Definition of freewheel in English:


Line breaks: free|wheel
Pronunciation: /friːˈwiːl


[no object]
  • 1Ride a bicycle with the pedals at rest, especially downhill: the postman came freewheeling down the track
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    • We swept through the town of Grindelwald and freewheeled along the bank of the Lutschine river.
    • As I freewheeled and carefully negotiated the ruts, I enjoyed views of Wetwang, partially hidden in trees, and surrounded by all that cultivated land Sir Tatton was describing.
    • We rode through a stream, enjoyed a few final bursts of speed and skidding switchbacks and freewheeled into the shanty town of Yolosa.
    coast, cruise, drift, glide, sail, skim, float
  • 2 (as adjective freewheeling) Not concerned with rules, conventions, or the consequences of one’s actions: the freewheeling drug scene of the sixties
    More example sentences
    • I would like for our society to retain its skepticism of power and its freewheeling entrepreneurialism.
    • They also maintain that the company's freewheeling engineering culture is not a liability but an asset.
    • Its freewheeling local agents are periodically accused - and sometimes even convicted - of drug trafficking and murder.


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  • 1 (free wheel) A bicycle wheel which is able to revolve freely when no power is being applied to the pedals.
    More example sentences
    • Both the Combi and Classic have the clutch wheel mounted in front and the free wheel in the rear.
    • Track bikes have no breaks, only one gear and there is no free wheel, which means there is no coasting.
    • It had wooden rims and no free wheel, but I thought it was a wonderful possession.
  • 1.1A device in a motor vehicle transmission allowing the drive shaft to spin faster than the engine.
    More example sentences
    • He showed us how surprisingly easy it is to open the freewheel and service the bearings or pawls, although I doubt the sealed mechanism requires much maintenance.
    • You will have to build another rim onto that hub so that you can twist the hub hard enough to unscrew the freewheel.
    • I've been doing my own work for 20 years, but I can't figure out how to get any lube into the freewheel, much less how to actually open it up.

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