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  1. #1
    Free and Self-Reliant
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    Replace Shimano Nexus 3-speed coaster brake hub with drum brake hub

    I hope this is just an incredibly stupid question, and that explains my inability to find an answer by searching. Please let the answer be "Yes, duh."

    I love the Kona Africabike, but a coaster brake is a deal breaker for me. I hate them hate them hate them. I *assume* that it's no big deal to replace the rear wheel with one built around an IGH with a drum brake. Do I assume correctly or is there something I need to look for to make sure it can be done?

    At the price, the bike is totally worth buying and changing out the rear wheel. I just need to know that it *can* be done. I will never have another bike with a coaster brake. Did I mention that I hate them?

  2. #2
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    You have to look up the width or "over locknut dimension" for these hubs and find a drum brake hub with the same width as the hub which is in there already. You'll probably need to go with the same number of speeds.

    If the Africabike is steel you don't need to worry because steel frames can be respaced to accomodate wider hubs.

    I have had a newer Nexus 3 speed and a S/A 8 speed with drum. There's nothing that different in terms of the installation except for the width issue. The two hubs were not in the same bike; the 8 would be too wide for a 3-speed frame. However, it would have fit otherwise had I wanted to convert one bike to use the other hub.

    Sturmey drum brake hubs have the cable stop built into the hub so you don't even need a cable stop on the frame. You just tie wrap the cable to the frame.

  3. #3
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Sure it can be done. Get a Sturmey Archer 3sp Drum Brake hub. If the bike has a slotted tab for a coaster brake, it will be perfect for mounting the drum torque arm. Just keep in mind rear dropout spacing when considering a new wheel.
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  4. #4
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    + 1 on a sturmey 3 speed with a drum brake ,

    there is a drum brake hub threaded for a freewheel too ,
    they can be modified to reduce the right axle & spacer length ,
    and used with a single, speed freewheels .. 6/7 speed is how they come.

    Sturmey archer 8 speed has a gear set more suited to small wheels.
    [1:1 is lowest, so chainring needs to be really small, all others are overdrive gears ]

    Because the sturmey 3 speed is a century old design, all small parts are available.

    SRAM/Sachs offers a drum+ 7 speed.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 10-18-10 at 09:12 AM.

  5. #5
    afraid of whales Mr IGH's Avatar
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    If it's a coaster brake 3 speed IGH, it's probably 120mm OLD. Sturmey makes 3 and 5 speed drum-brake 120mm old hubs.

    What brand is the rear coaster 3 speed hub on the Kona?

    I wouldn't try the 8 speed Sturmey Archer IGH right now, it's having issues even with the newest version and it will require changing the front chainring to a ~30T (no cheap options for that size). SRAM 7 speed drum version is hard to source in the US and spare parts are even harder to find. IMHO, for IGH/drum and 120mm OLD, SA owns the US market.

    Quote Originally Posted by ilynne View Post
    I...I will never have another bike with a coaster brake. Did I mention that I hate them?

    LOL, my kids say the same thing. I have one coaster brake bike in the stable (SACHS 7 speed) they refuse to ride it, they can't get used to not being able to backpedal.

  6. #6
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr IGH View Post
    it will require changing the front chainring to a ~30T (no cheap options for that size).
    Sturmey makes a 30T single-ring crank, the FCS80, lists for about $32.

    And I own the drum 8-speed, I'm debating on whether to buy another one (with disks)... they're under $125 now.

  7. #7
    afraid of whales Mr IGH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FunkyStickman View Post
    Sturmey makes a 30T single-ring crank, the FCS80, lists for about $32.

    And I own the drum 8-speed, I'm debating on whether to buy another one (with disks)... they're under $125 now.
    I guess it's relative, a rear cog runs ~$6, new crank may require a new bottom bracket too, chainline can also be an issue. Good luck with your SA 8 speed, hope it works out for you better than other folk's experience. Many of those $125 hubs are the older model, take care not to get one of those!

  8. #8
    Senior member Dan Burkhart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr IGH View Post
    I guess it's relative, a rear cog runs ~$6, new crank may require a new bottom bracket too, chainline can also be an issue. Good luck with your SA 8 speed, hope it works out for you better than other folk's experience. Many of those $125 hubs are the older model, take care not to get one of those!
    I'm quite certain you are right about that. I'm in a position to know what the wholesale price is too, and I doubt you will find a wide range 8 speed at $125.
    BTW, I've installed a wide range 8 speed SA in a 700c wheel to see how it holds up with a 30/25 chainring cog ratio.
    I'll be sure to share my findings.


    Gearhubs demystified and other cool stuff.


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  9. #9
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Burkhart View Post
    I'm quite certain you are right about that. I'm in a position to know what the wholesale price is too, and I doubt you will find a wide range 8 speed at $125.
    BTW, I've installed a wide range 8 speed SA in a 700c wheel to see how it holds up with a 30/25 chainring cog ratio.
    I'll be sure to share my findings.
    This is exactly what I want to do with my next bike... only on a CX/29'er frame with disks. I think I paid $135 for my XRD-8 new, and it's the W model. But you bring up a good point, check the exact model number!

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