Ryde Rims

We've been looking at products that compliment Rohloff hubs and have found these rims to be ideal.  Because of the large hub flange, the angle of the spoke/nipple at the rim relative to the hub flange is larger than for a hub with smaller hub flanges.  

Ryde rims are unique because they offer directional spoke drilling to lessen the angle for hubs with larger hub flanges; perfect for Rohloff.  We carry both the Andra 30 and Andra 210 disc rim for bomb proof durable wheels.  The hub being low maintenance and weather proof means nothing if the wheels don't stand up so these rims go a long way to make the perfect combination laced with Sapim Race spokes and brass nippples. 

Andra 210 - Andra_210

The shape of the Andra 210 is laid out for the use with disc brakes. This rim is optimized for weight without compromising strength.  The wheels for the IF bike below are built with Andra 210 rims.  32h and 36h 700c available.

Andra 30 - Andra_30
The Andra 30 is one of the most used rims on travel bikes. And for a reason! This rims holds its own when the conditions get really tough. Loads of luggage? No problem for the Andra 30. Both 26" and 28"/700c/29er available, 32h and 36h.

We've built quite a few wheels already with these rims and they build up very well.  Rims are true and easy to tension the spokes evenly on both sides.    These are the rims we recommend for disc and rim brake/disc applications.


TS Bolt On Rohloff

Recent build for a customer retrofitting his Surly Troll, 36 hole black Rohloff with Mavic EX729 rim laced with Sapim Race 2.0/1.8 spokes/brass nipples. 


There are so many How To wheel building sites/You Tube videos out there that I'm not really going to add anything to the discussion but I will say is that Mavic makes nice rims and as a wheel builder, I appreciate a nice rim. The Mavic EX729 is a disc specific, double eyelet, SUP rim that will likely outlast some bikes.  If you break this rim while riding, you are some serious rider. 

I like Sapim spokes because I find them to be a bit more butted than DT spokes.  Those are really the only 2 brands for spokes and they likely supply a majority of OEM wheels out there.  Brass nipples don't round out as easily as aluminum ones and they come in black so nothing to really complain about. 

Really liked this wheel and how it turned out. 



True North Fat

est we be accused of being stuck in the past, here is something that brings us right back to 2015!  This as far as I know is the only one in existence (Hugh has steel fatbikes of course) but this one is unique because it's designed with a Rohloff XL / Gates drive in mind.  I think the bike looks absolutely stunning.  The cable routing is Rohloff friendly, the frame comes apart to allow the belt to be installed, the workmanship is beautiful and I know because I can compare with the Seven frame right next to it.  It's got classic written all over it but if you look at the drivetrain, it's all 2015! 











I initiated this project with Hugh late last year with the idea of building a fatbike with the XL hub and at the time Hugh said he didn't have a frame yet that has been stiffness tested for Gates drive but he was about to get one ready to be certified.  He has other fatbikes of course using Gates drive but they are built with the standard Rohloff hub and so with the introduction of the XL hub from Rohloff, he had to prepare another frame to be sent for testing. 

In the meantime, it was getting all the bits and pieces together and that included the Light Bicycle carbon fatbike rims, Hope Fatsno 150mm front hub, Avid BB7 brakes, Avid Ultimate Levers, Surly Nate tires, Race Face stem\fat cranks, and FSA SLK carbon bars.  The beltline for Rohloff's XL hub is 72.25mm and 71.5mm for chain so it's important to get the right crank/sprocket combination right from the start. 

The geometry was custom and designed with the local geography in mind.  Hugh's fatbikes are literally everywhere!  So he definitely has some experience with what works around the local trails and what people like and don't like.  We tweaked it a bit to raise the BB height from the initial drawings but otherwise left it untouched.  The fork is a steel fork and the geometry is such that if in the future a Bluto fork is used, it won't totally mess up the geometry so it's future proof.  The rest was then just a matter of time.   When I went to pick it up a few weeks ago at Hugh's workshop, it was a sight to behold.  There is a reason why True North is so well regarded in these parts and everyone around here knows about Hugh and the work he does.  Something about custom Ti frames really speak to me.  I picked this up from a customer and friend of mine years ago and I've been afflicted with Ti disease ever since.  Part of it is Titanium's uniqueness, it doesn't rust, light yet strong, beautiful unpainted, the simplicity that can be had with titanium makes it unique I think compared to other frame materials.  

Part of any custom project for me is to come with something different to make it uniquely yours.  It could be a colour combination or a favourite saddle, a custom frame, a Rohloff XL hub ;)  The point is to always put your finger print on it so at the end of day, the whole is more than a sum of its parts.  It certainly takes more time and sometimes things don't fit or go as planned but that's part of the challenge and fun of it.  Often times you have to make changes along the way and timelines can go sideways.  So my advice is to always plan early and don't assume things will just bolt together.  Plan for mistakes because we're all human, parts not arriving and or sometimes missing.  Custom projects are fun for me and while it takes more time and effort, it's well worth it in the end.   Come check the bike out at the Toronto Bike Show this weekend and if all goes well (fingers crossed), it'll be rideable!


Back To The Future(?)

This the project we've hinted at before and if you drop by the Toronto Bike Show next weekend, you'll be able to see up close and give it a try. 


Is it new or old?  It certainly looks new but some of parts certainly aren't but maybe used in a new way?  The build isn't complete yet, still missing brakes but I thought the build was close enough to warrant showing it.  Let's start with the frame and fork.  The frame is a Seven Sola SL custom Ti frame.  If there was ever such a thing a timeless bicycle, I think you will not find a better example then a titanium hardtail.  Geometry for hardtails hasn't really changed much since the use of front suspension and no one would really put on a 120mm front fork on a hardtail.   This frame was designed around 80mm front suspension and for the most part that's probably all it'll ever need. 


That of course brings me to the fork.  It's an Amp Research F4 BLT 80mm cross country linkage fork although at the time, this was considered a DH fork but today it's perfect travel for XC.  It's stiff, works well and I think gives the bike that "not like every other bike at the Trail Head" quality that would be impossible with the latest Fox or Rock Shox XC fork.  Does it perform as well as a modern day XC fork?  In some ways it does and in some ways it doesn't.  It's light, it's stiff like modern day forks, the quality of suspension may not rival 2015 technology but it's only 80mm of travel.  We're not talking 120mm/5 inches of travel here.   The other option I would use is a suspension corrected steel or carbon fork with disc tabs. 

Bar / Stem / Headset / Seatpost - Moots / Chris King Ti headset with Ti headset spacers.  Not sure there is really anything else to add there.  The stem/bar is not the modern 31.8mm but again remember this is not a DH bike and isn't going to become one anytime soon.  The stem is longish by today's 60-90mm standards at 110mm but not crazy long like 130mm or anything. 


Cranks - XTR M970.  Does anyone still make a high quality 3 ring crankset anymore?  I'm only using the outer ring and using a Race Face Narrow Wide ring and that's all I need because of course I'm using a Rohloff disc hub in the back.  The outer ring gives me the perfect 53mm chainline that I need to use with the Rohloff that modern day 2 ring or 1 ring cranks do not.  And the XTR cranks are so well made that you'd be hard pressed to find a nicer set of cranks.  Cheaper yes, better no.  Other option here would be Race Face's Cinch SixC or if you really want to go high zoot the NEXT SL, cranks that can be used with their 3 ring setup and use only the outer ring and uses the latest 30mm BB standard. 


Hubs - Which of course brings me to the wheelset.  The front wheel is a Mavic 217 SUP rim laced to a Chris King non disc hub.  You'll likely need Google to tell you what a Mavic 217 SUP rim is but there was a time that it was THE rim for XC before tubeless and carbon 40mm wide rims.  The only thing better would have been the Ceramic version!  The rear is a Mavic XM 819 UST disc rim.  UST hasn't really caught on like Mavic had hoped for but I like the rim and I needed a good disc rim to use the Rohloff hub.  The rear hub is a Rohloff and I know it may sound a bit biased but while it's not XC light like a CK hub it fits this whole project perfectly.  Gives me the modern 1 ring look but still has 14 gears and range that a proper XC bike needs.  I'll have another write up on the gearing on this bike and why I choose it.   A cassette and rear derailleur would ruin the look of the bike I think but the bike does need a chain tensioner as it has vertical dropouts so that's a small price to pay for the overall benefit of the Rohloff in terms of look and performance.  It is of course a disc hub and the front is not disc so I'll be using an Avid BB7 disc brake in the rear, Avid Supreme V-brakes in the front and Avid Ultimate levers.  Probably the best V-brake and cable disc brake ever made.  Avid has stopped producing the Ultimate levers and Supreme brakes all together.  If you saw how much machining is in those parts, you'd understand why they were so expensive and why it doesn't make sense to make them anymore.  I choose cable disc instead of hydraulic disc brakes because I wanted the brakes to have the same feel plus it'd be odd to have 2 different levers in the front. 

Grips - I have to mention grips because ESI silicon grips are the BEST THING EVER.  These are the Chunky model.  They are light, comfortable, feels great and I can cut them to use with Rohloff shifters.  Highly recommended.  And they are easy to install.  Modern day materials and technology at its best.  I'll be carrying and using these grips for all future Rohloff builds. 

Saddle - Selle Italia Flight saddle.  The red matched the hubs :) 





Picture of front end with shifter and Avid Ultimate Levers / Supreme brakes


Final Price?  Priceless because you can't get Mavic 217 rims anymore ;)  Bonus points if you can identify the pedals. 

So if there was one bike that I had to choose to take with me to a deserted island.  I think this would be it.  There are other XC bikes out there and definitely longer travel bikes but as a pure XC bike that will be as comfortable on fireroads as it is around town, there's nothing quite like it. 

What would you take to a deserted island? 


Rohloff Wheel

Thought we'd share the latest build we're doing for a customer.  This will be going on a Moots single speed converted to 14 speed! 

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 Here are some final pictures before the bike was delivered.  Everything came together without any problems and looks great. 


Rohloff Speedhub

We received our first Rohloff shipment and want to share some pictures.  We'll be building up a demo wheel and installing on a test bike for people to try so stay tuned!

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The hub looks great and we're looking forward to building it up!  If you need any Rohloff related parts and accessories, feel free to drop us a line anytime at info@spokewrench.com.