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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 04-24-08, 06:47 PM   #1
captainnemo
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rohloff & albatrosses cranks & dummies?

I am building a Big Dummy up. The plan is to build it once ride it forever, so I am pretty keen to get it right the first time.

So far I have purchased the....

frame
Rohloff hub
Dt Swiss 5.1D rims
Competition spokes/prolock nipples
BB7 brakes
Marathon XR 2.0 tires

already own ( my crosscheck has been dumbed down )....

B17
thomson post
king headset
salsa liplock clamp

and will be purchasing....

Son front dyno hub
E6 primary and secondary lights
pitlock skewers
xtracycle kit
thomson stem

which leaves me with some questions re the rest....

Will albatross bars play with rohloff shifters, is anyone using such a setup?

What sort of bb/crank combo are people using and what would they use if the only considerations are ultimate functionality,durability in a min chain ring size of 40( rohloff spec 40/16 min for tandem/loaded use)?
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Old 04-24-08, 07:10 PM   #2
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The Rohloff shifter will fit an albatross bar just fine, that is the setup I'm using on my longtail.
My longtail setup has an assist motor and the bottom bracket/crank is proprietary.
On my bamboo utility bike I'm using a Race Face SS crank/bottom bracket, however they have had some durability problems (although I have not as yet), and if I were to install another bottom bracket I would use the Shimano equivalent.

With only one or two exceptions your build is almost identical to my bamboo bike.
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Old 04-24-08, 07:20 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by captainnemo View Post
I am building a Big Dummy up. The plan is to build it once ride it forever, so I am pretty keen to get it right the first time.

So far I have purchased the....

frame
Rohloff hub
Dt Swiss 5.1D rims
Competition spokes/prolock nipples
BB7 brakes
Marathon XR 2.0 tires

already own ( my crosscheck has been dumbed down )....

B17
thomson post
king headset
salsa liplock clamp

and will be purchasing....

Son front dyno hub
E6 primary and secondary lights
pitlock skewers
xtracycle kit
thomson stem

which leaves me with some questions re the rest....

Will albatross bars play with rohloff shifters, is anyone using such a setup?

What sort of bb/crank combo are people using and what would they use if the only considerations are ultimate functionality,durability in a min chain ring size of 40( rohloff spec 40/16 min for tandem/loaded use)?
Great build sounds like you'll have a fun/useful bike when you are done.

As for the cranks/chainring I'd use whatever you had at hand. All the fancy stuff does is help you shift when using a front dérailleur. I'm using a Race Face LP Turbine crank I had on a MTB I gave away.

I've gone back and forth about the minimum chain ring size for a Rohloff and Big Dummy. Ar first I was thinking it needed to be at least a 40 x 16 as I was using the Rohloff tandem spec, but I've since changed my mind. The primary reason for setting a minimum chain ring size is to limit the input torque to the hub. On a tandem you might have two strong riders going hard and that is what Rohloff used to determine their safe low end gear ratio.

On a Big Dummy no matter how much load you are trying to get up hill you still only have a single rider applying torque to the hub. My chicken legs are probably way below the potential power that Rohloff assumed when figuring the safe input torque. So I'm going to use a 38 x 16 gear ratio on my Big Dummy.

I'm no expert at this so if my logic is flawed please let me know.
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Last edited by vik; 04-24-08 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 04-27-08, 07:54 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by captainnemo View Post
I am building a Big Dummy up. The plan is to build it once ride it forever, so I am pretty keen to get it right the first time.
A lot like mine too!

BD frame & fork
Rohloff hub
Surly New Disk front hub
Velocity Cliffhanger rims
Wheelsmith 2.0/1.8/2.0 spokes & nipples (black, from Peter White Cycles)
Juicy7 brakes
Schwalbe Big Apple 2.35 tires
B17
Kalloy post
Cane Creek headset
pitlock skewers
xtracycle kit
Titec H-bars
Titec "Micros" straight bar ends, mounted on the front extension of the H-bar to hold the Rohloff shifter. I started with one, cut it down so it is flush with the end of the shifter when the shifter is slid all the way on, and mounted it on the right front hbar end. After a few days of riding I realized it would be nice to have the other one in the same position on the other side, and again I'm quite happy with the results. See the picture below. I think I'll cut the left one down to the same length as the right, and pad it out to approximate the same size as the Rohloff shifter, but already it's a nice alternative place to hang out on the bars.

I've got 4cm of spacers between the headset and the stem, and that stem has some rise to it as well as some length. Worked out great. (Found this place called purelycustom.com where I could get a 4cm spacer with custom lettering and graphics (not custom, I'm getting a peace sign on mine along with my name and "one less car"), in any one of several colors including black. I hope it comes in the right diameter, they didn't seem to say whether it would be 1" or 1&1/8".) Edit: It came in the right size! Woo hoo!

I like the idea of the Son nabendynamo but wasn't quite ready to sink another 300 on top of what was already past $3K and not finished... and I've had good results with battery lights.

I'm using a Shimano UN54 BB, 68x122mm, a cheap crank (Sinz) 110 bcd and 165mm arms, Surly 40t ring and Salsa Crossing Guard ring to keep my pants off the chainring. My Rohloff has a 16t sprocket.

I bought the cheap crank because I could get it in 165 length, and they come even shorter. I'm barely 5'5" and I don't agree with the trend toward longer cranks these days. Plus I get even more ground clearance and pedaling through the cornering.

After the first couple days I had been worried I picked too small a chainring. But on the 85 mile ride yesterday I found myself in gear 11 when I was comfortably cruising along on level ground. So I think maybe I picked the right ratio after all. And 1st gear is still a stump puller, except the Big Apples loose traction when I stomp off unless there's a lot of weight onboard.

Joel
Attached Images
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Last edited by joelparks; 05-08-08 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 04-28-08, 07:32 AM   #5
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Thanks for the replies guys. I am slowly getting there with the bike. I think I have found the cranks I desire....

http://www.whiteind.com/cranks/singlespeedcranks.html

Either with their BB or a Phil Wood. I have a Eno Eccentric Hub in my fixie which is beautifully crafted so I guess the cranks will be the same.

Yeah the lights are pricey but dyno lights are so easy. I have a prebuilt shimano version on my cross check at the moment which I commute on (until the dummy is built ) and just getting on the bike after work and rolling out the door is really nice.

I think a few solo camping trips will be in order if I can get a leave pass from the family. Strap the swag on the back with some fishing gear and a stove and away I go.

For the non australians a swag is more or less a bedroll. Mines one of these....

http://www.theswagstore.com.au/comme...ProdId=AOSTRAC
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Old 07-31-08, 09:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainnemo View Post
I am building a Big Dummy up. The plan is to build it once ride it forever, so I am pretty keen to get it right the first time.

So far I have purchased the....

frame
Rohloff hub
Dt Swiss 5.1D rims
Competition spokes/prolock nipples
BB7 brakes
Marathon XR 2.0 tires

already own ( my crosscheck has been dumbed down )....

B17
thomson post
king headset
salsa liplock clamp

and will be purchasing....

Son front dyno hub
E6 primary and secondary lights
pitlock skewers
xtracycle kit
thomson stem

...
I'm interested to hear how your Pitlock skewers are working with the Big Dummy and BB7 disc brakes. As you might know, Pitlock cautions against using the skewers with disc brakes. Any issues? Are the Pitlock skewers working well with the BB7s and loads/potential heavy braking of the Big Dummy?

I'm building a Big Dummy and am considering Pitlock skewers, but am a bit leery of the warnings.

If any other folks have opinions about this, I'd be interested in hearing them.

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by Blue Roads; 07-31-08 at 10:17 PM.
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Old 08-01-08, 05:11 AM   #7
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But why using E6 lights? If Schmidt is on your list, take the Edelux (27 weeks of deliverance currently
I would no longer use any ordinary bulbs in bicycle lights. LED is state of the art, and considering my Edelux I can tell the reason. It is more like a cars light (even at low speed) than what you are used to with bicycles lights. Very satisfactory. I believe there is not much of a need for an additional high beam light, at least for me here. In Autumn and Winter I am doing dark and rainy rides on forest roads quite regularly. It is no big fun changing light bulbs under such wet, black and cold conditions, even when headlight provides some parking light through capacitor to make bulb change possible at all. No more need for that.

BTW: nice build. I would probably use stronger spokes (Alpine III or Sapim Strong), however. And what reason is there for using mechanical disk brakes? What about hydraulic systems?
Regards, Phil

UPDATE: You may consider the extremely nice new SON 20R hub dynamo if LEDs are an option to you. Weighs 390g and is tandem-proof, allows radial spoke patterns (in case of usage with sports bikes with caliper brakes instead of disk brakes). But you need to wait for availability of centerlock disk version which may still take some time. And it is not meant to be used with ordinary halogen bulbs when used with 26" wheels, since it is specified for 20" wheels, considerung its electric performance. As soon as it is available I will upgrade for it.
The SON 28S disk btw has got 600g exactly (checked on my own).

Last edited by flatboarder; 08-01-08 at 05:47 AM. Reason: SON 20R stuff added
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Old 08-01-08, 07:40 AM   #8
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Mechanical disk brakes make sense because they are easier to maintain than hydraulic disk brakes for the average person. Cables are cheap and hydraulic bleed kits are not. I will put BB7's on my Big Dummy too.
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Old 08-01-08, 07:54 AM   #9
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Perfectly alright, if brake performance is sufficient and calipers and brake wires are dirt proof. I thought it probably was a matter of using some special handlebar with need for certain brake levers.
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Old 08-01-08, 10:21 PM   #10
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But why using E6 lights?.,..

I concur. Actually, I would say that a single Lumotec IQ Fly (90-100 $ depending on options) will give you more light and better light distribution than dual E-6 (almost 200 $).
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Old 08-01-08, 11:52 PM   #11
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Mechanical disk brakes make sense because they are easier to maintain than hydraulic disk brakes for the average person. Cables are cheap and hydraulic bleed kits are not. I will put BB7's on my Big Dummy too.
I concur. I'm also putting BB7s on my Big Dummy. FWIW, I'm using high quality (frictionless, Teflon) cables, as opposed to common cheap cables. Heard it makes a noticeable difference.
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Old 08-02-08, 02:21 AM   #12
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I concur. Actually, I would say that a single Lumotec IQ Fly (90-100 $ depending on options) will give you more light and better light distribution than dual E-6 (almost 200 $).
In the German bicycling newsgroup I read about an IQ fly where reflector stuff popped out due to some parking incident. It could be restored, nevertheless. I recommend Edelux light due to cooling capacity of LED directly connected to outer aluminium jacket of light. No plastic. And voltage proof electronics inside, specially made for dynamo hubs. My Inoled 20+ (first version) gave up after one and a half year of usage. LED was damaged due to high voltage when riding fast, I guess. Inoled recommended using some special protection cable called inoguard to be safer.
The Edelux was designed with all those issues in mind, as to my knowledge. For 'build it once ride it forever' builds therefore I would definitely recommend it. And it really gives great lighting at night.

BTW I am currently installing some 5V USB charger, directly connected to the dynamo hub for running some pocket navigation stuff on the big dummy.
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Old 08-04-08, 10:09 AM   #13
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Hi Blue Roads,

since my LBS mistakenly ordered my Surly New Disc Front hub with nuts instead of QR hollow axle, I built it up that way, and thus no pitlock on front hub. And since this is my first bike w/ disc brakes, I didn't really grok the issues until after it was built - with the caliper trailing the dropout, applying the brake creates a force vector that would send the axle out of the dropout. I was going to switch the front axle to hollow but have been riding with it nutted for a bit over a thousand miles now and I think I'll just leave it this way. It's not like I don't carry around a wrench with 15mm capacity when I ride, anyway.

The pitlock in the rear is working just fine.

By the way I have Juicy 7 not BB7. I had no trouble bleeding the longer hydraulic line I had to install, just followed the instructions. Really works nicely.
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Old 08-04-08, 10:23 AM   #14
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BTW I am currently installing some 5V USB charger, directly connected to the dynamo hub for running some pocket navigation stuff on the big dummy.
Hey that sounds pretty interesting. Is the usb charger home made or can you buy ones that you can connect into the hub?
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Old 08-04-08, 11:11 AM   #15
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Hey that sounds pretty interesting. Is the usb charger home made or can you buy ones that you can connect into the hub?
Please have a look in my blog entry (English language) where I have linked maufacturers that I know of. I have ordered the JaWeTec charger. If you are really interested in the device and need more information, I may try to translate manufacturers info, if not provided in English. Basically, it does take care of 5V and 500mA at max, without blowing up the connected device, which is guaranteed up to 50km/h. According to manufacturer it is a good idea to switch it of when riding downhill (I reach 75km/h with the big dummy in our area), but that depends on the dynamo hub of your choice. Since I will upgrade to the new SON 20R made for 20" wheels, but use it with 26" wheels (which is ok for my LED lights), that will not be that much of a restriction I guess. And, I may switch on my voltage proof lights, just to absorb away high voltages from the charger
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Old 08-04-08, 09:41 PM   #16
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+1 on the Lumotec IQ Fly... just got mine installed and I couldn't be happier. Coupled with a Shimano 3N71 generator hub. Light output is excellent, far surpassing my expectations, and they were pretty high. Completely lights up a two lane road for about 75 feet in front of you (depending on how you aim / focus it)... far more than adequate for my primarily urban riding requirements.

I would not be surprised for motorists to ask me to "turn off" my "high beams". I'm sure there are snazzier / more sophisticated alternatives, but honestly unless this thing just falls apart (highly unlikely based on my experience with my wife's bike, who has the older halogen Lumotec) then I'm going to be very, very happy for a very, very long time

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Old 08-04-08, 09:48 PM   #17
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Hi Blue Roads,

since my LBS mistakenly ordered my Surly New Disc Front hub with nuts instead of QR hollow axle, I built it up that way, and thus no pitlock on front hub. And since this is my first bike w/ disc brakes, I didn't really grok the issues until after it was built - with the caliper trailing the dropout, applying the brake creates a force vector that would send the axle out of the dropout. I was going to switch the front axle to hollow but have been riding with it nutted for a bit over a thousand miles now and I think I'll just leave it this way. It's not like I don't carry around a wrench with 15mm capacity when I ride, anyway.

The pitlock in the rear is working just fine.

By the way I have Juicy 7 not BB7. I had no trouble bleeding the longer hydraulic line I had to install, just followed the instructions. Really works nicely.
Thanks for the input and reply. I already ordered front and rear Pitlocks. Since my last post, I've heard the Pitlock/disc brake warnings are really aimed at aggressive mountain bikers -- banging into roots and rocks -- with repeated hard braking, and that commuting or touring should not be an issue with the Big Dummy. Just follow the instructions carefully, grease the threads, and tighten down without over-torquing.

I'm still a tad leery, but I'm going to give the front and rears a try. If any issues arise, I'll post them here.

Last edited by Blue Roads; 08-04-08 at 10:31 PM.
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Old 08-05-08, 01:45 AM   #18
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+1 on the Lumotec IQ Fly... just got mine installed and I couldn't be happier. Coupled with a Shimano 3N71 generator hub. Light output is excellent, far surpassing my expectations, and they were pretty high. Completely lights up a two lane road for about 75 feet in front of you (depending on how you aim / focus it)... far more than adequate for my primarily urban riding requirements.

I would not be surprised for motorists to ask me to "turn off" my "high beams". I'm sure there are snazzier / more sophisticated alternatives, but honestly unless this thing just falls apart (highly unlikely based on my experience with my wife's bike, who has the older halogen Lumotec) then I'm going to be very, very happy for a very, very long time

Steve
May I provide this link to a German supplier where several lights including IQ fly are compared to each other with their characteristics. It is in German language, but I think, the pure values are easy to check out.
There is an issue with LED cooling. LED efficiency goes down with LED heat, and LED might become really hot. I read about solder joints getting weak from heating up if there was not sufficient cooling and electronical voltage protection. For those riding with lights on a lot, cooling capacity of LED mount matters, since it will compromise durability. Same applies to internal electronics quality.
BTW Edelux and IQ fly use the same reflector technique (developed by B&M both), but due to mentioned facts the former can put out considerably more light although being smaller.
When these lights are adjusted the way they should be, there should be no issue with other vehicles coming across, since those lights -compared to typical strong offroad akku lights- are designed similarly to cars low beam lights narrowed sharply to a low area.
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Old 08-06-08, 06:15 AM   #19
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Thanks for the replies guys. I am slowly getting there with the bike. I think I have found the cranks I desire....

http://www.whiteind.com/cranks/singlespeedcranks.html
...
But they're really long (and they look really expensive)!

I, personally, have found that short cranks better; more conducive to spinning, and less effort all round. I have FMF cranks (available both square taper or ISIS) on one bike and Bulletproof on another, both in 140 mm length:

http://www.outsideoutfitters.com/p-2...ed-cranks.aspx

http://www.niagaracycle.com/product_...ducts_id=19394
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Old 08-06-08, 06:34 AM   #20
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140mm sounds quite short, expecially for riding uphill and out of saddle. For me, comparing 160mm vs. 155 vs. 172.5 vs. 175, the 160mm turned out to be most appropriate (leg length 82cm). For the big dummy, short cranks seem to be a good idea when riding offroad or fast turns without stopping pedalling. There is not that much ground clearance under some circumstances, due to wheelstand and whatever.

I am using a TA Specialites Vega crankset, which is a lightweighted MTB crank (square taper) with an exchangeable spider for all sorts of chainwheel combinations. I am currently using only one chainwheel, but configuration could be changed easily. I have some Token bottom bracket with 103mm steel axle and carbon coating. Lightweighted, free of any noises or clicking sounds, durable (hopefully). I am riding this combination in my big dummy and my MTB as well, both sets are free of any problems so far.
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