True Precision Hubs

Words Andrew Major
Photos Fergs
Date Sep 25, 2016

True Precision

True Precision is an aerospace-focused machine shop based out of Goleta, California.  Since 1999 they have committed about 10% of their business, and a huge amount of their passion, to creating their Stealth line of hubs.

Haven’t heard of them? This year Connor Fields of Team USA won Olympic Gold in BMX on their hubs. In fact, five of the eight riders in the final round were on their roller clutch hubs. Instantly engaging out of the gate. Launching silent attacks around the track.

True Precision Stealth Hub

Best known for their BMX hubs, True Precision offers their silent, instant, high quality hubs in a full range of widths and axle standards. That includes Boost. They make Shimano, SRAM XD, and their own single speed drivers.

True Precision Stealth Hubs

True Precision has been making their roller clutch for a long time. According to the company, their heat-treated stainless drive mechanism will “last forever” if you do some routine, very basic maintenance.

Why do top BMX racers prefer their hubs? Cynics will have to take a back seat here: True Precision does not pay athletes to ride their gear.

The hubs are bomb proof. The only consumables inside are the standard sized enduro bearings: 6801, 6804, and 6806. Athletes easily get a full year of racing and training out of the hub doing the very basic maintenance procedure I’ll highlight below.

True Precision Stealth Hub

All of True Precision’s Stealth hubs are identical internally and they offered to open up any unit I wanted to take a peek at the show. I’m a single speed nut and their unique cog system is designed for quick changes, easy chainline adjustment, and perfect concentricity. Easy choice.

Basic Stealth Service

The roller clutch hub relies on perfect tolerances for its instant engagement. The heat treated stainless steel drive mechanism is meant to last forever. To keep things working perfectly you need to stay on top of some very quick and basic maintenance.

What do you need? An Allen key, a 1/2 Teaspoon of transmission fluid, and a can of WD-40. The hardest part of the job is pulling the axle out. The tolerances are impressively tight.

True Precision Stealth Hubs

Basic maintenance. Step number one. Remove the lock ring and pull out the axle. Allen key required for the lockring.

True Precision Stealth Hub

Basic maintenance. Step number two. Pull out the drive mechanism. No tools required.

Step one: loosen the bolt on the preload collar. Unthread the collar. Then pull out the axle.

Step two: pull out the drive mechanism. No tools required.

Step three: clean the hubs with a liberal dose of WD-40 to remove any water or contaminants.

Step four: add 1/2 teaspoon of automotive transmission fluid.

Step five: put it back together and go ride your bike.

This whole process took Aki from True Precision less than five minutes including pausing for photos, explaining the process in details, and answering my questions.

How Does It Work?

True Precision Stealth Hubs

When freewheeling, the heat-treated stainless steel driver spins on the visible roller bearings. Engage the pedals and the roller bearings shift slightly in their seats locking the driver in place. Engagement is instant. It sounds simple but the tolerances needed to make it work are tight.

You’re freewheeling along silently. The heat treated stainless steel driver spinning on the full compliment of roller bearings in the hub. You hammer on the pedals and instantly, with zero perceivable float, your hub is engaged. When you pedal, the roller bearings shift slightly in their seats and stop spinning. This locks the driver in place.

It sounds simple but the tolerances needed to make it work are tight.

Support

Other than consumables, which are three Enduro bearings in this case, True Precision offers a 5-year warranty on all the components of their hubs.

They are working on a hub service tool, a la Chris King, but the external bearings are user serviceable and the clutch mechanism must be removed to access the inner-most bearing. To make up for the inconvenience of sending the hub back for service when a full tear down is needed, they do not generally charge labour for a hub service. You pay for three Enduro bearings and the shipping charges and they cover the rest.

True Precision Stealth Hubs.

Axles. Everything is made in-house at True Precision. The front hubs are QR, 15mm, and 20mm compatible. True Precision is launching new Boost compatible front and rear hubs any day.

Their hubs are not light weight with the stainless steel driver. You pay for top quality aerospace tolerances and small scale manufacturing.

The tolerances are beautiful. The performance is awesome. The credentials are impressive.

A rear hub with an XD driver costs US$425 and a front is US$185. For more click here…


Are True Precision’s Stealth hubs on your radar?

Comments

nat-brown
0
Nat Brown  - Sept. 26, 2016, 7:42 p.m.

Just for everyone's information, their website states that they do make weapons for the military.

Reply

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 26, 2016, 8:15 p.m.

It's an interesting aside. I mean where do you think the hollow Ti tubing that King Cages uses comes from? Ti tubing in general? LH Thomson? Fly on a Boeing or Airbus plane? How about ~ all carbon fibre development?

How many factories in China are actually straight up owned by the Chinese military? Most frames, components, etc, are made by a small handful of huge manufacturing companies in Asia: I'll bet you the majority of them - if not all of them - also make material only with way less export controls than the US. Own anything made by Foxcon (or using parts made at Foxcon?). What kind of car do you drive?

It's a valid post because it's true (they clearly post it on their website - I think it's a good thing). But it would be incredibly hypocritical of anyone to get their chamois in a twist or make a purchasing decision based on that - fully disclosed - fact without considering a lot of unknowns.

Reply

nat-brown
0
Nat Brown  - Sept. 26, 2016, 8:43 p.m.

I agree with you, and while I'm aware of the obvious implication in my comment, I didn't really mean to imply that no one should buy their hubs because of that simple fact. I also don't want to send the positive discussion here on a philosophical tangent. That might be naive of me. It's a factor, for some, that's all. Make your own mind up people.

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 26, 2016, 8:53 p.m.

Hi Nat, I understood that. It's just a lot of people for whom it's a factor don't see the forest through the trees.

craw
0
Cr4w  - Sept. 26, 2016, 7:59 a.m.

Their website doesn't list a 148mm rear option.

Reply

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 26, 2016, 8:02 a.m.

It will be up on the site in ~1.5 weeks.

I played with it at the show so I know they exist.

Reply

craw
0
Cr4w  - Sept. 26, 2016, 10:39 a.m.

How do they compare to Onyx?

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 26, 2016, 11:15 a.m.

They're both silent, instant, and relatively heavy ( if that's a concern). Both companies have great reputations for quality and cycling is a passionate side project in both cases.

I can't give you personal feedback on either at this time. Jon Is testing a set of NOBL wheels long term, which use Onyx guts. I'm working on setting up a test with True Precision.

Performance wise I don't see how you can go wrong. Long term and short term maintenance we'll hopefully have answers for you in the future.

Hope that helps; thanks for reading.

kain0m
0
kain0m  - Sept. 26, 2016, 3:50 a.m.

They look nice. I might consider them for a future build, thanks for the heads up… I was looking for some high quality hubs, but I don't like noisy hubs (and kings were a bit too expensive for my liking…)

Reply

walleater
0
walleater  - Sept. 25, 2016, 11:01 p.m.

And so begins the great Sprag Vs Roller Clutch debate of 2016 (or not….).

Reply

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 25, 2016, 11:26 p.m.

Or not.

King, Onyx, True Precision, I9, etc. If you're lucky enough to run a super high quality lightning fast engaging hub you're lucky enough.

Reply

walleater
0
walleater  - Sept. 26, 2016, 9:51 a.m.

I did waste too much of my life last night trying to work out which are superior though. I did read a comment that Sprag clutches are better for applications over 1000bhp. My legs only register 995bhp so I'm still not sure. In all seriousness though, as a hater of loud hubs I like the sound (ahem….) of these new hubs.

drewm
0
DrewM  - Sept. 26, 2016, 9:57 a.m.

coughnerdcough

Yeah I know. Takes one to know one.

I like the sound of silence too. On my friend Jimmy's recommendation I run Royal Purple 0W full synthetic oil in my King hub. Notable reduction in drag and significantly muted angry bees. Does require more frequent relube than King's ring drive lube.

craw
0
Cr4w  - Sept. 26, 2016, 12:58 p.m.

I love the idea of silent hubs. Check out this review, unintended consequences.

whatyouthink
0
whatyouthink  - Sept. 27, 2016, 6:53 a.m.

I have heard on other sites deep in the forums that the roller clutch has more drag to it when coasting, but I wish I could say from experience. I was hoping to build a wheelset this offseason on some onyx hubs.

Reply

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