Author Topic: Thinking of Gates Carbon  (Read 1115 times)

Bill

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Re: Thinking of Gates Carbon
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2018, 04:07:33 AM »
I have a Rohloff with chain drive on my Raven Nomad and Rohloff with belt drive on my Jones Plus.

Both have worked well without any problems. If you have to make any changes, the chain drive is much simpler and cheaper. Changing cogs on the belt drive is expensive and you will need a new belt. Belt tension is complicated, a belt needs to be tight, but too much tension can damage the hub. You really need the Gates belt tension gauge to adjust it properly, Gates has a clever app on your phone that calculates the tension from the frequency of the sound made when you pluck the belt with your finger, but its pretty wonky. I ended up getting the gauge from Gates.

A friend had a Gates drive with the belt adjusted too tight, and ended up ruining the cog and wearing out the belt.  Her hub is okay so far.

I like the idea of not having to clean and lube the chain, and the belt has worked well for me, but I don't really think there is any big advantage over a chain other than that. Chains are simple and cheap and easy to change and adjust and you don't have to worry about tension.

I have to admit I haven't noticed any difference in ride quality.
 

pavel

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Re: Thinking of Gates Carbon
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2018, 07:29:28 AM »
This afternoon I was at a bike store in Raleigh and went to ask a mechanic about my hand pump.  We had a good conversation about bikes for a few minutes until I noticed he was doing a one year tune up on a customers Gates drive, Shimano Alfine bike, which she had custom built by the shop. I talked a good fifteen minutes about Gates drives and I noticed, and was surprised about the low tension on the belt. He said that he puts the belt on with 30-35 pounds of tension and that that is within recommended specs.  It was not at all what I was imagining.  I wonder if manye people are not putting way too much tension on this new toothed design?

He said that they only build a few a year, mostly for high end builds but he really liked them and rides on himself. 

I had the thought that the best analogy to be made is the Aluminum Versus steel frame differences. Some people can't feel any difference between the two, while most of the world doesn't care one bit.  Only a few "nuts" really into bikes will talk of the "sweet" ride of a well built steel frame.  Steel is real, is lost on most. Had Aluminum arrived first to the Philistines, steel would likely never have come into existence. 

Perhaps it's got something to do with the way I like to ride slow, pedaling along and enjoying the scenery in a languid fashion, but I find something in that sweet Gates ride. Philistines notwithstanding.  ;)
« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 07:31:07 AM by pavel »

Bill

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Re: Thinking of Gates Carbon
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2018, 07:16:22 PM »
28-40 lbs is what Gates recommends for internal geared hubs.

Its not hard to get that tension, in fact its probably easier to set it higher, it is on the lower end of Gates' recommended tensions.

The problem is you don't really know what it is unless you can measure it. I suppose if you were a mechanic dealing with belt drives all the time, you would be able to do it by feel.

I am going to ride both my Rohloff bikes, one after the other, and see if I notice a difference. Not for a while though, its midwinter and the streets are covered with snow and ice. I will report back in a month or so.