Inside Pinion

Apr 4, 2017
by Matt Wragg  




The gearbox. The white whale of mountain bike drivetrains. On paper they make a lot of sense, centralising weight, eliminating the chain influence from the suspension and removing the fragile derailleur from its exposed position. The problem has always been the execution. There have been multiple attempts to get one right over the years, but out in the real world they have always been too heavy, create too much drag or are simply too complicated. The fact is that the modern derailleur is a finely-tuned precision implement and to convince the masses to step away from them needs a gearbox that is better than they are.

Back in 2011 a German journalist showed up on my doorstep with a bike equipped with a gearbox crafted by ex-automotive engineers. That was the Pinion P1.18. It looked wild and in the car park it felt like it might just work. A year later I flew to Northern Germany to try riding one. It was pretty good, but still had some quirks and a lot of weight. In the intervening years they may not have set the mountain bike world alight, but for serious bike-trekking enthusiasts, Pinion are the market leaders - if what you need is ultimate reliability, they are the name to turn to.

Last year they launched their re-worked C1.12 gearbox to the world, which is lighter, a little less bulky, but still as bombproof. Pinion themselves would admit that they are not quite at the point where their drivetrains are going to takeover the mountain bike market, but while their progress is slow and steady, they certainly show all the promise of being the people who will finally crack the gearbox problem...

We visited their headquarters, just down the road from Mercedes Benz and Porsche, near Stuttgart, Germany to take a look behind their doors.




Christoph Lerman and XXX the founders of Pinion.
Christoph Lerman and Michael Schmitz, the founders of Pinion.

The heart of Pinion s gearbox. Fearsome is the only word for the engineering that goes into one of these and a it is instantly clear where the extra weight in the system comes from - these things are built to last. Pinion expect a lifttime of over 100 000km for one of these gearboxes with no maintenance aside from the occasional cable change and a little lubrication.
The heart of Pinion's gearbox. Fearsome is the only word for the engineering that goes into one of these, and a it is instantly clear where the extra weight in the system comes from - these things are built to deal with a huge amount of torque - up to 250Nm, which is equivalent to a small car. They are also built to withstand these forces for a long, long time. Pinion expect a lifetime of over 100,000km for one of these gearboxes, with no maintenance aside from the occasional cable change and a little lubrication.

The upper array of sprockets in the gearbox is the critical part of the system and once you start digging into how it all works it is clear how impressive a feat of engineering it is. This group is made up of two spearate groups - the three sprockets to the left are the equivalent of triple chainrings so there is a small medium and large. The second group of six is equivalent of a 6-speed cassette - so between these two groups they combine to offer the18 gears in this gearbox.
The upper array of sprockets in the gearbox is the critical part of the system and once you start digging into how it all works, it is clear how impressive a feat of engineering it is. This group is made up of two separate groups - the three sprockets to the left are the equivalent of triple chainrings, so there is a small, medium and large. The second group of six is equivalent of a 6-speed cassette - so between these two groups they combine to offer the18 gears in this gearbox.

The axle has two separate parts to allow the two groups of sprockets to move independently.
The axle has two separate parts to allow the two groups of sprockets to move independently.

This two piece axle allows the groups of sprockets to move independently.
This two piece axle allows the groups of sprockets to move independently.

Beneath those sprockets lies this adjustable cam - this is the part the shifter actuates to change your gear and it took a solid half hour of squinting and stupid questions to even start to understand how it works. The shifter moves the cam through 18 unique positions sequentially each of which locks one sprocket from each of the two groups to create a gearing combination. This takes you through from the smallest gear up to the largest engaging different sequences of sprockets to create a very smooth progression through the 18 gears.
Beneath those sprockets lies this adjustable cam - this is the part the shifter actuates to change your gear and it took a solid half hour of squinting and stupid questions to even start to understand how it works. The shifter moves the cam through 18 unique positions, sequentially, each of which locks one sprocket from each of the two groups to create a gearing combination. This takes you through from the smallest gear up to the largest, engaging different sequences of sprockets to create a very smooth progression through the 18 gears.

This should be a test for engineering aptitude. If you can look at this and quickly understand how you would create something like this to drive the cam through those 18 precise combinations sign up for your engineering degree now. For the rest of us it is looks deceivingly simple but to get your head round how you can create all those combinations is mind-bending stuff. Talking to owner Christoph Lerman he could see this in his head and it makes instant sense to him.
This should be a test for engineering aptitude. If you can look at this and quickly understand how you would create something like this to drive the cam through those 18 precise combinations, sign up for your engineering degree now. For the rest of us, it is looks deceivingly simple, but to get your head round how you can create all those combinations is mind-bending stuff. Talking to owner, Christoph Lerman, he could see this in his head and it makes instant sense to him.

Each position of the cam pushes forward a different combination of these pawls to lock the desired sprockets in place.
Each position of the cam pushes forward a different combination of these pawls to lock the desired sprockets in place.

One of the challenges of a gearbox is the amount of torque that goes through it - with a standard chainring that torque is dispersed over a relatively large area that can be relatively inexpensively replaced. In a gearbox the sprockets are far smaller and replacing them is no small job. With a five year warranty and an expected lifespan of well over 100 000km you end up with this kind of burly sprocket.
One of the challenges of a gearbox is the amount of torque that goes through it - with a standard chainring that torque is dispersed over a relatively large area that can be relatively inexpensively replaced. In a gearbox the sprockets are far smaller and replacing them is no small job. With a five year warranty and an expected lifespan of well over 100,000km, you end up with this kind of burly sprocket.

You can use a simple torx key to cycle the cam through its movements to get a better idea of how it moves.
You can use a simple torx key to cycle the cam through its movements to get a better idea of how it moves.

The inside of the shifter assembly - this is the part of the gearbox that needs the most maintenance the cables need changing ever so often.
The inside of the shifter assembly - this is the part of the gearbox that needs the most maintenance, the cables need changing ever so often.

Once you have your internal mechanism you need a box to keep it in. This is the original 3D-printed casing.
Once you have your internal mechanism, you need a box to keep it in. This is the original, 3D-printed casing.

They did run through a few iterations before they were happy that the design was both as strong and minimal as it possibly coukd be.
They did run through a few iterations before they were happy that the design was both as strong and minimal as it possibly could be.

The evolution of the new C1.12 casing.
The evolution of the new C1.12 casing.

A look inside at the casting shows how much attention has been paid to every detail.
A look inside at the casting shows how much attention has been paid to every detail.

That said they have to - the moulds for casting the magnesium casing cost around the half million Euros mark. It is an eye-watering investment for a company the size of Pinion to make but it also makes a very clear statement about they want to do things - they come from the engineering tradition that spawned Porsche and Mercedes and the idea of doing something by half does not exist in that world.
That said, they have to - the moulds for casting the magnesium casing cost around the half million Euros mark. It is an eye-watering investment for a company the size of Pinion to make, but it also makes a very clear statement about they want to do things - they come from the engineering tradition that spawned Porsche and Mercedes and the idea of doing something by half does not exist in that world.

Inside Pinion

Inside Pinion
Inside Pinion

Inside Pinion

Once you have a gearbox you need to find a way to fit it onto a bicycle. This too took many iterations to perfect - trying to reduce the weight maintain stiffness and strength in the frame and make life as easy as possible for frame builders.
Once you have a gearbox you need to find a way to fit it onto a bicycle. This too took many iterations to perfect - trying to reduce the weight, maintain stiffness and strength in the frame and make life as easy as possible for frame builders.

Denkendorf Germany January 2017. Photo by Matt Wragg

Inside Pinion
Inside Pinion

Inside Pinion

All the design for the Pinion gearbox is done here in house and their plans for the future are more than interesting. In the near future they are looking closely at the cranks hinting that a carbon crank may appear and they believe it can shave as much as 400g from the system. Ask them about the future and they are confident that if you demand say a little less than 100 000km from your drivetrain it is entirely possible to get the weight on a par with a standard drivetrain...
All the design for the Pinion gearbox is done here in house and their plans for the future are more than interesting. In the near future they are looking closely at the cranks, hinting that switching to other material could save a lot of weight. Ask them about the future and they are confident that it is entirely possible to get the weight on a par with a standard drivetrain...

XXX and Christoph are very involved in the production keeping their hands-on with the gearboxes they produce.
Michael and Christoph are very involved in the product development, keeping their hands-on with the gearboxes they produce.

The pins for the cam are punched in one at a time.
The pins for the cam are punched in, one at a time.

You can t really tell here but the silver crown at the top of the assembly is spring-loaded to help keep the cam in place.
You can't really tell here, but the silver crown at the top of the assembly is spring-loaded to help keep the cam in place.

Ready.
Ready.

It is then placed into the main body of the cam.
It is then placed into the main body of the cam.

Inside Pinion
Inside Pinion

The sprockets are mounted one at a time onto the axles.
The sprockets are mounted, one at a time onto the axles.

The shifting mechnism runs on a bearing situated within the gearbox.
The shifting mechanism runs on a bearing situated within the gearbox.

The box is pressed together.
The bearings that the axles run on are pressed into the body.

Pinion make 10 000 gearboxes a year right now.
Many gearboxes, ready to ship.

Inside Pinion

Inside Pinion
Inside Pinion

Denkendorf Germany January 2017. Photo by Matt Wragg

Every single gearbox is run through a control procedure. This tests the basics of the gearbox will it pedal Will it shift What is very intriguing about this process is that the shifting is tested by a belt while the gearbox is under load. Out on the trail you cannot shift under load. When asked about this Pinion explained that it is a question of torque the gearbox itself will shift under load but using a cable shifter you cannot generate enough torque to do it. However if you were to have an electronic shifter with a servo motor of some kind then it might be possible...
Every single gearbox is run through a control procedure. This tests the basics of the gearbox, will it pedal? Will it shift? What is very intriguing about this process is that the shifting is tested by a belt while the gearbox is under load. Out on the trail you cannot shift under load. When asked about this Pinion explained that it is a question of torque, the gearbox itself will shift under load, but using a cable shifter you cannot generate enough torque to do it. However, if you were to have an electronic shifter with a servo motor of some kind, then it might be possible...

Finally the gearboxes are treated in a pressure oven to make sure they are completely sealed.
Finally the gearboxes are treated in a pressure oven to make sure they are completely sealed.

Inside Pinion
Inside Pinion

Once the checks are complete each gearbox is marked with a warranty sticker.
Once the checks are complete, each gearbox is marked with a warranty sticker.

Inside Pinion
Denkendorf Germany January 2017. Photo by Matt Wragg

XXX is the Pinion service department. If you are selling 10 000 units a year and have one man doing your warranty and repair it s fair to say that your products are pretty reliable.
Nico is the Pinion service department. If you are selling as many gearboxes as Pinion are and have one man doing your warranty and repair, it's fair to say that your products are pretty reliable.

The repaired gearboxes are mounted to this test mules for checking before being sent back to customers.
The repaired gearboxes are mounted to this test mules for checking before being sent back to customers.

There s no denying that bikes built around Pinion s gearbox are nice and clean.
There's no denying that bikes built around Pinion's gearbox are nice and clean.
And one local builder XXX has even mounted one to an XC race hardtail.
And one local builder, Quantor, has even mounted one to an XC race hardtail.



201 Comments

  • + 135
 Just make a bit affordable aluminium enduro bike with these and I will buy it instantlySmile For price of a Zerode Taniwha you can buy a small house, boat and 3 wifes from Balkan...
  • + 66
 and Lada with full package
  • + 5
 nicolai bikes! ok, not really affordable...
  • + 42
 little example, differences taniwha - tracer: 10k in technology - 10 k in blinging paint and marketing
  • + 8
 In our country we say three wife from Czech republic... Wink
  • + 3
 @zokinjo: The Zerode Taniwha is cheaper than some other high end bikes. www.stif.co.uk/bikebuilder/zerode-taniwha-custom-bike/181
  • + 6
 I want a 5 or 7 speed and as light as possible. for dh
  • + 2
 @StraightLineJoe: a mate bought taniwha only had 2 months wants sell says has to much drag and shifting is not flash also weighs 16kg even with carbon wheels ,bars and high end gear. so maybe gbox has a way to go before it can be a serious contender for race bikes .
  • + 1
 @spags71: Nah bro, pretty sure they come out around 14kgs. Is your mate filling the tyres with water or something?
  • + 2
 @spags71: I think your mates scales are out and he's a bit of wimp complaining about the drag to be honest..
maybe he should be looking at eBikes..
  • + 3
 I really want to try a Pinion. I worry that I'll want to buy one shortly afterwards. They're still a few marks away from killing it IMO.

1. Going to a trigger style or electronic shifter.
2. Aftermarket or carbon crank arms (160-180mm)
3. The C1.6 or equivalent needs to debut on a DH bike.
4. An Idler Pulley or someway to take up chain slack other than the current down low guide
  • + 1
 Exactly what I want @gonecoastal:
  • + 73
 Dear Pinion,

I can tell you your problem. Less engineering, WAY more marketing.

Sincerely,

Every other bike component manufacturer on earth

(Wait, whaaa?)
  • - 19
flag RedRedRe (Apr 3, 2017 at 23:25) (Below Threshold)
 I a, sure that sram is coming out with something like this in a couple of years, that is why it has been hyped up. Or maybe they just buy pinion like they did with envy thing else. Regardless a system where you can't shift under load is just no sense. But they ll shove it down our throats, no problem.
  • + 32
 @RedRedRe:
I was always taught to ease off on the pedals when you shift, especially on a downshift, on traditional cassette/derailleur gears to avoid that horrific crunch of the chain being twisted up and over the next sprocket under load. In which case, I don't see how the gearbox not being able to shift under load to be a negative?
Even on a motorsport spec dog-box you have to ease the throttle (done either manually or electronically) when smashing through the gears.
  • + 8
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: Seamless gearbox ala F1 and Motogp, only a few millon pounds
  • + 4
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: It's a problem. I agree with you, I always learned the "right way" and that is to let up on the crank for downshifts. I still do this. However on my AM bike I HAVE to be able to shift under load or I will be pushing...ALOT. It's just unavoidable with the kind of terrain I ride on that bike.
  • - 18
flag RedRedRe (Apr 4, 2017 at 6:28) (Below Threshold)
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: yes, in general, you need to ease when shifting. But if you ever been in a race OR ever ridden hard your bike, there are plenty of situation where u need to shift under load. entry level components can barely make it, stuff like xtr is designed t shift under load.
What about a sprint to a finish line?
Pinion is suitable to recreational and tourist bikes.
No way it can be successfully used on race or aggressive rides.
But they start brain washing us now, so in 2-3 years (I bet less) when they push this stuff live, the general public will be "ready". Innovation, the American way.
  • + 3
 @jimmythehat: Seamless is just a name, actually, the motor ignition is cut during a couple of milliseconds to 'ease off' while the gear is changed. This happens so quickly no one can feel it.

As for the pinion gearbox, I dont see it as much an issue, except maybe at a higher level than me. On the other hand, I can see many cases where shifting without turning crank would help A LOT, and that is something current shifters cannot deal with.
  • - 19
flag RedRedRe (Apr 4, 2017 at 7:45) (Below Threshold)
 @polarproton: if you never shift under load, you don't ride hard enough. or never raced a bike. or always ride the same places.
Hyperglide shifting was designed for MTB because being able to quick shift is the difference between making it over or falling down.
How can you sprint while having to stop pedaling?

Moreover did anybody here actually rode Pinion?
I can tell you the power transfer is lousy, more items between your foot and the real wheel, more energy lost and mushiness feel.
  • - 15
flag RedRedRe (Apr 4, 2017 at 7:54) (Below Threshold)
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: Have you ever ridden a gear hub? English 3 speed bikes? The new ones?
If you or anybody here did, this is the exact same thing, but moved to the front.
You need to stop pedaling while chasing gears.
If that is not a problem for anybody, then you may just want to get an electric bike as you don't ride hard enough.
  • + 11
 @RedRedRe: This is crap. Ride one and you will realize it's different, but not worse. Actually probably better. the fact is, when you're grunting up an impossibly steep hill and you're in the wrong gear, you can't really shift. You have to wait for the grade to drop a little so you can get that split second where you can shift and get a half crank under much less torque.

With a pinion (and I assume other boxes), you just ease of the cranks for a split second, shift and keep on your way. You can be coming into a techy climb that you forgot was there in literally the highest gear, and crank it into the lowest AFTER you've started up a climb. There are problems with eh gearbox. Claiming that shifting is one of them is decidedly luddite and ignorant.
  • + 6
 @RedRedRe: oh and you don't ride hard enough if you don't shift under load? Watch any smooth rider. I just imagine you going through moderate terrain, slamming up stuff and destroying your cassette, thinking "this is hard riding".

@TheRaven the shifting is entirely different, so it negates the problem. It shifts instantaneously, so it only takes maybe a quarter or half second of letting up. I thought it would be a problem, too, but you get used to it and it's actually better. You can drop like 4 gears right out of a corner. Really nice for riding unfamiliar trails and not making those mistakes that totally kill your speed.
  • - 11
flag RedRedRe (Apr 4, 2017 at 11:29) (Below Threshold)
 @trialsracer: you obviously have not ridden a pinion or ever raced a bike besides your pretentious name.
Imagine having to change gear while sprinting—yeah, right, Ritchie rude is going to stop spinning 120rpm for a fraction of a second so he can get a better gear. Please.
Gearbox have been around since the 1920's and they were abandoned back then because 1 weight 2 drag/inefficiency 3 cost. Then they come out with the greared hub-which is the exact same functionality.
At least try to ride a three speed or commenter bike before having an "opinion".

Bicycle evolution had always been following basic key elements:
- weight reduction
- less drag
  • + 3
 @trialsracer: Yeah that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about climbing rock gardens...I was doing this last night in fact and remarked about how nice it is for me to be able to shift while almost stalling on a big honkin boulder. You know, rear wheel caught up on the front side of the boulder, what you thought was the perfect gear on approach to the rock garden is now way too high and you jam your thumb all the way into the paddle in a last ditch attempt to try to avoid slipping off into the jagged rocks 5ft below to your right? That's happening to me alot more often on my AM bike recently and last night I was impressed at how I was able to shed three gears without the slightest bit of slippage on the crank. One nice smooth shift, three gears dropped, and not a single hiccup. Oh and boulder cleared.

So no, if you have to let up on the cranks AT ALL, it's not going to work for my AM bike. Now my trail bike, I could likely make that work. Not that it would never be a problem, just that it would be rare enough for me to let it slide.
  • + 3
 @trialsracer: I've downshifted numerous times on over 20 per cent climbs, yes you feel the cassette and chain don't particularly like it but with the right technique (ie accelerate a bit, then ease off and quickly shift) it can be done without messing up your gears too much.
  • + 3
 Dear Pinion,

Thank you for thinking of using clamping arms over the ISIS spindle. That should have been done years ago by FSA or RF.

Sincerely,

Guy who got headache from RF ISIS cranks.

Personal Observation - The clamping arm is a great concept, added to 48 spline spindle gives more clamping area which allows more torque to move through the splines to the spindle, which decreases the ability of the aluminum arms interface to migrate/deform under heavy impact loads. Which was an issue with 6000 series Alu arm, retainer bolt ISIS interface cranks. Unless the idea is to allow the arms to fail before critical forces deform the gearing axle, hindering operation?
  • + 1
 @gibbon-on-an-orange: Excellent points! We need a clutch!!!
  • + 1
 Yas. they over engineer. make it lighter and less durable. make it last 50000 km instead of 100000km... what's a clutch derailer good for? 1000 max?
  • + 0
 @jimmythehat: ...but those service intervals!
  • + 3
 And a trigger shifter not twist shift would be nice please.
  • + 3
 @Woodpeckar: second that. I use my wrists to control the bike, like most bmx guys (moto may not do that). But its a dealbreaker. Not the weight. Not the price. The grip shifter.
  • + 1
 @Woodpeckar: thirded. I understand it needs an amount of force and cable pull to actuate the shift, but surely two thumb shifters could do that (like two SRAM/shimano 'down' levers one above the other) and leave the grip clear.
  • + 1
 @Woodpeckar: from what I read on another blog a trigger is on the way
  • + 1
 @trialsracer: This is correct. Have been riding a Pinion since last August.
  • + 46
 It really bothers me that the bottom bracket area standard for these things isn't being standardised. Having a different fitment for the two Pinion boxes, the Bosch motor, the two different Shimano Steps motors (5 different systems doing basically exactly the same job) and others means that you can't swap things around on your frame and frame manufacturers have to commit to one system rather than being able to build one frame and offer it as an e assist bike and as a gearbox bike to increase volumes and reduce costs.
  • + 15
 I'm sure Shimano wants it that way right now. Harder for gearboxes to start taking a bigger dent into their vast market share.
  • + 2
 At least they're thinking outside the box...
  • + 6
 "Having a different fitment for the two Pinion boxes"

Not sure I understand this... Via the Pinion site the P and C series 1.6, 1.9, 1.12 & 1.18 all share the same frame mounting solution, and same ISIS 'style', crank arm to axle interface.
  • + 2
 @woodybepierced: The entire gearbox market value is a rounding error for Shimano, I doubt they care.
  • + 21
 So what I get from this is that once they switch the shifting to electronic actuation, the only drawback will be weight - and weight always comes down. I think it's safe to say that we can now see the crest of the hill.
  • + 17
 Drag is still up in the air
  • + 1
 @ibishreddin: cant you just use a freehub so the drag is eliminated when coasting?
  • + 2
 @Grosey: Yes, eliminates friction from the spinning chain, but I believe he was referring to the drag internal to the gearbox. A modern derailleur drivetrain has very few moving parts, if you think about it, while a Pinion gearbox is filled with intricate gears. All those gears result in increased drag. It's a fair point, and one I'd forgotten to consider; the higher drag is fundamental to the design of these gearboxes.
  • + 1
 @ibishreddin: Drag is surprisingly minimal. I honestly can't tell much of a difference between a standard setup and this. Have been on mine since August. Won't go back to a derailleur.
  • + 15
 " it is instantly clear where the extra weight in the system comes from - these things are built to deal with a huge amount of torque - up to 250Nm, which is equivalent to a small car "


Am I missing some thing ?

Do people put out this much torque ?
  • + 10
 E-bike motors put out roughly 75nm in a controlled fashion. I'm sure Richie Rude (for example) could easily hit 250nm powering out of a turn.
  • + 8
 Suppose it's got more to do with peak torque achieved in low gear ratios.
  • + 37
 Yes people put this torque. A 100kg rider can apply 145kg load on a 175mm lenght crank. that give a torque arround 250 Nm. You can hit your crank into a stone or root when riding then the torque go higher than 250 Nm.
  • + 20
 @effigear: spying on the competition huh? Do we get a tour of your facilities and your gearbox too???
  • + 4
 @effigear: Thanks for the explanation.
  • + 43
 @ratedgg13: haha! You right we spying competitor on public article Wink . PB and other media are welcome in our facilities!
  • + 27
 @effigear: gotta keep the French / German rivalry going, especially if it helps make better gearboxes!
  • + 3
 @ratedgg13: good to know though because my first thought was, if a car makes 250Nm, humans probably don't... so cut the weight, yo
  • + 16
 @jaame: Chris Hoy, 700Nm of torque. www.shortlist.com/news/olympian-efforts
  • + 4
 Just tried to google "how much torque can a cyclist generate". Ended up reading tons of roadie arguing bullcrap, didn't get anything valuable... the best was a guy who wrote a few page long article on how certain cadence makes you win races and everyone who stands up to pedal is a loser. "The fall of men" is all I got from it

If someone can post a link to a picture or a video of a human being strapped to a machine with cranks and pedals, with a screen next to it showing torque in Nm - thank you...
  • + 2
 @mattwragg: thanks! any number on how much torque can an average freehub body take? Let's say Hope or DT?
  • + 7
 @WAKIdesigns: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17562069 Check this out, it's an actual scientific paper on the subject. They get 266 Nm for elite cyclists.
  • + 11
 Yea a lot of us could generate around that or nearly that as a peak load under a hard sprint. A small car might put out only 250Nm but that small car is also doing it at 6000rpm, not 90 which makes for a huge power difference and very different demands in terms of fatigue cycles. Also note that from what they said this is their fatigue life target for 100,000 km which makes their absolute strength a lot higher than the 250Nm.
  • + 6
 Chris Hoy. Half man, half bull. Fucking beast!
  • + 0
 @samimerilohi: Now that's a valuable piece of info. Thank you!
  • + 4
 A friend of mine once pulled a Toyota Corolla out of a ditch with his bike.
  • - 3
 @DJ-24: you just got some bad weed man...
  • + 5
 @WAKIdesigns: he's from Canada.... I think you mean *good*.
  • + 0
 @atrokz: I thought that good weed doesn't give you hallucinations but now you mention it, it seems possible that they crashed the car due to smoking too much then one dude felt so damn good about himself, the weed has made his torque so awesome that he felt like he will pull the car out using the bike. So he took the bike off the rack and attached velcro strap from his knee guard to the side mirror of the forementioned Corolla. He pedalled away, opened the door a bit, the strap losened, and the door shut back, so he thought he made it. They got so happy that they decided to go to town on foot to count all the light posts. They thought that it is a bright idea.

Yes @atrokz, good weed indeed.
  • + 7
 @WAKIdesigns: And, it was with a road bike.
  • + 1
 @ratedgg13:
But Richie Rude with e-bike engine support could easily hit 750Nm powering out of the turn.. Smile )))))
  • + 1
 @effigear: @effigear: Can we see more pictures of the nicolai DH bike with the mid high idler pulley?
  • + 1
 @gonecoastal: have a look at Benoit Coulanges FB pages : www.facebook.com/benoitcoulangesofficial
or send us a message with your email
  • + 1
 @effigear: No FB. Will send email
  • + 12
 Dropped a chain on a race run at the weekend. Ended up wrapped in around my cassette. Cost me the run, ruined my chain, bent my cassette, bent spokes, bent derailleur, had to single speed the bike for the final, and most pedally stage. Been saying it for years. GEARBOXES ARE THE FUTURE.
  • + 1
 No just get a sealed casing for your Derailuar, Ever wondered why you cant buy one?
  • + 7
 A dork disc would have saved that from happening
  • + 2
 @doe222: A dork disc probably would have got annihilated tbh.
  • + 2
 I agree with your sentiments. Have been on a Pinion since August. Love it.
  • + 15
 Real men only require 1 gear and 2 legs....





Me? I require 36.
  • + 48
 You've got 36 legs?
  • + 15
 Pure Mechanical Porn
  • + 9
 An interesting peek into an ever-growing market. I feel that if pinion did some work into inter-shift auto clutch integration and weight savings the battle would be soon over. Then again, things can only get so hollow and there comes a limit to every residual stress treatment available.
  • + 3
 Yup, can only get so light. we humans are low on the horsepower scale, but give us ~170mm of lever, & we rival or exceed cars in the amount of torque we can generate.

That said, given the money & opportunity, I'd ride a belt driven pinion 1.12 today. The weight difference is already low enough for my personal taste.
  • + 2
 @groghunter: Same here. Cost and maintenance is the issue for me. I know I could trust XT at the FNC Enduro last weekend, but I am not sure I would have been able to trust the shifter of a pinion in the same way.

I usually generate a 1300W sprint (1.75mech HP @tire) on my rides and excepting one single severe incident on a "launch start"with my dirt jumper I have never had an issue with chains and drivetrains in terms of power transfer and reliability.
For my age that is a decent figure and know that Mr. Atherton regularly does 2000W on a perfectly set up bike as a race run. No doubting the bulletproof-ness of that.


It is really cost and availability. Is there was a decked out Santa Cruz V10 or Nomad CC adaptation that came out tommmorow that was within 2 lbs of the lowest end C models you would find me walking over to the LBS to place a pre-order.
  • + 9
 I see Pinion for bikes on rental program like in a bike park. No more cheaper bended stuff that barely works. I like this idea of close gear set.
  • + 9
 A drive train that last 100000 kilomters. Cant have that. Says the two big S companies.
  • + 5
 I kina feel like they are in the wrong place in terms of trade-off between longevity and weight. Shimano / SRAM make the same trade-off between longevity / torque rating, and weight for regular derailleur drivetrains, and they’ve gone more towards lightweight and less durable compared to where pinion have landed. i.e. derailleurs and chains don’t last 100,000kms. And looking at the surface area of the contact points between chain rings and chain, they *look* to be able to withstand a lot less torque. But are a lot more light weight (and create less drag) than if they were engineered to last 100k kms.

Cut the service life and the torque rating of this box, then we’d get closer to the weight, with the trade-off being a 2-3 year re-build interval. Given the complexity of these things, I wanted if LBS could refresh / overhall?
  • + 3
 Yes totally agree, it is a conflict of intrest like sealed drives
  • + 2
 Hopefully a bike shop could service it. I need my damper serviced on my one year old Fox fork and my local full service shop can't do it. They don't want to buy the tools for it, so they send them out. That's $200 for me, without parts. I saw the tech video, too many parts and specialty tools, I'm not going to do it. I miss the simple cartridge and open bath forks.

The pinion looks easier then the damper rod to do, but would also require some specialty tools and someone with mechanical aptitude to have it done right. That being said, how much would it cost to overhaul it? I would think it would be an 6 hour job at $50 an hour?
  • + 1
 @oldschool43: Thats true. I like to try most jobs on bike myself, but a damper rebuild looks a PITA. My summer damper ? A box overhall would likley include replacement of bearings, and new gears, and a whole lot of parts to loose. If it was designed with serviceability in mind, maybe not too hard, though agree shop mechs migh need 'offical training' to do it.

add up the cost of a replacing an eagle, couple of chains, you might be ball park.
  • + 4
 Esteemed PB commenters,

Regardless of feasibility, if you could have a gearbox like Pinion, or a true continuously variable transmission (CVT), which would you choose? In other words, would you want pre-defined gear ratios where each "click" of an indexed shifter goes to a defined gear, or an infinite number of ratios between high and low gears where you'd push/rotate a lever to any position between two points?
  • + 2
 That would really depend on the feel of how the shifting would work on a CVT, indexless shifters back in the day worked ok, but when indexed came about it got a whole lot nicer to shift... that's different from a CVT of course, as was an indexless shifter working on set gears. I think the CVT would be cool, but I'd still like some form of indexing to 'feel' how much you are shifting. I have a Pinion BTW...
  • + 3
 You mean like this? www.fallbrooktech.com/nuvinci-technology

CVT sounds good, eliminates the need to find the sweet spot.
  • + 7
 Indexed all the way. As amazing as a CVT seems I think on a mtb it would be a real pain. on a road bike situation or a fire road climb a cvt would work amazingly, perfect gearing all the time. However on the trail it would be irritating. Clicking through gears gives such a good indication of where you are in the range of available ratios. A CVT would likely lose that which would mean coming out of that corner in likely the wrong ratio or hitting that pinch climb without really knowing where you are in terms of gearing.
Basically:

Constant pedalling effort CVT would be brilliant

Occasional / broken pedalling efforts: Better to have indexed gears
  • - 5
flag jaame (Apr 4, 2017 at 1:48) (Below Threshold)
 @mynameiskoko: surely CVT would not require a shifter? I mean, it's constantly variable, yo. You don't have to shift it. But you do need a belt and some big-ass cone washers.
  • + 2
 @jaame: That could be an option. But that would mean you would essentially have a transmission set to maintain a certain cadence. I vary rarely want to pedal at the same cadence consistently even on a road bike. on a mtb its an even bigger range of required cadence.
  • - 6
flag jaame (Apr 4, 2017 at 3:14) (Below Threshold)
 Thanks for the negative props for stating the obvious you bunch of poo poos! Yes, I agree that CVT would be of more use on a road bike application, such as my Yamaha scooter with CVT. The one I ride to work every day. The one I know does not have a shifter. So I believe what you were trying to say was thank you. You're welcome.
  • + 1
 A shifter system and here is why. In the 80's and 90's, I rode/tested 3 different CVT transmissions (worked at a big bike shop and always had that one customer) and can say, I don't think it would be the right application for mtb's. Without making it a full electronic system, with an angle meter, cadence and speed, you will likely never have the "right" gear. A mechanical system runs mostly on some type of flywheel system. I rode the Browning mtb front chainring system (had a 3 month demo), and someone once brought in an 2 different encased rear systems, they both changed gears the faster you pedaled, but it never found MY gear. I've turned to spinning up climbs instead of grinding them over the years, a CVT would likely think you were sprinting and change to a higher gear. I have the quads for it, but don't think there is a mechanical system that would work for mtb. An electronic would be closer, but carry a huge price tag. For the record though, I think they worked okay on the road.
  • + 6
 picking your own gear is paramount to cycling as not all cyclists ride the same, and even ride different from themselves from beginning to end of ride, unlike a motor in a car that has the same power from beginning of ride to end. This is a non-question when you think about it, CVT does not belong on bikes.
  • + 1
 ah nvm, I see you meant a range vs clicks. yea, I guess whatver works, but CVT isn't something you control in terms of it's nomenclature.
  • + 4
 Yes gearboxes are nice in theory, But inificent and heavy compared to Derailuars
But do not see why that has to be such a big difference after all this time with development
Surely the heavy part could be reduced more without causing them to wear out too quick?
Would like to help, but what would it take to be allowed to do that?
  • + 1
 They will be getting lighter and more efficient as time goes on
  • - 6
flag RedRedRe (Apr 4, 2017 at 7:48) (Below Threshold)
 I have ridden some gearboxes, you nailed it. It is inefficient, the power get lost. It is like an internal hub rear. Besides it is not possible to shift while pedaling which just cut it off from any hard riding or racing.
  • + 2
 Here's a thought for those who want gearboxes but not the inefficiencies that go with them...how about E-assist gearboxes? The only assist you get is to overcome drag of the gearbox itself so it feels like you have a regular derallier. The motor and battery would be relatively tiny so the additional weight wouldn't be that bad. Good application of motors or worst of all worlds?
  • + 4
 @Sardine: the efficiency difference isn't actually that much. it's realistically about 2 to 3%. I've read the 5% but it's not backed up by any actual stats, just marketing jargon. Actual tests show about 2% loss compared, which is *something* you can feel, but not as exaggerated as people think. It also loosens up from initial seal friction and this initial break in phase should not be used to factor the efficiency as it will be lower, of course. It should also be noted, that you can pedal, you just can't load the system and this is the same for a conventional drive-train, where loading the chain while shifting is a quick way to start separating the pin/link/roller assy and lead towards a weaker chain prone to breaking, or bent/prematurely worn teeth. This is common knowledge, not to load drive-train when shifting, in just about ALL manually shifted mechanisms, not just bikes.
  • + 5
 @RedRedRe: I ride a DH bike with an Effigear gearbox and you can shift all you want while pedaling and it will shift into harder (higher?) gears as fast as you shift and the shift feels seamless, much less crunchy then doing the same on a cassette and derailleur set up. To shift into easier (lower?) gears you have to let off for an instant and rock the cranks back ever so slightly. I'm not a high level rider or racer but it works quite well for DH racing and the lack of noise, the extra clearance, and minimal maintenance make it great for most of us. Some areas where it accells over a cassette and derailleur are being able to select a gear with out pedaling.
For instance if your racing and know you need to grab two or three gears after the next turn you can do it before the turn while continuing to pedal and stay in your current gear, then let off power (stop pedaling) through the turn, and come out of the turn in just the right gear with out a turn of the cranks. Or you can change gears over a jump in the air and be in what ever gear you want with out a turn of the cranks...
That said there is noticeable drive train loss.
  • + 1
 @atrokz: where do you find those tests at? My eng textbooks say belt, then chain, and much further from 100% efficiency, gears, as they create far more heat and noise than the other 2.
  • + 1
 @wildcatwilly: drl is still gears and still subject to losses. I believe a british university tested a few units against eachother, and there's a more recent one as well.
  • + 1
 @atrokz: Can't find anything based on that vague description. In engineering terms a derailler system does not have any physical gears, and in the pinion system you have the losses of sprockets/chain - 1 idler + gear box. With a countershaft setup, the best case scenario might be within 2% of a derailler's worst case... maybe. On Pinion's website they claim their system will be more efficient when compared to a dirty and skewed chainline, but tests show cross chaining on a 2x system does not affect efficiency, they are extrapolating data from a chain system not designed to bend, and their system will have a dirty chain in the same circumstances, so that claim is false.
  • + 1
 @wildcatwilly: have you used google before?
  • + 1
 How does the gearbox play into the equation where youve already listed its gearset?
  • + 1
 On mobile with limited connectivity but heres one where rohloff is compared to drl. Rohloff being a planetary system is different but does illustrate a better number vs the arbitrary numbers being thrown around. 2 percent is the most realistic difference. www.hupi.org/HParchive/PDF/hp55/hp55p11-15.pdf
  • + 1
 In engineering terms a drl system does in fact have gears. Hence, having..... Gears.
  • + 1
 And lastly, if you dont think cross chaining a chain causes more friction and energy loss, then I dont know what to tell you other than youre welcome to see the test we do for naval systems (TAHS) where angled chainline litterally causes smoke from the chain. Im sure youre getting a good education, but I suggest looking into manufacturing engineering principals and the pages and pages on chain drive systems and how bad chainlines cause excessive wear (friction. Energy loss). This is undisputable and widely known in industry. Angled chain is a huge no-no for longevity of this system and is a bane of the drl system where chains are weakened over time by this kind of use. Same industry that has been using roller ball bearings for pivots for decades. Litterally the worst bearing for the application.
  • + 1
 @atrokz: Getting a good education? That was 10 years ago, I've pulled out screwed up chains with a crane many times, I know exactly what happens, you are describing the chain systems not designed to bend I was talking about, "I don't know what to tell you" aka you have no idea how to refute what I said. That's the equivalent to stating how shaft alignment is affecting bearing load, but ignoring that the design uses spherical roller bearings. The chains of the 2 are not apples to apples, if they were, the bike chain would fail in a matter of hours, and there is no industrial equivalent to a bike chain I'm aware of. Does it wear out sooner? Sure, but something that takes an entire season will not create a measurable difference in efficiency. A derailler system has gears, as in different drive ratios, but not physical gears, a sprocket and a gear are 2 different things, especially referencing drive efficiencies in technical documents. It's also hilarious for you to ask if I've used google, and then give me a link to an old rohloff test as your example of "actual tests". You are aware that a rohloff has a 1:1 drive scenario where 0 gears are turning? The pinion system does not have a gear where the input locks to the output, power always transfers through all 3 shafts, and all gears mesh at all times, also not a good comparison. So something like pinion 86-92 and 11spd derailler 94-99 is actually quite realistic. "Cross-chain gears make little difference. In the Shimano 27, the cross chain between the two big gears on the Shimano has a higher-than-average efficiency (gear 10, 44/34" more tests from 2001. Tell me when your chain snaps, are the surfaces exposed between inner and outer links galled up like an industrial chain failure, or are they still smooth?
  • + 1
 @wildcatwilly: ngalling depends on materials,friction. Etc. Yes, its not the same amount but as you know full well, its still engergy and its exaggerated the further out it goes. Its minimal, but Im just saying its there. A larger affect on energy would be size of the ratio used, say 30t vs 36t. Etc.

I forgot that the pinion doesnt have a 1:1 like rohloff has. Thats true, it is a difference. That said, 3 gears meshed isnt a 14% loss.
  • + 1
 A spur gear is 98-99% efficient. Since losses on meshed gears are due to friction and churning it shouldnt be too hard to calculate if all 3 are constantly meshed. Only WAGs would be seals and the tolerance stack for that assembly and how much friction its applying. Like I said 2%, 3% maaaybe 4% makes more sense compared to a chain, not from 100.
  • + 4
 As a design engineer, working on designing something like this for a company like pinion,or even just designing their test rigs or making the fucking tea would have been an absolute dream.
  • + 5
 Milk with no sugar and get back to work & stop dreaming at work!
  • + 6
 is it intentional that I'm seeing a sram eagle advertisement at the top of the page...
  • + 3
 Cool stuff. How much cheaper is the C1.12 and when will it be available? I'd love to have one in a commuting/adventure/bikepacking bike. Especially if the price comes more in line with IGHs. Will Zerode be offering the C1.12 in their enduro bike in the future?
  • + 3
 I for one would love to have a nice aggressive HT with this DT. I commute to work every day through my local state park in every kind of condition. Not having to clean and lube my DT nearly every day would be nice. Yes if you ride through lots of mud, snow or whatever you need to clean and lube your DT.
  • + 3
 My zerode taniwha is without question the best bike I have ever owned. Here in NZ we get all conditions. The gearbox is brilliant. There is absolutely zero drag. If you keep load on as you downchange on a climb you are savage on your drivetrain, shifting is instantaneous and positive. SRAM and shimano have been ripping me off for years, goodbye forever to all the fast wearing exposed overpriced crap I have been wasting my $$ on. The only people who can judge are those who have experienced.
  • + 7
 Looks like the bike industry might be shifting gears once again...
  • + 3
 You know what really grinds my gears? People who can't shift properly.
  • + 3
 @ratedgg13: Looking at the photos of the gearbox assembly makes my head spin...freely...
  • + 2
 At least they're thinking outside the box...
  • + 2
 I don't think that casing in the first picture is actually 3D printed, there are no layer lines. It kinda looks sculpted (from wood or some other material?). Some of the ones in the next photo definitely are printed, though.

Anyway. I can't wait till the C1.12 hits the market properly, I don't suppose there's some info on which companies (if any) apart from Ghost are looking to make a bike with it?
  • + 3
 Nicolai make the ION GPI, it's awesome!
  • + 2
 @MacRamsay: I wouldnt listen to this guy he knows nothign about bikes! ha ha thats not true but he will drive you mad about his ION GPI... ha ha ha
  • + 1
 Think it was a joke dude
  • + 5
 Gearboxes.
In theory I'm like "yeahhhh maybe"
In practice I'm like "but nahhhh"
  • + 4
 Not with this one bro, give it a whirl!
  • + 6
 Please do not make your gearboxes press-fit
  • + 6
 Do Pinions go through shift cables "ever so often" or "every so often"?
  • + 1
 I can live with typos, but then he called the gear a sprocket... too far.
  • + 2
 Pinion really need to do some serious demo days. This kind of thing sounds very interesting, but I'll never buy one until the reviews a hugely biased towards the amazing, or, I can actually try one of these things out and stop wondering. Till then, XT is so damn cheap...
  • + 3
 If there ever a company that would benefit from crowd funding it would be this one. I would certainly invest to help speed up development and drive down costs. A rider owned gearbox company would be great.
  • + 4
 Please get electronic shifting into these ASAP! Then we can ditch the grip shift and the horrid dual cable system for a trigger shifter and maybe better changing under load
  • + 2
 I am wondering whether Pinion and the likes will claim a position in the mainstream market of cycling in the near future or will they be overhauled by the upcoming e-bike market...

Could it be that in the future we will see Pinion integrating e-motors on bikes?
  • + 2
 All looks lovey with its nice gears and cool engineering. But I cant see how it will be sealed from the crap we get in a UK winter.

As anyone in the UK knows, bearings are sealed but UK winter riding kills them. I had a Hammerschmidt, which was also well made, but they couldn't seal it against water / dirt and I had to take it apart every few weeks in the winter to remove the grinding paste that had got in.

How will this be different ?
  • + 2
 This is absolutely glorious. Awesome article, and awesome tech. I want it on my next bike. All I need is for someone closer to Canada to put together a good looking, good performing, reasonably priced Alum frame, and we're in business.
  • + 4
 These are essentially Honda Civic transmissions stuffed into a bike frame. So awesome.
  • + 4
 Holy arbor press, Batman! I NEED THAT THING. On a side note, these photos are amazing. Great article!
  • + 1
 I am not sure if this was mentioned earlier but being able to shift gears while coasting is cool for example when you have to stand on the pedals due to speed and rolling terrain. I think there are a lot of pro's and con's to a gearbox but a rider has to be able to make their own decision. that being said, It would be cool if they could make a few demo bikes and tour the lands, I would sign up!
  • + 1
 Hey whats the deal with the rear hub? Did I read somewhere that it doesn't have a freehub body and the chain moves all the time or did I imagine that? Do you have to use a pinon hub or just a nice disk single speed one? Their documentation on these things is horrible. I get trade secrets and all but a big park of biking is getting to geek out on the tech. If it is all super squirrel secret you loose out on half the fun. It is clearly the right design though I would imagine it would be hard for builders to get it at first. Also their cranks suck so they should just have the option of running other peoples ones.
  • + 5
 I have a Taniwha . Me very happy
  • + 2
 The Honda rn box is still the best using normal parts packed away and centered in the frame,they should just refine that idea it would be way cheaper,great engineering thow must have took ages to get this tek,
  • + 3
 given how many BB i go through on mtb bikes what happens with these gearbox and e bike motor bearings. full strip down and rebuild job to get at them?
  • + 4
 A life of 100,000km?! Doesn't that seem a little excessive?
  • + 3
 Technically, you could bring it with you from bike to bike. Like that one thing all your girlfriends complain about. I have an Elite Hotwheels collection. I still have them, no matter the outcome. Kinda like dumping a girlfriend. "Well, that frame is done. We've had fun. I'll just take my transmission with me and move on". Hopefully your girlfriend doesn't give you her transmission..
  • + 4
 E=MC Squared, these guys are brilliant.
  • + 1
 That formula has literally nothing to do with gearboxes ????
  • + 3
 @piersgritten: I know. Albert Einstein was a German genius also.
  • + 2
 Why not something like a small version of this?
www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHWqlfDZnmQ

Just two variable gears instead of lots of moving parts
  • + 2
 Really, really nice stuff. Impressive. I like how they replaced the Dell with the Pinion logo on the back of the screen.
  • + 2
 I want some stiff carbon cranks for mine please! And the C.12 would be nice too. Anyone wanna buy a P.12?! lol
  • + 1
 which is the better suspension platform for these, it seems all are running single pivot, would it work with a VPP or a Horst Link?
  • + 4
 It would work but not really necessary -- vpp and Horst link exist mainly to counteract the problems created by a variable chainline and to counteract braking input on the suspension to a lesser extent
  • + 2
 I'm almost sold on these. They just need to figure out how to make them change gears under pressure.
  • + 1
 You know what we need to work on in the bike industry.............the god damn prices. Bring them mother fuvkers down!
  • + 1
 If this become cheaper, i'll probably get one.

I can't wait to tell everyone i'm passing that "v-tech just kicked in yo".
  • + 3
 I'd ride one.
  • + 2
 Was on the fence about gearboxes, until I saw the guts of this ...
  • + 1
 i for one am excited. wireless electric gearbox? no maintenance for 100,000, yes please. i will buy it right now.
  • + 2
 Stop with the articles! Have mercy, dammit; it's finals week!
  • + 2
 i got one nicolai hardtail/pinion! lovable!!!
  • + 1
 This is the future. The future is now. I want a Viral Skeptic like nobodies business!
  • + 2
 Gotta love those German engineers! Can't wait to try out a pinion.
  • + 2
 great article. thanks @mattwragg !
  • + 1
 All these pictures of small moving parts made me change my o'pinion ... I'll stick with deraileurs for this life.
  • + 2
 Pinions are like assholes...
  • + 12
 So we all have them? If so I've lost mine, can someone please send me a new one?
  • + 1
 I am curious why the need of the derailleur cage. Why not make the rear axle adjustable like a dirt bike.
  • + 2
 Nearly all rear suspension designs have some amount of chaingrowth as they cycle through travel. On a HT with horizontal dropouts obviously no need for a spring tensioner
  • + 1
 Would work on some slope style suspension types like those used on the LePink, Pslope and Bass.
  • + 1
 Would it be half the weight with half the gears? Obviously not but who needs 18?
  • + 1
 There's a 9 and 12 speed version too Smile
  • + 1
 @MacRamsay: I knew they made a 12speed of the original. I wonder if they get a similar range with the 9speed and what the weight is.
  • + 1
 @choppertank3e: P18 is 2700g, the P12 is 2350g, P9 a further 2200g.

The new C12 is 2100g, C9 is 2000g and the C6 is 1800g.

So the new casing effectively saves roughly 200g which is pretty good.

I might consider the C9 as an upgrade to my P12 - the range is only slightly less (and i very rarely get up to 12th gear) and add carbon cranks into the mix then I'd be looking at a weight saving of potentially 500g (assuming saving of 150g on cranks) bringing the weight under 2kg. Which would be ace.
  • + 1
 @MacRamsay: Cheers. C9 sounds dope.
  • + 2
 Man, super cool to see! Makes me want one
  • + 0
 You will know that gear boxes have arrived, when you see UCI XC racers running them.
  • + 2
 One day!
  • + 5
 Tomorrow?
  • + 1
 You guys remember the HammerSchmidt? Yeah
  • + 1
 get that on a session or demo or some kind of DH beast and I will buy it
  • + 0
 I know this is being picky, but there are no 'sprockets' in that gearbox....
  • + 1
 I want one of these badly, they look incredible!
  • + 0
 Needs a motor to go with it....braaaaap
  • + 1
 With you on that one! Nicolai have a new ebike that looks awesome, but not with pinion. Pinion trialled a concept E-pinion but it was abandoned as far as I know...
  • + 0
 Pinion with DSG Transmission, thats all.
  • + 1
 Hope, your up.
  • + 2
 A hope gearbox? Wow. Or maybe just some cranks to fit it would do...
  • + 0
 nvm. delete it
  • - 2
 maybe the internal gear hub is the best after all! tup
  • + 1
 this is excatly like an gear hub but moved on the front.
  • + 3
 @RedRedRe: the internal gear rear hub will already fit any bike, no need to buy a new frame!
  • + 2
 @RedRedRe: and the price difference is.......

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