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  1. #1
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    Sturmey Sprinter 5 Internals into a Sturmey S-RF3 hub? Is it possible?

    Hi I have a S-RF3 SA hub and they gear steps are a little too big for me. After doing some research I came to the old(ish) Sturmey Archer Sprinter 5 speeds. The range and gear steps seem perfect for my taste and cycling style. My question is, since I can get new Sprinter internals would, I be able to just screw them in and fit them in the S-RF3 shell? Last week or so I have been checking instruction manuals and parts lists but I still cannot get a clear answer. I know that as far as the SA 3 speeds go you can swap parts made 50 years apart with no problem. So are the shells and threads identical between the 3 and 5 gear hubs?

    I am even considering buying an old SA FW 4 speed (similar gear steps, one less high gear, however, difficult to find control rod and parts), according to parts manuals threads and caps are identical to the SA AW 3 speed. I know for certain that AW internals fit into an S-RF3 shell. See link:

    http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=17531.msg314519

    By just changing the internalA all I'll need is a new shifter instead of a whole new wheel rebuilding.


    Thanks in advance. Any input is appreciated.

    -Carcinogent
    Last edited by Carcinogent; 01-21-10 at 01:22 PM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carcinogent View Post
    Hi I have a S-RF3 SA hub and they gear steps are a little too big for me. After doing some research I came to the old(ish) Sturmey Archer Sprinter 5 speeds. The range and gear steps seem perfect for my taste and cycling style. My question is, since I can get new Sprinter internals would, I be able to just screw them in and fit them in the S-RF3 shell?
    Was thinking of something similar a few years back, and was advised not to due to claimed high internal losses of the S-A 5-speed.

    Had extensive plans for running a quad front and a chain tensioner, which with the right rings would have given me 12 different gears spaced about 6% apart.

    Would have been fun, but I chickened out at the work of setting it up with the shifters that I wanted, so eventually I replaced the hub instead.
    Last edited by dabac; 01-22-10 at 07:33 AM.

  3. #3
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    I don't know but I can't believe it. There is a ring gear with the teeth inside on a 3. see if there are two on a 5. also, see if the gearteeth are notably smaller or if the planet gears are smaller diameter. Even if the teeth are the same size, they will be the wrong profile if the planet, the sun, or the outer orbits are a different size.

    SO, I am GUESSING no because I can't see how they would add the extra steps without needing a different gear track in the shell of the hub.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the input!

    @dabac: that's what i heard also, however, the biggest losses are at 1st and 5th gear (efficiency as low as 85%?!?!), and I am really interested in the middle range for the most part, the -21% and +26% if i am not mistaken. The +50% top might come as an added bonus since here in the Nethelrands it is mostly flat and a low of 51.7" that I currently have can tackle anything with power and rpm to spare. That being said SA AM comes in mind and as the guy in the link i posted has done, the threads, etc fit perfectly. The problem is that AM is only available used and parts might be hard to come by and also it has no NIG so it might slip if out of adjustment between 2nd and 3rd.

    @garage sale GT: by purely looking at the internals, the gear pawls (only one set on both the 3 and 5 spd) are on identical places and also the sprinter and S-RF3 shells have the pawl tracks on the left hand bearing cup. I just came across the Brompton schematics (read list of spare parts with exploded views) and there when talking about SA hubs, the sprinter is mentioned as internals only. My question is purely mechanical, whether threads and shell sizes are identical between the two hubs. I can just order the internals and give it a try but it might prove to be a quite costly experiment if it doesn't work, even provided I could return them.

    -Carcinogent

    P.S. some links that might shed some more light:

    S-RF3 shell
    http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/product-S...A599-19209.htm

    S-RF3 internals
    http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/product-S...X120-19309.htm

    Sprinter Shell (36h)
    http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/product-S...A486-19182.htm

    Sprinter internals
    http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/product-B...5-SA-13625.htm
    Last edited by Carcinogent; 01-22-10 at 08:54 AM.

  5. #5
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    I am talking about the gear teeth inside the hub. Do you see the planet gears on the 5 speed? They would have to be the same size and in the same location as the planet gears on a 3 speed in order to work. I suppose it's possible. Maybe it works like a 3 speed with another "stage" added in. Since there is not a second set of planet gears visible beside the first, it is possible they don't need their own gear ring inside the hub shell to work.

  6. #6
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    It could be set up like the planetaries in an car automatic transmission where one planentary drives through another. If that is the case the additional planetaries would not require an additional internal gear in the hub case.

  7. #7
    Gear Hub fan
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    You might ask on the Yahoo Geared Hub Bikes group. The link is in my signature block below. Lots of knowledgeable SA enthusiasts there who might be able to answer your question. You have to join to post.
    Gear Hubs Owned: Rohloff disc brake, SRAM iM9 disc brake, SRAM P5 freewheel, Sachs Torpedo 3 speed freewheel, NuVinci CVT, Shimano Alfine SG S-501, Sturmey Archer S5-2 Alloy. Other: 83 Colnago Super Record, Univega Via De Oro

    Visit and join the Yahoo Geared Hub Bikes group for support and links.
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Geared_hub_bikes/

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the input. I'll def check out the yahoo group. Also i got some info from a bike store owner that internals hsx140 for the new X-RF5 hub have the same ratio as the SA sprinter and will fit the S-RF3 shell (they are both the latest generation n the SA lineup if you can call it that way so parts can be quite I interchangeable. I can get the parts new and relatively cheap so I'll give it a try and keep you posted. I'll wait till I can get my hands on the new shifters also bcause I find the old black/red ones plain ugly.

    -Carcinogent

  9. #9
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    Resurrecting an old thread here as I'd like to know the answer to this question also.

    It seems to me that Sprinter S5 internals ought to fit the S-RF3 shell.

    Were the X-RF5 internals and S-RF3 shell proven to be compatible?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by chagzuki View Post
    Resurrecting an old thread here as I'd like to know the answer to this question also.

    It seems to me that Sprinter S5 internals ought to fit the S-RF3 shell.

    Were the X-RF5 internals and S-RF3 shell proven to be compatible?
    I unsubscribed from the thread a while ago so i must have missed your post. Anyway to your question; I found out that the 5 speed internals will not fit into the SRF-3 shell. I did consult quite some technical documents and I did come to the conclusion that the HSX 140 internal unit that I bought is the same you find in the Sprinter hub. The 5 speed internals that they sell on SJS Cycles seems to have the same dimensions. Unfortunately they do not fit in the SRF-3 shell. They screw in, however, the low gear pawls cannot engage the ratchet inside. So I went ahead and did the AM conversion. Gear steps are very nice , however I do miss the low end of the AW. So I have been thinking that I will get the 2 speed derailleur (SRAM 6 speed conversion kit). The driver of old SA hubs is wider so you can fit 2 cogs and a spacer. 13/15 combination in the back would give only 4 unique gears out of the 6, however, as I have said before I see it as a low and high range AM. If I ever need more range I will get old AW internals; it is an easy enough swap.

    Good luck with the search for the perfect gearing and let me know if you have more Brompton/Sturmey Archer related questions=P

    -Carcinogent

    P.S. You can build a new wheel with a hub of choice, however, this might take some more mixing and matching of parts.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the info.
    I found that to be the case when trying to fit X-RF5 internals to a AW shell; momentarily I thought it was going to work and then I realized the pawls didn't extend far enough down. I thought perhaps it was due to a design change that took place across the range when the X/S-RF models came out but apparently not, which strikes me as weird as I can't see any reason why the 3 and 5 speed shouldn't share the same shell design/proportions. That'd certainly make things much more convenient.
    For me the older SA 5 speed range was pretty much spot on. . . a big enough range with small enough jumps and at no extra weight penalty over the 3 speed. I have an old (non-wide) X-RF5 hub that I'm considering lacing up to a brompton rim. . . the problem with committing myself to this particular hub is that it's no longer in production and there's no equivalent, so if any part needs replacing I'll have to pay a premium. It's also a high-flange version, the S model would be preferable but I can't seem to get hold of that shell for a reasonable price. So I either buy a new S-RF5 hub (expensive) or use the X-RF5 and buy the extra parts I need (probably just shifter, maybe cable two).

  12. #12
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    Seems a clever kludge borrow parts from the Brompton catalog..

    they have a 2 speed short 'cassette', and contracted hubs from Sachs/SRAM,
    and Sturmey Archer-Sun Race, the current BWR is wider than the AW3
    uses Shimano spline cogs , like the BMX ones ,
    the Sachs hub uses regular 3 speed cogs in 3/32..

    so some parts swapping , axles and the driver assemblies is possible ,
    to half step at the hub with an A/B choice in the derailleur.

    Sram took up the Sachs 7x3 hybrid hub, in that case, the driver is 7,
    then 8 or 9 speed. similar internals
    Obviously longer axle ..

    The new X-RF5, uses the 33% AW3 and adds 20% gears above and below.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-10-11 at 11:36 AM.

  13. #13
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    I asked about this on here a while ago, apparently the newer 5-speed internals are not compatible with any 3-speed shells due to the pawl issue mentioned above. However, I was told that some of the very early 5-speed internals will fit a 3-speed AW shell, if you can get hold of a set.

  14. #14
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    I just rode my Dahon Curve SL with S-RF5 hub again for the first time in a month or so, having been debating whether to try to stick with 3 speeds on the Brompton. No contest really, it's got to be the 5. Foolish that Brompton don't offer it any more, it's nearly ideal for folding bikes, the only downside being the requisite exactitude of its cable adjustment.

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