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Abiding hatred for bicycle derailleur drive trains

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Abiding hatred for bicycle derailleur drive trains

Old 11-18-19, 12:35 PM
  #101  
TricycleTom
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You may be interested to know that "Disraeli Gears," an album by Cream, is named after Jack Bruce's term for derailleurs. As an engineer, I love them. You need a lateral transfer and a speed change without reversing direction, and you don't have much width available. The Derailleur gives you a whole new path for each ratio, instead of adding a second, power-robbing element. It is also a fairly good use of material, giving a much "stiffer" pedal per pound than a shaft.

I can't remember the last time mine needed attention, but I never haul the bike by car or lay it down.

That said, if you have a trike or a velomobile, you should have a completely re-designed system that could easily include an oil bath, and if cyclists would ever accept a clunky appearance, it would be better there, too. The chain length take-up should be done with larger jockey pulleys arranged horizontally, and the chain guided onto the rear cluster by a simple cage as on the front. It is slack there, and easier to displace. The pulleys can be in a tight-fitting case to keep the chain on even if it is thrown sideways by a trike hitting a bump with one front wheel or odd handling in transit. The take-up case can actually float sideways with the chain, only constrained in other dimensions. The big pulleys are to bend each link through fewer degrees to get through. If the bike will be kept upright, you can put a puddle of oil at the lowest point of the chain and not lose much of it while enjoying great chain life and low friction. The puddle goes onto the chain in use, and then drains back.
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Old 11-18-19, 01:51 PM
  #102  
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Kapusta

Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
II find rear derailleur drivetrains brilliantly simple, work nearly flawlessly, easy to adjust, light, and efficient.

Road, gravel, MTB, commuting... they just work. Like someone else said, a silent partner.

I gather you do not share my thoughts on the matter
I


Mmmmmm....Kapusta.

I used to love having a big bowl of kapusta , with rye bread!
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Old 11-18-19, 02:05 PM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by Kovkov View Post
Derailleurs are a simple but crude way of shifting gears. Bend the chain until it has to go to the other sprocket. They work pretty well in nice weather with friction shifters and 5 or less sprockets on the rear. They make sense in niche applications like racing and mountain biking where weight is believed to be a factor.

For normal everyday riding, commuting etc. IGHs are more suitable. But only Rohloff and SA-AW.
I see you haven’t quite moved into the 21st century with derailleurs😊
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Old 11-18-19, 02:40 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by General Geoff View Post
Between the Rohloff Speedhub, Nuvinci CVT, and Pinion gearboxes (combined with belt drive), you have plenty of much cleaner, more self-contained options at your disposal.


Mass-market bicycle design is more focused on light weight, speed, and efficiency, not necessarily convenience and longevity of wear components.
Sell people what they need and you'll probably survive.
Sell people what they want and you can make a pretty good living.
Convince people to want what you're selling and you'll die rich.

Most people focus on the marketing hype but the biggest factor for the mass market is price. Enthusiasts can debate endlessly the relative merits of slightly different products. Buyers only have so much money to spend. The hype is still a factor. They want to get as much as they can for their money. As you hit higher and higher price points your pool of buyers shrinks. Rohloff if truly impressive technology but the mass market is down at the big box store looking at entry level machines priced lower than the LBS could sell at a profit.
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Old 11-18-19, 02:46 PM
  #105  
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Why not go for the original direct-drive... a penny farthing? No messy, complicated drivetrain. A real man's bike, for sure.

Check out this guy.

https://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plu...-farthing.html
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Old 11-18-19, 03:25 PM
  #106  
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seen it before

Originally Posted by Old ABLA Member View Post
Derailleur drive trains are putrid piles of pus. They are promulgated by the industry for two reasons: 1. To make your cycling life at some point in the not too distant future dysfunctional, filthy with grease, out of adjustment, worn out and miserable which then sends you to number 2. A bicycle shop or mail order house for new freewheels, chainwheels, cables and housings, and chain. My hatred for this lousy dirty exposed to the elements high maintenance system goes back to the 70's when I first got into bike racing. I've been stuck dealing with this crap system ever since.


I've wanted a drive shaft system with an infinitely variable ratio from say 20inches to 110 inches, with the only adjustment knob on your handlebars being selector of pedal rpms you want to maintain which the infinite ratio adjuster adjusts so that your pedal rpms stay within that general ballpark setting. There would be no visible parts with all the drive train hidden behind protective shrouding in an oil bath.



Ahh! just think about it - no maintenance, you just grab your bike and go, no more roadside filthy greasy hands anymore when the chain pops off, no more cable adjustment of new or stiff cables, no more derailleur screws to finagle with etc.etc.

I've wanted this for the last 4 decades. We could put a man on the moon with the computing power of a modern smart phone but we can't come up with my desired drive train. Why? Because the industry is not willing to put in the R&D to design and tool this because they know they will be shooting themselves in the financial foot. They don't want a bunch of happy cyclists simply doing what they want to do which is just go for a ride and not have to deal with the grief and expense of the derailleur system.


Imagine my excitement about the new Pinion 12 speed 637% gearbox and totally greaseless Gates Carbon Belt Drive. It's not my dream system but it's a huge leap forward. I recently purchased the Priority 600 and am setting it up now. I live on a dirt road and am pretty excited about it.


On my other old primary bike the derailleur drive train is worn out now and slipping under torque when hauling groceries. I'm thinking the next best thing is to have a Nexus multispeed hub on the rear with the perfect chain alignment that a single rear cog gives you, along with no god awful rear derailleur.

They don't call'em derailleurs for nothing - they derail your cycling happiness when they irritate your cycling life.
In the late 1970s I received a mail solicitation for a new type of drivetrain. The freewheel was replaced with an exposed cone that allowed for infinitely adjustable ratios between 130 and 20. It had a driveshaft, and some sort of articulation that slide up and down the cone. The system was built into a road bike The solicitation was nicely presented on heavy 8 x 11 trifold card stock. I think i was on their mailing list as a subscriber to Bicycling. I received the same solicitation again a month or two later. After that, nothing. Never saw it in a store, a catalog, or anyplace else. Anyone else remember that thing?
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Old 11-18-19, 09:13 PM
  #107  
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Still having four bikes I still ride with friction shifters and one with Shimano 10sp click shifters, that's just part of cycling and it's cool. Wouldn't want it any other way. A bicycle is a mechanical, not an electronic device.
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Old 11-18-19, 11:12 PM
  #108  
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I like the concept of modern IGH's & gearboxes but to me it only makes sense when paired with belt drive that eliminates messy frequent chain cleaning. Derailleurs themselves are low-maintenance & with indexing/pins/ramps/shaped chain plates they run quietly & shift smoothly. Now 1x is even simpler. However I'd like to see Shimano etc popularize IGH/belt for commuter & casual bikes, the simplicity & easy maintenance could be a big selling point.
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Old 11-19-19, 06:30 AM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by Artmo View Post
I see you haven’t quite moved into the 21st century with derailleurs😊
No need, my bikes are from the 20th century and work perfectly
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Old 11-19-19, 07:50 AM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by DropBarFan View Post
I like the concept of modern IGH's & gearboxes but to me it only makes sense when paired with belt drive that eliminates messy frequent chain cleaning. Derailleurs themselves are low-maintenance & with indexing/pins/ramps/shaped chain plates they run quietly & shift smoothly. Now 1x is even simpler. However I'd like to see Shimano etc popularize IGH/belt for commuter & casual bikes, the simplicity & easy maintenance could be a big selling point.
Huh? Chains are messy and require frequent cleaning, but only when used with IGH equipped bicycles, but are just fine when used with derailleurs? Makes no sense to me.

If you like belt drives - fine, but note that chains are and have been simple and easy maintenance on bicycles equipped with old or new IGHs.
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Old 11-19-19, 07:54 AM
  #111  
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Originally Posted by mad max View Post
In the late 1970s I received a mail solicitation for a new type of drivetrain. The freewheel was replaced with an exposed cone that allowed for infinitely adjustable ratios between 130 and 20. It had a driveshaft, and some sort of articulation that slide up and down the cone. The system was built into a road bike The solicitation was nicely presented on heavy 8 x 11 trifold card stock. I think i was on their mailing list as a subscriber to Bicycling. I received the same solicitation again a month or two later. After that, nothing. Never saw it in a store, a catalog, or anyplace else. Anyone else remember that thing?
I vaguely remember that.
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Old 11-19-19, 08:50 AM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Huh? Chains are messy and require frequent cleaning, but only when used with IGH equipped bicycles, but are just fine when used with derailleurs? Makes no sense to me.

If you like belt drives - fine, but note that chains are and have been simple and easy maintenance on bicycles equipped with old or new IGHs.
Yeah, I don't get this either. It's been several decades since I've had an IGH, but the one clear advantage is you got a whole hell of a lot more miles on a chain before it wore out. For me, having to buy a new chain every few thousand miles is by far the most annoying aspect of chain maintenance. Lubing a chain isn't any big deal, and cleaning on an IGH chain is pretty much limited to running a cloth over it once ina blue moon.
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Old 11-19-19, 10:54 AM
  #113  
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Agreed. At first glance, belts are much better, but not when you weigh the pluses against the minuses. It's not fair to compare a belt drive with IGH against a chain drive with derailleurs. And as @livedarklions points out, a 1/8" chain is not a maintenance nightmare at all.
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Old 11-19-19, 10:35 PM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Typo? Maybe he was once part of:

Benny looks a little bored.

I'm ABBAsolutely INXSive.
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Old 11-19-19, 10:48 PM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Huh? Chains are messy and require frequent cleaning, but only when used with IGH equipped bicycles, but are just fine when used with derailleurs? Makes no sense to me.

If you like belt drives - fine, but note that chains are and have been simple and easy maintenance on bicycles equipped with old or new IGHs.
I didn't mean that, I said "derailleurs themselves" meaning not including the chain. If cost was no consideration I'd put Rohloff-14 w/chain on my touring bike. Rohloff w/chain has some advantages over derailleur but for me those would be marginal & not justify the cost. One of the main attractions of IGH is reduced maintenance; a belt only adds ~10% to the Rohloff price & means a drastic reduction in maintenance time esp for those who are a bit scrupulous about keeping a clean chain.
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Old 11-19-19, 11:36 PM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by DropBarFan View Post
One of the main attractions of IGH is reduced maintenance; a belt only adds ~10% to the Rohloff price & means a drastic reduction in maintenance time esp for those who are a bit scrupulous about keeping a clean chain.
You say "a bit scrupulous", others might say so "obsessed and/or compulsive" about performing chain maintenance and cleaning rituals that the price and hassle of replacement of a belt drive makes sense.
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Old 11-20-19, 12:36 AM
  #117  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Yeah, I don't get this either. It's been several decades since I've had an IGH, but the one clear advantage is you got a whole hell of a lot more miles on a chain before it wore out. For me, having to buy a new chain every few thousand miles is by far the most annoying aspect of chain maintenance. Lubing a chain isn't any big deal, and cleaning on an IGH chain is pretty much limited to running a cloth over it once ina blue moon.
Perhaps chain maintenance is not as critical with IGH chains since the straight line means less drag & wear. But with continuous commuting or touring etc a weekly lube-wipe, at least, would seem to be in order. OK, 5 or 10 minutes extra maintenance per week doesn't seem like much but if one is busy or weather is bad that would be nice to avoid. Chain life is not crucial, one can buy 10+ chains for the price of a Shimano Alfiine 8-sp IGH. Belt life is reputedly so good that they're cheaper than chains in the long run. Chains stain clothes & car interiors.
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Old 11-20-19, 08:18 AM
  #118  
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Originally Posted by DropBarFan View Post
Perhaps chain maintenance is not as critical with IGH chains since the straight line means less drag & wear. But with continuous commuting or touring etc a weekly lube-wipe, at least, would seem to be in order. OK, 5 or 10 minutes extra maintenance per week doesn't seem like much but if one is busy or weather is bad that would be nice to avoid. Chain life is not crucial, one can buy 10+ chains for the price of a Shimano Alfiine 8-sp IGH. Belt life is reputedly so good that they're cheaper than chains in the long run. Chains stain clothes & car interiors.
When I used IGH to commute through the 1980s, I think my average chain cleaning time was pretty much 0 minutes per week. They just don't really get dirty enough to care on normal road riding unless it's winter.
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Old 11-20-19, 12:08 PM
  #119  
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Strange your remark concerning CVT transmissions. Toyota is using CVT's. Honda is using CVT's. They are programmed to act like 6 speeds.
Ask a Toyota driver about their experience. Both are cars that are known for going 225,000 miles with minimal maintenance. There are a few people who have had problems but look at the record for standard 6,7,8,9 speed transmissions. Yes, there are bad experiences when a fast lube jockey puts in the wrong oil. Try the same with any automatic and you will end up in the transmission shop.
When CVT's were new back in the last century there was some terrible trials. They wanted to save money as they do today. Manufacturers had to learn cheap was not cheap in the end. Ask old timers, there aren't many left, about the early automatics in the 1940's. I am one who remembers back then.
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Old 11-21-19, 11:26 AM
  #120  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
When I used IGH to commute through the 1980s, I think my average chain cleaning time was pretty much 0 minutes per week. They just don't really get dirty enough to care on normal road riding unless it's winter.
At the risk of turning this into a chain lubrication thread, I spend 0 minutes per week, month or year cleaning chains. The key is to not use lubricants that need constant cleaning. I get about the same chain life as most people report but I just don’t spend a lot of time on chain cleaning. The only time my chains get cleaned is when they are installed. They don’t need cleaned again. These are chains in the dead of winter that had hundreds of miles on them

IMG_0365 by Stuart Black, on Flickr
2013-07-26 08.06.29 by Stuart Black, on Flickr
IMG_1155 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

I use a bottled wax lubricant (White Lightning), I get about 700 miles between application and I don’t have to constantly clean the drivetrain. Yes, I have to lubricate after rain but anyone who says that they don’t doesn’t understand how oil, water and chains interact.
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Old 11-21-19, 11:43 AM
  #121  
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
The OP is a one time poster and has not returned to this thread.

We’ve been well trolled.
Is possibly from Shimano as they have a new patent for a CVT system which I read about on bike198.com before I saw this thread.
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Old 11-21-19, 12:08 PM
  #122  
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Originally Posted by mtbvfr View Post
Is possibly from Shimano as they have a new patent for a CVT system which I read about on bike198.com before I saw this thread.
Doubtful that Shimano would crap all over derailleurs like that as a bet on something they haven't even demonstrated anywhere.

More likely, the one-shot poster is a guy who thinks he's the first person who ever thought such a thing, then realizes there's umpteen people who know way more about it.

I actually think IGH vs, derailleurs vs. SS is a pretty good thread topic, I've had some laughs, maybe learned a few things, and if it ends in a hug, could be a "very special" sitcom Thanksgiving episode.
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Old 11-21-19, 02:43 PM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by mtbvfr View Post
Is possibly from Shimano as they have a new patent for a CVT system which I read about on bike198.com before I saw this thread.
It's not a CVT, it's an enclosed gear system near the crank.
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Old 11-21-19, 06:53 PM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by horatio View Post
Why not go for the original direct-drive... a penny farthing? No messy, complicated drivetrain. A real man's bike, for sure.

Check out this guy.

https://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plu...-farthing.html
Nah... he'd be doing something if he did it on one of these...

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Old 11-21-19, 10:11 PM
  #125  
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I use a bottled wax lubricant (White Lightning), I get about 700 miles between application and I don’t have to constantly clean the drivetrain. Yes, I have to lubricate after rain but anyone who says that they don’t doesn’t understand how oil, water and chains interact.
OK, & belts don't require any lube. But I'm not saying that chains are horrible, just questioning why spend extra money on IGH/chain.
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