Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

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NickJP
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby NickJP » 28 Oct 2019, 9:23pm

Not a statistical universe, but we've had three Rohloff hubs in use on bikes for about 20 years (his, hers, plus tandem), and none of them have given the slightest problem. Nor - as compared to the OP - have I had any problem removing the drive sprockets. They use a multi-start steeply pitched thread, so they don't wind themselves on really tightly, as does a conventional freewheel or track cog. The sprockets are also reversible, so you can increase their life by flipping them around as part of fitting a new chain when one side of the teeth start to get worn.

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Graham
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby Graham » 29 Oct 2019, 8:21am

I have split the discussion of personal data use / abuse into a new topic in TEA SHOP
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=133595

Please confine this one to discussion of Rohloff / Shimano hub gear stuff. Thanks.

EDITED NOTE :
A contributor has suggested that this comment by the original poster is a significant indication of bias :-

meandros wrote: . . . . To be less succint, in my book [ i.e. opinion ], a superior product is one that can be serviced outside the jurisdiction of the company/corporation that physically made it. . . . . . . .. I will not be a cynic when it comes to personal freedoms of any kind.

reohn2
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby reohn2 » 29 Oct 2019, 8:25am

Sweep wrote:
reohn2 wrote:The deraileur has it's innards on the outside where they are subject to weather,catching on shrubbery or getting damaged in a fall,not so a reliable IGH sucha a Rohloff.

It's very hard I think to damage a rear mech in a fall on a loaded panniered bike.

Me? Considered a rohloff in the past - now happy with mechs - like to see what's going on - I agree with mick on running costs - An XT mech of mine which came on a bike bought in 2004 is now on another bike build - just replaced the jockey wheels for about £11. That mech is a nice looking thing but tough - it did take a slight knock once but all is well.

Found it so tough I have bought a couple of second hand ones.

Not sure what all this talk is of extensive maintenance on a rear mech - squirt some GT85 on key bits now and again - keep jockey wheels cleanish by holding a rag against them as you turn the pedals/chain. Done. All that can be done on the road.


Sweep(FIFY :wink: )
Here's my previous reply to MickF:-

I think you'd be on a loser there.
TBH I think for extended touring use put to it's full potential a Rohloff beats any deraileur system for cost and low maintenance,factor into that unpaved roads in all weather conditions or MTBing and the deraileur doesn't stand a chance


PS,I'm currently following a a couple of chaps touring South America on YouTube both on loooonnnnggggg multi year tours,one on deraileur the other on Rohloff,the deraileur(high end XT) chap is always having gear problems trashed mech,skipping gears bent hanger,etc,not so the Rohloff chappie.These places are hard testing grounds for equipement and show up faults the ordinary tarmac light off road tourist is unlikely to encounter.
TBH if I could justify the use I'd buy a Rohloff for my MTB.
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The utility cyclist
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby The utility cyclist » 4 Nov 2019, 1:21am

reohn2 wrote:
Mick F wrote:
brynpoeth wrote:It costs x more than an Alfine 11
Is it x times better?!

Better question is why buy a Rohloff at all.

If you're going to that expense - circa £900 to £1000 - you could buy all sorts of other gearing systems and replace the parts as they wear out, and still be quids in.

I think you'd be on a loser there.
TBH I think for extended touring use put to it's full potential a Rohloff beats any deraileur system for cost and low maintenance,factor into that unpaved roads in all weather conditions or MTBing and the deraileur doesn't stand a chance

I already did the calculation based on a 10 speed derailleur system (at todays live market prices) earlier in the thread, there's absolutely no doubt that just a Rohloff hub alone (never mind chains etc) is not far shy of double the cost over 100k miles, it's significantly cheaper with far greater gearing options and gear spread with fewer/smaller jumps in the available ratios to go with a derailleur system

That's just a simple indisputable fact.

Brucey
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby Brucey » 4 Nov 2019, 1:41am

the 'simple indisputable fact' ignores the fact that having ridden x-thousand miles on a derailleur transmission, you are left with little more than a heap of valueless scrap metal. If you do the same thing with a Rohloff, you are left with a Rohloff hub, which is worth something (quite a substantial something actually) rather than nothing.
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PH
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby PH » 4 Nov 2019, 4:32am

The utility cyclist wrote:That's just a simple indisputable fact.

I dispute it and having run and paid the bills on several derailleur systems and a Rohloffs I'm better qualified to know.

francovendee
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby francovendee » 4 Nov 2019, 8:11am

reohn2 wrote:
PS,I'm currently following a a couple of chaps touring South America on YouTube both on loooonnnnggggg multi year tours,one on deraileur the other on Rohloff,the deraileur(high end XT) chap is always having gear problems trashed mech,skipping gears bent hanger,etc,not so the Rohloff chappie.These places are hard testing grounds for equipement and show up faults the ordinary tarmac light off road tourist is unlikely to encounter.
TBH if I could justify the use I'd buy a Rohloff for my MTB.


I'm assuming they are touring together so a perfect comparison?
Well at least as perfect as it' s possible to get with two different riders.
I like these long rides, I'll do a search on YouTube and see if I can find them.

reohn2
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby reohn2 » 4 Nov 2019, 8:28am

francovendee wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
PS,I'm currently following a a couple of chaps touring South America on YouTube both on loooonnnnggggg multi year tours,one on deraileur the other on Rohloff,the deraileur(high end XT) chap is always having gear problems trashed mech,skipping gears bent hanger,etc,not so the Rohloff chappie.These places are hard testing grounds for equipement and show up faults the ordinary tarmac light off road tourist is unlikely to encounter.
TBH if I could justify the use I'd buy a Rohloff for my MTB.


I'm assuming they are touring together so a perfect comparison?
Well at least as perfect as it' s possible to get with two different riders.
I like these long rides, I'll do a search on YouTube and see if I can find them.

No they're not riding together but are riding in similar terrain and conditions:- https://youtu.be/8jCpn0mJFSQ
https://youtu.be/aXw4DMjHiMc
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steelframe
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby steelframe » 4 Nov 2019, 8:50am

Brucey wrote:the 'simple indisputable fact' ignores the fact that having ridden x-thousand miles on a derailleur transmission, you are left with little more than a heap of valueless scrap metal. If you do the same thing with a Rohloff, you are left with a Rohloff hub, which is worth something (quite a substantial something actually) rather than nothing.


Plus it ignores the fact that this fact even if it would be true would just be relevant for those people who want the cheapest ride. And those were better off with a single-speed anyway. :P The main advantages of the Rohloff are comfort and robustness, not being cheap. Maintenance is changing oil every 5.000km and a sprocket about every 20.000km (widely different numbers are reported here, some lower, some far higher). You can use a Hebie chainglider or such, saving on chain-live and maintenance. You can change gears when standing still, you have evenly spread gears with a huge range with well usable jumps between the gears, simple to use with a single lever.

If you like those things you might be a candidate for a Rohloff. If not then not. If you are short on money probably not as well. There is nothing wrong going for a 10sp derailleur setup if you prefer it. Luckily we all are allowed to follow our taste and have the freedom of choice.

Regarding resale value: The Rohloff is available for a bit more than 20 years. Today, a new Rohloff hub, when bought aftermarket, retails for ~1000€ (depending from the model). It was cheaper back then, roughly ~7xx€ when it was introduced if I remember correctly.

A used Rohloff retails for ~650-750€ here in Germany most of the time, even very early models retail for a minimum of ~450€ (and with these offers sometimes there is some doubt to legal ownership or parts are missing). So in fact retail value is very high and you get back a very relevant part of your initial investment when you sell it after many years and many miles. If you start out with a used hub you might even run it for free financially apart from maintenance cost. However: I usually do not choose my bike parts by resale value but by my needs and financial possibilities, so to me this is mainly academic.

Having run derailleur setups of all kinds as well as hub gear setups of all kinds I have become a Rohloff convert over the last years - to me it offers the best compromise for my needs. Anybody else's mileage may vary.

reohn2
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby reohn2 » 4 Nov 2019, 9:21am

The utility cyclist wrote:I already did the calculation based on a 10 speed derailleur system (at todays live market prices) earlier in the thread, there's absolutely no doubt that just a Rohloff hub alone (never mind chains etc) is not far shy of double the cost over 100k miles, it's significantly cheaper with far greater gearing options and gear spread with fewer/smaller jumps in the available ratios to go with a derailleur system

That's just a simple indisputable fact.

You're not looking the whole picture and focusing on bits of it that don't suit your particular style/use.
I don't own a Rohloff simply because I don't do extended touring in remote places,the 3x10sp Deore equiped MTB I have covers my needs for the roughest routes I ride which amount to car assist 30 to 40mile jaunts in the hills.
There's far more to it than just overall cost which I think you're wrong about anyway,others have explained why.

As for the ratio spacing yes it's set but not they're not wide yawning gaps eg; not much wider than 22/30/40 11-36 3×10 I ride off road,and the Rohloff can be adjusted up or down by sprocket choice.
TBH I reckon a Rohloff on extended rough terrain expedition type touring is practically unbeatable,and there are many people on the web who testify,through experience, to that fact.
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brynpoeth
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby brynpoeth » 4 Nov 2019, 9:23am

Fact? Opinion!
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reohn2
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby reohn2 » 4 Nov 2019, 9:32am

brynpoeth wrote:Fact? Opinion!

I think honest opinion based on fact trumps anything.

Cycling is a multifaceted and diverse thing with many different approaches to a particular end,what suits one can be completely unsuitable to another.
Rohloff is but one of those many facets within an approach to gearing let alone the many other facets of cycling as a whole.
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francovendee
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby francovendee » 4 Nov 2019, 10:13am

reohn2 wrote:
francovendee wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
PS,I'm currently following a a couple of chaps touring South America on YouTube both on loooonnnnggggg multi year tours,one on deraileur the other on Rohloff,the deraileur(high end XT) chap is always having gear problems trashed mech,skipping gears bent hanger,etc,not so the Rohloff chappie.These places are hard testing grounds for equipement and show up faults the ordinary tarmac light off road tourist is unlikely to encounter.
TBH if I could justify the use I'd buy a Rohloff for my MTB.


I'm assuming they are touring together so a perfect comparison?
Well at least as perfect as it' s possible to get with two different riders.
I like these long rides, I'll do a search on YouTube and see if I can find them.

No they're not riding together but are riding in similar terrain and conditions:- https://youtu.be/8jCpn0mJFSQ
https://youtu.be/aXw4DMjHiMc

Thanks for the second link, I've followed the first guy from Alaska down to SA . I think he was on a Surley with a conventional derailleur set up originally. He moved over to a fat bike with a 1x11 set up a couple of years ago. His latest YouTube shows a freehub failure (broken pawl). I contacted the guy and asked what his bike+ gear weighed. I suggested 50 kg and he said it was in excess of that. Not surprising as he carries an inflatable boat with him to ferry him and the bike across lakes.
He really is an extreme tourer and often uses animal tracks as his route over mountains.
I'll take a look at the other guy and see how his travels compare to the first.
If they are as tough it shows a Rohloff hub is up to the harsh conditions.

reohn2
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby reohn2 » 4 Nov 2019, 10:41am

francovendee wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
francovendee wrote:
I'm assuming they are touring together so a perfect comparison?
Well at least as perfect as it' s possible to get with two different riders.
I like these long rides, I'll do a search on YouTube and see if I can find them.

No they're not riding together but are riding in similar terrain and conditions:- https://youtu.be/8jCpn0mJFSQ
https://youtu.be/aXw4DMjHiMc

Thanks for the second link, I've followed the first guy from Alaska down to SA . I think he was on a Surley with a conventional derailleur set up originally. He moved over to a fat bike with a 1x11 set up a couple of years ago. His latest YouTube shows a freehub failure (broken pawl). I contacted the guy and asked what his bike+ gear weighed. I suggested 50 kg and he said it was in excess of that. Not surprising as he carries an inflatable boat with him to ferry him and the bike across lakes.
He really is an extreme tourer and often uses animal tracks as his route over mountains.
I'll take a look at the other guy and see how his travels compare to the first.
If they are as tough it shows a Rohloff hub is up to the harsh conditions.

We've chatted about Iohan on another thread,his exploits are incredible! :shock:
The other chap's journey isn't quite as wild but nearly and terrain is sometimes as rough and wild,he doesn't seem to have the same kind of transmission problems though.
David Travelli is another RtheW cyclist I've been following on YouTube,mainly because he's riding a 2x10sp deraillur equipped Genesis Longitude,he also has his fair share of drivetrain problems.
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geocycle
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Re: Why the Rohloff Speedhub is (secretly) inferior

Postby geocycle » 4 Nov 2019, 11:05am

reohn2 wrote:
francovendee wrote:
reohn2 wrote:No they're not riding together but are riding in similar terrain and conditions:- https://youtu.be/8jCpn0mJFSQ
https://youtu.be/aXw4DMjHiMc

Thanks for the second link, I've followed the first guy from Alaska down to SA . I think he was on a Surley with a conventional derailleur set up originally. He moved over to a fat bike with a 1x11 set up a couple of years ago. His latest YouTube shows a freehub failure (broken pawl). I contacted the guy and asked what his bike+ gear weighed. I suggested 50 kg and he said it was in excess of that. Not surprising as he carries an inflatable boat with him to ferry him and the bike across lakes.
He really is an extreme tourer and often uses animal tracks as his route over mountains.
I'll take a look at the other guy and see how his travels compare to the first.
If they are as tough it shows a Rohloff hub is up to the harsh conditions.

We've chatted about Iohan on another thread,his exploits are incredible! :shock:
The other chap's journey isn't quite as wild but nearly and terrain is sometimes as rough and wild,he doesn't seem to have the same kind of transmission problems though.
David Travelli is another RtheW cyclist I've been following on YouTube,mainly because he's riding a 2x10sp deraillur equipped Genesis Longitude,he also has his fair share of drivetrain problems.


I think we have an equation where Hassle = magnitude x frequency. With a robust derailleur system you can expect a lot of minor tweaks to be needed to keep you on the road but it is usually possible to bodge or repair. With a rohloff you are likely to encounter very few if any problems, but if something catastrophic should occur it could result in being holed up for a couple of weeks waiting for a part. It depends on the specific journey and the mentality of the rider as to which is the best approach.