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  1. #1
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    Season Tikit - Nexus 8 vs. i-Motion 9

    Just noticed that Bike Friday has a new Season Tikit, using the SRAM i-Motion 9-speed hub:
    http://community.bikefriday.com/node/11312?styleId=1676

    ...and here's a blog entry about it from BF Walter, with pics:
    http://bikefridaywalter.wordpress.co...or-a-new-ride/

    One big plus for me is the gear range of the i-Motion - 101-30 gear inches [incorrect - see below], compared to the Nexus at 88-29 and the stock Tikit at 79-31. Wellington is hilly, and I'm doing some light touring, so I'd like both lower and higher gears than the stock model.

    Couple of things I'm wondering about, if anyone has experience with these bikes (or these hubs):
    - Does the i-Motion Tikit replace the Nexus-based one, or is it just another choice? I'll ask BF.
    - How does the i-Motion compare to the Nexus in everyday use?
    - Is it worth the extra $300 over the Nexus? ($1,925 vs. $1,615) Didn't notice any other differences in spec.

    Any help appreciated.
    Last edited by dmnobrien; 09-05-09 at 11:38 PM.

  2. #2
    hipster traffic dodger ChiapasFixed's Avatar
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    sweetness! can the i-motion 9 take disc brakes? i have a tikit with the Alfine hub and BB7's, the shifting is super smooth and the hub is completely silent, but does not have quite the range of the sram. in fact, the range is exactly the same as the nexus-8, although alot smoother, quieter, and more efficient (i have the nexus-8 on my Joey), and it can take disc brakes..
    IRO Mark V Pro, home made bamboo track bike, eddy merckx corsa extra, Airnimal Joey, UGADA Tikit

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    dmnobrien:

    In order to get that gearing with the I-Motion 9, you will need a 62T chainring, which is rare and expensive.

    I never used an I-Motion 9, but from the research I did when looking for an IGH for my wheel build, I found out that the I-Motion:

    - have more evenly spaced gearing
    - it is easier to remove the wheel than a Nexus/Alfine
    - weights more than a Nexus/Alfine (about 2000g)
    - only grip shift for now
    - does not use silent clutch, so you will hear the tic sound as in most hubs
    - 36 holes only

    Now the Alfine/Nexus (I had the red band 8r36 with triple roller):

    - Gears are not evenly spaced
    - Super silent (no one will ever hear you coming)
    - Shifts while pedaling
    - grip shift, trigger shift, and thumb shift
    - Wheel is harder to remove
    - The Alfine is a hardcore hub and it has been tested by mountain bikers in some nasty terrain. Check the mtb forums.
    - 36 and 32 holes plus black and silver finish

    Is it worth the $300 difference? It depends on how you look at it. For me, I can build an imotion wheel for about $375. So I would rather spend an extra $75 for a new wheel, try both, and then sell the one I did not like, or keep it as a spare.

    ChiapasFixed:


    Yes, the I-Motion 9 accepts disc brake. ISO standard, not centerlock.

  4. #4
    Senior Member boston blackie's Avatar
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    Price is over $400 for the hub and shifter here: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/sram.html
    Add the cost of wheel and building and that's a lot.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joako View Post
    In order to get that gearing with the I-Motion 9, you will need a 62T chainring, which is rare and expensive.
    And which will not fit on a Tikit.

    The largest chainring which will go on a Tikit is probably 61T.

  6. #6
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    One big plus for me is the gear range of the i-Motion - 101-30 gear inches, compared to the Nexus at 88-29 and the stock Tikit at 79-31. Wellington is hilly, and I'm doing some light touring, so I'd like both lower and higher gears than the stock model.
    How many gears do you really need?

    Maintaining consistent speed is a more efficient use of energy. So you're better off grunting up hill in a higher gear and cruising down hill in a lower gear anyway.

  7. #7
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joako View Post
    In order to get that gearing with the I-Motion 9, you will need a 62T chainring, which is rare and expensive.
    Is that with the smallest sprocket available?

  8. #8
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    A 36-hole hub with small wheels is a royal pain in the @ss in my opinion. At least if you use all of the holes and use a crossing pattern.

  9. #9
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand View Post
    Is that with the smallest sprocket available?
    I just checked, it appears that an 18-tooth sprocket is the smallest available and yes ... one needs a 62-tooth chainring to reach the high gears discussed earlier.

  10. #10
    tcs
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    One big plus for me is the gear range of the i-Motion - 101-30 gear inches, compared to the Nexus at 88-29 and the stock Tikit at 79-31. Wellington is hilly, and I'm doing some light touring, so I'd like both lower and higher gears than the stock model.

    Any help appreciated.
    A Sturmey-Archer XRK8(W) will give 96-30 G.I. @ 46/25T, ISO35x349mm. The Sturmey 8 is available with 28 spoke holes.

    If it's high gears one desires on their tikit, a S-A 8(W) with the stock 53T chainwheel and a 19T cog would yield 146-45 G.I.

    tcs
    Last edited by tcs; 08-23-09 at 08:10 AM.
    "When man first set woman on two wheels with a pair of pedals, did he know, I wonder, that he had rent the veil of the harem in twain? A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Typewriter Girl, 1899.

    "Every so often a bird gets up and flies some place it's drawn to. I don't suppose it could tell you why, but it does it anyway." Ian Hibell, 1934-2008

  11. #11
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    Don't know the details of the components, but BF Walter listed the i-Motion as yielding 101-30 GI (he corrected himself later - see below), and I assume he meant on the Tikit that he has. Hmmm.

    As far as gearing needs go, I'm no expert for sure, but I do know that:
    - On my Mu P8, low gear is 33-ish, and I keep wishing I could go one lower on the hills here, especially if I had the extra weight of touring stuff.
    - The Mu P8 tops out at 92-ish, and that's OK, but if I got an extra gear on top, I would definitely use it.

    My main problem with the stock Tikit is the top end of 79 GI. For my intended routes, that's just too low. And I like the idea of a low-maintenance drivetrain and clean chainline, hence my interest in an IGH.

    I think the low end of the Capreo is 39 (?), and so that wouldn't work for me either. I figure if I'm spending this kind of dough on a bike, I can afford to be picky.
    Last edited by dmnobrien; 09-05-09 at 11:47 PM.

  12. #12
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    For my intended routes, that's just too low. And I like the idea of a low-maintenance drivetrain and clean chainline, hence my interest in an IGH.

    I think the low end of the Capreo is 39 (?), and so that wouldn't work for me either. I figure if I'm spending this kind of dough on a bike, I can afford to be picky.
    Well ... what is the smallest cog that you can put on an Alfine or Nexus? You can always use a double crank in the front to get the extra range you want. Similarly, you can do the same with the Capreo hub. a 56/39 double in the front mated with the Capreo hub would provide appropriate gearing.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand View Post
    Well ... what is the smallest cog that you can put on an Alfine or Nexus?
    Alfine/Nexus = 16T

  14. #14
    tcs
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    IIRC a SRAM P7 will fit a 14T sprocket. I could be wrong.

    tcs
    "When man first set woman on two wheels with a pair of pedals, did he know, I wonder, that he had rent the veil of the harem in twain? A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Typewriter Girl, 1899.

    "Every so often a bird gets up and flies some place it's drawn to. I don't suppose it could tell you why, but it does it anyway." Ian Hibell, 1934-2008

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by tcs View Post
    IIRC a SRAM P7 will fit a 14T sprocket. I could be wrong.

    tcs
    It can even go down to 13t!
    Internal Gear Hub Guru
    Currently owned hubs: Sachs Pentasport, SRAM P5 Drum, Sturmey SRF5-W , Sturmey XRD3
    Previously owned hubs: Shimano Nexus 8 speed, Sturmey AW 3 speed, Shimano 3 speed coaster, SRAM S7 Drum, Sturmey XRF8 8 speed
    Tested hubs: SRAM i-Motion 9 speed, Sturmey XRD5

  16. #16
    tcs
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    Quote Originally Posted by K6-III View Post
    It can even go down to 13t!
    With the stock tikit 53T chainwheel an S7 with a 13T cog would yield 114-37 G.I.

    tcs
    "When man first set woman on two wheels with a pair of pedals, did he know, I wonder, that he had rent the veil of the harem in twain? A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Typewriter Girl, 1899.

    "Every so often a bird gets up and flies some place it's drawn to. I don't suppose it could tell you why, but it does it anyway." Ian Hibell, 1934-2008

  17. #17
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joako View Post
    Alfine/Nexus = 16T
    Then if you are looking for high gears, one would need really big chainrings like 60t.

  18. #18
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    Just asked BF Walter about the gear range of the SRAM iMotion 9 (originally reported as 101-30), and he corrected the numbers as follows:

    "The stock configuration comes with a 20 tooth cog, yielding 80.5-23.7
    ...the highest cog I know to be available is an 18 giving 89.5-26.3.
    ...You could put a 54 on there with the 18 and get 91.2-26.8
    ...or go 56 and get 94.5-27.8."

    I think the Nexus is something like 86-28, so it looks like the iMotion gives a higher top end for a given low gear (28 GI is good for my purposes).

    The other difference I'm pondering is the handy cable release on the SRAM. Is the Nexus a pain to deal with if I get a rear flat?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    Is the Nexus a pain to deal with if I get a rear flat?
    Yep, better practice a few times and carry a solid object to help you push the lever. There is another solution, which I used to do with my 08 Curve SL; just keep the shifter housing long enough in order to have enough clearance to pull the wheel off the dropouts.

  20. #20
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    Is the Nexus a pain to deal with if I get a rear flat?
    NO, the Nexus is not difficult to remowe. where did this come from? Nexus is super easy, just pactice a few times at home so you know what t is like and what tools you need.
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  21. #21
    hipster traffic dodger ChiapasFixed's Avatar
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    super easy to remove the nexus cable IF you have a very thin allen key to slip into the special hole and move the spring loaded cam... doing it this way literally takes 1 second.
    otherwise it is hard on the fingers, and you will be cussing and swearing.
    IRO Mark V Pro, home made bamboo track bike, eddy merckx corsa extra, Airnimal Joey, UGADA Tikit

  22. #22
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    Thanks for the replies on removing the Nexus hub. Sounds like even I can handle it.

    For my purposes, I don't think the iMotion9 is worth the extra $300 over the Nexus. So I'll probably go with the Nexus Season Tikit.

    Besides, I just learned that the Season Tikit price ($1615) doesn't include the hyperfold - that's a $226 option on all custom Tikits - ouch!

  23. #23
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    I've got a Season Tikit [on long term loan to a friend] a regular Tikit, a NWT with an Nexus 8 and a Surly Pugsley with an Alfine. FWIW I also have two Rohloff equipped bikes.

    I can definitely say the Season Tikit is a worthwhile upgrade on the standard Tikit if your budget allows for it. If I had to replace my Tikit I'd get one with a Shimano Alfine hub for sure.

    Every time I have added a new IGH hub to the fleet I looked at the SRAM offerings. They do have some good points, but the quality of the shifting and ride of the Nexus 8 and the Alfine have kept me loyal to Shimano's IGHs. The shifting is the nicest of any bikes I've owned.

    I have also abused an Alfine in beach sand, saltwater, desert sand/dust, snow/salt/grit, +40 deg C to -40 deg C, offroad/dirt road fully loaded touring, corrosive dust for a week at Burning Man - and this Alfine hasn't even noticed. It just keeps pedaling and shifting like it was business as usual.
    safe riding - Vik
    VikApproved

  24. #24
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    Vik, thanks for your IGH wisdom. Your blog was the first place I saw a Season Tikit.

    From the BF page, it looks like they're offering the Red Band Nexus 8. Not sure if they offer the Alfine. How would you compare the Red Band to the Alfine?

  25. #25
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmnobrien View Post
    Vik, thanks for your IGH wisdom. Your blog was the first place I saw a Season Tikit.

    From the BF page, it looks like they're offering the Red Band Nexus 8. Not sure if they offer the Alfine. How would you compare the Red Band to the Alfine?
    Well on paper the Alfine is a superior hub, but I'm not sure if I could tell the difference from the saddle. All the bikes I have Nexus 8 or Alfine hubs in are quite different so it's hard to compare.

    I'd probably hold out for the Alfine. I'd be surprised if BF wouldn't build you a Season Tikit with an Alfine if you asked nicely.
    safe riding - Vik
    VikApproved

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