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I disagree on a number of counts.

Used v. new -- everyone should know the risk they run when they purchase anything used, and that's the trade off for a good price. "Too cheap?" "Lacking foresight?" That's just talking stupid and being unnecessarily insulting. You're making a ton of assumptions.

Going to the manufacturer and avoiding user forums with a wealth of experience to share? That's so anti progress, I can't imagine why this would seem like a good idea to anybody. Public forums like this (or before the internet, user groups and clubs) are a great way to discover problems that may be trending, and leverage pressure on a manufacturer to recognize a problem and correct it.

Despite never having trouble with my hub, I learned about the missing springs from forum posts. I learned about cracked flanges. I learned about the bad batch of axles that were causing trouble. I learned of the broken chainstays and seatstays some frames were experiencing.

But I also learned that the Speedhub is very, very reliable. I learned that Rohloff recognizes problems and responds to them, making the hub better in incremental ways. You're assuming folks can't think for themselves and will gravitate towards the negative posts. Sure, those will get a disproportionate share of attention, but everything is relative and the number of problems reported for by Speedhub owners is terribly underwhelming compared to other bicycle parts.

Yes, reporting problems to the manufacturer is a prudent step. But don't think you'd be doing anyone any favors by sweeping this stuff under the rug and enforcing this thuggy "hush hush" mentality on the forums. It sounds like you,and then by extension Rohloff, have something to hide. Honest, open discussions are probably the best marketing tool any small company has at its disposal.
 

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Not talking about this thread of OP. This is a good thread. I'm all for the exchange of ideas, but tired of the few vocal's who bash Rohloff. No hush hush mentality with me. There's a difference between honest discussions and willful smearing the reputation of a company.

Yah, not all people are too cheap to buy new, but some are, and they are the one's it seems who badmouth Rohloff because they've got a problem, and their too cheap to send it in for service. They'd rather complain on forums instead.
 

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For what it's worth, two (and a half) of my Speedhubs I bought used.

One I bought directly from Thomas at Rohloff USA. It was a low serial number, I'm sure it has some miles on it, but I assumed it was properly cared for being from his shop. It was, in fact, the worst one I've owned, only that it felt a little sloppy shifting and was noisy in a weird way. I've since sold it to some bloke in the UK and I hope it's working well for him.

The second was the one with the missing springs. I have no idea how many miles were on it, and I have no doubt it hadn't been well taken care of given all the dog hair and muck covering it. But it was a hell of a deal, it was broken in when I got it, and it has been the quietest and most well mannered of the Speedhubs I've owned.

The other came pre-built in a wheel from Alex at MTB Tandems and I think was more or less new, but I'm sure had a test ride or two on it. But, being practically new, it was still notchy and needed to go through the whole break in process. I don't really consider it "used."

My point in all this is that of the Speedhubs I've owned, the used one from the sketchiest source has been my favorite. So rippin' on somebody for saving $800 (or $600 or $400) isn't factoring in how much value *can* be had in a used hub. Though I'm in total agreement with you that *****ing about Rohloff after the fact -- if the purchase turned out to be a burn -- isn't too cool... but I haven't seen too much of that.
 

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You're an exception around here, in that you know a great deal about Rohloff, and you're knowledgable enough to buy used. Preowned is great as long as someone know's what their getting into, and doesn't cry when things don't go their way. You do the former, but not the latter.

On the other hand, I had no experience with Rohloff, and will only have one in my lifetime. I couldn't take a chance buying used. It was tough forking out over $2000 for a laced hub and wheel on something I've never seen, but it paid off for me. It was a good move that keeps on giving long after the pain of spending the money was over.

There really are very few people here who bash Rohloff. I figure it's either a personal grudge, or some people bash them and have never even seen one ( go figure that ) Not sure how I got so involved in this thread. It's an honest thread with a lot of good information. Anyway, no worries here. I've learned a lot here about how to care for my hub, and have learned what potential problems might arise in the future, and how to possibly mitigate those issues.

It's all good...and hope everyone enjoy your hubs.
 

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Why would we not openly exchange ideas and possible solutions? The company pays folks to manage its public image, folks to run quality checks etc. etc. I paid the price for an outstanding product, and that is what I got. I feel bad for the folks that are having issues after paying so much money, and if I can tell them something that they might not possibly know (and they appreciate it) then what is the harm in that? Some people like to take on troubleshooting such challenges on their own. I know shipping a wheel to Germany is not the first thing I am going to try if I ever have issues with my hub.

To try and silence all this exchanging of relevant and important information seems really backwards and counter-productive. As consumers, we have a right to dissect and discuss. If it makes the company look bad, that is an unfortunate consequence, but also a business reality that any business owner must be able to accept. Some people will slander, some will wrongly accuse. Such is life, be it a manufactured product or personal relationships.

I guess the thing that set me off was the "waste of time" comment. I would accept such a statement if I was getting paid for my volunteer work, but I don't do this for fun, nor do I do it to make Rohloff look bad. I don't want a medal, an award or even any praise.... Just wanna get another Speedhub back on the trails or road where it belongs.

I'd consider myself a fairly knowledgeable user, and everything I learned was either thru my own ownership or via shared information over the internet. I think it would be unfortunate to prevent others from having access to that same shared information.
 

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Climbercraig66 said:
I totally disagree w/ your post (even though you "waste your time" offering your own list of possible malfunction causes). Also disagree with Subas, as buying such an expensive item, sight unseen or not even demo'd, is equally (if not more) foolish than buying a second-hand hub. Imagine if things hadn't worked out for you..... You could have been the next Rohloff Basher. You cast a mighty wide net with all your assumptions and stereotypes. Don't be surprised if you get tripped up in it.

Why would we not openly exchange ideas and possible solutions? The company pays folks to manage its public image, folks to run quality checks etc. etc. I paid the price for an outstanding product, and that is what I got. I feel bad for the folks that are having issues, and if I can tell them something that they might not possibly know (and they appreciate it) then what is the harm in that? Some people like to take on troubleshooting such challenges on their own. I know shipping a wheel to Germany is NOT the first thing I am going to try if I ever have issues with my hub.

To try and silence all this exchanging of relevant and important information is so backwards and counter-productive. All in the name of your "Rohloff pride" or for the company's sake? Ridiculous! Are you serious? As consumers, we have a right to dissect and discuss. I don't care if it makes the company look bad, or makes you feel threatened by Rohloff Bashers.

I don't give a flying f$#@ if someone wants to bad mouth my hub. The experience is mine, and it's been a damn good ride.

I am going to keep "wasting my time" trying to help and educate my fellow Speedhub user. I'd consider myself a pretty knowledgeable user, and everything I learned was either thru my own ownership or via shared information over the internet. What a waste to prevent others from having access to that same shared information.
I think you've gone off the deep end with your rant. Maybe you feel better now. As for suggesting it was more foolish of me buying a new Rohloff sight unseen and never demo'd than buying a used hub, and had it not worked out I could have been the next Rohloff basher, you're making a lot of meritless statements.

First of all, I had no way to demo a hub. Second. I wasn't about to go looking for a used hub that someone else was very likely dumping because of a problem. Then it would be my problem. I'm just too smart for that game. Third. I do my homework. I researched the hubs for six months or more, then contacted Cycle Monkey when I knew enough to have an intelligent conversation to put in an order.

It wasn't a question of the hub working alright, but more about the perceived noise and grinding in gears 7-8, and the drag that some people said they didn't like, which for me turned out a total non issue. My understanding was that you either love the hub, or hate it. Most loved it, so I went with the majority opinion. Had I not loved it, I could recoup most of my money selling it especially because it was new. Buying used in my case would have been foolish. Buying new was smart.

If you like spending your time tearing apart speed hubs and posting self help on the internet have at it. I have better things to do with my time. If I ever have a problem, the wheel goes off to Cycle Monkey or another authorized repair shop. Did I mention I bought new, and have a warrantee.

As far as you're statements about Rohloff pride and feeing threatened. I don't know where you're coming from. Rohloff makes a unique and valuable product that has enhanced my riding experience many times over. I dismissed the bashers and negative people when I researched the hub, because some people no matter how hard they try, they screw things up, and blame anyone but themselves.

Buying a Rohloff sight unseen is no different than when I bought my Phil square taper BB, or my Middleburn cranks, or my Penthouse Flats, or my Magura Gustav's, or even my Lupine Betty. It's no different than the custom Phil front hub that I just ordered yesterday. I do my homework, make an informed buying decision, and walk away a winner....not a whiner.
 

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You're right. My response was a little too sharp, and a little too personal. I apologize for that, to both you and estutjaweh. My intent was to challenge what I interpreted as squashing of idea sharing and collaborative problem solving. In the end, some folks like to work on things themselves, and some like to have that work be performed by an authorized entity. Neither way is wrong.

I do enjoy tinkering with my hub, and I enjoy helping folks out when I can. I do not necessarily like spending my free time spouting off on the internet, sending suggestions and trying to fix everyones problems, but if the situation arises, I will try to lend assistance. Rohloff users are a small percentage of cyclists overall, so I do feel a bit of brotherhood or community, if you will.

I still disagree with your blanket statements, as I interpret them to say that anyone who buys a Rohloff second hand, is either stupid, cheap, lazy or lacking common sense. Sorry if I am not reading it correctly. The fact of the matter is, you could be doomed when you buy the hub used, or you could be doomed several years down the road when your new hub warranty runs out and you start having problems. Either way, the mechanisms involved are for the most part, more than most folks would want to attempt and repair themselves anyway. But those who do, and who share that information, are doing a worthy service to others whom suffer the same issue, especially if it is something that can be fixed at home.

All in all though, I guess my point is this: I see no harm in potentially saving someone from postage costs to Germany and downtime off the bike. I am by no means an expert, and I learn something too when I try to help someone troubleshoot their problem, and I think it's great that all this accumulated information is available to those seeking it. And even if it is the case that some people shouldn't be messing with their hub, or some people just won't understand and will shift blame where it does not belong, such is the way of the world. You could apply that way of thinking to just about anything. But these people we talk about should not govern or restrict what the rest of us have access to.

Either way, glad you are enjoying your hub as much as I am, and neither of us (and the majority of Speedhub users) are having anything but awesome rides. I'll tone down my earlier post to a less personal, more idea-based manner. Sorry I didn't make that distinction earlier.
 

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Question to the OP and sorry if I missed it:

When your LBS transfered your hub from one bike to the other , have they opened it in some way ?

If they changed the angle of the shift box , it means that they opened it in some way.


I've worked in bike shop and seen stories .... :rolleyes: :D
 

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Discussion Starter #49
An overdue update.
My Rohloff had to be returned to Germany. It has come back and is working perfectly. Everything was done free of charge even though the hub was a good few years old, so no complaints there. Unfortunately there was no real diagnosis so I am non the wiser and can't post what the problem actually was.
A massive thanks though to all who helped and advised me.
Moose.
 

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luh3417 said:
I got it from a legit dealer in Australia. The slipping gears are 4,6,7,11,13 and 14. I will take it to my repair shop here in Sydney. They specialise in hubs. If they get stuck I will refer them to you!

Thanks again. Will keep you posted.
Got my hub back. It went to Rohloff agents in Australia who said it was the timing and may have been a fault that got worse with running in or maybe the tension on the wheel nuts. I was pretty careful with not over tightening the wheel nuts so I think it was a factory thing. All seems good now and I may just get a torque wrench for good measure.
 

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It's Back

Had the first really warm couple of days since fall & winter and the slip / skip in 4,6,7,11,13, &14 reappeared. Today was a cool day and there was no slip. Headed back to the man-cave and put the bike in the stand and proceeded to heat the hub with a heat gun. Went back out for a ride and lo and behold, the slip returned. As the hub cooled down, the slip went away. First it faded from the upper gears, then the lower gears.

The last couple of warm days are probably some of the warmest the hub has seen since it came back from being repaired (Neil from Cycle Monkey put new guts in the hub last September) for this issue last year. It sure looks to me to be temperature related. It is happy as long as it is cool.

At this point I haven't really decided what do other than probably contact Neil and see what he thinks. Anyway I just wanted to report in.

UR
 

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Please keep us updated -- I'm curious what the prognosis is. I know these hubs have suffered through some killer heat an various cross-continental tours they've been subjected to, so find it baffling that two sets of innards you've ended up with are displaying this same problem. I wonder, could it somehow be related to a defect in the shell? Or something specific to the way it's being mounted in your frame? So random...
 

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estutjaweh said:
What I'd really like to know is:

If problems with a hub are detailled and discussed here in a forum instead of with a mechanic at the bike shop, or via an Email with the manufacturer, then you cant really blame Rohloff as they have no knowledge of the issue at this point. A manufacturer can only correct a mistake once they are aware it exists and generally through all documentation, its seems as if Rohloff find solutions and correct all issues for no more than the postage cost 'to them'....and this even when the hub is waaaay out of warranty.
I can assure you, when my Rohloff, which had 700 documented miles on it, and started slipping at 450 miles, had shifting problems and slipping in 3rd and 4th gears, when I sent it to Rohloff, I got a nice fat bill for the service, plus shipping. It was a defective axle, the subcontractor grinding the shifting flats on the axle had quality control problems. I don't remember if it was Thomas or Neil that serviced it, but I was sent an email from Neil, stating that the hub he pulled out looked brand spanking new, it was nowhere near broken in or smooth in the lower gears.

That was enough to convince me to sell mine off. It was a very expensive experiment, with mine slipping at a very critical switchback with exposure and severe, near fatal penalty for failure. Slipping sent me over the bars, crashing, while standing and mashing. Not acceptable. I could never trust the hub after that moment.
What was installed was a used, remanufactured set of guts. Not new, which is what I bought, and was removed, a near new hub and priced accordingly.
 

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Luh and Moose: Glad to hear you are both sorted. That sucks that they didn't give you any helpful information on the issue they repaired. Were either of your hubs temperature-sensitive before being repaired? I notice that your slipping gear #s are similar to Uncle Robins.

Uncle Robin, your problem is a real head-scratcher...... The only thing that would seem to make sense is an oil viscosity issue. I lean towards dismissing parts expansion since my experience is that Rohloffs are tight, but they aren't THAT tight.

Can you post a description or picture of your bike and hub setup? What kind of heat application did you use, and about how hot did you get it to repeat the symptoms? And I think I asked this before, but what riding temperatures make a good hub or a slipping hub?

Assuming I don't have to torch the stickers off my hub, I'd be willing to replicate your test on my hub and compare results.
 

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estutjaweh said:
If problems with a hub are detailled and discussed here in a forum instead of with a mechanic at the bike shop, or via an Email with the manufacturer, then you cant really blame Rohloff as they have no knowledge of the issue at this point. A manufacturer can only correct a mistake once they are aware it exists and generally through all documentation, its seems as if Rohloff find solutions and correct all issues for no more than the postage cost 'to them'....and this even when the hub is waaaay out of warranty.

Granted there are problems, but nothing is perfect and this sort of service is second to none in any industry, yet alone a low profit sector such as the bike industry.

Rohloff hubs are too fragile and too sensitive to too many variables. Too cold, thin the gear oil, too hot, it slips in gear, too salty, it corrodes, too small a front ring gear, it stresses the gear box, too loose an axle tolerance and it slips out of gear explosively. Too, too, too.... as in too many excuses, too expensive to work on, by factory personnel only, no spare parts available, and too many failures. Then there is another example of the whole unit having to be sent back to Germany to get it corrected. This is typical of German products during the last 30 years, including new VW TDI Jetta's and Golf's from 2009 on, having catastrophic High pressure fuel pump failures made by Bosch, where VW made a bean counter decision to go cheap with the pump from Bosch, and it destroys/grenades the whole fuel system and everything down stream in the fuel lines and fuel tanks.

German engineers design product with no consideration for service requirements at all, more as an after thought. Try adding gear oil through the speedometer sensor fitting, after removing the speedo sensor, because there is no filler hole on top.
 

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suba said:
You're an exception around here, in that you know a great deal about Rohloff, and you're knowledgable enough to buy used. Preowned is great as long as someone know's what their getting into, and doesn't cry when things don't go their way. You do the former, but not the latter.

On the other hand, I had no experience with Rohloff, and will only have one in my lifetime. I couldn't take a chance buying used. It was tough forking out over $2000 for a laced hub and wheel on something I've never seen, but it paid off for me. It was a good move that keeps on giving long after the pain of spending the money was over.

There really are very few people here who bash Rohloff. I figure it's either a personal grudge, or some people bash them and have never even seen one ( go figure that ) Not sure how I got so involved in this thread. It's an honest thread with a lot of good information. Anyway, no worries here. I've learned a lot here about how to care for my hub, and have learned what potential problems might arise in the future, and how to possibly mitigate those issues.

It's all good...and hope everyone enjoy your hubs.


You should see the VW TDI's I've picked up, for under what you paid for your wheel, and still got another 50,000 miles out of them, at 50 + MPG. I can work on anything, as long as there are spare parts available without paying stupid money for the parts. Boat motors, transmissions, clutches, rebuilt injector pumps myself, turbo diesel motors, turbochargers too.

Try getting spare parts here in the USA for a Rohloff. They will tell you that is not an option.

When Neil emails me that the gearbox pulled out of my hub looks brand spanking new, and the previous owner could count the number of trips to Whistler on that hub, and the miles per day, I'd say I knew quite well, that I'd bought a very new, very limited use hub, with a known mileage. It was one of those turkeys that Rohloff let get out, because of inadequate quality control on their end, accepting axle parts from a vendor the sub contracted with, and not measuring and QC'ing the parts the vendor supplied.

I am beginning to think that German standards consider a 2 to 3% failure rate quite acceptable, well within their normal standards. I see this a lot on german car companies too.
 

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RandyBoy said:
You should see the VW TDI's I've picked up, for under what you paid for your wheel, and still got another 50,000 miles out of them, at 50 + MPG. I can work on anything, as long as there are spare parts available without paying stupid money for the parts. Boat motors, transmissions, clutches, rebuilt injector pumps myself, turbo diesel motors, turbochargers too.

Try getting spare parts here in the USA for a Rohloff. They will tell you that is not an option.

When Neil emails me that the gearbox pulled out of my hub looks brand spanking new, and the previous owner could count the number of trips to Whistler on that hub, and the miles per day, I'd say I knew quite well, that I'd bought a very new, very limited use hub, with a known mileage. It was one of those turkeys that Rohloff let get out, because of inadequate quality control on their end, accepting axle parts from a vendor the sub contracted with, and not measuring and QC'ing the parts the vendor supplied.

I am beginning to think that German standards consider a 2 to 3% failure rate quite acceptable, well within their normal standards. I see this a lot on german car companies too.
Give it a rest. :rolleyes: No matter how many times you tell your story of woe, my Rohloff somehow manages to work flawlessly ;) Your problem is you took a chance buying a used hub and lost. That's what karma does sometimes. Why don't you try sucking it up, and consider it a learning experience instead of continually spreading bad vibes. You bought a used hub on ebay. It turned out to be a bad move. Move on man. Grow up, and be thankful for all the blessing that you do have in your life :thumbsup:
 

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suba said:
Give it a rest. :rolleyes: No matter how many times you tell your story of woe, my Rohloff somehow manages to work flawlessly ;) Your problem is you took a chance buying a used hub and lost. That's what karma does sometimes. Why don't you try sucking it up, and consider it a learning experience instead of continually spreading bad vibes. You bought a used hub on ebay. It turned out to be a bad move. Move on man. Grow up, and be thankful for all the blessing that you do have in your life :thumbsup:
I wish to point out the German business mindset, the arrogance of German engineers, and how they do business.

Try buying a 25 to $50k german Audi or VW with a Bosch High Pressure Fuel pump that fails, spreads shrapnel throughout the whole fuel system, and costs $7,000 to $16,000 to replace the whole fuel system, then you blame all the problems on customers misfueling. Let this go on from April 2008, note that it is still going on with current 2011 production, that NHSTA has gotten involved, that BMW has done the same sh*t until they got called on by ABC Nighlty News it and issued a recall, finally.

The buck finally stops when a class action lawsuit was filed. This is exactly how German companies act.

http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/acms/docservlet/Artemis/Public/Pursuits/2011/EA/INRD-EA11003-45604P.pdf

Start around page 318 for the lawsuit being filed, and then read each case, and how VW tries to blame some for misuse or misfueling. This is a problem on Audi Q7 TDI's , A3 TDI's, and VW 3.0 TDI Touaregs, as well as Jetta, Golf, and Sportwagens.

The situation is the same, deny, deny, deny, until your azz ends up in court. Running a steel piston in an Aluminum bore to pressurize fuel to 28,000 psi in a common rail is so retarded, it's designed failure. That the pump grenades and wipes out everything down stream, rail, injectors, fuel tank, fuel lines, 3 fuel pumps and it costs 1/3 to 1/2 what the car is worth in 2 or 3 years is pathetic, what will happen when the car is 6 or 10 years old and it's out of warranty and grenades again. The repair costs more than the car is worth. Diesels are designed to go 300,000 miles, minimum, 400,000 if very well maintained, by the book. It has happened, folks have lost 2 pumps in under 60,000 miles.


It's easy for you to sit there in denial, being that your Rohloff hasn't failed yet. It's another when you have the experience of yours having failed and you go over the bars on a steep narrow single track when it misses a shift while standing and mashing on a trail with severe penalty for failure. I don't mind being in the minority and educating folks in the potential pitfalls of owning a Rohloff. You can not discount my personal experience, because it is a fact, as was brontotx's issue. He also got a bum hub back from Rohloff too, trying to get it fixed.

http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?p=3049482#poststop

So keep on sweeping it under the rug, and deny, deny, deny. Some us out there know the facts and have real world experience with the failures of Rohloff Hubs. Most will probably get a perfectly good Rohloff hub, but some will not, and those some should also be heard here on MTBR.
 

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RandyBoy said:
Glad you pointed that thread out. Personally I would have been too embarrassed to do that.
It was hard getting through all you're rants but I make it. I'm guessing you have good healthcare as you'll need it when you have a stroke or heart attack. Heck, stress can even cause cancer. Hope nothing runs in your family.

Why stop now eh ? Keep the bashing and ranting going. Why not start a new thread about what a piece of crap Rohloff's are, and they are ALL doomed to fail soon if not sooner. Go ahead, make my day :thumbsup:
 
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