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rolhoff speedhubs. . .

Old 01-16-07, 07:08 PM
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"My lazy dude with google sensor is firing"

Are you one of those wonderful people who, when asked for the time, responds with "time for you to get a watch"?

"I think I mentioned the source. "

Nope. Feel free to, though.
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Old 01-17-07, 04:01 PM
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"My BS detector is beeping. Sources?"
I agree everytime I read your replys my BS detector goes off the scale.
My point is get onto Rohloff and try it don't just ***** about it. As both a serious touring cyclist, commuter, ex-racer, bicycle mechanic and bicycle advocate I would not go back to a non Rohloff system. I have both set up and serviced many Rohloff bikes for both the year round commute as well as local and the global tourist. They are so easy all aspects have been thought out. I did alot of reseach before jumping in but all the reseach couldn't replace the joy of using one. Following on from all the negative replies across this thread. I have not run out of gears. 32# wheels are super strong when built with the right parts and a reputable wheel builder. Rohloff offer lots of variations to suit all frames. They are not that expensive given the added benefits.
Enough said cheers Guru out.
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Old 01-17-07, 07:39 PM
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"My lazy dude with google sensor is firing"

""Are you one of those wonderful people who, when asked for the time, responds with "time for you to get a watch"?""

No I don't wear one.

I mentioned two sources in the last email, if you have to look them up for yourself I'm unmoved. How tough is it to go over to the Frameforum and search Rohloff. How hard is it to stuff "rohloff tandem world tour" in a search engine. pops right up on first page. These are fairly pro R people I would imagine, right in your comfort zone, if that's important. Do stays break, yes they do. What's the big deal? Chains break, derailleur get bent. Nothing is perfect. Why worry so much about people hearing all sides of the issue. I don't have anything to hide, at least about gears. I doubt that it's a wise idea to stuff one on my urbanite, that's the kind of thing I'm warning about.


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"I agree everytime I read your replys my BS detector goes off the scale"

This from the "GURU"

"My point is get onto Rohloff and try it don't just ***** about it"

Nice try, but I'm not required to pimp your purchase, or your business (summer job?). Every product has the vices of it's virtues. If you can't think of any, leave it to me, I can.
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Old 01-18-07, 02:52 AM
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Speaking of Rohloff, what's the best crank to use with it?
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Old 01-18-07, 05:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Peterpan1
Speaking of Rohloff, what's the best crank to use with it?
I find with my Rohloff its the one sat on the saddle

george
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Old 01-18-07, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Peterpan1
Speaking of Rohloff, what's the best crank to use with it?
Well, the one that Thorn sell allows you to take off the chainring after so many thousand miles, turn it around and do the same mileage again. Ditto for the rear sprocket.
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Old 01-19-07, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by jibi
I find with my Rohloff its the one sat on the saddle

george
good one, George
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Old 01-20-07, 02:48 AM
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I spent a pleasant period trying to find out what they were using on Thorns, but couldn't make much sense of their website. I did enjoy the 250 canabuck set of drops one needs for a Rohloff. Some good ideas there. I guess there are a lot of options from some old road cranks, to BMX, and so forth.
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Old 01-21-07, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Peterpan1
I spent a pleasant period trying to find out what they were using on Thorns, but couldn't make much sense of their website. I did enjoy the 250 canabuck set of drops one needs for a Rohloff. Some good ideas there. I guess there are a lot of options from some old road cranks, to BMX, and so forth.
Thorn use their own cranks which come in a huge range of size. Who makes them is an another story but they are of good quality. Ditto stems.
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Old 01-21-07, 11:52 AM
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I use bmx steel crank with my Rohloff, I have nothing bad to say about my hub it survived a 4300 mile ride with 61.5kg bike plus my 63kg on top, with out missing a beat.
As for you nah sayers that worry about them breaking down as they've had no internal problems only spokes pulling through but unless you pull a whole load through, you can ride on just like you'd do on every other wheel. Cables like any other type of shifter give problems every now and then, the same as other types of shifters, but again they have no internal problems unlike other hubs, so the hub is the most reliable you'll buy period.
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Old 01-21-07, 05:42 PM
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I mentioned two sources in the last email, if you have to look them up for yourself I'm unmoved. How tough is it to go over to the Frameforum and search Rohloff. How hard is it to stuff "rohloff tandem world tour" in a search engine. pops right up on first page.

How hard is it to post a link to a rather vague reference? Too much trouble, I guess.


These are fairly pro R people I would imagine, right in your comfort zone, if that's important. Do stays break, yes they do. What's the big deal? Chains break, derailleur get bent. Nothing is perfect. Why worry so much about people hearing all sides of the issue. I don't have anything to hide, at least about gears. I doubt that it's a wise idea to stuff one on my urbanite, that's the kind of thing I'm warning about.


Er.... yeah. If you read your own source, you would have seen that the problem was more than likely having disk brakes on a bike with no reinforcement between chainstay and seatstay.

I like hearing all sides of an argument too, just from people who are sincere about it and have some facts to share.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------




"My point is get onto Rohloff and try it don't just ***** about it"

Nice try, but I'm not required to pimp your purchase, or your business (summer job?). Every product has the vices of it's virtues. If you can't think of any, leave it to me, I can.[/QUOTE]

Yeah, I'm sure. So after all this arm waving, how you actually tried one?
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Old 01-21-07, 08:18 PM
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"How hard is it to post a link to a rather vague reference? Too much trouble, I guess."

Not really too much trouble, I had to double check it to verify it was as easy to find as I was going to say.

It was a case of the frame snapping because of the speedbone arm.

"Yeah, I'm sure. So after all this arm waving, how you actually tried one?"

No that's my point. They are so popular that of the 10 or so pretty good shops I frequent up here, only one has one and it's a dusty looking part not on a bike. If you had actually read my responses rather than jumped in, you would realize that a few posts back I mentioned that I almost bought one after some of the stuff said on the first page. And I periodically am tempted. But while I realize it works brilliantly in certain environments, I just can't get past the steep price and the various limitations. If I cough up 250 for a DT hub, or 360 for a Phil, I am not aware of a single problem attendant to that decision, other than the money. As far as I know there isn't a single problem with choosing either of those products. No leaks weird noises, poor spoke choices etc...

But with the Rohloff you could write a book. It's so far not in regular use for road racing, there has to be some drag from the system that isn't there with at least a clean derailleur, and I think they are happy to admit it even if you aren't. And I still don't believe they are competing for the road/touring/comfort market. What we also have are several folks like Shimano adding a gear to Nexus every year or two (tried one of those), producing 36 spoke hubs, and keeping the price to 170 bucks. I don't think Rohloff cares about anything other than MTBs at the moment. The hub is 1600 at the LBS while the LX hub is 40, it's a hard case to make.

There are lots of problems identified by actual owners:

- Grinding,
- oil leaks,
- weight,
- pulled through spokes,
- noise, This is how the Thorn guy refers to this "I like the absolute silence of pedaling it, in gears 8 to 14", once it is run in.
- rough riding around the changeover gear (whatever that's called).
- set gains between the gear
- more limited useable gear
- poor parts supply,
- can't set ratio (is that true? What happens when it breaks down in say 7, can you then choose any single ratio to run it in and change it by hand as required?).

Here is the list the Thorn guy gives of the negatives (of course he is largely rhapsodically positive):

- 32 spokes only
- shifter doesn't fit drops (me, more of that we don't give a rat's a$$ about roadies stuff)
- Doesn't enjoy the noise in gears 1-7
- Have to back off when downshifting out of the trans point.
- Doesn't like the extra net weight and it feels extra bad being located where it is
- Frames have to be specially constructed for it

He also mentions a lot of gaming ratios that is required because gear 11 is the best and the one you should spend the most time in and you want to avoid the 8,7 gears area. And of course the 1-7 area.

Gee, he almost sounds worse than I do on this stuff. You would almost think I was making it up. Cruise over to Sheldon's wonderful site and read the Andy Blance/SJS article. As previously mentioned it is a positive review of the product. They consider Rohloff to be the best touring choice. See it's possible to be both positive and fair. Give it a try, you may even find you like it.

If I already owned one I would be making the same noise about how smart I was as you are, and facing the same skepticism.

"Er.... yeah. If you read your own source, you would have seen that the problem was more than likely having disk brakes on a bike with no reinforcement between chainstay and seatstay."

Not entirely the point, no. It's an overall discussion of the structure, within which that is a specific point if I remember. But you have to be a little smart about this source: 1) these are some very good frame makers in the custom world, even they are asking the question, good luck with your "will TIG for food" products; 2) it's the OEM drops which cost more than the LX front and rear hubs total, in the raw before installation. You could probably buy an LX drivetrain for what that's gona cost, and yet still problems. 3) These are being installed on heavy MTB units, not on touring weight units. So now consider my actual point, that these hubs are very gifted when it comes to heavy duty uses, but you want to be careful about assuming they will make your ride stronger. In other words add DT or Phil hubs to your Urbanite touring frame, net result is my big a$$ is less likely to break an axle, and I am less likely to suffer a broken cassette shell etc... Add the Rohloff and you may get a broken stay for your troubles. As far as all that is concerned I think that thread adds to that point.

Last edited by NoReg; 01-21-07 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 01-22-07, 04:02 AM
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I love the absolute silence of my Rohloff running.

If, and I mean if, anything goes I can set the gear with an allen key.

I "back off" slightly when changing but I had to think about answering that, I change without thinking now.
For supplies with SJS Thorn I can go on their website, leave a phone number and a time, anywhere in the world, and they will phone me back. And they will get parts to me, wherever I am.

Its a personal choice, do the research and if you find you do not like what you see don't buy it. Simple

No-one is being forced to fit a Rohloff

I found I liked what I saw and bought.

I am still happy with my choice of Rohloff and Thorn bikes and customer service.
In fact, I love it and wish I had bought one years ago.

george
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Old 01-22-07, 06:16 AM
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snip<And I still don't believe they are competing for the road/touring/comfort market. >

Well, Thorn cycles are now fitting only the Rohloff on all their touring bikes. They are discounting those touring bikes they have without it.
Again I think that you will find that this gear is the choice of many German touring cyclists.
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Old 01-22-07, 01:42 PM
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Thanks for the spirited discussion.

If anyone knows:

1. Is there any advantage to using the Rohloff specific dropouts over standard horizontal dropouts?

2. If you have horizontal dropouts, could you swap a Rohloff wheel in and out with a single speed hub?

3. Can this swap work with disk brakes? I'm not sure if there is a disk brake option with the bolted version.

I did try to ask these questions intelligently, but the formation of this inquiry may have been impeded by a lack of knowledge, a dearth of brain cells, and/or much too much Monday morning.

Last edited by Krink; 01-22-07 at 01:52 PM.
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Old 01-22-07, 03:10 PM
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The advantage of using Rohloff specific dropouts eg the Thorn ones, is that they have a cut-out which allows the hub to be braced by the dropout itself rather than have to have a brace fixed from the hub to the chain-stay. This is a much more elegant solution to the problem of countering the forces dragging the hub forward.
I'm not sure re question 2, but I daresay horizontal drop-outs would work with a brace from the hub to the chainstay as in some Rohloff models, and some sort of chain tensioner ie eccentric BB or spring device.
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Old 01-22-07, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Krink
Thanks for the spirited discussion.

If anyone knows:

1. Is there any advantage to using the Rohloff specific dropouts over standard horizontal dropouts?

2. If you have horizontal dropouts, could you swap a Rohloff wheel in and out with a single speed hub?

3. Can this swap work with disk brakes? I'm not sure if there is a disk brake option with the bolted version.

I did try to ask these questions intelligently, but the formation of this inquiry may have been impeded by a lack of knowledge, a dearth of brain cells, and/or much too much Monday morning.
A:
1. Yes. As posted above it gives you a horizontal "dropout" whilst providing a stronger brace with the frame, making the supplemental external lever brace unnecessary. So overall, lighter.

2. Depends. The Rohloff is a 135mm dropout width hub. The bigger problem is the shifting cable assembly, which requires a double cabling. Swapping the hub and wheel also requires separating the cable controls at the hub. That is not a quick-disconnect, so the swapout would not be convenient. I would recommend against this as the straight chainline and the freewheel gives you the same features any single speed has except with the Rohloff you can select the ratio you want. Sort of begs the question why you would bother.

3. See A #2. It would be impractical.


I suggest that you have the Rohloff on a dedicated bike and not try to use it as a platform for a single speed. The cost of the hub practically justifies this. I suppose the bolt-on option (I think what they designate as TS) might be nice as an added security measure, but the quick-release axle works very well with this hub, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend that setup.

As far as few manufacturers specifying the hub here, that is largely due to cost, a relatively small market overall for tourers and a general market bias amongst even high-end touring bike buyers toward 9-speed derailleur systems. As others have noted, full acceptance of the Rohloff is amongst high-end mountain bicyclists where Rohloff is seen as a pinnacle product spec'ed on the very highest-end machines (Nicolai, and others). I think the weight differences are generally not an issue. As far as not being compatible with drops, that is only true if you mean being on the bars, but very efficient setups are possible by using modified bar-ends and placing the control knob on the stem (see photo, my bike).
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Old 01-22-07, 07:29 PM
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Thanks Onbike and CHenry.
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Old 01-23-07, 02:40 AM
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My favorite yacht designer used to tell us that 90% of the technical arguments are just a justification for personal preferences.

Speaking of which, I like the way the straight chainline of the Rohloff looks. The zigzag of the deraileur was very cool when they were rare in NA...
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Old 01-24-07, 03:06 PM
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Originally Posted by jibi
I love the absolute silence of my Rohloff running.

If, and I mean if, anything goes I can set the gear with an allen key.

I "back off" slightly when changing but I had to think about answering that, I change without thinking now.
For supplies with SJS Thorn I can go on their website, leave a phone number and a time, anywhere in the world, and they will phone me back. And they will get parts to me, wherever I am.

Its a personal choice, do the research and if you find you do not like what you see don't buy it. Simple

No-one is being forced to fit a Rohloff

I found I liked what I saw and bought.

I am still happy with my choice of Rohloff and Thorn bikes and customer service.
In fact, I love it and wish I had bought one years ago.

george
I agree, an internal hub may not be for everyone; but they are my preference and after going through a few SRAM hubs on my town bike, I bought a Rohloff and was pleased enough to buy a second.
They are dead silent in the top half of the gears, and in the bottom half make noise, but no louder than a derailleur hub.
I do slack off when shifting, I do so instinctively and find being able to shift while at a full stop very beneficial.

As for parts, I'm adding a disk brake to one of my hubs. I've had to send it to Rohloff U.S.A.; but I would have to send away any of my cameras or other technology to be modified. They are a small company and I'm not going to hold it against them that they have not saturated a market to be as ubiquitous as Coca-Cola.

I haven't done an extensive tour with one yet but my first hub was mounted on a Giant Twist for the first 5k miles of it's life (now destined to see duty on a farm/camping bike, the other is the one in my sig.). Almost all of those miles were loaded with 20 lbs. or so of cameras and such, giving a total bike weight of 65-80 pounds. The Twist is an electric assist bike and the drive is through the chain. It was not the most strenuous thing a hub can go through, but from its point of view, not the easiest either.
It's held up fine and is the one to which I'm adding a disk.

Dropouts. Rohloffs come in 2 basic flavors, those with torsion bars and those without. To keep the hub from spinning in the dropouts Stermey-Archer relies on an axle with one flat side. On one aluminum frame I've had the dropouts strip out, allowing the hub to rotate and effectively put the frame out of service. To prevent this Rohloff either uses dropouts designed specifically for the hub, or a torsion bar.
Both my hubs have torsion bars and I've mounted them on a frame with vertical dropouts and used a chain tensioner to take up the slack, and I've had one on a horizontal dropout frame. I've never touched the vert/chain-tensioner combo, and had to slide the hub back once to take up some slack with the horizontal dropout.

The cranks I've used with my hubs have been a Campy Record and a single speed mountain bike crank. I have a 52 tooth single wheel on the Record crank, a 38 on the mountain bike crank and use a single speed chain in both cases.

I've just over 9k miles between the two inside of 14 months, and have had to do no adjustments and only the most routine of maintenance. For 2 bikes: 2 oil changes (ten mins each, ~$5 each I bought a can of oil), 2 sets of brake pads, lube but not replace the chains (stretch is < 1/32).

My attention never gets drawn to my hubs, either shifting or maintenance, and is why my preferred drive train is an internal hub over derailleur.

--A

Last edited by Allen; 01-24-07 at 08:56 PM.
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