Hey Kyle, check this out

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
As a bike connoisseur, I thought you might appreciate this. As I was loading my bike after this morning's ride, a gentleman that appeared to be in his mid 70s came riding up to the car beside me on a lightweight chainless road bike. He said it was from Dynamic Bike Co., and had an 8-speed IGH. He obliged when I asked to take a photo of it. Pretty cool.

DSCF0317.jpg
 

KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
Well, that's not JUST an internally geared hub, which isn't that uncommon, nor is it just any old chainless setup (much less common, but still findable). Nossir. That's a frigging SHAFT drive setup, which is absolutely not common. It's a very old concept, and many motorcycles use it, but bikes don't very often at all. My understanding is that shaft drives lose you at least 10% on your efficiency, which is a ton on a bike. Nothing beats a chain for efficiency, except perhaps a carbon belt drive, which is the chainless setup I expected to see when I scrolled down.

A quick note on belt drives: They are clean (no oil required), they are quiet, and they last longer than chains. They're wider, though, because they have to be wider than a chain to handle the same amount of torque. That makes them a little harder to line up left/right wise, and they're much less tolerant of being out of alignment. They're also solid with no removable link like a chain has, so since you can't "break" the belt like you break a chain to install it, you have to "break" the bike frame. Think of it as the magician's trick with the two solid steel rings that he suddenly links together. Your frame has to have a split in the rear triangle to slip a belt drive in there. Thus, you ain't tossing a belt conversion on just any old frame. You can have a segment cut out and replaced with a welded-on coupling that screws back together, but who's gonna pay for that? So you tend to need to make the frame with belts in mind from Day One.

A quick note on IGH's: Shimanos are the most common, and for good reason. They're about the same price as Sturmey Archers, but they're more sophisticated on the engineering side (a good thing - more robust, easier to shift, last much longer with no maintenance) and are made better. Other options besides those two are expensive and for specialists. Rohloff is the top of the pile (I want to say just the hub is $2k?), and Nuvinci is midway between "consumer" and "touring pro nerd". Of the Shimanos, the one you get tends to be dictated by how wide your rear dropouts are on your bike frame. The 3 speed Nexus is something like a 120-125 spacing, and the 8 to 11 speeds are 135. So you can't just drop whatever you want into your frame.
 

KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
Traditional deraileurs offer a much wider range of gear ratios, are cheap, are easy to work on, but require regular tuneups to stay aligned properly. SO everything's got its place, really.
 

tonyturley

Legend
Location
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Real Name
Tony
The dropout spacing on my bike is 170mm. SA had one IGH that would fit that I was seriously considering, but again, I was facing dismantling and relacing the rear wheel. I could have farmed the work out to the LBS, but who knows how much more that would have cost? I'm content with my setup. It works, and I did something I knew very little about when I first started. Win - win.
 

Crsnydertx

Top Veteran
Location
Houston, TX
Real Name
Chuck
that internal hub (I'm fairly certain) is Shimano... I don't know who else makes them. But Google about a bit. If I ever get UNlazy enough to buy a bike, I like the clean look (and non-maintenance) of a bike with no deraileur. Here's some basics that you may (or may not) find interesting.

Shimano Nexus/Alfine 3, 4-, 7-, 8-, and 11-Speed Technical Information
There was also these guys. I've seen some of their hubs for sale here and there: Sturmey-Archer Bicycle Hubs

I considered an IGH for the bicycle I just built, but I was so not into the idea of having to lace the back wheel all over.

Just an aside: my very first 3-speed English bike (circa 1956) had Sturmey-Archer gears. Haven't seem that name in decades...
 

KillRamsey

Hall of Famer
Location
Hood River, OR
Real Name
Kyle
They're still alive. They manufacture somewhere cheap, which in and of itself isn't a bad thing, if quality control were as good as Shimano. The designs haven't been revisited often enough either. Having said that, I do have a Sturmey front hub on one of my builds. It's an internal brake and generator to run the lights. The brake isn't very powerful, but it's functioning fine.
 

Latest threads

Top Bottom