Freenight Releases Planetary MTB Freecoaster Hub

Jun 21, 2022
by Matt Beer  


First built for the insanely technical world of fakie (riding backwards) BMX tricks, freecoaster-style hubs let you roll in reverse without needing to backpedal. This opens up the possibilities for new trick variations and makes landing backwards easier.

The Freenight Planetary Freecoast Hub uses a unique system that has no "slack", better known as the amount of crank rotation it takes to engage the drive in the forward direction, which is one of the major drawbacks of standard freecoasters on the market. It's also roughly 150-grams lighter than most freecoasters - another downside to the typical cone-style decoupling mechanism.

Freenight Hub Details

▪ No "slack" or lag in drive engagement
▪ 6-bolt disc brake compatible
▪ 135 x 10 mm hub spacing
▪ 32 or 36 hole, 58mm diameter flanges
▪ black or polished finish
▪ 10 mm male axle bolts
▪ 11T driver
▪ 502 g
▪ $290 USD
▪ More info: freenightbmx.com
The Freenight Hub is now available for mountain bike frames with 135x10mm hub spacing and is available through their consumer-direct website.


How Does It Actually Work?

Inside the Freenight Planetary Freecoaster Hub are three main components that makeup the design: pawls or sprung teeth that engage with a drive ring that allow the hub to freewheel in the foward direction, a set of planetary gears inside the hub shell, and a clutch plate that is sandwiched between those two components.

The one-piece 11-tooth steel driver has three double-row pawls that are sprung in a downward, disengaged position, unlike a traditional hub. When pedalling forwards, one of the three ramps on the clutch plate rotates in the clockwise direction (when viewing from the drive-side of the hub) to catch the pawls and raises them tangentially outward from the axle to lock into the drive ring on the hub shell, turning the wheel forwards.

Upon landing fakie when the wheel rolls in the reverse direction, the planetary clutch plate rotates backwards to disengage from the pawls. This is where the downward sprung action of the pawl is crucial. Confused? Check out the video below to see the internals and how it works in action.




61 Comments

  • 64 4
 To all the confused doofuses: it's made for DJ bikes. The point of it is so you don't need to pedal backwards while rolling fakie, which can help with certain tricks/high speed fakie tricks. It's really not that hard to grasp.
  • 42 1
 This is the single piece of gear holding me back from so many amazing tricks. No boost spacing, though, so unfortunately I'm going to be limited to riding forwards. Glad it's not my fault.
  • 33 4
 Bmx backround comments incoming in 3...2...1...
  • 8 0
 I don’t have a BMX background
  • 4 0
 I also do not have a BMX background...
  • 5 0
 My DH background helped improve my box foreground.
  • 6 1
 I have a BMX background, and it's done nothing for me.
  • 19 1
 I have a BMX background... image as my computer's wallpaper.
  • 1 0
 This goes hard! @iamamodel:
  • 1 0
 As an engineer, my BMX background doesn't look like sessioning.
  • 19 2
 Heavy, expensive, overcomplicated, I couldn't land a trick if my life depended on it Sign me up !
  • 3 0
 I resemble that comment
  • 12 2
 Please make one in 148 x 12 with a microspline driver - I'll take 5
  • 1 0
 YES PLEASE
  • 9 3
 These hubs should start a healthy debate on pedal kickback with full suspension mtbs. Looks like an excellent idea for hardtails.
  • 2 2
 My first thought as well!
WRP are doing some insane cranks - so why not solve it through a hub?
Also - this calls for a new hubstandard - ULTRA BOOST! 158mm!
I also wonder when we will get to MO-MO-MO-MO-MONSTER BOOST BOOST BOOST AT 159,5mm?
  • 1 0
 @pnyberg: you mean super boost, which already exists and is 157mm wide?
  • 5 1
 Do actually want no slack? What if you land with your feet slightly unlevel and happen to weight the front pedal a bit? With no slack, that's going to engage forward for as long as the front pedal is weighted, no?
  • 15 1
 Planetary freecoasters are either engaged or disengaged based on wheel rotation direction instead of pedal input. Check out BSD's video on their BMX Planetary Freecoaster Hub. Moonwalks FTW
  • 10 3
 I have a bmx foreground
  • 1 0
 "Upon landing fakie when the wheel rolls in the reverse direction, the planetary clutch plate rotates backwards to disengage from the pawls. This is where the downward sprung action of the pawl is crucial. Confused?"

Almost correct - when moving backward in fakie, the clutch plate rotates Forward - away from the pawls.
When riding forward, the clutch plate rotates backwards - and is always trying to lift the pawls (like a spring in a cassete), this is why there is no slack.
  • 4 0
 I would be very happy if I could get one of these in 142X12mm
  • 2 0
 Look at profile?
  • 2 1
 Man love the idea, I wonder if the 11T driver only works with a SS chain? Would love to try it on my slope bike, but my frame uses a tensioner, and a standard MTB chain.
  • 2 3
 Pitch is the same, and pretty sure internal width is the same. Single-speed chains are externally wider since they don't have to fit between a stack of cogs, but should work on those same cogs if they weren't so close together.
  • 2 0
 Some cogs/rings are single speed chain specific (at least on bmxs) which are significantly thicker to handle the torque and wear slower.
  • 1 0
 @inked-up-metalhead: Can confirm. My single speed came with an 8-speed chain and 34t bmx chainring. When I changed the chainring to 28t the 8-speed chain would not fit and had to switch to a single speed chain. Haven't had any problems with the 8-speed cog with the single speed chain.
  • 2 0
 @vapidoscar: no you won't, wider chains can fit on narrower rings, but not the other way round, you could have run a single speed chain all along and never even known it was a thicker chainring lol. I only know all this from a mate who was a serial chain snapper/chainring bender, and bragged about his 'indestructible' set up which was a gusset tank chain (1.5t breaking load), an oddysey chainring which was pretty much a 44t solid plate of 6mm aluminium, and a 18t full steel single speed driver designed for trials bikes. And tbf it survived about 50x longer than the standard drive set up that the bike came with.
  • 1 0
 @inked-up-metalhead: my concern on the 8 speed cog was side to side slop would accelerate wear.
  • 1 0
 Very cool product. Seems like they do 11t and 9t drivers, which is a little annoying. Most of the main MTB street dudes run a 23-10 set up. Would love a 10t option.
  • 5 0
 Why not just run 25-11?
  • 1 0
 I remember buying the first KHE geisha hub, hand down biggest let down ever. it was on my DMR transition, was inconsistent out of the box. May knees to the bars!!!
  • 2 0
 Finally, MTB freecoaster, that could be purchased, thank you!
  • 1 0
 You're welcomed Smile
  • 2 1
 I have a BMX in the background...
  • 1 0
 I have a bmx.
  • 1 0
 Leave the planets alone.
  • 1 0
 I have a future in BMX
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