Hey folks. I'm planning to set up a vintage road bike frame (late 80's - early 90's Gios if it works out) with some form of IGH, keeping the drop bars.
I'm looking for some advice/pointers about selecting the hub, shifter, and crankset.
I don't want or need a lot of gears, but I do want/need a pretty wide range. 3 speeds would be fine: one for flats, one for uphill, one for downhill would meet my needs, but I do need a decent range, I would think that 200% from low to high would be dandy, but more would be better. The main goal here is to give my knees a break from my fixed gear bike, especially given how much weight I've gained in the year since the knee probs killed most of my cycling and basically all of my running.
As noted, this is going on a road bike with drop bars. It seems to me that a bar-end shifter would be the way to go. Indexed would be nice, but I guess it's not totally necessary. I've found that a Shimano 8-speed indexed bar-end shifter works with a Nexus or Alfine hub if you use an inline Travel Agent to adjust the ratio.
The 8 speed setup is more gears than I really want, and more money than I'd like to spend. This isn't a super low budget project, but if I can find something serviceable with 3-5 gears that's significantly cheaper because folks are fixated on the newer setups with more gears, then that's cool.
To me, the Sturmey Archer S-RF5(W) or S-RF5(N) look good on paper: 256% range from 1st to 5th, low flange, and no brake (I want to go with dual-pivot caliper brakes front and rear). I'm not sure about the pros & cons of the 9-flange mount for the cog on the (N) vs what the (W) has (presumably threaded). Plus they make bar-end shifters and ones that can be used with the braze-on on the downtube.
Is there any reason I shouldn't go with the S-A 5 speed setup? What cog mounting is preferable, and why? If I also go with their crankset, should I expect that to make chainline alignment easier? I hope not, their cranksets are f'n ugly. Bad enough to put a heavy, ugly IGH on the back where I don't look at it so much - a fat ugly crankset would be a bit much to bear...
Any advice or info on this would be much appreciated.