Tuesday, April 01, 2014

A Nice Surprise

The surprise found under the 11 cogs
It's a well known fact amongst bike geeks and especially amongst the longer in the tooth mechanics and shop rats, (like myself), that bicycle companies like to scrimp, save, and "cheap out" wherever you are not going to be looking. You know.....places like your bottom bracket, head set, and spokes. Places like that.

They like to do this because then the product managers get to keep their jobs because they spec'ed a seemingly awesome bike for less than you might expect. You know those bikes that seem like such a great deal new, (current model year, of course), that "blow the competition out of the water", or say "compare at twice the price"? Yeah....they have hidden parts that suck. Put your ears up to them, and you can hear the air being sucked into the black hole of cheapness. (Well......not really, but it sounds fun! Kind of like listening to sea shells........but I digress.)

Anywho........as a bicycle mechanic you get kind of jaded by this after a while of pulling off wheels with spokes not worthy of a dung cart, or dealing with freewheels that say "Shimano" on them but wobble when spun like a drunken college boy leaving a frat party. Then every once in a while you get surprised.

I pulled the cassette of my new Raleigh Tamland Two, fully expecting a cheesy, heavy steel free hub body, and ..........well lookee here! It has an aluminum free hub body with a steel reinforced spline to help prevent that dreaded "digging in" of the individual cassette cogs. That's not the kind of feature you usually see on a mass produced rig, if anywhere. Of course, it's an idea I first saw on an American Classic hub, and maybe it isn't as well done, (note that the individual cogs dug in a little bit anyway), but still............

So, faith restored until I have to double check another 7.2FX!


PedalBound said...

Those are really nice hubs/wheels that are spec'ed on the Tamlands! I'm hoping that this continues to be a trend for Raleigh's mid and high-end bicycles. This further confirms my suspicion that these are manufactured by the same company (supposedly Joy Tech) that makes Velocity's hubs. ( http://www.velocityusa.com/product/hubs/race-rear-hub )

Guitar Ted said...

@PedalBound: I'm seeing in the spec sheet that those are hubs from Novatech.

PedalBound said...

Whoops, I mean't Novatech. I knew it was a ____tech and not Formula, like I had originally thought.

Irishtsunami said...

Let us know what you get. I bought a waterproof Olympus a few years ago and never really liked it so I am on the hunt for a new one.