Quantcast

the gearbox thread

LMC

Monkey
Dec 10, 2006
683
0
I'm thinking they got the idea from a variable stroke engine. Funny how after all these years the gearbox still gets talked about.
 

atrokz

Turbo Monkey
Mar 14, 2002
1,556
79
teedotohdot
Instead of gearboxes, years later the industry gives us:

2 different wheel sizes, and phasing out of 26" (If you think this is tinfoil hat, look at special ed's new lineup)
A few more gears
Tall teeth on your chainring
A 'clutch' on that $200 weak point still hanging off the rear axle in harms way
Multiple new 'standards'.
Multiple new lies.
$10,000 mountain bikes being normal.

Only in this industry can such miniscule 'advancements' net such large increases in cost. well under $10,000 can buy you a Nicolai Pinion with great parts and custom geometry, or, a specialized 29" 'evo' with nothing actually revolutionary or that great at all. Food for thought.....


Anyone else have something to add to the list of items not gearboxes?
 
Last edited:

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
59,430
7,075
media blackout
Instead of gearboxes, years later the industry gives us:

2 different wheel sizes, and phasing out of 26" (If you think this is tinfoil hat, look at special ed's new lineup)
A few more gears
Tall teeth on your chainring
A 'clutch' on that $200 weak point still hanging off the rear axle in harms way
Multiple new 'standards'.
Multiple new lies.
$10,000 mountain bikes being normal.

Only in this industry can such miniscule 'advancements' net such large increases in cost. $10,000 would have bought you a Nicolai Pinion with great parts and custom geometry. Food for thought.....

Anyone else have something to add to the list of items not gearboxes?
this has trickled down from road biking
 

LMC

Monkey
Dec 10, 2006
683
0
Instead of gearboxes, years later the industry gives us:

2 different wheel sizes, and phasing out of 26" (If you think this is tinfoil hat, look at special ed's new lineup)
A few more gears
Tall teeth on your chainring
A 'clutch' on that $200 weak point still hanging off the rear axle in harms way
Multiple new 'standards'.
Multiple new lies.
$10,000 mountain bikes being normal.

Only in this industry can such miniscule 'advancements' net such large increases in cost. $10,000 would have bought you a Nicolai Pinion with great parts and custom geometry. Food for thought.....

Anyone else have something to add to the list of items not gearboxes?
To be honest, i think its not unique to the cycling industry. Generally if point A is where current products are at, and point Z is where they could be at it manufacturers really wanted it, we get releases B, C, D etc as there's more profit in planned obsolescence. Apple for example are notorious for it, making minor adjustments to a new iphone release and charging high premiums.
 

atrokz

Turbo Monkey
Mar 14, 2002
1,556
79
teedotohdot
Agree with both of you guys. It's as if the crackheads, errrr, engineers at some of these companies are following Apple's method for leaching as much out of the consumer as possible.

Only a few years ago one would have balked at $10,000 complete builds. Now quite a few are doing one, and none have been able to make a gearbox, save for a few brilliant engineers who came from the automotive industry... which kind of says a lot about the guys designing these $10,000 bikes and their actual prowess.

Edit: Oh well. I'll keep readjusting my $250 XTR and $150 Force every week. It's not like other industries have come up with great inventions since the inception of the derailleur, like rail guns, scramjets, magnetic launching systems, smartphones, computers, digital everything, and.... oh, wait....
 
Last edited:

xy9ine

Turbo Monkey
Mar 22, 2004
2,860
252
vancouver eastside
Agree with both of you guys. It's as if the crackheads, errrr, engineers at some of these companies are following Apple's method for leaching as much out of the consumer as possible.
should we expect anything else from a capitalist system? they need to move big numbers every year to exist. can you imagine the difference in current bike & drivetrain sales if, say, larger wheels had not been conceived (not to discount their benefits), and (adequately) light weight & reliable gear hubs were readily available a reasonable price points?
 
Last edited:

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,497
1,273
01776
back on the topic of gearbox bikes; curious how this works (looks to be a production unit):
that looks awesome! One thing I hadn't really considered, if the pinion allows you to use a smaller chainring (looks like it) you could also use a lower pivot height. That could potentially make for a playful bike that still has a fair amount of anti squat and other good tractive capabilities. Would make for a sweet "park bike". 6/6" travel, no gears, go screw around on a-line or hellion all day long.
 

atrokz

Turbo Monkey
Mar 14, 2002
1,556
79
teedotohdot
should we expect anything else from a capitalist system? they need to move big numbers every year to exist. can you imagine the difference in current bike & drivetrain sales if, say, larger wheels had not been conceived (not to discount their benefits), and (adequately) light weight & reliable gear hubs were readily available a reasonable price points?
Yup. It's the world we live in I guess. Still, they could have made sales off a new bar/stem/seatpost/pedal/crank/discombobulator standard no?

to be fair... it's not the engineers. its the project managers and suits making the calls. engineers are just the minions.
This is true.

the pinion box looks pretty well put together. same w/ the frames that use them. haven't heard much about them lately though.
Really just a few euro companies using them. I'd love to see the cost on a unit at OEM pricing to put on a trail HT to putt around on.
 

atrokz

Turbo Monkey
Mar 14, 2002
1,556
79
teedotohdot
that looks awesome! One thing I hadn't really considered, if the pinion allows you to use a smaller chainring (looks like it) you could also use a lower pivot height. That could potentially make for a playful bike that still has a fair amount of anti squat and other good tractive capabilities. Would make for a sweet "park bike". 6/6" travel, no gears, go screw around on a-line or hellion all day long.
Yup, and have enough gearing to go play in the woods as well.

It really looks like the best system around in terms of gearboxes. Too bad a large player hasn't picked up on them yet. I know the market is skeptical, but it goes something like this:

"Hello, ve are from das Pinion, and ve haf previously designed Porsche doppelkupplung gearbox. Now ve come to bring ze magic to dis industry of biking and invented ze best transmission for ze bike eva concived"

Industry: "Sorry, we're in bed with SRAM and Shimano, we like hanging $200 fragile bits off bikes, and we're too busy shoving new standards down our consumers throats"

Consumers: "If pros don't run it, it's not good" & "It's waaaay to complicated for my feeble brain to comprehend, so it can't possibly work!!"


This is why we can't have nice things.
 
Last edited:

Sandwich

Pig my fish!
Staff member
May 23, 2002
16,497
1,273
01776
yeah but in the past 15 years it's been:

"Look at this revolutionary technology we and only we have! You can license it for a lot of money and be revolutionary"

"But it weighs 2lb more and offers a more limited range of gear and limits frame design and drivetrain lash is substantial"

"YES BUT THE REVOLUTION"

Hopefully the pinion corrects some of these ailments. I haven't been following it because it's so german, but maybe there's potential there. It doesn't necessarily have to do with what the pros are running. No pros are running the vivid air, to my knowledge, nor the CCDB air, but those are both market viable, real world shocks. The zerode seems to be doing well, despite not having a pro team.

Usually, riders buy what works. It's only through feats of marketing that riders buy what works worse and thinks it works better, like hacking half a cassette off and selling it to riders for more than a full cassette, or limiting the range of a shock and saying it's better because you can't tune it as well.

If pinion wants this to sell well, they'll have to allow anybody to use it, not charge 1400 for it, and not force people into further standards, like a single pivot location. Add in a website that isn't cryptic and requires a login, and they might have a chance.
 

atrokz

Turbo Monkey
Mar 14, 2002
1,556
79
teedotohdot
All valid points.

If shimano could get off their asses and figure something out or license the technologies, companies would follow.

Maybe the idea of owning a gearbox'ed trail bike that goes a season without any drivetrain work is a pipe dream. Oh well.
 

xy9ine

Turbo Monkey
Mar 22, 2004
2,860
252
vancouver eastside
^i was just reading the pinion literature; standard maintenance consists of an oil change - every 10,000k. love it.

similarly, my drivetrain maintenance over the last 6 years has been (apart from standard chain care) - 1 oil change, and replacing 1 set of cables. perfect shifting always, with absolutely no adjustments required. radness.
 
Last edited:

no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
don't know where you're hearing this stuff, but it ain't true. why would the UCI ban stock components for dh when in road biking they are mandatory?
It was way back then. Ten years ago, before ten speed had been slowly taught to the masses as possible/"necessary", everyone would've scoffed at it back then. and the UCI probably had no foresight. I can't recall where I heard it. Probably fiction or speculation, Either way, true or not is not really important, just interesting if it was.

They started with Kayaba then went to Showa not sure when. I have the magazines it will be about 8-10 pages in total will try to load them at about 2000 by 1600 or so!
Off topic, but what brand ownes what out of Kayaba, Showa and Ohlins? I think Showa and Kayaba are owned by one of the moto companies, maybe Yamaha, and not Honda like you'd think. I can't recall, anyone know?

that looks awesome! One thing I hadn't really considered, if the pinion allows you to use a smaller chainring (looks like it) you could also use a lower pivot height. That could potentially make for a playful bike that still has a fair amount of anti squat and other good tractive capabilities. Would make for a sweet "park bike". 6/6" travel, no gears, go screw around on a-line or hellion all day long.
Yeah you can run smaller front and rear. Tiny front. I have one, I'll check what it is again. The chain output(pivot point)is pretty low, you'd only need lower for a concentric BB to work with a normal chainring. The current Pinion is plenty low enough for a shortening rear end IMO, something I don't see the point in. Especially for a park bike. But yeah if you wanted it, it'd be possible. You'd need a tensioner also then though. Something you could avoid with pivot at output height. For built in anti squat, you'll need a tensioner, not that big a deal.
 
Last edited:

no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
All valid points.

If shimano could get off their asses and figure something out or license the technologies, companies would follow.
Maybe the idea of owning a gearbox'ed trail bike that goes a season without any drivetrain work is a pipe dream. Oh well.
Shimano I'm sure could just make a narrower Alfine. Nothing wrong with using a rear IGH as a centralized gearbox. Current ones need 83mm BBs and therefore widen Q factor for XC type bikes, not an issue for AM and DH IMO, but it'd encourage more manufacturers for sure if it was narrower.
Effigear is here now with what looks like a very promising light gearbox with nice range for AM use.
^i was just reading the pinion literature; standard maintenance consists of an oil change - every 10,000k. love it.

similarly, my drivetrain maintenance over the last 6 years has been (apart from standard chain care) - 1 oil change, and replacing 1 set of cables. perfect shifting always, with absolutely no adjustments required. radness.
Hopefully they're as reliable as your Rohloff. That'd be way cool.

More importantly, hopefully Pinion will make a 400% or less box, with less gears. It'd be lighter and cater to a lot more applications. I think the 600%gearing is what holds it back the most for AM and DH aplications.
Effigear is here though now. Hopefully they're durable. 7, 8 or 9 speed, and quite light. Should shake things up a bit if it's bullet proof.
 
Last edited:

no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
All valid points.

If shimano could get off their asses and figure something out or license the technologies, companies would follow.

Maybe the idea of owning a gearbox'ed trail bike that goes a season without any drivetrain work is a pipe dream. Oh well.
Word was that was their plan. I believe it was an 9 or 9 speed box designed for DH applications.
Yeah, we can only hope. Sadly plans can often take a long time to come to fruition for small companies. Pinion are flat out just trying to keep up with demand for their current 18speed box. Same/similar reason we've unfortunately not seen an AM Zerode yet:(
 
Last edited:

ianjenn

Turbo Monkey
Sep 12, 2006
2,576
340
SLO
Off topic, but what brand ownes what out of Kayaba, Showa and Ohlins? I think Showa and Kayaba are owned by one of the moto companies, maybe Yamaha, and not Honda like you'd think. I can't recall, anyone know?
Harley Davidson owns SHOWA...or share a facility. Dont confuse the garbage Suspension on a Harley with that that is on an R1 or KXF, YZF whatever. Totally different.....
 
Last edited:

thad

Monkey
Sep 28, 2004
383
17
Not a gearbox bike, but at least it doesn't have a derailleur!

This is my friend, Clayton's homemade bike. It's the third bike he's built. It originally had a different swingarm, beefy, rectangular. The truss swingarm lightened and stiffened it.
It's not too heavy. Maybe 40 lbs? 4130, with trutemper DT and TT, 7075 main axle, 4 big f-off bearings. He does have a kinda heavy build: og saints, big seat, cable brakes, bark busters!






He is making a new bike. Similar, but the pivot will be a bit higher still(!), and further back. Geo will be longer, lower, slacker.
 

no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
Bottom one is Falcon. Top 160mm 650b trail bike is yet unnamed and is just the first draft. Will get prettier. There's also a 180mm Cavaleire named the Squirrel, based on the Falcon frame. Hopefully other brands will buy and use the Effigear gearbox platform. It allows manufacturers to build a competitive weight bike with a low tidy gearbox. Cavalerie is just to showcase the Effigear gearbox. Nicolai are using it now in the Ion18 Dh bike. Unfortunately (IMO)both brands are showcasing belt drive also, something not needed or beneficial for most, and it causes slight compromise in design(no Horst link for Nicolai for example).
I'll be getting a trail bike Cavalerie as soon as they're ready. I have a Pinion Nicolai being built right now.
 
Last edited:

no skid marks

Monkey
Jan 15, 2006
2,514
27
ACT Australia
I make good money and Im not sure how you guys afford $6k frames. I thought my Zerode was spendy.
Hasn't your Zerode saved you a bit of cash by now?
I ended up with a Pinion gearbox after a staff member threw out a customers Pinion cranks shifter and other small parts, and the postage was as much as it was to replace them, so we ordered another gearbox package to save money I guess. The pain of expense passes. The joy of a good purchase that's durable doesn't. I'm hoping I get the joy.