Re: [Classicrendezvous] Helicomatic Bearings

Date: Sat, 11 Nov 2000 11:15:49 -0500
From: Jerry & Liz Moos <>
To: Bob Reid <>
CC: Classic Rendezvous <>
Subject: Re: [Classicrendezvous] Helicomatic Bearings
References: <>

Just to muddle the picture even further, I have at least one Helicomatic on which the outside of the bearings (I thought) was stamped "Sealed France". So I thought the later Helicomatics use sealed cartridge bearings. But later I discovered in an LBS NOS Maillard axles of the era, with a thin metal plate with the same markings held in place between the cone and the adjacent axle nut. So the "Sealed" may have meant nothing more than a metal dustshield on the same conventional bearings as any other Helicomatic. That doesn't exactly strike me as "sealed", but to paraphrase that great American Bill Clinton, known to history as the husband of Senator Hilary, "It depends what you say the meaning of the word 'sealed' is". Guess the French can play fast and loose with words also, especially when they are, after all, only English words. I guess I'm going to have to tear down some Helicomatic hubs to figure all this out.


Jerry Moos

Bob Reid wrote:
> Okay now I've stopped the sarcasm, I'll give the whole story ;
> Customer walks in with a helio hubbed wheel & asks for new bearings - he's
> already stripped it and doesn't have the old bearings with him. So I think
> I've nothing better to do than put 1/4's on the left and 5/32's on the
> right. Not so ! with 1/4" bearings in the right-side you can't get the
> axle through the hub, let alone the cones on the bearings. Back to the
> drawing board and hence the question. I end up stripping another NOS
> Helico Matic hub of similar appearance but four years old (84) and find the
> 13 x 5/32's in both sides. End of problem.
> It could be that the low to middle end Maillard hub's used this arrangement
> and it was the top-end stuff that used 1/4" on the left ! I don't know.
> Thanks for the answer anyway.
> Bob Reid
> Stonehaven
> Scotland
> > From: Jerry & Liz Moos <>
> > Date: Sat, 11 Nov 2000 09:18:39 -0500
> > To: Bob Reid <>
> > Cc: Classic Rendezvous <>
> > Subject: Re: [Classicrendezvous] Helicomatic Bearings
> >
> > Bob, I just checked Sheldon's website. He has a section on Helicomatics under
> > French Bicycles, and it implies there there that the 13 5/32 was on the right
> > side only, while the left was the usual 9 1/4. Don't think I'm ambitious
> > enough to strip one of my Heliocomatics to resolve this discrepancy.
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > Jerry Moos