Finally after months of teasing, Truvativ releases the true identity of HammerSchmidt. We can put an end to all the rumors and speculations that have been inundating various MTB forums. Adios front derailleur, hello HammerSchmidt!
EDITED: Added Q Factor Info
This project started almost two and a half years ago after noticing that many riders were using 2 x 9 setups on their bikes. The goal was to deliver a reliable crankset that used one single ring, but offered the gear range of a double ring setup. After many discussions with riders and frame makers, Truvativ’s HammerSchmidt was born. A revolutionary front transmission system that replaces your front derailleur and chain retention system while still giving you the gear range of a dual ring setup.
Truvativ’s HammerSchmidt is offered in two version – Freeride and All Montain. Both flavors share the same five main components: FreerideAll Mountain
• compatible with 68, 73 and 83mm BB shells
• All Mountain version uses a 15mm crankbolt
• Freeride version uses a 12 mm crankbolt.
• All Mountain available in 170 and 175 in Galvanized Silver
• Freeride available in 165, 170 and 175 in Tungsten GrayFR vs AM crank arms
• HammerSchmidt’s Collar actuates the sun gear
• Will only work on frames that have ISCG 03 or ISCG 05 Tabs
• It’s vital that the ISCG tabs and BB interface are perfectly faced and perpendicular. There will be a specific HammerSchmidt ISCG facing tool.
• This is the heart of the HammerSchmidt transmission system.
• 22/36 or 24/38 gear range.
• 1: 1 or Overdrive ranges. 1:1 means the chainring does one full revolution with every pedal stroke. Overdrive is approximately 1:1.6.
• All Mountain bashguard is made of Carbon while the Freeride is made of a special ultra-durable plastic.
• HammerSchmidt triggers look just like the current X.0 and X.9 offering but they are specific to the HammerSchmidt. Easily recognizable by the anvil etched on the lever.
• Actuation is reversed when compared to traditional FD shifting.HammerSchmidt Trigger Shifter
• Superior Ground Clearance when compared to a traditional two or three ring setup. This will allow you to clear more obstacles on the trail.Clearance with 3 ring setupHammerSchmidt clearance
• Seamless Shifting under load.
• Instant Shifting even while coasting or pedaling backwards. The HammerSchmidt doesn’t depend on pedaling to shift.
• Ultimate Chain Management with one single ring and a constant chainline. Makes it much easier to use the full range of gears in the back. The chain is encapsulated between the collar assembly, Mechanism assembly and top chainguide slider, so it’s not going anywhere.
• Streamlined design that looks pretty clean and fast.
• Simple and low maintenance with only a few parts to lubricate.
• Granted you have ISCG tabs, this system allows you to run two gears up front on bikes that otherwise can’t accommodate a front derailleur.
If you want to use the HammerSchmidt, your bike will need ISCG 03 or ISCG 05 tabs. ISCG adaptors will not work. This means this system is not compatible with many top end bikes, but Truvativ reassured us that they are working closely with many of these manufacturers to have them incorporate ISCG table on their frames so they are ready to adapt to the HammerSchmidt. In addition, your BB and ISCG tabs both need to be faced so they are perfectly perpendicular to each other.BB and ISCG facing tools
The HammerSchmidt uses a proprietary Bottom Bracket – therefore other Truvativ Bottom Brackets won’t work.
The shift cable is routed down the downtube and feeds into the back of the collar assembly. Otherwise the HammerSchmidt install procedures are the same as your tradition crankset. Pretty straight forward really.
Weight, price and availability
Compared to traditional Truvativ All Mountain and Freeride setups, the HammerSchmidt weigh a bit more. Even more so when compared to other lightweight crankset on the market today.
Expect the HammerSchmidt to cost between $700 and $800 for the Bottom Bracket, Crank arms and Trigger shifter. Available starting December of this year.
I recently got to ride the HammerSchmidt down in San Luis Obispo and was pretty impressed at how quickly and efficiently the system shifts. Under load, while coasting, while backpedalling, while standing still – shifting is instantaneous! It’s pretty trippy because with a front derailleur you have to do 1/4 to 1/2 of a pedal stroke before the shift is complete – whereas with the HammerSchmidt the shift happens as soon as you actuate that trigger.
Speaking of trigger, since actuation is reversed compared to your traditional front Trigger sifter, shifting the HammerSchmidt takes some getting used to. Even after an hour on the bike, I was still hitting the wrong trigger. I’m convinced that after a few rides I wouldn’t have to think about it anymore – but I was struggling since front shifting has become second nature for me and I’ve never had to think about what trigger to hit.
The pre-production samples we rode were a bit loud – but from what I’ve been told, the final production models are quieter. Tuvativ had HammerSchidt’s mounted on Turner RFX’s and Scott Ransom’s, two bikes that pedal relatively well in granny gears, but alas we all know that not all bikes pedal well in the granny gear – like my Santa Cruz Nomad for example. I can only assume that on some type of suspension linkages/designs, the HammerSchmidt wouldn’t be efficient.
All this aside, I think Truvativ’s HammerSchmidt has potential. The idea of not having to adjust a front derailleur, never dropping a chain and never missing a front shift due to chain suck is pretty appealing to me. The added weight, reverse shifting (compared to what we have now) and requiring ISCG tabs, not so much. A short ride wasn't enough to really gauge the HammerSchmidt - these are only initial impressions. I will let you be the judge unless I can get more HammerSchmidt ride time in the near future.
Truvativ HammerSchmidt Q Factor provided by Truvativ
Q factor defined as the distance between pedal mounting faces of left and right crankarm, measured in a direction parallel with the BB axis.
• Truvativ HammerSchmidt Freeride is essentially the same as Holz OCT and Blaze, i.e. all Howitzer level crankarms.
• HammerSchmidt All Mountain is 8mm narrower than the Freeride version, and is in the class of Stylo's Q-factor (1 mm wider)
• HammerSchmidt Q-factor is symmetric about the centerline plane of the bicycle frame
Learn more about Truvativ HammerSchmidt
HammerSchmidt overview and installation with Anthony Medaglia
Sorry about the funky video thumbnails - not sure what's up with that? but the videos still play fine - enjoy!Part one