The Geared Singlespeed

Just like a Good Oxymoron, Its a singlespeed with gears. Low cost of a singlespeed chainline with all the benefits of a 1x8.

1st teasers of the Alfine

I am using a 22 tooth Shimano Nexus cog dished outwards for a 47mm chainline. Shimano designed the Alfine with downtube cable routing in mind. I can't stand downtube routing so I Macgyverized the cassette joint by switching the left, white and right, silver horizontal non turn washers to get a 30-40 degree angle on it and then I had to bend it slightly to get the cable out of the chainline.

1st teasers of the Alfine

Rode it around a little tonight on the neighborhood bike trails and it feels like a good gear range, surprisingly better then expected.

My boy Luis asked how much the wheel weighed. Being the slacker I am I forgot to weigh it before I put the tire and all the tidbits on. So I weighed it as it would be on the bike. 8 lbs/ 3628 grams on the nose. Sounds heavy I know but considering the singlespeed wheel I have been using weighs 5.5 lbs/ 2494 grams built with a Chris King hub, Salsa Delgado rim, the cog, spacers, tire and disc and 2.5 lbs/ 1133 grams for gears don't sound so bad to me at least.

Keep in mind the $340(price includes shifter, hub, and the small parts kit all of which needs to be purchased seperately) 8 speed Shimano Alfine hub weighs 3.5 lbs/1590 grams compared to a $1500 14 speed Rohloff which weighs 3.7 lbs/1715 grams with the advantage of the Rolhoff being an addition 6 gears. The $1200 difference in pricing was the deal maker for me.

Most of you may be thinking this is alot of weight but compare it to a high quality derailleur system.
  • Rear derailleur: 230 grams
  • Front derailleur: 130 grams
  • Chainrings: 250 grams
  • Cassette: 260 grams
  • Rear hub: 370 grams
  • Additional chain weight: 30 grams
Total weight: 1270 grams and then take in the cost of maintenance of a derailleur system and internal gears start looking really good.

The ultimate test will be this weekend's Tour de Mines in the back country near Georgetown, Colorado...going from 9,000 to 11,000 ft. Originally it was planned to be Jerry, Little E, and myself but Jerry bailed due family its just me and little E.

The usual side I see when hanging Little E

E climbing at Heil

I'm a little scared actually. Little E is no joke on a bike and I'm gonna have to keep a leash on my little bro to keep us from gettin separated. All the trails we're riding this weekend are ligit but they're on no map or topo that I know of and not even many Colorado locals know the trails even exsist. I'm gonna have to use all the compass and topo line reading skills I have to get us through this one.

Even scarier is E has been known to get frisky and force himself on the locals. For weighing just over 100 lbs soaking wet(alright I'll give him 120 lbs but no more), little dude has some freaking awesome weight to strength ratio.

Mark and E gettin Freaky

Good thing is that E just got back from 14 days of riding Pisgah including placing ninth in the Pisgah Mountain Bike Adventure Race. Can't remember if he was singlespeed or fixie but either way its an impressive finish and all that riding has bound to slow him down a tenth of a second. Did I mention he is a East Coast Transplant to Colorado as well?


  Kevin aka. PBR

May 16, 2009 at 9:55 PM

Lookin forward to hearing about this one!