Novatec Hubs Suck- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mLeier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    217

    Novatec Hubs Suck

    And so does Norco warranty service. So disappointed.

    In September of 2017 my husband bought a Norco Fluid FS 7.1+. He started having problems with the bottom bracket and the rear hub almost immediately. The LBS just kept packing them with grease and the bike was put away for the winter. In the late spring of 2018, the hub blew up. It took 6 weeks for Norco to replace the hub. The wheel had to be sent to them for repair, they would not compensate the LBS to do it themselves. First ride out, the new hub failed as well. LBS was amazing and gave us a full refund on the bike. They didn't have any bikes in stock in his size.

    My husband tried a few different bikes but didn't like how any of them felt so ended up with another Norco. He bought a 2018 Norco Torrent last October at a different LBS. Within the first week of riding, the rear hub blew. New LBS was also great and just swapped out the wheel with one from another bike that they had in stock. My husband got one ride on the bike before the snow flew and we switched to fat bikes for the winter. Fast forward to this spring and 3 weeks into the season, another hub has been blown. Again, Norco will not let the LBS fix the problem, the wheel has to be sent in to them, or they will offer a $50 credit to the LBS but will not cover any labour costs for the LBS to lace a new wheel.

    My husband is a pretty average sized guy, 6' and 195 lbs. He isn't an aggressive rider, his wheels never leave the ground, he rarely stands to pedal and he isn't overly fast. There is no reason that he should be blowing up hubs like this.

    Has anyone else had this many problems with Norco stock hubs?

    LBS will offer a 15% discount on the parts for a a Hope hub, but after labour it still comes close to $400 to replace a part on a bike that is still under warranty and has less than 250 km on it. Hardly seems worth it for a $2000 bike...

    It's unfortunate because he loved how the Norco bikes feel but at this point, we have lost all confidence in them and we are done with them.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: JScoot's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    204
    I have not had those problems with mine, but I've heard of others having issues with novatec off and on. When I had a specialized fuse, I read some complaints about the hubs failing. In my case, I've been putting some good hard use on my Torrent's stock wheelset without an issue, hopefully saying this doesn't jinx me.

    Not sure what to say about Norco's response, and how it would differ from another company that specs with novatec like Specialized. Your LBS sounds like they really looked out for you though.

    I will say that if my hub blew up, like it did once when I rode a trek stache (that hub was labeled bontrager, but might have been novatec), I would go ahead and upgrade it. Of course, I have no warranty to fight for, so that's really my only option. But as upgrades go, a bomber rear hub is often worth it (imo). Part of the reason the bike is only 2k is that it's specced with novatec!
    Last edited by JScoot; 2 Weeks Ago at 03:56 PM.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    49
    It's really not a problem exclusive to Norco. Novatec can be a nightmare and we've more or less only had problems with them (In Canada). There's a lot of other manufacturers running Novatec as well so it really isn't a Norco thing specifically.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Nubster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    6,781
    If you want a $2000 bike...companies skimp somewhere to save money for more profit. Hubs are usually one place they skimp. Good luck finding a new bike for $2000 or less with a decent hub. My Release 3 was VERY WELL spec'ed and still came with Novacrap hubs. That's a nearly $3k bike. Honestly, good luck finding any bike at any price that has a really good hub stock. I just happened to have the Santa Cruz site up so I checked and their 5010 XO1 build for $6800 only comes with DT Swiss 350 hubs. Now while they are really solid hubs and heads and tails better than Novacrap...they are still only a $200 hub set. Not until you hit the XX1 nearly $10k build do you see I9 hubs on the build sheet.

    I think the only bike I've seen that comes with a good hub at not a really high price was Whyte and they have Hopes on their bikes that are around $2700.

    And like stated already...this isn't a Norco issue. It's a bike industry issue using shyte parts to maximize profits. Any bike you buy at the $2k price point will likely have the same issue. Might as well factor in a new wheel set into the price when you buy a bike in that price range because if you ride much at all...it's a matter of time before you have issues with junk parts.
    Kona Big Unit SS
    Kona Private Jake SSCX
    DiamondBack Release 3
    Norco Torrent HT 7.1

  5. #5
    Downcountry AF
    Reputation: *OneSpeed*'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    6,063
    That's pretty lame. I don't understand why Norco has to rebuild the wheel? Most LBSs are quite capable of building a wheel, or replacing basic hub internals. Why pay to ship a whole wheel back and forth? and why does it take 6 weeks?

    I'd build an entirely new wheel with the Hope hub (build by LBS) and take the replacement warranty wheel when it arrives and sell it to offset the cost of the good wheel.

    It sucks. You and the LBS are getting the short end of the stick here. Unfortunately I'd just do what you have to do if he likes the bike, but next time I'd look to another brand that is better to deal with.
    Rigid SS 29er
    SS 29+
    Fat Lefty
    SS cyclocross
    Full Sus 29er (Yuck)

    Stop asking how much it weighs and just go ride it.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    829
    Sounds like maybe Norco had a bad batch of hubs for a while there.

    And, I suppose I can understand not wanting to pay for a rebuilt wheel, but they should have a stock of replacement wheels ready to send out if that's the case.

    Again, I might guess that a bad batch of hubs overwhelmed their warranty system. In which case, they really ought to bite the bullet and reimburse LBS for warranty fixes.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: mLeier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    217
    Quote Originally Posted by Nubster View Post
    If you want a $2000 bike...companies skimp somewhere to save money for more profit. Hubs are usually one place they skimp. Good luck finding a new bike for $2000 or less with a decent hub.
    I get that they need to cut costs somewhere, but they still need to stand behind whatever crap product they choose to put on their bikes.

    Quote Originally Posted by *OneSpeed* View Post
    That's pretty lame. I don't understand why Norco has to rebuild the wheel? Most LBSs are quite capable of building a wheel, or replacing basic hub internals. Why pay to ship a whole wheel back and forth? and why does it take 6 weeks?

    I'd build an entirely new wheel with the Hope hub (build by LBS) and take the replacement warranty wheel when it arrives and sell it to offset the cost of the good wheel.

    It sucks. You and the LBS are getting the short end of the stick here. Unfortunately I'd just do what you have to do if he likes the bike, but next time I'd look to another brand that is better to deal with.
    I agree. And it shouldn't pass the hardship and additional costs onto the LBS. They have it tough enough as it is these days. I have no idea why it took them 6 weeks last summer, but not a gamble we want to take again. And last summer Norco did confirm that the hold up was on their end, not on the LBS's. They said it was just how long it was taking them.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwiceHorn View Post
    Sounds like maybe Norco had a bad batch of hubs for a while there.

    And, I suppose I can understand not wanting to pay for a rebuilt wheel, but they should have a stock of replacement wheels ready to send out if that's the case.

    Again, I might guess that a bad batch of hubs overwhelmed their warranty system. In which case, they really ought to bite the bullet and reimburse LBS for warranty fixes.
    Must be bad batches as this was 2 different bikes from 2 different model years.

    LBS finally just took a wheel from another bike of a different and put it on my husband's bike and will wait for the new wheel to come in and deal with it themselves. Fingers crossed that one lasts longer!

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Nubster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    6,781
    Quote Originally Posted by mLeier View Post
    I get that they need to cut costs somewhere, but they still need to stand behind whatever crap product they choose to put on their bikes.
    But aren't they? They are covering it under warranty...just not in a time frame that suits you. As far as not compensating the LBS for doing the warranty work...that's standard procedure for most brands. You think everytime a shop has to do warranty work on a Shimano or SRAM product they get a check for their labor? No way.

    Novatec is shit. Get a new wheel built with a better hub or continue dealing with these issues or start buying bikes that cost $5k+.
    Kona Big Unit SS
    Kona Private Jake SSCX
    DiamondBack Release 3
    Norco Torrent HT 7.1

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LargeMan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    525
    Take it up with Novatec, not Norco. Will be faster and easier.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    49
    Quote Originally Posted by LargeMan View Post
    Take it up with Novatec, not Norco. Will be faster and easier.


    Too bad you can't take shit up with a company that doesn't want to hear from you or reply to your stuff. In Canada, bike brands that put novatec on their bikes have to self distribute because novatec doesn't care about that market.

Similar Threads

  1. Any experience with Novatec hubs?
    By Haystack Calhoun in forum Drivetrain - shifters, derailleurs, cranks
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 02-06-2019, 04:31 PM
  2. Novatec Hubs or Budget Hubs
    By gambit023 in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 12-06-2018, 08:11 PM
  3. Novatec Hubs any good?
    By Jason Boi in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 65
    Last Post: 07-12-2017, 10:32 AM
  4. Novatec 4 in 1 Hubs?
    By NH Mtbiker in forum Wheels and Tires
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-17-2012, 11:19 PM

Members who have read this thread: 59

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.