Dec 2, 2020 at 14:19 Quote
I bet it's not an anomaly, I had similar issues but cos I live in the uk I couldn't be arsed dealing with getting it fixed and just got new hubs so that's one they never heard about. I do believe there is an axle tolerance issue though but I think it's Onyx's fault not the axle. My Yeti axle seized to my onyx hub so badly I had to take a hammer and hit really hard numerous times for about 15mins until it came out, probably buggering the hub in the process hence the notchiness I had after. My carbon Ti hubs are so damn smooth, even with pawls they rotate for longer than the onyx did, weigh less than half as much (both hubs together weigh less than the rear Onyx alone), come in straightpull, much nicer coloured anodising ect. Yes they are not instant engagement and make a bit of noise but it is worth it for the quality of them. I liked how my onyx was silent sometimes, but when I went to the bikepark with my mate and his pro 4's it made me wish at that moment I had some cool sounding hubs, it just adds to the experience, it's like a tesla vs a muscle car, one might be better on paper but the other just has more soul, throw reliabilty and weight in there too and that is why I never decided to buy an Onyx hub again.

Posted: Dec 20, 2020 at 0:19 Quote
brinkerhoff150 wrote:
Anyone had issues with Onyx Vesper hub causing the rear cassette to bind up (not spin freely) while backpedaling? Brand new hubs and when the rear axle is torqued (~12nm) the hub completely binds up. Works fine when not torqued. Also the binding is not constant - part of the friction during rotation is more noticeable at certain points in the stroke.

I have read about this issue and the owner found out that the end cap wasn't installed correctly. This may help. It has to sit flush.

Posted: Feb 27, 2021 at 19:21 Quote
Everyone that is having binding issues (or excessive play), please watch this youtube video on how to adjust the bearing preload adjuster on the left side of Vesper hubs. I was pulling my hair out after I had developed lateral play in the hub. Onyx has ZERO literature on this that I could find. I thought it was just a sleeve on the left side, but it's actually threaded. Then after the fact, I stumbled on this video from a guy that had gone through the opposite issue (binding freehub) but the solution is the same. I really can't believe that this is not the first thing that Onyx would document.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RtRZvospzAM

Posted: Feb 27, 2021 at 20:00 Quote
aburkhol wrote:
Everyone that is having binding issues (or excessive play), please watch this youtube video on how to adjust the bearing preload adjuster on the left side of Vesper hubs. I was pulling my hair out after I had developed lateral play in the hub. Onyx has ZERO literature on this that I could find. I thought it was just a sleeve on the left side, but it's actually threaded. Then after the fact, I stumbled on this video from a guy that had gone through the opposite issue (binding freehub) but the solution is the same. I really can't believe that this is not the first thing that Onyx would document.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RtRZvospzAM

The Vespers didn't always have this little locknut adjustment, believe it or not. They have gone through some running changes to their axle and end cap design over the last year. But this makes sense - the bearing preload nut is a little too tight, and when you clamp down your axle they are binding the bearings. I haven't seen one come poorly adjust straight out of the Factory like that, usually Onyx is on the ball. Easy to fix however, which is great.

Posted: Mar 21, 2021 at 22:22 Quote
Update: the video fix that was posted above did not fix the binding issue. The preloader was actually interfering with the the frame (ibis ripmo v2) and caused the binding. Onyx acknowledged this and actually redesign the end caps. Got my wheel back from them/bike shop I purchased them from at the end of November. Good on Onyx for fixing the issue.

Today I finished a relatively easy ride and notice a strange noise coming from the front wheel. I took it to the bike shop and they confirmed what I feared - bearings are shot. Purchased these hubs in August 2020 and didn’t get my first ride on them until almost December. Now 4 months later and the bearings are shot. I’m frankly pretty disappointed with these things. They look great but my previous second hand King hubs ran flawless for years. I’m seriously concerned with the longevity considering the price.

Posted: Mar 22, 2021 at 1:21 Quote
Having owned Onyx hub previously I can say they are not worth the cost. The instant engagement is nice, and silence is if you really hate the sound of pawl hubs.

But they are far too heavy, forget about building a lightweight wheelset with these. They are very unreliable. They actually offer more drag than my pawled Carbon Ti hubs even though the mechanism disengages the bearings are obviously piss poor in the Onyx and the anodising is very wishy washy and looks a bit crap.

My Carbon Ti's are miles higher quality, spin much more free, look great, come in straight pull reliable, ridiculously lightweight....yes they are only 54t, not instant engagement, but it's worth the compromise to not put up with all the other issues...besides at lower speeds or after big drops the lower engagement lets the rear end work more free and the bit of slop reduces the pedal kickback anf makes the landings a tad softer.

If the Onyx were cheaper, came with better bearings, worked properly for more than a few months and shaved 25% weight they would be a good option for some...and why the hell they don't offer straightpull on a premium hub Idk.

Posted: Apr 22, 2021 at 6:51 Quote
Recently had this same issue, Onyx has since added some support:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFozBtIZej8

Posted: Apr 30, 2021 at 18:31 Quote
Hoping someone may be able to help me here. I just replaced my stock wheels on a 1m old bike with a New Wheelset with a vesper hub and seem to be having issues right off the bat. I’m struggling to even diagnose what is happening so maybe others here have some thoughts.

First let’s cover what seems fine.
- No lateral play
- Shifts fine
- Seems to spin freely fine

When riding through higher speed sections where the rear shock compresses it’s making terrible chain grinding noises. Almost like the hub is packing up in someway or screwing with the progression of the chain during compressions of the rear shock. At first I thought it was maybe chain slap that was accentuate by the silent hub but after it happened a few times it was clear it wasn’t normal and a few times I could see the upper segment of the chain substantially dropping down below the chain stay. Again the bike is pretty much brand new and after 3 rides before this change I’ve had no issues at all riding the same kind of trails.

Any thoughts?

Posted: Jun 23, 2021 at 5:30 Quote
BryanBobo wrote:
Hoping someone may be able to help me here. I just replaced my stock wheels on a 1m old bike with a New Wheelset with a vesper hub and seem to be having issues right off the bat. I’m struggling to even diagnose what is happening so maybe others here have some thoughts.

First let’s cover what seems fine.
- No lateral play
- Shifts fine
- Seems to spin freely fine

When riding through higher speed sections where the rear shock compresses it’s making terrible chain grinding noises. Almost like the hub is packing up in someway or screwing with the progression of the chain during compressions of the rear shock. At first I thought it was maybe chain slap that was accentuate by the silent hub but after it happened a few times it was clear it wasn’t normal and a few times I could see the upper segment of the chain substantially dropping down below the chain stay. Again the bike is pretty much brand new and after 3 rides before this change I’ve had no issues at all riding the same kind of trails.

Any thoughts?


Literally just got a set and have the same issue. In the small cogs I got up to speed, heard some weird grinding sounds before the chain was chucked off and it threw me over a berm. These hubs aren't even safe to ride on and now when i bounce around in small gears it throws the chain off, even when I'm stationary!

Posted: Jun 23, 2021 at 17:38 Quote
willtriv wrote:
BryanBobo wrote:
Hoping someone may be able to help me here. I just replaced my stock wheels on a 1m old bike with a New Wheelset with a vesper hub and seem to be having issues right off the bat. I’m struggling to even diagnose what is happening so maybe others here have some thoughts.

First let’s cover what seems fine.
- No lateral play
- Shifts fine
- Seems to spin freely fine

When riding through higher speed sections where the rear shock compresses it’s making terrible chain grinding noises. Almost like the hub is packing up in someway or screwing with the progression of the chain during compressions of the rear shock. At first I thought it was maybe chain slap that was accentuate by the silent hub but after it happened a few times it was clear it wasn’t normal and a few times I could see the upper segment of the chain substantially dropping down below the chain stay. Again the bike is pretty much brand new and after 3 rides before this change I’ve had no issues at all riding the same kind of trails.

Any thoughts?


Literally just got a set and have the same issue. In the small cogs I got up to speed, heard some weird grinding sounds before the chain was chucked off and it threw me over a berm. These hubs aren't even safe to ride on and now when i bounce around in small gears it throws the chain off, even when I'm stationary!

So take this with a grain of salt because this worked for me but then started having the same issue again… Have you played with the preload adjustment? They have some YouTube videos on it. The issue is it seems really super sensitive. I find I’m either between it being too loose so I can feel play or too tight (where I think you get this grinding issue). I do like the silence of the hubs but after 2-3m of use I have to say idk that they are worth the hassle. I’m starting to lose my patience.


 
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