Sturmy Archrer Vs Alfine

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  • Sturmy Archrer Vs Alfine
  • Premier Icon LAT
    Subscriber

    I am thinking about fitting a hub gear to my Bowery. I've seen a lot of interest in the Shimano Alfine on STW, but little mention of the Sturmy Archer 5 or 8 speed hubs.

    Does anyone have any experience of the SA hubs?

    Cheers

    Mackem
    Member

    Do the SAs exist? I got the impression they were just a small possibilty talked about on obscure websites.

    Edric 64
    Member

    Sturmey Archer do still exist they have just bought out a lovely 3 speed fixed gear hub

    Premier Icon LAT
    Subscriber

    It was the 3 speed fixed hub that got me looking at their website. That is when I discovered their 5 spd with a 120 OLD. What appeals to me about the 5 spd is that the direct drive gear is in the middle of the 5 on offer. That is, the ratios that may suffer from the mechanical drag of the planetary gears are either side of what I am used to peddling as a single speed and what I'd choose in most situations.

    What I am wondering is, do the SA hubs have more drag than the alfine/nexus?

    Edric 64
    Member

    I would expect the Alfine to be superior in all honesty just because most Shimano stuff is well made .The only S A stuff I have is very old and I have not tried an Alfine yet

    rob
    Member

    the 5 speed sturmey hub is very good got one on my pompino not noticed any excessive drag
    i would avoid the s a 8 speed as 1st gear is the direct drive

    Premier Icon LAT
    Subscriber

    Rob,

    the idea of 1st being the direct drive put me off the 8spd.

    how long have you been using the 5 speed?

    thanks

    Premier Icon epicyclo
    Subscriber

    I use a 3 speed S-A for road riding.

    It is smooth, silent, light, nicely made, and reliable. It has over 100 years of development.

    I also own a few other hubs:
    Nexus/Alfine 8 speed
    Rohloff
    Assorted others, eg Duomatic, S-A 7 speed, S-A 4 speed, the new S-A S3X hub (yet to be fitted), etc.

    The Shimano hub is very nice but I prefer the lighter rear wheel you get from the S-A 3speed (the 5 speed is the same weight according to the website), and the only reason I'd use the Shimano is if I desperately needed the wider range – perhaps towing a trailer.

    The S-A 8 speed should be avoided unless you are running it on a small wheel commuter, or will spend a lot of thime in low gear because bottom gear is the direct.

    The nice thing about the S_A is that the middle gear is direct, thus no drag. Set that as your usual cruising ratio and the other ratios fall nicely into suitable reductions or stepups.

    rob
    Member

    LAT
    only got about 300 miles on this hub bought mine off ebay £28 nos
    my dads got a 3 speed sa hub from 1954 on his old road bike its never been serviced and is still going strong

    jackthedog
    Member

    With the three speed, how big are the jumps between the gears?

    I love the idea of a direct drive, with an under and overdrive either side – that's pretty much perfect for my uses, but it depends on the ratios. If it's only the equivalent of a couple of cassette-sprockets difference either way then it might not be worth it.

    I'd like a middle SS gear, a spinny gear for long/steep climbs, and a big gear for fast flat and downhills (I know, moon on stick alert).

    Any ideas?

    Premier Icon LAT
    Subscriber

    Thanks for all the info. I just have to decide it I want 5 or 3 speeds

    Jack, from the SA website for the 3 speed,

    • Overall Range – 177%
    • Gear 1 – 75% (-)25%
    • Gear 2 – 100% Direct Drive (Gear 1 + 33%)
    • Gear 3 – 133% (+)33.3% (Gear 2 + 33%)

    Premier Icon epicyclo
    Subscriber

    The ratios are Low .75; Direct 1.0; High 1.33

    On my S-A 3 speed road bike I have set the gearing in Direct to 65" which is a pretty useful ratio for allround single speed road use. This means the Low is 48" which is the gearing I use on my single speed mtb, so it's good enough to get me up any hill, and the High is 86" which is approximately the gearing I use on my single speed road bike.

    In other words a perfect set of ratios, one for uphill, one for cruising, and one for going faster.

    For contrast the standard Bowery gearing is 48/17 to get about 75". Keeping that ratio as direct would give 56", 75", and 99" with a S-A 3 speed

    jackthedog
    Member

    Thanks guys – sounds like my decision is made.

    Premier Icon rootes1
    Subscriber

    also sram 3 speed is good – simple and robust

    Premier Icon rootes1
    Subscriber

    also sram 3 speed is good – simple and robust

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Subscriber

    Anyone tried off road with the 3 speed Nexus inc. disc mount and (I think – not checked) 135 OLN?

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