Bicycle Mechanics - Which internal hub?
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12-31-03, 11:27 PM
I have an old 80's MesaRunner with horizontal drops and I'm going to put an internal hub on it. I have been using it as a singlespeed commuter but I want a tad more gear range to save my knees in 30 MPH headwinds.
What's a good choice? I do not want coaster brakes-- unless someone can change my mind. Are three speed hubs more efficient than say a 7? How much more does a 7 speed weigh than a 3?
Thanks in advance.
01-01-04, 06:43 AM
Shimano introduced their Inter-8 ... I actually started a post about this in commuting... its not available as a component yet... but I'm hoping soon.... they have two models - standard and premium - premium weighing less at around 1550 I believe. Its supposed to be more efficient than their 7 and offer a higher range of gears. Other people like the SRAM... but a) it doesn't fit in my dropouts and b) its got a frail plastic "clickbox" that hangs outside the drive-side drop that allows shifting... (which is why it won't fit my recessed dropouts)...
Anyway - I also have a single speed and one of my knees is starting to not like it, and am building up a seperate bike with an internal gear... I'm waiting for the Nexus 8 because I just don't have enough money to blow on a Rohloff 14.
3 speeds are alright, but if I just have two bikes - one single and one geared - I want a little more than 3, my experience with three's has been old Sturmey-Archers and the lowest was like my single speed (42x16) and it just got higher and higher after that so it wasn't entirely useful to me... but maybe newer ones have better gearing...
01-01-04, 07:39 AM
Simano makes nexus hubs with roller hub brakes, which are excellent for commuting applications.
01-04-04, 10:53 PM
I'm still not sure which hub to go with. I'm not very technical here but is it possible to take off my freewheel, put on like an old 5 speed freewheel and just use friction shifter and rear derailer? Even more, is it possible to get something with a close ratio-- example: I run single speed crank in front with 36 chainring, ideally I would like something with 16, 18, 20 in back. 18 most of the time, 16 downhill, 20 when I'm tired, or hills. How would I do something like that?
How would that throw off my chainline? Did they ever make 3 speed freewheels and if so what derailer would work. Sorry if I'm such a newb.
Hmm found this:
3 speed freewheel with 16, 18, 22-- that would rock! looks like i have to buy em in lots of 50 who wants to help me buy the other 49 :P
Why can't they make an internal hub geared like this instead of the wide ratio ones they make?
01-07-04, 10:38 PM
Robert :) Glad you got that Rohloff pitch in :) I was almost foaming at the mouth lol
I like the 5 speed freewheel idea best. It's most likely the cheapest solution given the equipment you've got. With closer gear spacing than any currently available 3 speed hub.
Internal hubs are likely to all be more expensive. Even the cheapest decent used old Sturmey Archer 3 speed hub would cost as much or more than a 5 speed freewheel.
I've never seen a actual 3 speed freewheel, though I know they exist.
Add a similarly inexpensive derailer and you should be OK.
AFAIK, close range three speed hubs are extinct. You might possibly find a old example on ebay once in a while, but I'm thinking not worth the effort.
3 speed freewheels aka French 3 speeds per their origin vs. the English 3 speeds on the Internal gear hubs originating in England. I have a 16/20/24 on one bike.
You have wider ratios available with the 3 speed internal gear hub than the 3 speed freewheel.
SRAM 3 spped and 7 speed gear hubs are equally efficient, only on set of epicyclic gears are engaged at a time. But the 7 speeds are about 2 lbs heavier.
The SRAM gear hubs are more efficient than Sturmey-Archer which are more efficient than currently available Shimano.
The pricey and heavy Rohloff is more efficient, particularly in its overdrive mode, than its low end competors. Its lower gears do run epicyclic gears in series.
The Shimanos are easier shifting and longer lasting than SRAM or Sturmey-Archer. The Shimano 4/7 speeds are more expensive than the SRAM 5/7 speed competitors. The Shimano Nexus 4 is a high overdrive hub so more ratio step up available.
Just one other thought here that hasn't been covered yet. The S-A three speed hubs usually have an 18t cog on them and I agree that the gearing is too high(at least for us old guys). There are 20t and 22t cogs available for them which bring the gearing down to something more reasonable. It's a simple job to switch the cog. A snap ring holds it on. I use a 20t on one of my bikes and a 22t on another and I find them to be much more useful than with the original 18t(unless you're going down hill with a tail wind - then I coast).
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