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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 07-03-17, 07:17 PM   #51
Robert C
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I have four IGH hubs in the household. I got a NuVinci N360 for my commuter bike. Frankly, it is great.

My daughter got a Nexus 8 for her touring bike. She was a bit unhappy with the effort involved in changing flats. I posted about it here and the general consensus was that a part was missing. The bike was also not an ideal fit; as such, it got passed on to another relative and she replaced it with a custom bike with a Rohloff. She is extremely happy with the Rohloff.

I also got a NuVinci N360 for my wife's trike. It was a great choice; I base that on the fact that it gets used and, while she wants another trike, she wants a NuVinci on her next trike.

I also have a NuVinci N380 on my trike that was rigged for touring.

I think you can tell that I am sold on IGH systems. For a commuter, or other utility bike, I think they are great. The only place that I feel they fall behind is competition bikes.
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Old 07-04-17, 08:12 AM   #52
JonathanGennick 
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Originally Posted by bragi View Post
5. My last concern is demographic: Is there a good reason that derailleurs are installed on about 98% of all bikes? What's the advantage of derailleurs over IGHs, if you're not racing road bikes?
I surmise that today's prevalence of derailleurs over IGH hubs is from a combination of: 1) Emphasis in the industry on racing, 2) The promotion of "more gears is better", and 3) High cost of IGH hubs having more than three speeds, and 4) Possibly the weight of such hubs.

I'm looking at my 1973 Sears catalog. On the "Touring Lightweight Bikes" page there are two derailleur bikes, two IGH bikes, and one single-speed coaster-brake model. Derailleur bikes are only 2/5 of the models on that page, and both IGH bikes are three-speed.

The facing page is racing bikes, and all three of those are ten-speed, drop-bar, derailleur bikes.

The kids bike page shows a girl getting a three-speed IGH, and the boy gets the 10-speed. Go figure.

There's a utility- and tandem page showing an IGH tricycle bike having a huge basket in the back, and also a folding IGH cargo bike having built in racks front and rear. Both those bikes are three-speed IGH.

Growing up in that era, I recall IGH three-speed bikes being fairly prevalent and common. But IGH hubs get expensive and heavy as you ramp up the number of gears. I'm guessing that the 10-speed boom and then all the subsequent "more gears is better" marketing from the industry led to the demise of IGH relative to derailleurs. Because a good IGH hub with 8 or 11 gears will cost as much or more just for the hub as some entire 27-speed derailleur bikes. Someone looking at price will just buy the cheaper bike.
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Old 07-04-17, 11:05 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Robert C View Post
I think you can tell that I am sold on IGH systems. For a commuter, or other utility bike, I think they are great. The only place that I feel they fall behind is competition bikes.
Completely agree.

I'm another fan of Nuvinci. My only two complaints are that they are a slight bit wider than other IGH's and sometimes can't shift while stopped. The width can make getting a wheel back on a bit more difficult. Fortunately I rarely have to remove a rear wheel. Neither of these would keep me from getting another. I'm planning to convert my bakfiets to Nuvinci sometime in the next year or so.
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Old 07-09-17, 09:49 PM   #54
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I had an Alfine 8. It sucked. 5th gear, where the roller clutch engages, was never right. It slipped and skipped, under light load too. Definitely under heavy load. And by heavy, I'm 140lb pack fodder.

Wheel removal is a pain. Carrying an extra wrench for it should be counted in your calculations of system weight. God help you if you have to change a flat in cold, wet, and dark conditions. Just call a cab at that point.

I dumped so many dollars into having shops attempt to fix it. They were happy to take my money, but they ever solved the problem. So you better hope that either you or your shop can service the damn thing.

I went back to a derailer setup, and was happy with my bike again.
Hmm, I had a similar problem - I took it to a shop and got it fixed. I picked the shop that sold lots IGHs and the mechanics were super experienced with the Alfine hubs.

No problems since! I don't know what they did but it was quick and inexpensive. I did find lots of shops I wasn't comfortable with doing the work though.

I am definitely love my IGH - though I am sort of thinking I might want more range. A Rohloff would be a ridiculous splurge but I am tempted!
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