What do I give up using a tensioner?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    What do I give up using a tensioner?

    I have a HT frame, and I'm using a Rohloff Speedhub. I'm currently using a Soulcraft Convert, but it occasionally gives me trouble, and it is very finiky to get set right if it messes up on the trail. I think I am going to get a Rohloff chain tensioner, because that seems like it would solve my problems.

    My question is, what am I really giving up by using a chain tensioner over an EBB or sliders on a different frame? (besides looks)

    I've been thinking of getting a Niner Sir9 frame, but the new Niner A&W Rootbeer MCR9 looks so nice. The Sir9 has an EBB, the MCR9 has regular dropouts and is $50 cheaper.

    Why shouldn't I get the MCR9 over the Sir9, and just use a chain tensioner? What say ye?

    P.S. I will keep using my Speedhub, but will occasionally ride it SS as well.

  2. #2
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    Doesn't anybody have an opinion?

  3. #3
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    Using a tensioner you give up a stelthy ride, IE: the tensioner adds noise.

    I run pyramid tensioners and have never had issues. I'm looking into getting track ends welded on though....
    Bike Building and Painting

    Crystavox Single Speed Bikes

  4. #4
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
    Reputation: shiggy's Avatar
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    Tensioners can:
    • add friction
    • get clogged by mud/debris
    • drop the chain
    • fail
    • make it more difficult to mount/remove the wheel
    mtbtires.com
    The trouble with common sense is it is no longer common

  5. #5
    RJG
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    Good job!

    You could get an ENO hub, that might solve the tensioner problem. A $50.00 difference is not that much. Good tensioners cost 50 bucks. I don't think you give up much but aesthetics if you run the tensioner in the "push up" position. I say spring for the clean look.
    R

  6. #6
    donkey
    Reputation: nbrennan's Avatar
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    he wants to use a rohloff... so eno is out. I personally hate chain slap, and got a little bit of it when i was running a surly tensioner. Running a tensioner also makes the drivetrain susceptible to the dreaded phenomenon of chain suck, which sucks. And there is always the possibility that you'll tweak your derailer hanger and send the tensioner into the wheel, ripping out all of your drive side spokes. Hate to be the doomsman, but I'm sure its happened. Anyway... its a rohloff - a clean-looking, low maintenance, straight drive train is part of the point, right?

  7. #7
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    I reckon my Rohloff tensioner creates drag. Be better to do without it.
    "The man is richest whose pleasures are the cheapest" Henry David Thoreau (obviously a single speeder)

    "...everytime you throw something away your load gets lighter..."

  8. #8
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    If he hadn't said it, I would have said exactly what Shiggy said. Best to avoid them if you can.

    If you do stick with a tensioner, I'd say stick with the finickiness of the 1-pulley tensioner you have now. 2-pulley tensioners like the Rohloff add more than twice the drag of 1-pulley tensioners, due to the circuitous chain path they create.
    "People like GloyBoy are deaf. They are partisan, intellectually lazy & usually very angry." -Jaybo

  9. #9
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    Here is a large advantage for tensioners

    If you are just trying out single speeds, it is just a small dollar commitment that can be used with any geared frame. On the same token, if you decide that you dont like singlespeeds in the future, the frame is still usable as a geared bike. Most single speed frames dont allow that flexibility.

  10. #10
    WAWE
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    What everyone else has already said plus....

    - If aesthetics are an issue, the lack of tensioner on the SIR9 earns more points than the veryverynice rootbeer paint!

    - The cost of the Rohloff tensioner is more than the $50 difference.

    - In the end... separate tensioners are really a pain in the ass versus EBB.

  11. #11
    donkey
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    i'm not sure if this is an issue with a rohloff, but using a tensioner makes it very easy to change rear cogs and chainrings out. you can forego constant modification of your chian length for the most part.

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