Winter Commuting - Internal Shiftin' Rear Hub

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by erniep, Nov 24, 2004.

  1. erniep

    erniep New Member

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    I'm a "pick my mornin'" winter cycle commuter. i.e. no rain, freezin' rain, snowin' and there's sufficient road allowance due to lack of snow banks to allow me to travel on city streets with a minimum of happerin' to motorized traffic.

    'Bout eight years ago I had put together a "winter" bike for seasonal use based on a large department store mountain bike with brake mountin' posts and had an ole' Sturmey Archer (my 1st bike with an internal shiftin' bub) laced into an alloy rim with DT's. After a couple of "winter" seasons (mid Nov. - Mid April - once most of the road grim was swept from city streets) I upgraded the warpin' rear rim to a double walled type "Rino-Lite".
    I've been amazed at how robust the ole' (3 decades) hub is. I try to keep the cable / chain end that goes into the axle coated with grease to prevent grime infiltration into the hub and have had to replace the rear cog once due to wearin down of the sprokets.
    I'm currently waitin on my bike guy to lace a Nexus 7spd into a quality rear rim. This hub incorporates a removable cable brake. The manual with the hub advises against using the hub brake in the cold. Anyone with experience of such units (or any internal shiftin' hub for that matter) for commutin' through the winter?
     
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  2. Doug Miller

    Doug Miller New Member

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    Ah...this a question for Icebike.com ...the ultimate winter cycling web site with a contibuting readership of so many 'experienced smart' winter cyclists.
    I would search the archives at this site and I'm sure you'll uncover an opinion if no the definitive answer.
    Good Luck
    [email protected]
     
  3. krking

    krking New Member

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    I think this is a great idea for the winter.
    My internal hub experience is with SRAM dualdrives (8 speed rear derailleur with 3 speed rear hub), which was great.
    Options to consider:
    SRAM spectro s7 is supposed to be more efficient than the Shimano Nexus 7
    (Shimano is about 90% average, #'s in Bicycle Science, 3rd ed., SRAM about 93%, SRAM's own #'s, I found them on web by searching for "spectro s7").
    According to Bicycle Science, these #'s are only a little lower than those for derailleur gears- they show the 98% efficient typically quoted for derailleurs is a bit optimistic.
    Also, Shimano now has an 8 speed hub gear which is lighter and more efficient than the nexus 7 which I found out about at www.breezerbikes.com
    (click on "breezer uptown 8" and then on the link "Premium Shimano Nexus 8-speed"

    Good luck with it.
    rich
     
  4. erniep

    erniep New Member

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    An Update on my bike "winterizing" project:
    While I could have relatively inexpensively made up winter bike tyres using short hex headed #6 or 8 sheet metal screws in an agressively lugged mountain bike tyre, I indulged myself in the least expensive (but still pricey!) of the Schwalbe studded ones available. I did finally get a new rear wheel built incorporatin' the "heavy" Nexus 7spd hub laced with DT's into a fairly solid coated Keba double walled alloy rim. Overall I won't be using the beast of a bike for any road racin'!
    My limited exposure thus far to ice and snow have proven the traction of the tires allowing me to stand w/o slippin out while goin' up hill! It's nice to have the closer gradiation on the gearin' from the 7 sp although it's takin' some gettin' use to the grip shifter. I'm curious as to the brittleness of the plastic parts of the grip shifter @ -20°C and it's usability when coated with freezin' rain. Thus far the hub brake hasn't provided an impediment when not engaged @ - 5 - 15°C and works very effectively when engaged. We'll have to see how well it tollerates a winter season's worth of sand and road salt though.
     
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