Author Topic: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11  (Read 769 times)

Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« on: July 11, 2020, 09:39:37 am »
Is anyone touring using a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11 IGH?

Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2020, 09:44:09 am »
Alfine 8 has been used to circumnavigate the globe.  But are you thinking of touring with a load on....?

cheers

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2020, 01:17:35 pm »
Alfine 8 has been used to circumnavigate the globe.  But are you thinking of touring with a load on....?

cheers
I never knew that! Any links about it, please?
A bit far for me, I think. I'm happy with South Shropshire and the Welsh Marches. :)

Less than 100kg including me and much nearer to 90kg. Are they averse to heavy loads?
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2020, 02:17:02 pm »
Nope, but would recommend ensuring that you have a 2mm hex key handy for rear wheel removal. Very awkward if you don’t, although a spare spoke would work,

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2020, 04:37:38 pm »
Vin Cox rode a Genesis Croix de Fer equipped with an Alfine 8 hub RTW in 2010, setting a new record in the process.

https://www.bikeradar.com/news/vin-cox-sets-new-round-the-world-record/

He used a Croix de Fer frameset (which isn't IGH-dedicated, normally being used with derailleur gears ) so that in the event of the IGH giving trouble, he'd be able to use a more readily available derailleur rear wheel instead; I think changing wheels is OK but changing framesets/bikes might fall foul of the RTW rules. The hub did the full trip without incident, so in the event this wasn't necessary.

Heavy loads are mainly a problem from the POV of gear range.   Alfine 8 is a better hub than (say) Alfine 11 in many respects, but it has less evenly/more widely spaced gears, and a narrower overall gear range. You can fit two chainrings  (provided you use a tensioner) and address one or other issue if you want, but unless there are long hills/steep hills/heavy loads probably you won't need to bother.

IMHO for several reasons the hub works best if you set gear 5 or gear 6 as the 'tapping along' gear, which you would normally use on the flat with no wind, or perhaps as a singlespeed gear

cheers

Auntie Helen

  • 6 Wheels in Germany
Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2020, 05:04:55 pm »
I’ve done loads of tours with an Alfine 11, it’s been great.
My blog on cycling in Germany and eating German cake – http://www.auntiehelen.co.uk


Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2020, 06:43:14 pm »
I’ve done loads of tours with an Alfine 11, it’s been great.

Apologies for forgetting you Aunty Helen.
I've set the motor up on my Trice Q according to your instructions and thanks for putting them on your blog.
Just final fettling to do on that machine.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2020, 06:46:04 pm »
Nope, but would recommend ensuring that you have a 2mm hex key handy for rear wheel removal. Very awkward if you don’t, although a spare spoke would work,

Would that be as an aid for releasing the cable?
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2020, 07:01:18 pm »
Vin Cox rode a Genesis Croix de Fer equipped with an Alfine 8 hub RTW in 2010, setting a new record in the process.

https://www.bikeradar.com/news/vin-cox-sets-new-round-the-world-record/

He used a Croix de Fer frameset (which isn't IGH-dedicated, normally being used with derailleur gears ) so that in the event of the IGH giving trouble, he'd be able to use a more readily available derailleur rear wheel instead; I think changing wheels is OK but changing framesets/bikes might fall foul of the RTW rules. The hub did the full trip without incident, so in the event this wasn't necessary.

Heavy loads are mainly a problem from the POV of gear range.   Alfine 8 is a better hub than (say) Alfine 11 in many respects, but it has less evenly/more widely spaced gears, and a narrower overall gear range. You can fit two chainrings  (provided you use a tensioner) and address one or other issue if you want, but unless there are long hills/steep hills/heavy loads probably you won't need to bother.

IMHO for several reasons the hub works best if you set gear 5 or gear 6 as the 'tapping along' gear, which you would normally use on the flat with no wind, or perhaps as a singlespeed gear

cheers

Thanks for the link, Brucey.
I've just changed the rear socket to 20 teeth which gives me a 5th of 50" and a 6th of 61". (I took your earlier advice about reversing the axle locating nuts, changed the chain for one without a half link and it went together lovely).
With these IGH I try to start with the lowest gear at mid 20's and let the rest sort itself. I have a spare Alfine 11 and a rim it could go in if I want a wider range but if I decide to motorise I'll stick with the 8.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2020, 07:09:22 pm »
Other than a spare cable is there anything relating to the hub that should be carried as a spare part.
I seem to recall that I used to carry a spare sprocket spring clip when I rode Sturmey Archer FW's but I don't recall ever needing it or why I thought I might.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2020, 07:28:27 pm »
Someone to push you uphill  ;)
the slower you go the more you see

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2020, 07:31:08 pm »
Nope, but would recommend ensuring that you have a 2mm hex key handy for rear wheel removal. Very awkward if you don’t, although a spare spoke would work,

Would that be as an aid for releasing the cable?
The more recent version of the 8 (C7000?) has the cable routed over the top and it's easily done with a finger, I then pull it out of the arm giving loads of slack to wiggle the nut out.  I also have the version with the cable routed the other way and that's a little more awkward, though neither are a big deal.
I couldn't tour with the 8 spd,  the range and spacing wouldn't suit my touring (Or fitness), it's been OK for the urban riding it gets used for, but that restricts the other uses I might have for the bike so I'm likely to retire it from that as well.  I otherwise like it, IMO whether it suits you is entirely about the range and ratios.

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2020, 08:01:42 pm »
Other than a spare cable is there anything relating to the hub that should be carried as a spare part....

I would suggest that you consider carrying a spare cassette joint lockring; they weigh nothing, are easily broken and the hub won't work at all well without.

The other thing is that if you use a 3/32" sprocket it is a very good idea to make sure that the lugs on the sprocket which transfer the drive are set to the left side of the sprocket not the right; if set to the right then they can wear and allow the sprocket to slip round, sometimes pushing the retaining circlip off the driver.

cheers

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2020, 09:00:02 pm »
Someone to push you uphill  ;)
That'll be Mr. Bafang  :P    (maybe).
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2020, 09:04:43 pm »
The more recent version of the 8 (C7000?) has the cable routed over the top and it's easily done with a finger, I then pull it out of the arm giving loads of slack to wiggle the nut out.  I also have the version with the cable routed the other way and that's a little more awkward, though neither are a big deal.
I couldn't tour with the 8 spd,  the range and spacing wouldn't suite my touring (Or fitness), it's been OK for the urban riding it gets used for, but that restricts the other uses I might have for the bike so I'm likely to retire it from that as well.  I otherwise like it, IMO whether it suits you is entirely about the range and ratios.

I've also the advantage that with the Moulton I can separate the cable. I'm not sure about the range being enough for touring but I'll give it ago. I'm only thinking two nights out and using trains so never far from home. I know that I don't like the 11" drop from 6th to 5th but I have other options if it doesn't work.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2020, 09:47:52 pm »
I rode my first audaxes on a Surly Cross Check fitted with an Alfine 8 and have never bettered my time over a 200 since ???

I never experienced a failure on any of my Alfine equipped bikes over many years and mile, but for some reason decided to sell them on over the last couple of years.  Apart from one that was left feeling lonely in the shed until I took it out last week for a spin, oh my, how I'd forgotten just how nice it is to ride a hub gear, especially over challenging off road sections where the advantages really shine.

Brucey, thanks for the link to Vin Cox, very interesting :thumbsup:
Most of the stuff I say is true because I saw it in a dream and I don't have the presence of mind to make up lies when I'm asleep.   Bryan Andreas

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2020, 10:53:19 pm »
Vin Cox rode a Genesis Croix de Fer equipped with an Alfine 8 hub RTW in 2010, setting a new record in the process.
I went to see a talk by Vin a few months after he'd completed the trip.  Apparently some of the motivation for using an Alfine was because a certain Somerset purveyor of fine fourteen speed hub gears had told him it'd be a mistake to try it on anything less...

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #17 on: July 12, 2020, 05:34:52 am »
Vin Cox rode a Genesis Croix de Fer equipped with an Alfine 8 hub RTW in 2010, setting a new record in the process.
I went to see a talk by Vin a few months after he'd completed the trip.  Apparently some of the motivation for using an Alfine was because a certain Somerset purveyor of fine fourteen speed hub gears had told him it'd be a mistake to try it on anything less...
Obviously not a Bridgewater Bandit. They'd never say such a thing.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #18 on: July 12, 2020, 09:02:03 am »
FWIW I've just had a play with the gear calculator and here are a couple of twin-chainring Alfine 8 based setups for a 35-406 wheeled machine;

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=19&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=45,50&RZ2=19&UF2=1510

one is a half-step and the other is a one-and-half step.   Because the IGH ratios are non-uniform the ratios are not evenly spaced once subdivided either, but it isn't any worse than most derailleur-based half-step schemes are.

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=15&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=41,54&RZ2=16&UF2=1510

includes a 1-1/2 step scheme using 15T sprocket and 50-39T chainrings, and an alternative giving similar ratios using a 16T sprocket and 54-41 chainrings. This gives a 25-102" gear range and also gives four gear ratios in the 54-68" 'tapping along' zone, including 50/15 (or 54/16) gear #5, which is direct drive 63", which would be an efficient gear that would see a lot of use with me. I'd happily tour on those ratios, or similar.

cheers

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #19 on: July 12, 2020, 10:31:51 am »
FWIW I've just had a play with the gear calculator and here are a couple of twin-chainring Alfine 8 based setups for a 35-406 wheeled machine;

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=19&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=45,50&RZ2=19&UF2=1510

one is a half-step and the other is a one-and-half step.   Because the IGH ratios are non-uniform the ratios are not evenly spaced once subdivided either, but it isn't any worse than most derailleur-based half-step schemes are.

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=15&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=41,54&RZ2=16&UF2=1510

includes a 1-1/2 step scheme using 15T sprocket and 50-39T chainrings, and an alternative giving similar ratios using a 16T sprocket and 54-41 chainrings. This gives a 25-102" gear range and also gives four gear ratios in the 54-68" 'tapping along' zone, including 50/15 (or 54/16) gear #5, which is direct drive 63", which would be an efficient gear that would see a lot of use with me. I'd happily tour on those ratios, or similar.

cheers

The only caveat I would add to twin chainrings (or indeed any IGH using a tensioner  and touring) is to loctite the bolts for the tensioner pulleys, otherwise the lower one can unscrew, particularly if the chainline is slightly out (and the tensioners can develop play at the hanger bolt) DAHIKT

edit The lower pulley on twin pulley tensioners, the only one on single pulley tensioners! ;D

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #20 on: July 12, 2020, 11:03:38 am »
FWIW I've just had a play with the gear calculator and here are a couple of twin-chainring Alfine 8 based setups for a 35-406 wheeled machine;

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=19&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=45,50&RZ2=19&UF2=1510

one is a half-step and the other is a one-and-half step.   Because the IGH ratios are non-uniform the ratios are not evenly spaced once subdivided either, but it isn't any worse than most derailleur-based half-step schemes are.

http://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=SNI8&KB=38,50&RZ=15&UF=1510&TF=90&SL=2.6&UN=MPH&DV=gearInches&GR2=SNI8&KB2=41,54&RZ2=16&UF2=1510

includes a 1-1/2 step scheme using 15T sprocket and 50-39T chainrings, and an alternative giving similar ratios using a 16T sprocket and 54-41 chainrings. This gives a 25-102" gear range and also gives four gear ratios in the 54-68" 'tapping along' zone, including 50/15 (or 54/16) gear #5, which is direct drive 63", which would be an efficient gear that would see a lot of use with me. I'd happily tour on those ratios, or similar.

cheers

The only caveat I would add to twin chainrings (or indeed any IGH using a tensioner  and touring) is to loctite the bolts for the tensioner pulleys, otherwise the lower one can unscrew, particularly if the chainline is slightly out (and the tensioners can develop play at the hanger bolt) DAHIKT

edit The lower pulley on twin pulley tensioners, the only one on single pulley tensioners! ;D
Thanks. That is worth knowing.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #21 on: July 12, 2020, 11:11:45 am »
Other than a spare cable is there anything relating to the hub that should be carried as a spare part....

I would suggest that you consider carrying a spare cassette joint lockring; they weigh nothing, are easily broken and the hub won't work at all well without.

The other thing is that if you use a 3/32" sprocket it is a very good idea to make sure that the lugs on the sprocket which transfer the drive are set to the left side of the sprocket not the right; if set to the right then they can wear and allow the sprocket to slip round, sometimes pushing the retaining circlip off the driver.

cheers
I had a look in my spares box and found three cassette lock rings. Why I have three I have no idea. Also decided to add a cable nut assembly - just the sort of thing I'd drop and lose.

Can I ask for a bit more explanation about the sprocket lugs. I don't understand what you mean by 'set to the left side'? Thanks
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #22 on: July 12, 2020, 02:11:20 pm »
if you look at any 3/32" IGH sprocket it is 1/8" thickness where it sits on the driver, courtesy of various joggles in the ~3/32" thickness material. All three drive lugs end up offset to one side, and if they happen to be offset to the right, they can more easily wear and slip on the driver.


dished 16T SA 3/32" sprocket with offset drive lugs

1/8" sprockets don't suffer from the same problem.

cheers

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #23 on: July 12, 2020, 02:58:16 pm »
if you look at any 3/32" IGH sprocket it is 1/8" thickness where it sits on the driver, courtesy of various joggles in the ~3/32" thickness material. All three drive lugs end up offset to one side, and if they happen to be offset to the right, they can more easily wear and slip on the driver.


dished 16T SA 3/32" sprocket with offset drive lugs

1/8" sprockets don't suffer from the same problem.

cheers

Ah yes. I see what you mean. Is this example joggled Left or Right though?
Sorry to be so dim.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Touring with a Shimano Alfine 8 or 11
« Reply #24 on: July 12, 2020, 04:01:08 pm »
it depends which way  you have the dish facing as to whether the drive lugs are to the left or right.

cheers