24 August 2005

Chainless Bike

I've mountain biked quite a bit here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest and bent my fair share of axles and derailleurs, so this seems like a perfect solution. You get better ground clearance (13 inches), because there front gear is gone, but I wonder how you grind over a log with this thing. For $750 it's not exactly cheap, but it's not out of this world either. No grease is nice, and breaking a chain becomes a thing of the past, but if the internal gear box does break, I'm guessing you're out of luck. With a chain a few simple, light tools and extra links and your back on the trail. Still, looks very interesting. I'd love to give it a ride and see what kind of gear range the "Shimano Inter-8 Premium - planetary gears" really have. My guess is they've not quite got the range worked out just yet. Another worry is this bold text from the owners manual: If you shift while pedaling, reduce your pressure on the pedals. Excessive tension on gears makes shifting difficult and speeds the wear of the components. When they come out with the "racing transmission" edition, where I can switch gears with full force on the drive train, I'll absolutely have to give this a ride.

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