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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by geweber View Post
    I have mine on a Niner Rip 9 geared at 26 x 17. I did make the climb yesterday up Johnson Mountain at Oak Mountain State Park in AL for the first time. If I can maintain my balance with this low gearing I can climb pretty good.

    I still feel the drag. Has anyone tried the Fox Float Fluid? I may try that next. Thinking about trying a 1 x 10 with a 22 x 36 granny to compare against the Rohloff.
    would you not be better to think about selling it and switching to derailleurs now rather than destroying the hub with a 1.53 input ratio?

    I know, I know, it's your hub do what you like etc, but the lowest recommendation is 2.38 so you're looking for performance a long way outside operating parameters. 26x17 gives a gear a great deal lower than a 22/36 is, actually 25% lower than a 20/36.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacB View Post
    would you not be better to think about selling it and switching to derailleurs now rather than destroying the hub with a 1.53 input ratio?
    That's an honest question. Whatever damage if any is probably already done. I ran 36/17 and had a hard time keeping my balance in the lowest gear ( 17.1 g.i. ) I'm setting up for 44/20 which gives me a slightly higher gear ratio. With more teeth grabbing more chain I've concluded that the drive chain ( cog, ring, chain ) will last longer.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbkaz View Post
    Not sure why this caught my eye, but I'm thinking that you must not know many people who ponied up the money for a Rohloff to begin with. Count me as someone who went back. I really want to like the internal gears but the drag in gears 1-7 (or at least my perception of it on my hub) is so bad that I just can't ride it on serious rides where I know I'll need climbing gears. Also, planetary gears have a lot of take-up when engaging. After years on high-engagement hubs, I prefer the direct engagement that I feel in a standard gear & high-end hub setup.

    When I first picked up the Rohloff, I tried putting a lot of miles on it to break it in. I swapped out the cog to try to optimize the gearing so that I can spend more time in the higher gears. Changed out the oil frequently, hoping the gear drag was part of break-in. Nothing really helped.

    I still keep my Rohloff on the "trail-a-bike" bike for cruising around with my kid, but I don't use it for much else. It's still a fun conversation piece among bike geeks. Also, since mine is an old pre-disc brake model, it's not compatible with my newer frames anyway. But spending the money to convert it to disc isn't worth it to me at this point.
    Ditto for me. Much better off with a Hadley or a DT Swiss Hugi FR hub and a SRAM 990 on my RIP. Waaay too much drag on climbs in gears 1-7. On cold mornings the gear oil felt like molasses when running in the lower gears on extended climbs. Highly over rated in terms of efficiency loss, I was getting 10-13% on long steep fireroad climbs.
    "i'll brazilian when YOU do boy, right around the ol' rusty star. Actually, whole fruit bowl. Get on it!" NicoleB

  4. #29
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    They brag that their recommended gear ratio will stand up with two top athletes on a tandem. I doubt that with my 150 pound body that stays in the saddle with this low gear ratio is exceeding the torque created by this tandem.

    To make it up the climb with the Rohloff I need the lower gear ratio to compensate for the drag.

    I have a NuVinci 360 that has much more drag than the Rolhoff. A loop that took 1 hour with the Rolhoff took me 1.25 hours with the Nuvinci. So I don't take the bike with the Nuvinci on rides that have significant climbs or with a competitive group. I am running it at a gear ratio of 1.0 and the recommended it 1.8. When I talked with one individual at Fallbrook he couldn't or wouldn't tell me much about how it fails. It feels very durable and I am willing to test it beyond their recommendation.

  5. #30
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    Maybe it's a rider weight thing then, at 220lbs I don't notice anything like the drag some claim on a Rohloff. I'm also not sure how people are doing their comparative analysis here. I find the Rohloff pretty true to gearing, as in a 19" gear feels like a 19" gear. But some of the above seems to be claiming that a 19" gear on a Rohloff would feel like a 25" gear on derailleurs, that isn't borne out by my experience. That includes Rohloff, Sturmey and SRAM hubs.

    I have mine geared at 38x16 which gives me a low of 19.1" with a 2.2" tyre, so far that's been plenty low enough. 26x17 would give a low of 12.3", I'm not sure how well I could physically ride on that number.

    But then I don't go seeking out insanely steep stuff, I don't actually mind climbing it's the downhill bit I wouldn't enjoy.

  6. #31
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    I understand the Rolhoff is the strongest IGH made, how can Mobil 1 ATF damage it when 1000HP engines beat on transmissions using Mobil 1? And what's all this worry about too low a primary gear? As noted, if world class riders can use one on a tandem, how can any single rider damage it? (I've yet to hear of any Rolhoff failure.) With easily sourced parts and service, why not run as low a gear as you need? 16" on a 29" wheel would be nice for those long steep hills.

  7. #32
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    Maybe it can handle that but as I don't need it to then I'm not going to push beyond those boundaries. As it is 38x16 takes me down to a low that is about the same as a 22x34, taking it down to 16" would be the same as going down to a 20x36. I just don't have climbs that need anything like that and I'm not going to gear it down just in case.

    As I've already said, anyone can do whatever they like to their own hub.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by pursuiter View Post
    I understand the Rolhoff is the strongest IGH made, how can Mobil 1 ATF damage it when 1000HP engines beat on transmissions using Mobil 1? And what's all this worry about too low a primary gear? As noted, if world class riders can use one on a tandem, how can any single rider damage it? (I've yet to hear of any Rolhoff failure.) With easily sourced parts and service, why not run as low a gear as you need? 16" on a 29" wheel would be nice for those long steep hills.
    I have run a 34x16 on my 29er for 7 years. The low end is 17.2 gear inches and if I'm in that gear I'm too bleary eyed to stay upright at that low speed. The reason I geared it like that is to keep the quietest and smoothest running gears -- 8 and up -- in a range that I use 90% of the time. I split my mtb time between the Rohloff and a single speed and I use 47 or 49 gear inches on the single speed. With the Rohloff setup using the 34x16, gears 8, 9, and 10 are 42.0, 47.7, and 54.3 gear inches, respectively.

    I believe Rohloff says you can actually continue to use your hub if you were to lose the oil for some reason. The reason to hesitate and think about using various oils or additives (for me anyway) is that seals or other nonmetal parts might not react well to a given organic. That being said, I did spike some Rohloff oil with Molybdenum disulfide on my last oil change...

    I don't usually question another's reality, but RandyBoy is a known Rohloff detractor having bought an out of warranty hub that had some issues and apparently made himself such a pest that no one who could have helped him wanted to help him. I don't know what temperature a "cold morning" runs in his part of the world, but single digits on the Farenheit scale (either + or -) are a reality in my part of the world for 6 months of the year and such conditions have ZERO impact on the feel of the hub. As I noted before, my real world experience just doesn't have the hub either breaking down or experiencing noticeable inefficiency.

    And mtbnkaz, if you're still following this thread, perhaps I could send you a rear wheel, an XTR rear derailer and a couple of bucks in exchange for that underutilized Rohloff? I could put it to a real use -- a fat bike with a Rohloff would be awesome!
    "The plural of anecdote is not data." -- Attributed to various people in a variety of forms, but always worth remembering...

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeT View Post
    I have run a 34x16 on my 29er for 7 years. The low end is 17.2 gear inches and if I'm in that gear I'm too bleary eyed to stay upright at that low speed. The reason I geared it like that is to keep the quietest and smoothest running gears -- 8 and up -- in a range that I use 90% of the time. I split my mtb time between the Rohloff and a single speed and I use 47 or 49 gear inches on the single speed. With the Rohloff setup using the 34x16, gears 8, 9, and 10 are 42.0, 47.7, and 54.3 gear inches, respectively.

    I believe Rohloff says you can actually continue to use your hub if you were to lose the oil for some reason. The reason to hesitate and think about using various oils or additives (for me anyway) is that seals or other nonmetal parts might not react well to a given organic. That being said, I did spike some Rohloff oil with Molybdenum disulfide on my last oil change...

    I don't usually question another's reality, but RandyBoy is a known Rohloff detractor having bought an out of warranty hub that had some issues and apparently made himself such a pest that no one who could have helped him wanted to help him. I don't know what temperature a "cold morning" runs in his part of the world, but single digits on the Farenheit scale (either + or -) are a reality in my part of the world for 6 months of the year and such conditions have ZERO impact on the feel of the hub. As I noted before, my real world experience just doesn't have the hub either breaking down or experiencing noticeable inefficiency.

    And mtbnkaz, if you're still following this thread, perhaps I could send you a rear wheel, an XTR rear derailer and a couple of bucks in exchange for that underutilized Rohloff? I could put it to a real use -- a fat bike with a Rohloff would be awesome!
    Now that makes perfect sense and thanks for the additional info, in the same circumstances I wouldn't hesitate to run 34x16. It sounds like you fully understand how gearing and torque works and have calculated how to get what you want without risk. Though well within parameters I based my road going Rohloff gearing on the same theory, keeping my majority riding in the upper 7.

    It's a shame that RandyBoy has had so many issues but, as this thread shows, buying secondhand can have an element of chance. I certainly wouldn't buy a hub that had been run at 26x17 and experimented on with different oils. Or I would at least check with Rohloff on the cost of a refurbishment and factor that into the price I was prepared to pay. But that assumes that you're given all of the information necessary to make such a decision. That is not an accusation towards anyone merely an observation of the realities of buying seconhand and people tinkering.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by suba View Post
    That's an honest question. Whatever damage if any is probably already done. I ran 36/17 and had a hard time keeping my balance in the lowest gear ( 17.1 g.i. ) I'm setting up for 44/20 which gives me a slightly higher gear ratio. With more teeth grabbing more chain I've concluded that the drive chain ( cog, ring, chain ) will last longer.
    Suba, where did you get the 20 tooth gear for the Rohloff? The largest I could find was the 17 tooth.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by geweber View Post
    Suba, where did you get the 20 tooth gear for the Rohloff? The largest I could find was the 17 tooth.
    21 tooth from HERE not cheap though.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by -jes View Post
    21 tooth from HERE not cheap though.
    I looked at that too but didn't want an odd tooth.

    geweber.... I ordered mine from Phil Wood for $66.00 plus shipping. Should be here soon..

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by suba View Post
    That's an honest question. Whatever damage if any is probably already done. I ran 36/17 and had a hard time keeping my balance in the lowest gear ( 17.1 g.i. ) I'm setting up for 44/20 which gives me a slightly higher gear ratio. With more teeth grabbing more chain I've concluded that the drive chain ( cog, ring, chain ) will last longer.
    I think it's been mentioned enough, but any damage you are going to do will be to the couple nylon "pins". Rohloff designed it this way so you shear the pins and not anything that is difficult/expensive to replace. I ran mine out of range for 2 years before I went to SS (waiting on 36h shell, long story) with 265 downt o 225 lbs. No issues and had it serviced to check on internals. Also bought this one used with a couple K miles on it.

  14. #39
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    @NZPeterG: That really surprises me. Perhaps I just compared a "cheap" derailleur setup to the best IGH, but I'm pretty sure my rohloff is the same efficiency or better than my old derailleur setup. I'll never go back!

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeT View Post
    ... a fat bike with a Rohloff would be awesome!
    It is!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Life after Rohloff-fat-tires-fat-tree-.jpg  


  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeT View Post
    I don't usually question another's reality, but RandyBoy is a known Rohloff detractor having bought an out of warranty hub that had some issues and apparently made himself such a pest that no one who could have helped him wanted to help him. I don't know what temperature a "cold morning" runs in his part of the world, but single digits on the Farenheit scale (either + or -) are a reality in my part of the world for 6 months of the year and such conditions have ZERO impact on the feel of the hub. As I noted before, my real world experience just doesn't have the hub either breaking down or experiencing noticeable inefficiency.
    Hahaha....+1000...you hit the nail on the head...

    I've got 2 Rohloffs as well as 3 other IGHs. My Rohloffs have been stellar for me as have my other IGHs. No issues down to -30 deg C for several hours.
    Safe riding,

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  17. #42
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    I am in the process of deciding whether to stick to standard drivetrain vs Rohloff. Tested out a Rohloff yesterday, and did not notice the drag so much, although the gearings are different. Any advise on how to sense gearing difference vs drag?

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by sevencyclist View Post
    I am in the process of deciding whether to stick to standard drivetrain vs Rohloff. Tested out a Rohloff yesterday, and did not notice the drag so much, although the gearings are different. Any advise on how to sense gearing difference vs drag?
    I'm not sure what you mean. Although you won't have exactly the same gears on a Rohloff bike you get the same range as a typical MTB drivetrain. The 14 gears you do have will approximate a bunch of options available on your derailleur MTB.

    If you rode a Rohloff bike and liked the experience go for it. If not stick with derailleurs.

    For my MTBs I think the perfect shifting under all weather conditions, shifting while coasting, lack of derailleur to rip off and lack of chainslap make an IGH a great choice.

    Having said that I currently have 1 IGH MTB and 1 derailleur MTB with a 3rd IGH MTB being built. Both systems work - just depends on the conditions you ride in and what matters to you most which one is the right choice.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by sevencyclist View Post
    I am in the process of deciding whether to stick to standard drivetrain vs Rohloff. Tested out a Rohloff yesterday, and did not notice the drag so much, although the gearings are different. Any advise on how to sense gearing difference vs drag?
    I suppose you could attempt to do the same route in exactly the same gear inches via derailleur and IGH, then compare feel, speed and times. You'd also have to try and minimise all the other variables.

    I can honestly say that once I'm riding I don't really notice anything, but then I don't race so I'm not getting 'dropped' on hills or anything. Drag is literally any loss of energy from you through the drivetrain. But it often gets confused with the different feel of an IGH.

    I've actually taken my Rohloff off my 29er and am putting it on a tourer now. Basically because the bigger range, top gears especially, will be more use there. The 29er is now sporting the SRAM I-9 but this may be replaced by an Alfine 8, mainly to get a trigger shifter, and black hub, for this build. I did consider the A11 but reckon 8 is enough for my offroad needs.

    It's really down to how/where you ride and the gears you need. For an Alfine 8 I'd gear it at 34x21, same as the I-9, to give me 25 to 76 gear inches. The I-9 gives me an 86 inch gear on the top end but is otherwise identical to the A8. My sort of riding wasn't requiring the super low of the Rohloff, or the top end, so I was under utilising the hub offroad.

  20. #45
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    I have a 26" hardtail MTB with rim brakes with 44/32/22 mated to 11-34. It has been a super light experience for 10 years. Now I am converting to disc brakes on the new frame, just wavering whether want the drivetrain to be the same as before or try IGH for a new experience. I would love to have the ultra low gears, and might even consider doing the 32x16 or 34x17, but that would void the warranty. I think the lowest allowed is 38/16. I am not the powerful dude that's going to exceed the max cranking power, but also do not want to have problem with the hubs and regret voiding the warranty. Tough decision.

    If I go with the standard drivetrain, I would want the 44/32/22 with 11-36 which would be similar to 34x17.

  21. #46
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    I am running 26 x 17 with the Rohloff on a 29er. I notice the drag more on a steeper climb in the lower gears. This is my first winter and it is nice not to have break downs of the drive train.

    Rohloff has an efficiency chart for each gear. There is a theory that if you gear it lower so you are not in the low gears so much that it might be better. I don't know about that. Sometimes I go from 2 to 4 to 6 to 8 to 9 to 11 to 13. Those gears are a little more efficient than the adjacent ones. When you go from 7 to 8 you enter a different range that is more efficient. There is less gear noise above 7. I am running Mobil One ATF. It seems to have less drag.

  22. #47
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    As far as I know the rohloff is 2x7 sets of gears, so the lower 7 engage an additional planetary gear that is not used for the upper 7. If that is correct then the lower 7 would always have less overall efficiency than the upper. But it also means that, with direct drive at gear 11, you're not moving 10 gears away when you use first. So gear 5 is really gear 11 with the step down planetary engaged and could be more efficient than something like gear 8.

    As something worth having a go with it would be a no brainer if it weren't for the initial cost outlay. If you use a full triple range offroad then the rohloff would be the best IGH choice. Whereas if your riding style tends more towards the SS style, as in you change gear infrequently and are more likely to vary your power input rather than change gear, then another IGH would be more your thing.

    For example I will mash it offroad, get out of the saddle a lot and rarely change gears unless I really have to. At some point I'll probably build up the courage to go SS for offroad use, on a 29er. but it will be nice to be able to switch between an 8/9 IGH wheel or a SS one. On road I change gear more, especially for touring/long day style riding where I will climb, and ride, seated a lot more. So for this the rohloff matches my needs pretty well.

    I can't really be specific on efficiency variances as it seems to be such a subjective area. For the rides I do and the people I ride with I don't find an IGH to be a hindrance at all. I'm not even aware of having to work noticeably harder with one over a derailleur setup. But this is only within my own parameters, my bikes are well set up, well maintained and well suited to match my needs. I don't race, I like wider tyres and I prefer flat pedals and wool cycling tops....though I don't have a beard and I don't wear sandals.

  23. #48
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    I ran 36/17 for quite a while and liked the 17.1 to 90.1 g.i. with my Pugs which is effectively a 29er. I recently switched from 3/32" to 1/8" drivetrain. My new setup is 44/20 which gives me 17.8 to 93.6 g.i. This gives me slightly higher gearing but gear 11 is still an easy 63.8 which is the gear I ride most.

    I couldn't see myself riding without my speed hub. As most of you known it changes the way you ride and considerably reduces the workload. At least it does for me.

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by sevencyclist View Post
    I have a 26" hardtail MTB with rim brakes with 44/32/22 mated to 11-34. It has been a super light experience for 10 years. Now I am converting to disc brakes on the new frame, just wavering whether want the drivetrain to be the same as before or try IGH for a new experience. I would love to have the ultra low gears, and might even consider doing the 32x16 or 34x17, but that would void the warranty. I think the lowest allowed is 38/16. I am not the powerful dude that's going to exceed the max cranking power, but also do not want to have problem with the hubs and regret voiding the warranty. Tough decision.

    If I go with the standard drivetrain, I would want the 44/32/22 with 11-36 which would be similar to 34x17.
    I've been running 34x16 on my 29er for years without any problems. If you search, you'll find many people are running their Rohloffs geared below the specs without problems.

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