Any Alfine 11 reviews?

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  • 10-26-2010
    fraal
    Any Alfine 11 reviews?
    Since the other Alfine 11 thread has turned into a Rohloff vs Alfine debate, I thought I may start a new thread! :D

    Does anybody know of any recent Alfine 11 reviews on teh intrarwebs? A quick google didn't turn up anything new, and I've seen those old carpark tests on pre-production units.

    Cheers,
    Alex.
  • 10-27-2010
    wantriot
    Second
    Also keen on more information/reviews. Anyone know who else will be using this hub on their stock bikes?
  • 12-13-2010
    em_T
    Me three dammit - where are the early adopters? And who has them in stock?
  • 12-14-2010
    fraal
  • 01-08-2011
    JakeWake
    ..on my Fat Bike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by wantriot
    Also keen on more information/reviews. Anyone know who else will be using this hub on their stock bikes?

    I have an Alfine 11 on my Fat Bike.

    The recommended input ratio is 1.9. I am running 1.7 because I wanted lower gears, and I might go down to 1.6 if it seems to be handling it OK.

    My observations so far are that the engagement is a little spongy, especially in the lower gears. I think that is due to the roller clutch engagement.

    It is also a little finicky - you have to get the cable tension just right for the shifting to be spot-on in all gears.

    Other than that, it is heavy but shifts great, even when not pedalling. But you all already knew that though.

    Jason C
  • 02-02-2011
    fellsbiker
    JakeWake so how is the 1.7? Do you feel like you're putting too much torque into the hub? I plan on running 1.6 (32x20) out of the box. That gives me the highest low gear I can ride with on technical hilly trails. I'm a pretty light rider so I'm hoping the hub holds up ok. How much do you weigh?
  • 02-02-2011
    JakeWake
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fellsbiker
    JakeWake so how is the 1.7? Do you feel like you're putting too much torque into the hub? I plan on running 1.6 (32x20) out of the box. That gives me the highest low gear I can ride with on technical hilly trails. I'm a pretty light rider so I'm hoping the hub holds up ok. How much do you weigh?

    It seems fine so far. I'm not really a masher - I tend to spin, so I don't know if other riders will have the same results.

    I am actually going down to 1.6 here shortly.

    The only drawback that I see so far is that the engagement feels a little mushy in the lower gears. This is due to the roller clutch engagement, rather than pawls.

    JC
  • 02-06-2011
    anthony.delorenzo
    This is just one experience, so take it for what it's worth, but....

    My friend (wrenches at LBS) just blew up his 11-speed Alfine running 32x20. It lasted less than two months on a Pugsley.

    Could chalk it up to him being a big, strong guy on a low gear, BUT.... I am bigger, running longer cranks and lower gearing (32x22) on my Alfine 8 for three winters now and it is 100%. My wife has the same setup and no issues either.

    Some aspects of the 11-speed seem to be not as good. The cassette joint, for example.

    Anyways, his 11-speed is going back to the supplier but he's trying to get them to replace it with an older 8-speed if they have any left.
  • 02-07-2011
    BrunoBB
    Alfine 11
    I received my Alfine 11 from Harris Cyclery at the end of 2010 but i finished to assemble it only one week ago. I`m running on 36x18 and it is too heavy. I was thinking to buy an 32t chainring but after reading the posts iīll try an 34t and try to loose weight before going uphill.

    Excuse me for my poor english.

    Bruno B. Barcelos
    Greetings from Brazil.
  • 02-08-2011
    presslab
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anthony.delorenzo
    My friend (wrenches at LBS) just blew up his 11-speed Alfine running 32x20. It lasted less than two months on a Pugsley.

    Do you know specifically which part broke? What is the rider weight?

    I broke a pawl on my Alfine 8 but I chalked that up to an incident where the cable popped out of the stop and my best guess the subsequent slipping damaged the pawl. I have been riding it (without 2nd and 6th gear) trying to make it die but it keeps going. I'm 200 lbs 32x20.
  • 02-24-2011
    presslab
    I'm now on the Alfine 11. It's fantastic. The shifter is the most substantial improvement, for me, and the extra range over the 8 is very nice too. My ratio is 1.45:1.

    The shifer can now be operated thumb/thumb, and both up and down shift can be done two at a time. It has a lighter feel than the 8 and a very smooth action. I whacked off the gear indicator, just like I did on the 8. The cassette joint now has the weather seal by default, and the longer arm allows for seatstay routing that is very clean. The hub is definitely smoother than my 8 when new. The gear steps are good, 1st feels a bit like a "bailout" gear with a larger step. Still has the same silent roller clutch with pretty good engagement.
  • 02-24-2011
    swift
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JakeWake
    It seems fine so far. I'm not really a masher - I tend to spin, so I don't know if other riders will have the same results.

    I am actually going down to 1.6 here shortly.

    The only drawback that I see so far is that the engagement feels a little mushy in the lower gears. This is due to the roller clutch engagement, rather than pawls.

    JC


    You guys are confusing me.

    1.7:1 is lower than 1.6:1 How are you "going down" to 1.6?

    The lowest gear you can run on a Rohloff is around 2.5:1, making the reported Alfine11 gearing seem pretty tall. Am I missing something here?
  • 02-24-2011
    presslab
    It's just a ratio, it could be geared up or geared down. In our case, it's geared up, so that means that 1.6 is "down" from 1.7. In other words, for every rotation of the cranks the hub cog turns 1.7 times.
  • 02-24-2011
    fellsbiker
    Then input ratios (2.5:1, 1.6:1 etc) are only the chain's ratio, before it goes into the hub. The rholoff has completely different gearing inside, and so you can't compare input ratios from different hubs. If you want to compare final drive ratios, you can multiple the input ratio by the gear ratio of each gear in the hub.

    Anyway, 1.45:1 is extremely low. If the hub can handle that, 1.6:1 should not be a problem.
  • 02-24-2011
    fellsbiker
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by presslab
    I'm now on the Alfine 11. It's fantastic. The shifter is the most substantial improvement, for me, and the extra range over the 8 is very nice too. My ratio is 1.45:1.

    The shifer can now be operated thumb/thumb, and both up and down shift can be done two at a time. It has a lighter feel than the 8 and a very smooth action. I whacked off the gear indicator, just like I did on the 8. The cassette joint now has the weather seal by default, and the longer arm allows for seatstay routing that is very clean. The hub is definitely smoother than my 8 when new. The gear steps are good, 1st feels a bit like a "bailout" gear with a larger step. Still has the same silent roller clutch with pretty good engagement.

    What actual gear sizes are you using for your chain?
  • 02-24-2011
    presslab
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fellsbiker
    What actual gear sizes are you using for your chain?

    32:22

    I would have used 32:20 but my chain was too long and the wheel would not fit in the horizontal dropouts. If I were to shorten the chain by one link my tire would rub the chainstays.
  • 02-24-2011
    fellsbiker
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by presslab
    32:22

    I would have used 32:20 but my chain was too long and the wheel would not fit in the horizontal dropouts. If I were to shorten the chain by one link my tire would rub the chainstays.

    That gear range is a bit too low for my liking. But like I said, that's great that the hub can handle that. 32/20 should be no problem at all for me. I also have a relatively light bike and I'm not too heavy myself. I'm getting more and more excited about this hub.
  • 02-24-2011
    presslab
    My bike is 31.4 lbs and I am around 220 lbs with gear. So far, no slipping or any complaint from the hub. I hammered out a good climb the other day standing the whole way, no problems.

    In top gear my speed on the tarmac was just fine, a notable improvement over the 8 speed.
  • 02-24-2011
    fellsbiker
    Good good. I do lots of technical climbing and will be spending much of my time in the "granny gear"
  • 02-25-2011
    Paco Loco
    Thanks for the review Presslab, sounds great! Looking forward to getting one this summer.
  • 02-25-2011
    Storm Rider
    It has been a long process to gather all the parts for my bike, and adapt them to my frame. I stripped the frame of all the old and worn out parts, and replaced nearly everything. The two most difficult steps were designing and fabricating a new brake mount for the rear, and a custom chain tensioner. I am running 30/22 sprockets, or 1.364:1. I needed the low gear to match my previous 22/32 granny gear, so I could get up some of the hills around here.

    While testing at home, I noticed the shifting was a little weird, particularly from 7-8th, where the ratio seemed to be inconsistent. Of course gears can only have one ratio, so it must have been the clutch engagement. I am not very familiar with the internal workings of these hubs.

    Yesterday my first ride with the Alfine 11 hub was on the Fullerton Loop, which is about 11 miles long and has a wide variety of terrain and conditions. My gear calculations worked out well, so that I had the low gears I needed, and 11th gear was just enough for the fast sections. Even though I have about the same granny gear ratio, steep climbs were a little bit harder with the A11. I think it is because of the taller tires increasing the gear ratio.

    During my ride, there were many moments when I would shift and get a "false neutral", meaning there would be little resistance at the pedals until the gear or clutch would engage. Sometimes this effect was very brief, sometimes it was a few revolutions. Other times the hub shifted very quickly and almost imperceptibly. I am unsure of it's ability to shift under load at this time. I don't know if these hubs have a break in period, but I hope the shifting will improve over time. Maybe I just have to learn the proper shifting technique.

    I weighed my bike today and I think it gained about 8-10 oz. I didn't notice the extra weight of the hub while riding. My overall impression is very favorable, and I really like the A11, inspite of the quirky shifting . One of the biggest differences I noticed was the silent running, with no chain slap, and much less noise overall.
  • 02-26-2011
    fellsbiker
    So for those that have built it up, I have a question. I got my 20T cog today (don't have the hub yet). Are these three subtle nubs all that connects your legs to the wheel? It seems like those little nubs would sheer right off under load. Is that what yours looked like too??

  • 02-27-2011
    pintwister
    Does anyone know where I can buy the oil for sg-s700 (alfine 11 spd) ?
    How much for 1L
    Also ... Is there a substitute such as a light machine oil ?
  • 02-27-2011
    Leopold Porkstacker
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fellsbiker
    So for those that have built it up, I have a question. I got my 20T cog today (don't have the hub yet). Are these three subtle nubs all that connects your legs to the wheel? It seems like those little nubs would sheer right off under load. Is that what yours looked like too??


    Yep, same as the 8-speed Alfine setup. Crazy, isnít it, to ponder that all your power is being transmitted through those three tiny-assed nubs??? :nono: I havenít sheared them off yet, 2,900 miles, and about 50% of the miles are 4,000+ foot ascension excursions over rough terrain.
  • 02-28-2011
    Storm Rider
    Yesterday I rode my A11 for the second time. The shifting was much better, as I learn how to shift this hub. I still had a little trouble down shifting while climbing. It seems this hub really likes to be unloaded when shifting. I also got a small blister or bruise on my index finger from pulling the upshift lever. I expect it will toughen up and not be a problem.

    Once upon a time, there were only rigid bikes with cantilever brakes. Suspension forks came along, slowly evolved, and now are nearly universal. Rear suspension followed, and is superior for most situations. Disk brakes arrived, and the MTB world stopped on a dime. All of these new technologies worked way better than the previous status quo, but all were heavier as well. At this time, I am willing to speculate that the IGH will one day dominate the MTB sport like the three previous new standards have. It is so early, and we only just met, but I think I may be falling in love with Alfine Shimano. <3
  • 02-28-2011
    presslab
    Shifting under power only works in certain gears and certain directions. It has to do with the roller clutches. You'll learn it.

    I use thumb/thumb shifting and not my index finger. Love it.
  • 02-28-2011
    fellsbiker
    I read that the shifter is basically just like an XT shifter, is that true?
  • 02-28-2011
    s-keeper
    Shifter is a big improvement on the Afline 8 shifters, and it also works perfectly with an Alfine 8 hub.

    Storm Rider, if your hub holds out at 30:22 ratio then I'll definitely be purchasing an Alfine 11!
  • 03-01-2011
    john_dalhart
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fellsbiker
    S Are these three subtle nubs all that connects your legs to the wheel? It seems like those little nubs would sheer right off under load.

    The three spline cog/hub interface has been an industry standard for some 60 years and has been used on hundreds of millions of hubs from Sturmey-Archer, Fichtel&Sachs (SRAM), Shimano and other manufacturers.
  • 03-10-2011
    Storm Rider
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by s-keeper
    Storm Rider, if your hub holds out at 30:22 ratio then I'll definitely be purchasing an Alfine 11!

    So far, so good. I'm loving it. Yesterday I was able to beat my usual best time of 1:08 on the Fullerton Loop by one minute. On a steep climb I missed my downshift into first gear, and had to bail off and push. It wouldn't let me shift under load, but it was more a case of bad timing and operator error.

    When I rebuilt my bike, I went from 2.1 to 2.2 tires. The 2.2 is significantly larger in width and diameter, so it made my gearing taller. This has hurt me on the steep climbs in first gear. I am considering going back to 2.1 in the rear, or maybe a 23T cog, but at the same time, I don't want to lose more top end. My gearing is just about perfect for what I do.

    I can get into 10th and 11th on gradually sloping downhills, but the only time I get totally spun out is on a long steep hill, but I am ok with that. My coasting speed is close to my pedaling speed on this particular downhill, and I can still clear the same jump with just enough speed thanks to gravity.
  • 03-13-2011
    pintwister
    I have been riding my sg-s700 now for about 100 miles.
    I am using a tripple ring set-up with rear derailleur.

    The derailleur is stretched out as far as possible, to allow for plenty of tension.

    Shifting is perfect. All gears hit "dead center" under pressure, up or down with no delay.

    The problem I have is when I back pedal. The top portion of the chain gets so much slack that it actually rubs against my frame.

    What could be causing this.
  • 03-13-2011
    fellsbiker
    Can you post some pictures?
  • 03-24-2011
    Velobike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Storm Rider
    ...On a steep climb I missed my downshift into first gear, and had to bail off and push. It wouldn't let me shift under load, but it was more a case of bad timing and operator error...

    Most internal gear hubs require you to momentarily ease off on the pressure to downshift, otherwise they break. Just like you shouldn't shift down on a manual car without using the clutch.

    Don't know if this is a requirement of the Alfine 11, but it is with the 8, and I doubt it would be different.
  • 03-25-2011
    ZackR
    In the little bit of riding that I have been able to get in on my new hub I have found it more tolerant of shifting while pedaling than the 8 speed hub. I have found that I can shift up or down with a momentary "lightening" of my pedal stroke, where I would really have to stop pedaling for the 8 speed to get into gear. Either way is really not an issue for me, everything has pros and cons and if I have to get used to easing up on the pedals to shift, so be it.

    Actually, I can see being able to shift while not pedaling on a hill very advantageous. It sure beats having to try to shift at the last moment while going up a steep hill and trying to get your pedals all the way around to get the chain on a lower cog, while everything is grinding and popping, but I agree that all the times I would do that is user error.
  • 03-25-2011
    Storm Rider
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ZackR
    I have found that I can shift up or down with a momentary "lightening" of my pedal stroke.

    This is a good description of my technique as well. On steep climbs, It is difficult to lighten up on the pedal stroke when you need it the most, so you have to plan your shift early, and execute it while you still have some rpm to work with.
  • 03-26-2011
    driftn
    3 month review
    Hello everyone, had my alfine-11 for three months now and here is some of my first impressions. Note that this is my first IGH and I am no genius. For it's intended use, no doubt it is spot on from Shimano. Of course I have it on my Santacruz Nomad using it with a double up front which puts it way out of it's range. Here goes, very sensitive to adjustment. Yellow on yellow marks, you will experiment but will return to being right on the marks for the full gear range. Saying that, cable routing is critical especially on a full suspension bike. Switching the blue and green washers will either give you chain stay or seat stay routing. Using Sheldons chart, the inches don't seem to match up with the inches from my standard drive train. It could be me being in winter shape. Given equal inches, I cannot seem too pull the same gears on my usual climbs. I think there is a break in period for a hub like this, because shifting and all else seem to be getting better with time. Like everyone says keep to your old shift habits of letting up, some gears you can get away being sloppy. Set up I treated like a 10 speed losing the 1st gear because of the jump. Wish they put it on the other end. Running a 32x23 seems to be close to the edge, before you get that mystery dead spot. I still have a double with a 24t so I can fill the big gap on my middle for longer climbs. But I did have a 23t and 22t and for some reason got the mystery slip, just too low. Running a 10 speed chain and spaced my middle ring in .06mm for cleaner chain line. If I clean my bike more you could go .12 using two shims. Bottom line: yes it is fun and different and under the right conditions the shifting seems seamless. Plus your Pals will never know what gear your in when they are following or even hear the shifts half the time. Something new to play with..oh yeah....just my two cents
  • 03-27-2011
    s-keeper
    I'd like to ask the same question... as I've never heard of 'a mystery slip' before, what do you mean? Are there other symptoms of gearing too low apart from trashing the hub?
  • 03-27-2011
    rekrutacja
    I just ordered my Alfine 11, should arrive next week. This will be mounted in Marin Mount Vision mountain bike, and i'm still curious what sprocket i should use on the rear with 32 on the front. Obviously i want lowest gears possible.

    Driftn, could you say more on your experience with 23t sprocket? Why you think this is close to the edge? I think I would rather like to push my bike uphills than trash such an expensive gear :-)

    What others are recommending? Is 22 safe?
  • 03-27-2011
    driftn
    Okay you guys, sort of messed up. I have a 22t rear right now, went through so many lately got retarded...sorry. So 32t front 22t rear works great, again big jump between 1st and 2nd. Like skipping a gear. So if you forget the compound low, 32x22 alfine is very close to 32x11-30 cassette. Now lets talk about the mystery slip. Its like bad biopacing or it is not engaging. I even had a rotor-ring sitting around and tried that to off set the feel. If you slow down your cadence it get a little better, how odd does that sound. Do I feel like I will blow the hub? Well here is the deal, I running a Vanilla 36 with a 50m stem and it is harder to really hammer like on a cross/country setup. Because you sorta stay smoother on the steeps to keep the front end from walking all over. I know I will get flack for this, but I find myself not crushing the granny end like I would on something more layed out. Note I am running a 24t on my inner which give me about .75inch lower then my 32t but fills the big gap. No mystery/slip there, but try a 23t inner and it is back. Hope this helps......
  • 03-27-2011
    fellsbiker
    Damn, my universal translator is offline
  • 03-28-2011
    Velobike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by rekrutacja
    I just ordered my Alfine 11, should arrive next week. This will be mounted in Marin Mount Vision mountain bike, and i'm still curious what sprocket i should use on the rear with 32 on the front. Obviously i want lowest gears possible...

    What others are recommending? Is 22 safe?

    Shimano have a recommendation that you do not go below a ratio of 1.9 with the 11 speed. (It's on the Alfine 11 General Safety Information sheet SI-37R0A-002-00)

    For a 29er this gives a low of 29"

    I am not aware of a recommended minimum for the 8 speed, so if you want lower gearing the 8 speed is the way to go as far as I can see.

    (I've just posted this on another thread, but it's relevant here).

    From the info sheet:
    It is recommended that the gear ratio of the front chain ring be set to approx.1.9
    Example: F34 - R18T, F39T - R20T, F45T - R23T
  • 03-28-2011
    rekrutacja
    Velobike, i know this recommendation, but 1.9 is too high for me. There are others running lower gearing, so i just wanted to ask what you are running and how it works.
  • 04-10-2011
    Pinchphlat
    I have just taken my Alfine 11 out for its first run on my commuting bike and it works great! :thumbsup:

    Having come from a derailleur set up, I found that the shifting was very dffierent, but in a positive way. Shifts into higher gears are so smooth that they are pretty much unnoticeable, although your legs certainly feel the change in gearing. Shifts into lower gears are different though - there is a definite 'feel' of the gears moving about and so the gear change is very noticeable.

    You have to ease up on the gears when changing, especially when shifting into gears from 1-5. The hub doesn't seem to mind if you apply a load when shifting, although it will refuse to give into your efforts if you forget to ease up during the shift. Instead you will be stuck in your current gear while applying a load until you ease up and let the hub shift.

    I also think that my commuting bike lost a little weight in the conversion to an Alfine :)

    The only problem with this hub is the setting of the cable tension. As other forum members have commented, the indexing is hyper sensitive to variations in cable tension. I found that some intial cable stretch during my set-up meant that the 184mm bolt measurement was unsuitable for indexing. I had to move the cable adjusting bolt back to 181mm (thus increasing the cable tention in relation to the outer length) so that I could use the shifter's adjustment barrel to bring the yellow lines together. However once I had made this adjustment, the indexing worked flawlessly on the few bike rides since the set up.

    I have heard of some reports of problems occurring with the Alfine 11 (e.g. presslab's pawl destruction), but this has me wondering if the problems are related to mis-aligned indexing rather than the quality of the hub? I wouldn't be too difficult to have the yellow lines move out of alignment while new cables are bedding themselves in without you realising this was the case over a few punishing rides. I am running a 44/20 primary drive combination on my communter, however the hub feels more than adequate for low primary drive ratios, and I wouldn't hesitate to put one on my mtb (when I get the money for it!).
  • 04-14-2011
    fellsbiker
    3rd ride of the season, my derailer hanger exploded during a high speed stretch, and when my derailer went into my wheel, it literally tore the derailer in two before the wheel locked up.
    I emailed an LBS and told him to order my A11. No more dicking around.
  • 04-15-2011
    bigbeck
    Using my current derailleur system, my lowest gear is 26T granny ring and a 34T cassette cog. Does the Alfine have a gear that low? I could actually use a gear that's a little lower than that.
  • 04-15-2011
    bustanutley
    depends on what input ratio you give it homie, but, that is pretty low. I'm running a 1.45 input on mine.

    Here are the ratios: http://bike.shimano.com/publish/cont...L.-type-..html
  • 04-15-2011
    huntting
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bigbeck
    Using my current derailleur system, my lowest gear is 26T granny ring and a 34T cassette cog. Does the Alfine have a gear that low?

    The lowest internal ratio in the Alfine-11 is 0.527 and the largest cog it will accept is 23T.
    23 / 0.527 = 43.6, which makes it the equivalent of a 44T virtual cog.

    With your 26T granny and 54-559 rear tire the Alfine's lowest gear is 15.6 gear-inches vs your current low of 20.0 gear-inches -- 28% lower than you now ride.
  • 04-15-2011
    Pinchphlat
    Bigbeck, the ratio that you have between your font chainring and the sproket on an Alfine 11 will determine how low you can make the gearing on your bike using this hub. A ratio of 32/22 (chainring/sprocket) will give you a lowest gear ratio of 0.76, which is equivalent to the 26/34 ratio of your derallieur set-up.

    Fellsbiker - I am really sorry to hear about your derailleur snap! :eekster: I hope you came out of that situation with few injuries.
  • 04-18-2011
    GiovanniPeletonni82
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Velobike
    Shimano have a recommendation that you do not go below a ratio of 1.9 with the 11 speed. (It's on the Alfine 11 General Safety Information sheet SI-37R0A-002-00)

    For a 29er this gives a low of 29"

    I am not aware of a recommended minimum for the 8 speed, so if you want lower gearing the 8 speed is the way to go as far as I can see.

    (I've just posted this on another thread, but it's relevant here).

    From the info sheet:
    It is recommended that the gear ratio of the front chain ring be set to approx.1.9
    Example: F34 - R18T, F39T - R20T, F45T - R23T

    "...be set to approx 1.9..." is not the same as "do not go lower than 1.9." That interpretation should also include that Shimano recommends not going above 1.9

    I suspect the 1.9 is more of a functionality range than a durability limit.
  • 04-18-2011
    fellsbiker
    That's what I'm hoping.
  • 04-28-2011
    Evesie
    Mr S-KEEPER -
    Quote:

    Shifter is a big improvement on the Afline 8 shifters, and it also works perfectly with an Alfine 8 hub
    Does this mean that the 11 speed shifter makes the 8 speed hub work the right way round - i.e same a standard Shimano deraillier?. This reverse shifting of the std 8 speed is one of the aspects that put me off & I was intending to go for an 11 speed at double the money, but if the 11 speed shifter means an 8 can be made "normal" I will go for one of these instead. Has anyone done any internal mods to an 8 speed to reverse the shifting? Is the cable pull equal between all gears?
  • 04-28-2011
    s-keeper
    Yes, even with an 8 speed hub the 11 speed shifter is NOT rapid rise. I've now used it on a dozen trips without issue.
  • 04-29-2011
    evrac
    Sorry s-keeper, but I can't believe this.

    The alfine 8 shifts into a harder gear by turning counter-clockwise, which is done by pulling cable.

    The thumb button for the 11 shifter still pulls the cable, same as on the 8.

    The only way it would reverse, is using the cassette joint of the 11, which wraps the cable around the top. The internal spring return in the hub works the opposite direction.

    In other words, the shift direction is dictated by the internal return spring and the cassette joint, not the shifter.

    Sorry if this is not clear. Sort of hard to explain.
  • 04-29-2011
    fellsbiker
    I should have my Alfine 11 installed by next week. I'll have plenty of pictures and an ongoing review as I ride it more and more.

    To everyone that has it already, how has the breakin period been? Forget about shifting, I'm more curious about just regular friction from pedaling. Does the hub get smoother the more you use it?
  • 04-29-2011
    Pinchphlat
    Fellsbiker, my hub ran perfectly smooth out of the box, so I don't know if it has improved because it still runs perfectly smooth! :thumbsup:

    I do recall for the first 200km it would feel a bit rough when changing into my low gears (numbers 1-4), but that was only during the gear change, and riding in the low gears itself has always been smooth. The rough feeling has gone now, so maybe it has broken in????
  • 05-02-2011
    s-keeper
    Sorry Evesie/evrac, my bad. Evrac is right. I'd misinterpreted 'rapid rise' as meaning it would be easier to go up gears. With Alfine 8 & 11 shifter It is easier to drop down to an easier gear. Looks like when I had derailleurs in the past they have been rapid rise without me realising it.
  • 05-02-2011
    Evesie
    Thought it was too easy, I had seen that the 11 cable pulled clock-wise & 8 anti-clockwise. To make the 8 into normal shifting some internal surgery on the spring will be required. Does anyone know whether the cable pull is equal in all gears?
  • 05-02-2011
    ZackR
    I finally got to go out on the trails and give my alifine 11 a true off road test. I have put about 200 miles on it on gravel trails and everything seems good so far. As others have said, the cable tension is finicky. The first couple rides I was getting the occasional click while in 6th gear, but after I cut the housing to final length and re-adjusted everything, no problems. Gears engage and stay put.

    I am running 32/20 on 26'' wheels. The trails have some strenuous and technical climbs that really require putting some muscle into the pedals. At first I was nervous to really crank on it, but then I realized that if I am going to break something, better to have it happen sooner than later. No problems at all. No noise or skipping gears, which impressed me so far. Granted, I have few real trail miles on the hub, but initial impressions were positive and I guess we'll see what happens in the future.
  • 05-05-2011
    fellsbiker
    I just got mine installed last night. I consider it only half installed at this point, since I'm still using my old 9speed chain and I still have two old chainrings in the front, one being an unused big ring, and then a extra large bashgaurd over that. Once my new 'front' parts come in, i'll take a bunch of pictures and post final weight number. At this point, it looks like I'm probably going to come very close to breaking even with the weight.

    As far as riding, my first real ride will be tomorrow. But I've done plenty of around the block test riding, and it feels really good. It doesn't really feel 'less efficient' than a traditional setup. So I'm happy about that. The downshifting is a little rougher than I expected, but if feels like that roughness is coming from the shifter itself, not the hub. Like it's springs are super stiff or something. I'll see how it breaks in.

    I still haven't decided what I want to do for a chain. Based on some experimenting, 97 links is the ideal size for my bike. I was checking out some BMX halflink chains. Then I saw this nice single halflink that has a cotter pin rather than a regular chain pin. That would be great for chain reliability, but it wouldn't fit through my Alfine 11 chain guides on the hub. At this point I'm still on the fence. I'm going to do a few rides on the 9 speed chain and then make some decisions. I may just end up going with 98 links and using a cheapo SRAM single speed chain and a power link.
  • 05-08-2011
    fellsbiker
    I took a bunch of pics of my setup, but rather than spam this thread, I started my own:
    http://forums.mtbr.com/internal-gear-hubs/alfine-11-maverick-ml-8-a-707358.html#post8028877

    Bottom line: the hub is real sweet, but turning a FS into a single speed can be tricky.
  • 09-03-2011
    Gianni
    A11 on a Haro 650B
    Installed a A11 on Haro 650B, laced to Blunts.
    After riding single speed for 10 year, nice re-intro to shifting. Front 34, rear 18 - now have a gear for the fast flat sections, and couple more for getting up the steeps.
    Big test was on the Copper Harbor trails - UP Michigan, and the Nicolet Roche Trails - Wisconsin. Works fine, in my estimation doesn't shift any worse then chain and der would.
    Tore up the outer chain ring gaurd, few snips w/razor and it was off. Had been wondering how long it would last anyways.
  • 09-05-2011
    Buoyen
    Anyone have actual weight on the "complete" setup? Hub with rear cog and shifter?
  • 09-05-2011
    fokof
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Buoyen View Post
    Anyone have actual weight on the "complete" setup? Hub with rear cog and shifter?

    Google Traduction
  • 09-05-2011
    Gianni
    Hate to say, if you're worried about the weight this isn't for you, just picking up the hub will be turn off for most. Traditional set-up will have the wt savings.,
  • 01-02-2012
    smilzo
    1 Attachment(s)
    24T on Alfine 11
    Hi all, first review of my experience with the Alfine 11. After I made a bit of ratio calculations and comparison with a standard 3 chainrings-12/34 combo I found that for the trails I normally ride in my area (swiss alps) the 20T cog was not short enough especially for long very steep hills. So, even if not (apparently) recommended I put a SRAM Sprocket 24T taking the risk that the increased torque will eventually screw up my new IGH (to have an idea Iím a fit mtbiker with years of experience and a cx and marathon racer). Well, the installation was problem free with the exception of the chain that was little rubbing against the cable rubber protector because I choose to turn the sprocket the other way around to have a better chain line, I had to change it with another shorter cable protector to avoid to warn the rubber. After 6 rides 2-3 hours each I must say that the hub is working flawlessly , maybe the first 2 rides I think it needs a bit of brake-in because you feel some internal friction and the gear selection especially putting shorter ones is a bit hesitating . Now after some mileage is far better and I start using it without any hesitation, of course it needs a bit care to avoid to change under power but also this aspect is getting better every new ride. So far Iím fully satisfy, hope this will go onÖ
  • 01-25-2012
    cannonballrun
    Anybody have any issues with oil leaks from Alfine 11 hub? Both hubs I've had had oil leaks. Very low mileage. The leaks seem to happen when the wheel has been sitting for a period and possibly resting on an angle. Shimano replaced first hub no problem. Still waiting to hear about this second hub but no complaints on service thus far. Any similar issues with Rohloff hubs? Is just something that is normal for oil lube IGHs? Doesn't seem to be much info on this topic on the interweb.
  • 01-25-2012
    fellsbiker
    Actually my second 11 leaked out all it's oil. It wasn't a new hub, just new hub "guts". The shop said shimano didn't have the installation tool yet so he had to wing it. But when the oil leaked out, he did have to tool, so he drained it, refilled it, resealed it, and hopefully i'm good to go now. The bike had been sitting for a while. Standing upright though.
  • 10-27-2012
    jja37
    I screwed my Alfine 11. The second and fourth would without warning disengage and that is an issue which has lead me to go to boring 1x9. 32x20 is playing with fire especially on a 29er wheeled bike with 2.2 tires. The Alfine is not a bomber hub for steeps, taking the torque needed when cranking a 29er Eskar tire. Be warned.
  • 10-27-2012
    cannonballrun
    Alfine 11 Blues
    We figured out that the oil is leaking around the seals on the drive side of the alfine 11. What this means though is that this hub (at least the two I've had - and i'm wondering if this is a factory assembly issue) will always be leaking a bit of oil as the wheel turns and is used and it also leaks when the oil is allowed to pool against the seals. This means constant top ups but there is no way to know how much to top up and I've read that too much oil or too little oil can impact shifting. This also means don't transport or store the wheel on an angle or on it's side.

    We tried tightening the cones a bit. I haven't run the hub much or checked the oil level to know if this has helped but i think we tightened a bit too much as there seems to be more drag. We figured that leaking oil is just going to be a fact of life. Another thought I had was trying a slightly more viscous oil - anybody try anything like that? I'll be running the hub more shortly hopefully and will post something when i know more.

    As for gear ratio I was running 38/22 and didn't have any issues so far but i did find that was a bit harder to pedal - thinking of going down to 36/22 but other folks say that is too high as well.

    Seems that so far Alfine 11 is not a 100% reliable product - which is unexpected and disappointing from Shimano. Hopefully they are tightening up the design and assembly line and worrying less about Di2'ing everything first.
  • 10-27-2012
    fokof
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cannonballrun View Post

    Seems that so far Alfine 11 is not a 100% reliable product - which is unexpected and disappointing from Shimano. Hopefully they are tightening up the design and assembly line and worrying less about Di2'ing everything first.

    I don't have an 11 but I think that the problem is not the hub Per say but what people use it for. It is designed as a "Pavement" product , for hybrids and town riding not MTB.
    Same thing for the 8.

    If you buy a Honda Civic and go off riding it , don't expect it to last that long.
    Buy a Jeep instead .....
  • 10-28-2012
    itsdoable
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cannonballrun View Post
    ...We figured that leaking oil is just going to be a fact of life....

    I don't have the Alfine-11 (yet) but I do have several Rohloffs, and they all "weep" oil. This seems to be normal with oil bath bicycle hubs (except maybe the NuVinci).

    Leakage is maximum after an oil change, then over time it diminishes. There is usually enough oiI left in the hub from surface tension to keep the hub running for a year or 2 - at least this is the experience I've had with the Rohloffs. Infact, if you are careful and don't over-fill the hub, it really does not "weep" much afer an oil change. I imagin the Alfine-11 is similar.
  • 11-11-2012
    Simon
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by itsdoable View Post
    I don't have the Alfine-11 (yet) but I do have several Rohloffs, and they all "weep" oil. This seems to be normal with oil bath bicycle hubs (except maybe the NuVinci).

    oh, really? my Alfine is also leaks oil! The oil leaked out from the seal and dropped to the rim and floor. I sent it back to bike shop for repairing.
  • 11-11-2012
    fellsbiker
    None of my Alfines ever "weeped". They either held their oil fine, OR they leaked all of their oil out in a few days time. No in-between.
  • 01-23-2013
    doperide
  • 02-01-2013
    vikb


    My A11 is going strong in my 29er. Used for MTBing and bikepacking. No problems in its first year...:thumbsup:

    Running 32T x 23T cog. 175lbs and more of a spinner than a masher.
  • 02-17-2013
    Viking_sys
    Guys, did anyone faced with such problem:

    bought a wheel with brand-new alfine 11, but wheel turns heavily.

    do i have to adjust cones or something like that?
    did yours hubs rotated smooth?
  • 02-17-2013
    fellsbiker
    Mine rotated pretty smooth
  • 04-04-2013
    vikb
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Viking_sys View Post
    Guys, did anyone faced with such problem:

    bought a wheel with brand-new alfine 11, but wheel turns heavily.

    do i have to adjust cones or something like that?
    did yours hubs rotated smooth?

    Mine doesn't turn as freely as a standard hub, but I chalk that up to the seals needed to keep the oil inside. My Rohloffs are the same way.

    Having said that if I give my rear wheel a good push it will rotate 5-6 times before it stops.

    I've adjusted my Alfine 8's bearings, but not had to mess with the A11 yet.
  • 10-17-2013
    Storm Rider
    After 30 months of riding my Alfine 11 hub on my full suspension bike, I am still loving it.

    There are occasional glitches in the shifting, but they are so minor I hardly notice.

    I am still running 30/22 sprockets, or 1.364:1, and I haven't blown it up.
    I am light at about 155 and I am a spinner. I rarely stand and pedal.

    Please Shimano, make a durable MTB specific 14 speed hub with a wide ratio, and it will obsolete derailleurs forever. In my mind they already are.
  • 10-17-2013
    fellsbiker
    I'd settle for a durable 11 speed hub.
  • 10-17-2013
    Storm Rider
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fellsbiker View Post
    I'd settle for a durable 11 speed hub.

    I got one.
  • 11-06-2013
    Pinchphlat
    My A11 (both of them) are running great - one on the commuter bike that I have had for nearly four years, and the other on my mtb for two years. The mtb A11 is being run with 32/21 on a 29er with no issues at all. As far as I am concerned the hub is very durable.
  • 11-29-2013
    Gritter
    Here's my review:
    It sucks.
  • 11-29-2013
    GTR-33
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gritter View Post
    It sucks.

    Very insightful. How about some details as to why it apparently sucks.
  • 11-29-2013
    Gritter
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GTR-33 View Post
    Very insightful. How about some details as to why it apparently sucks.

    I gave away my bike with an old Nexus-7 that provided me with awesome service for some 7 or 8 years, because I wanted to upgrade to the latest and greatest. I loved that hub. It had a roller brake, operated by a brake lever. Coming from such a good experience with Shimano's IGH, I jumped on the new ∆leven speed Alfine as soon as I could. I built my whole new bike around it, to be an all-weather commuter/tractor/trailer-hauler. I read mixed notions about minimum gear ratios, but decided to try my luck real low, since it was going on a 29'er platform. I went with a 1.43 to 1 ratio with a 33 tooth chainwheel and a 23t cog (I've read reports that this worked well for some people on the internet, for instance vikb is below that in this quote taken from this thread: just-took-plunge-alfine-11).

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    I've been using 32 x 23T on a 29er and would like a lower gear.

    It all went together pretty easy, and similar to the Nexus-7, but I remember thinking how janky it all kind of was. That cassette joint lock ring doesn't really fit too tightly. It's not confidence inspiring. I know it doesn't need to be tight, but it seems like such a precise transmission could extend closer tolerances to its external parts as well. Once I sorted out the non-turn chain-tensioner situation, I was on the road.

    The first thing I noticed was squish. When I brought my pedal up for take-off position, I noticed it was really mushy. "Must be my new fancy spiral-cut gears," I thought, "the mushiness must be some kind of new technology awesomeness." Once I got going, I didn't notice any mushiness at all, it was only when fully stopped, so it was no big deal for me. Not a deal-breaker.

    As I approached my first incline, the hub breezed up that hill like a white-winged dove flying away from a wedding. I was stoked. I pedaled faster. Everything was great, I had a fancy 11-speed internally geared hub. My chainline was still 2mm off, but I was happy to not have any dangly bits hanging from my rear drop-out. Life is good.

    When the hill got steeper, I switched it down to 2nd gear to sit and spin my way up. I decided to try 1st, to see what that was like, and was astounded at the huge leap in my cadence. I must have went from spinning at 70 rpm to a frantic 100 rpm. There was a huge gap between 2nd and 1st. "That's okay," I thought, "first gear is my 'bail-out' gear, and my 1.43:1 ratio can do what I need in 2nd gear, for the most part."

    Then it happened. It "jumped" out of gear. I heard a series of clicks and clacks and my crank's rotation stuttered. I immediately eased up and pulled over to check my red dot alignment. It was spot on. I decided to go easy on it, and try minuscule turns of the barrel-adjuster in either directions, to "dial" it in while riding. I mean, I pedaled extremely lightly, and found that it worked best when the red dots were perfectly aligned, so stayed with their recommended specification. I want to emphasize how easy I went on it.

    It kept happening. In the first two gears, up hills, the hub would get agitated and express that by clacking out of gear. At this time, my mind was always focused on the hub. I couldn't enjoy the ride, because I was constantly worried my hub would explode, and then it did.

    This is all within less than fifty miles. About 15 or so gentle short jaunts along a bike path nearby. I glanced down at my expensive hub and noticed the drive side was all covered in oil. My heart sank. "It's broken, and I have to fix it," I thought. I got all bummed out and cursed its existence, but then I realized it's under warranty.

    I called Universalcycles, who built it into a wheel for me, and they were extremely nice and helpful. They told me I'd be back on the road in no time. I just have to wait for all kinds of shipping back and forth. I ship it to them, they ship it to Shimano, they evaluate it, repair/replace, Shimano ships it back to them, then they ship it back to me. That's nice.

    Maybe I went too low with my gearing, and it's all my own fault. Maybe the one I got was just a fluke bad one. Perhaps the replacement won't feel mushy and won't slip at all. Some people really love theirs and have nothing but wonderful things to say about them. I want to have faith, because I had to invest in so many special parts for it, and I've got a lot into it. Now I've got to find a safe place to keep all these loose parts, along with the chain, tire and tube, so I don't lose them while my hub is in limbo. I hope I remember the order it all went together, that little dust cap goes over the snap-ring for the cog, then the cassette-joint, and then the janky lock-ring thing.

    I removed all the "small parts" from it, including the 6-bolt rotor adapter, the cog and snap-ring, and ate $35 shipping cost.

    I don't know how long this warranty process is going to take, but having my bike out of commission is a bummer, as well as the little bit of labor to strip it and paying out of my pocket to ship it. My bike is just hanging on the workstand, with an empty rear end. I don't know how to store it to free up my stand. My rear fender would get jacked up if I just rested it on the floor. I guess I'll have to take that off as well, and store it with the small parts. I'm exaggerating, because I don't need to free up the workstand. I have three, so I guess this could hang from one for while.

    In hindsight, I wish I would have went a different route. If they fix it, I still won't feel confident riding the new/repaired one when I get it back. That nagging feeling that I could loose my transmission at any moment takes a lot of the joy out of riding, so I want to give up on it. I don't want to give it a second chance after reading so many other people having similar issues with theirs. But I'm torn, because after reading this, I'll be losing potential buyers looking for a freshly warrantied Alfine 11 kit, so it probably won't fetch much at auction.

    "Downgrading" to the Alfine-8 would mean building another wheel, buying another shifter and a different cassette-joint that comes in their small-parts-kit. If I get rid of it and use that money to build a different wheel, my bike is going to be out of commission for a really long time.

    I feel like I unknowingly volunteered to be a product tester for Shimano.
  • 11-29-2013
    GTR-33
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gritter View Post
    I feel like I unknowingly volunteered to be a product tester for Shimano.

    Thanks for the in depth response. No offense but you sound like you wouldn't be satisfied by this hub no matter how well it did or didn't work. Not only is the input ratio low but you seem to have spent most of the time you did ride it in first and second gear.

    How often would you use the hardest gear in your short time of ownership? AFAIK with the A11 your starting point is gear 5 and you should gear it based on that gear. I hope it works out for you though. Also, as you wrench on your own do you have any training in bicycle repair? I'm not trying to dismiss your story, just trying to work out how reliable these things are.

    It's hard to say because half of the people that ride IGHs on MTBs don't actually mountain bike, and I'm strong enough that I don't need to gear the thing super low. On the other hand, I too am weary of it immediately braking. I have a belt drive compatible frame and it would be cool to build an internal hub with a belt but at the same time I do really ride it on single track.
  • 12-18-2013
    Gritter
    Just received the call that my hub is finished. I should be excited, but I'm not. I really should give it a chance, though - since resale value is shot anyway, I'll never recoup anywhere near what I've got into the darned thing. I'm hoping I had a bad one from the start. I'm hoping this "new" one will be a night and day difference. I hope there'll be no sponginess, and it will never slip, but I'm not holding my breath.

    I just finished building a different bad-weather-commuter as the IGH-bike's replacement, and it's been great, but the reason I invested in the Alfine system to begin with was in hopes of the foul-weather duties. The entire Alfine build, from frame to saddle, has left a sour taste with me. I feel like parting it all out as a lesson learned, and to forget the whole experience.

    On the other hand, kudos to Shimano for standing behind their product and the (relatively) short turn-around time. I guess they yanked the internals out and slapped a brand new assembly in there, with new seals, oil and gears, keeping my shell, since it's still laced to my rim.

    They believe in it enough to fix me up right, and send me a new one, without accusing me of any wrong-doing, or "user-error" or anything shady like that. (that would have been a real bummer) I wish I knew if they think I abused it, or if it was just a defect from the factory. I'd love to know these things. They probably just have an assembly line replacing internals without much examination, I just don't know.

    I'd love to know if this "new" one is only warrantied for the remainder of my original warranty, or if my 2 years starts over with this new one. If my 2 years warranty starts fresh with this replacement, then I'd be all for trying this again. If I only have what's left of my original warranty, I'm scared it'll leave me down and out without any recourse, as I'm coming from a history of failure and let downs, and it's going to take time to build up trust again.

    That sounds like a joke, but it's real. Transportating around without faith you'll make it back, is stressful.

    Anyway, I'll let you all know how it works out. I'm going to ride it out. I'm glad I didn't waste my oil-change-kit on that first hub though, so I still have that. I have too much time and money (and hope) invested in this set-up to just throw in the towel after all that waiting and shipping and Shimano standing behind their product and warranty. It would be really cool, if this new one is amazing and none of the earlier issues exist at all.
  • 12-18-2013
    Storm Rider
    Dude, you're neurotic. lol

    Recently I decided to test both myself and my A11. I have been riding with my GF who is a beginner MTB rider, and she is slow on the trail. In order to get more of a workout, I follow behind her and stand up a lot. We ride a nice 12 mile beginner loop called appropriately the Bunny Trail. It is mostly "flat" and winding with a few small gullies. One day I decided to take my seat off and ride the whole trail standing up. Most of the time I was in 9th or 10th gear, and I would crank out three or four slow revs, then coast behind the GF. I survived the whole 12 miles standing up, and so did the A11. It is still going strong with no issues at all.
  • 12-31-2013
    Gritter
    I received my ∆leven back from warranty service yesterday. That's how long it takes (during the holidays) for it to happen, in case anyone else has to do the mail-order warranty thing in the future. They just pulled the guts out of my shell, and replaced it with a new assembly. No documentation about what was wrong with my first one, so I have no idea if it was faulty, or if I broke it. They probably didn't even inspect mine before replacing its guts.

    Just turning the axle, fresh out of the box, it feels "tighter" to me. Which makes me believe my first one was a lemon from the get-go, and that would be good news - voiding my previous negative experiences. We'll see how it works out.
  • 01-08-2014
    Skorp
    How efficient is the hub?
    Would you need to put down more power compared to a derailleur?

    I want one for my gravel grinder 29er, but im afraid i will hate it because of the power loss in the hub
  • 01-10-2014
    vikb
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Skorp View Post
    How efficient is the hub?
    Would you need to put down more power compared to a derailleur?

    I want one for my gravel grinder 29er, but im afraid i will hate it because of the power loss in the hub

    I run a variety of drivetrains including derailleurs and IGHs.

    My seat of the pants assessment of the efficiency between them is that derailleurs are better when things are clean and IGHs are better when things are dirty.

    All the bikes I tour on run with IGHs and I never feel like they are inefficient and I am not a particularly strong rider.