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  1. #76
    Gear Combo Guru Chris_W's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. The one mm difference between the 12mm total width for the CenterTrack versus 13 for the old version is what I need - I had to file about 0.5 to 1mm off the edge of the old rings where they went behind the crankarms, so the CT version should work without that. I'm expecting that I'll need some 3mm spacers behind the CenterTrack pulleys to correct for the centered mounting, so this shouldn't be a big deal.

  2. #77
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Likely the Illinois weather is as bad as our N. Idaho weather these days, meaning little to no white bike riding outdoors. On the other hand, Jacksonville should have little excuse

    How about an update report?

  3. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by twocicle View Post
    Likely the Illinois weather is as bad as our N. Idaho weather these days, meaning little to no white bike riding outdoors. On the other hand, Jacksonville should have little excuse

    How about an update report?
    We rode in Tulsa over the WE and then Wed, Thursday and Friday outside here in Illinois. We now have nearly 400 miles on the center track system and it is still quiet and smooth. On a ride with our daughter and one of her teammates they said we were so quiet that when we attacked they did not hear us coming around. I have checked the tension several times and it has not changed (used the iPhone app).

    The system is working perfectly. Completely happy with the way it is performing.

  4. #79
    Senior Member waynesulak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DubT View Post
    We rode in Tulsa over the WE and then Wed, Thursday and Friday outside here in Illinois. We now have nearly 400 miles on the center track system and it is still quiet and smooth. On a ride with our daughter and one of her teammates they said we were so quiet that when we attacked they did not hear us coming around. I have checked the tension several times and it has not changed (used the iPhone app).

    The system is working perfectly. Completely happy with the way it is performing.
    Do you know if the system is dealing with any frame flex? I don't know if you have every looked at your bike's sync under stress but with larger teams there is usually some reduction in effective sync chain length as the captain stands up a hill. I understand that the center track system is supposed to be more forgiving of frame flex.

    Wayne

  5. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by waynesulak View Post
    Do you know if the system is dealing with any frame flex? I don't know if you have every looked at your bike's sync under stress but with larger teams there is usually some reduction in effective sync chain length as the captain stands up a hill. I understand that the center track system is supposed to be more forgiving of frame flex.

    Wayne
    Wayne, I have no idea, we are a little under 300 pounds as a team and the Calfee is fairly rigid. On most climbs I do stand but it has not been an issue, as far as I know.

  6. #81
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
    Just ordered the CDX system. It's only available with 69 tooth rings.

    The rep at Gates asked if there was something about the Tandem CDX drive online somewhere because it's only out this week, and they're getting lots of orders.

    I told him I thought this thread might be driving it.
    Merlin,
    Have you had a chance to install the CenterTrack system and get some riding time with it? I'd be interested in your thoughts as to how it functions compared to riding with the earlier system. Anyone else whose ridden both systems please chime in. Thanks.

    Curtis

  7. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
    Installed ours yesterday, and went for a short ride. So far it's great. We did several all out sprinting efforts trying to make it skip, and couldn't even from a standing start in the 53/11. (which we could do with the original belt system).

    From what I've read, you can run the new system at lower tension, so I've got it set up with less tension than the original belt, (albeit still a bit tighter than a timing chain) which should help with efficency and wear.

    No trouble with it walking off ( which was happening with the second belt we had).

    It also has much better clearence around the chainstay than the previous belt. Even though it's wider, the nature of the design moves the belt further out. On the lod system, I had to fabricate 2mm shims for the chain ring bolts. New system has more clearance with no shims.
    He has already written this. Sounds like it doesn't skip, walk off, need as much tension, and has better clearance. Sort of like a roller chain
    Now if only you could get it in any length, repair it on the road, and use readily available timing rings of whatever size you like
    Last edited by Dean V; 10-28-12 at 11:54 PM.

  8. #83
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Thanks Dean. I've read through this thread twice and somehow missed Merlin's comments. For those of you using the non CenterTrack belt drive system are skipping and the belt walking off of the rings a common issue? I'm asking because there appears to be a $150 premium for the CT system. One dealer online is asking $295 for the CenterTrack system while the belt and rings for the non CT system can be found for $145. I'm considering the CenterTrack system for our tandem and for a Rohloff/Belt drive touring bike build I'm thinking (dreaming) about.

    On the single speed and internally geared side of things I've read articles that claim the CT system requires more precise alignment and if this isn't achieved the system can make more noise and possibly cause more rapid wearing of the belt. What is the real world experience of you early adopters? Is it harder to achieve proper alignment compared to the the non CT system on a tandem frame? Probably way too early to tell concerning wear but with less tension in the setup one would hope for extended belt life compared to the non CT systems?

    Curtis

  9. #84
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    After wearing out my non CT early-adopter system and having the belt walk off the rings into the frame, I would never think about having a non CT system. That whole system made no sense. If non CT has come down from $500 to $145, CT is bound to come down to also. It's not the belt life, it's the ring life.

    I think belt alignment is easy on a tandem, at least it is if you use cranksets that the system is design to work with.

  10. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Thanks Dean. I've read through this thread twice and somehow missed Merlin's comments. For those of you using the non CenterTrack belt drive system are skipping and the belt walking off of the rings a common issue? I'm asking because there appears to be a $150 premium for the CT system. One dealer online is asking $295 for the CenterTrack system while the belt and rings for the non CT system can be found for $145. I'm considering the CenterTrack system for our tandem and for a Rohloff/Belt drive touring bike build I'm thinking (dreaming) about.
    On the single speed and internally geared side of things I've read articles that claim the CT system requires more precise alignment and if this isn't achieved the system can make more noise and possibly cause more rapid wearing of the belt. What is the real world experience of you early adopters? Is it harder to achieve proper alignment compared to the the non CT system on a tandem frame? Probably way too early to tell concerning wear but with less tension in the setup one would hope for extended belt life compared to the non CT systems?

    Curtis
    I ordered ours directly from Gates and here is the price quote that I received from them.

    Wayne,
    I finally have pricing. The 69 tooth are $75 each and the belt is $95. Please call or email in your CC and I will get this shipped.

    Thanks,

  11. #86
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I expect the manufacturer quoted their SRP,
    thru channels , distributor to Retailer,
    perhaps a lower price is available..

  12. #87
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Thanks for your input guys. I got a quote back today from Steve Pardoe at Gates.
    69tooth system (2-69 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $256
    74tooth system (2-74 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $264

    Carbonfiberboy, can you elaborate on your statement: "I think belt alignment is easy on a tandem, at least it is if you use cranksets that the system is design to work with." with respect to appropriate cranksets? I've looked through the Gates website and manuals and didn't find any specific recommendations for cranksets other than to BCD size and ring size (130 BCD spider for the 69 tooth tandem rings). It would make sense that a bottom bracket format which allows relatively easy chainline adjustment would be most appropriate. The options I'm looking at right now would be an FSA crankset with MegaExo BBs or a DaVinci crankset with JIS sq. taper BBs. Of the two BBs I think the MegaExo is the more readily adjusted in my limited experience. Your thoughts?

    Curtis

  13. #88
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Thanks for your input guys. I got a quote back today from Steve Pardoe at Gates.
    69tooth system (2-69 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $256
    74tooth system (2-74 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $264

    Carbonfiberboy, can you elaborate on your statement: "I think belt alignment is easy on a tandem, at least it is if you use cranksets that the system is design to work with." with respect to appropriate cranksets? I've looked through the Gates website and manuals and didn't find any specific recommendations for cranksets other than to BCD size and ring size (130 BCD spider for the 69 tooth tandem rings). It would make sense that a bottom bracket format which allows relatively easy chainline adjustment would be most appropriate. The options I'm looking at right now would be an FSA crankset with MegaExo BBs or a DaVinci crankset with JIS sq. taper BBs. Of the two BBs I think the MegaExo is the more readily adjusted in my limited experience. Your thoughts?

    Curtis
    Good Gates information in this thread:
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ng-Belt-System
    I don't believe they intended it to be an aftermarket system, rather to be installed by the manufacturer, obviating these problems.

  14. #89
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Thanks for your input guys. I got a quote back today from Steve Pardoe at Gates.
    69tooth system (2-69 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $256
    74tooth system (2-74 tooth sprocket/250 tooth belt) = $264

    Carbonfiberboy, can you elaborate on your statement: "I think belt alignment is easy on a tandem, at least it is if you use cranksets that the system is design to work with." with respect to appropriate cranksets? I've looked through the Gates website and manuals and didn't find any specific recommendations for cranksets other than to BCD size and ring size (130 BCD spider for the 69 tooth tandem rings). It would make sense that a bottom bracket format which allows relatively easy chainline adjustment would be most appropriate. The options I'm looking at right now would be an FSA crankset with MegaExo BBs or a DaVinci crankset with JIS sq. taper BBs. Of the two BBs I think the MegaExo is the more readily adjusted in my limited experience. Your thoughts?

    Curtis
    on our Calfee which has The new Ultegra cranks and the Bushnell eccentric, I was able to slide the eccentric laterally so that the front and rear sprockets are in perfect alignment. It was very simple. The rear Ultegra is not adjustable.

    Wayne

  15. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    Good Gates information in this thread:
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ng-Belt-System
    I don't believe they intended it to be an aftermarket system, rather to be installed by the manufacturer, obviating these problems.
    that does not seem to be the case, I ordered direct from Gates (Steve Pardoe) and he knew it was a retrofit. We discussed alignment and he told me that the system should be aligned within 1 mm.

    wayne

  16. #91
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DubT View Post
    that does not seem to be the case, I ordered direct from Gates (Steve Pardoe) and he knew it was a retrofit. We discussed alignment and he told me that the system should be aligned within 1 mm.

    wayne
    Wayne, how did you go about getting the alignment right? Did you use a straight edge across the rings before installing the belt or were you using the relative belt positon on each ring as an indicator of alignment? Thanks for the tip on moving the eccentric laterally. I would have never thought to use it as an adjustment mechanism.

    Carbonfiberboy, thanks for pointing me to Merlin's old install thread. He used the lateral adjustment of the eccentric also for alignment.

    Curtis

  17. #92
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Wayne, how did you go about getting the alignment right? Did you use a straight edge across the rings before installing the belt or were you using the relative belt positon on each ring as an indicator of alignment? Thanks for the tip on moving the eccentric laterally. I would have never thought to use it as an adjustment mechanism.

    Carbonfiberboy, thanks for pointing me to Merlin's old install thread. He used the lateral adjustment of the eccentric also for alignment.

    Curtis
    Weird replying to my own post, but I found this information on the Co-Motion website concerning installation and alignment specific to tandems. http://www.co-motion.com/index.php/i...ng_belt_system. The Gates site has information for single bikes but unless I missed it not much for tandems.

    Curtis

  18. #93
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Weird replying to my own post, but I found this information on the Co-Motion website concerning installation and alignment specific to tandems. http://www.co-motion.com/index.php/i...ng_belt_system. The Gates site has information for single bikes but unless I missed it not much for tandems.

    Curtis
    That page does contain some good, basic information. However, comments such as "Use a straightedge at least 28.5” long to verify that the sprockets are in plane." and no description of what to look for, or measure from, are too vague. IMO, a better approach is to mark the center (frontside or backside) of each seat tube and measure out from those marks to each timing ring. This is a more precise measurement than simply sighting along a straightedge and bottom tube. Key point is to find some common point from where to measure the front/back alignment.

    Regarding Wayne's comment above about the rear Ultegra cranks not allowing alignment adjustment, Wayne is correct that the rear left crank cannot be spaced independantly of the BB width and preload requirements for this setup. However, while the crank width (and BB preload) cannot modified to suit alignment needs, the entire crank-axle-crank can be moved slightly from side to side by swapping the provided spacer washers from one side to the other. Whether or not this option is feasible depends on the driveside chainline requirements.

  19. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krenovian View Post
    Wayne, how did you go about getting the alignment right? Did you use a straight edge across the rings before installing the belt or were you using the relative belt positon on each ring as an indicator of alignment? Thanks for the tip on moving the eccentric laterally. I would have never thought to use it as an adjustment mechanism.

    Carbonfiberboy, thanks for pointing me to Merlin's old install thread. He used the lateral adjustment of the eccentric also for alignment.

    Curtis
    i simply measured from the bottom tube to the sprocket mounting face on the rear crank and adjusted the front one to match, pretty simple actually.

  20. #95
    Senior Member Krenovian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twocicle View Post
    That page does contain some good, basic information. However, comments such as "Use a straightedge at least 28.5” long to verify that the sprockets are in plane." and no description of what to look for, or measure from, are too vague.
    In my shop I use a 32" precision stainless steel straightedge to establish co-planar surfaces on machines during setup and to check finished surfaces for flatness so this made sense to me. I pictured placing the straight edge across one ring so it touches both the leading and trailing faces then sliding it towards the other ring. If the straightedge hits the edge of the other ring or can cross the face of the ring without touching then the rings are not co-planar and need to be moved in or out accordingly. When both rings are co-planar the straightedge would contact both the leading and trailing faces of both rings at the same time. If one could not get leading and trailing faces of the rings touching the straightedge simultaneously then several conditons could exist: bent frame, bent ring, bent spindle, bent spider. The beauty of the staightedge method is that no measuring is needed. It is a kind of "go no go" system. Having not attempted this myself though I can't really say how well it would work but it seems reasonable. Since I have the straightedge I'll give it a go once my CenterTrack kit arrives and if it seems cumbersome, default to DubT's or twocicle's technique.

    Curtis
    Last edited by Krenovian; 10-30-12 at 10:05 PM.

  21. #96
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Attention Christmas shoppers: BLING ALERT

    CenterTrack belt w/69T rings now $230 including shipping at PrecisionTandems.com from Mark who has them in stock.

    Concerning preferred eccentrics, Mel at Tandems East recommended the DaVinci eccentric (#7 on this page: http://www.tandemseast.com/parts/brackets.html) over the Bushnell Featherweight. The DaVinci version is apparently a modified version of the same, but is even lighter, has resolved some issues with the latter and cost less at $115.

    Apparently Mel also has a source that can produce reliable adjustable carbon stoker stems for ~$300. TBD (sample photo on the way).

    Spend all your money quick so you can qualify for the next set of gov bailouts.
    Last edited by twocicle; 11-08-12 at 07:06 PM.

  22. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by twocicle View Post
    Attention Christmas shoppers: BLING ALERT

    CenterTrack belt w/69T rings now $230 including shipping at PrecisionTandems.com from Mark who has them in stock.

    Concerning preferred eccentrics, Mel at Tandems East recommended the DaVinci eccentric (#7 on this page: http://www.tandemseast.com/parts/brackets.html) over the Bushnell Featherweight. The DaVinci version is apparently a modified version of the same, but is even lighter, has resolved some issues with the latter and cost less at $115.

    Apparently Mel also has a source that can produce reliable adjustable carbon stoker stems for ~$300. TBD (sample photo on the way).

    Spend all your money quick so you can qualify for the next set of gov bailouts.
    so when do you get your new frame?

  23. #98
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DubT View Post
    so when do you get your new frame?
    ETA for the S&S Tetra is end of Jan/2013. As it has dumped snow already, no chance to ride here until maybe April. A trip south in Feb is looking good.
    Last edited by twocicle; 11-09-12 at 10:03 AM.

  24. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by twocicle View Post
    ETA for the S&S Tetra is end of Jan/2013. As it has dumped snow already, no chance to ride here until maybe April. A trip south in Feb is looking good.
    What changes are you going to make to the components?

  25. #100
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DubT View Post
    What changes are you going to make to the components?
    Porting over most everything that was on the 2007 Calfee frame I built up just this last spring. Besides the couplers (and cable-splitters of course) the other most significant unplanned change is the inclusion of a tapered 1.125/1.5" headtube, plus Enve fork w/tapered steerer and a Chris King Inset headset. I had a custom paint idea that turned out to be $2k, so opt'd out of doing that I'll start a thread for this new build at some point.

    Pertaining to this Gates belt thread, I am toying with the CenterTrack belt idea to make travel life easier... instead of having to mess with cleaning, oiling and transporting a mucky timing chain. I like to keep things very clean and find it hard to do satisfactorily while on a tour. Weight-wise, coming from the 2007 frame the 9spd Sram timing chain & Shimano t-rings weighed 406+86= 492gms total, so there would be some saving with the Gates setup but it's not a huge amount (-200gms?).
    Last edited by twocicle; 11-09-12 at 03:37 PM.

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