Modern multi-speed hubs?

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JA331

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3 gears is plenty for me. I can afford to buy new and chop it. I may be cheap, but I somehow spent $10k on skateboards in 5 years, so not poor.

How's the frame on that Electra? Mild steel or hi-tensile?

I have found a couple Electras for sale locally but they aren't cheap.
We have the most expensive gas in the nation here and also the most expensive bicycles.

Right now I'm looking at a (urgh!) Kent Margaritavlle for $269 new with the Shimano 3 speed. Mostly it is drek, but I think the frame is mild & could use a few of the little bits too.
I’m not poor either, I’m just repurposing bikes nobody wants anymore. I don’t know anything about the Kent but my point about buying a cheap Electra lady’s bike is to get the nexus wheel set from it. The wheel rims and hubs will probably be far superior to the Kent.

You could look for a men’s bike but they are more expensive and harder to find. My preference is for the older models with the seat tube inline with the bottom bracket (as most bikes). The flat foot models are primarily designed for riding on flat roads.

As Rustygold stated they are marketed as HT but really are mild steel. The majority of my bikes are mild steel. I’m 6’2 and 210 pounds and haven’t destroyed a frame yet.

Here’s a few of the Electra lady’s bikes I have pulled wheels sets from as well as other parts. All are Taiwanese made and excellent quality.
17143620-403B-47C5-8DE1-9DBB2B673C2A.jpeg

Pre 2000 Hawaii with a hard to find Nexus 4. $75. Like new. I fitted another wheel set to it and we use it at work.

DF1FE54A-79BF-4A2B-9098-8F929C7702C3.jpeg

3 speed Karma with a front roller brake $140.
0F797FE6-4D6F-4E98-A1A0-29C30A57FF8D.jpeg

3 Speed Hawaii. $35.
 
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Was your Jamis like this...

View attachment 191464

I have one of these aluminum Earth Cruisers as well...it's a real ripper (has roller brake Nexus7).
Mine had a diamond frame.

It was somewhere between a mountain bike and comfort cruiser.
(When I got it, it came as part of a pair, the other bike being a 2002 Fuji Palisades, also with a Nexus 7). I liked the Fuji but it sold almost right away.

Back when I got the first Nexus 7 speed I had bought an install kit for the hub, which came with all the small parts I needed. With that kit there was a sheet that stated that that the Nexus 7 hub wasn't recommended for '26" mountain bikes'. I was a bit surprised that they didn't elaborate more on why. There was also something with the roller brake front hub that said not to use it with riders over 150lbs. I tried it anyway, and it did okay but stopping power was very limited. There was no danger of it ever locking up a wheel.

I don't remember ever seeing a coaster brake version of the 7 speed first hand, it may have been the better choice.
What I noticed right away is how rear heavy the bike was with that hub.

The overall weight wasn't what I noticed, it was how heavy the rear of the bike was, and that combined with the frame flexing so bad made me give up on the idea.
I've had four or five Nexus 7's over the years, only three were bikes I had intended to keep for myself. None shifted well. They seemed to all have a delay when shifting where as with an old Sturmey Archer, the shift is more definite.
The SA hubs also seem to feel like it had less drag overall.
I think with a better shifter, something other than the pushbutton/lever or twist grip, and a heavier bike, the Nexus may be a better choice. It just didn't give me the results I expected or wanted on the bikes I had. However, I've used SA AW hubs on dozen of bikes with excellent results.
 

JA331

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I have to agree the brake on the roller brake nexus 7 is very weak. I believe it is designed for riding on flat ground in countries like the Netherlands where a weak brake is preferred in wet weather. It is also the heaviest and has the most drag of the 3 nexus 7’s I have. The roller brake assembly (if I remember correctly) is 250grams on its own. I removed it when I had the wheel set on a bike with a rear brake and was surprised it still had the same amount of drag. The 2 coaster versions i have actually spin far better and are lighter but the coaster brake is also weak compared to the 3 or 4 speed nexus versions.

Shimano does not recommend any igh’s for mountain bike riding or even for standing on the pedals. Nevertheless I have climbed plenty of steep hills on mine, “standing on the pedals” and they still function perfectly.

I find they all shift smoothly and fast enough. It could be older igh’s were built stronger but the recommendation for all the new ones is not to load the pedals heavily when shifting. Also there are more parts in a 7 speed hub than a 3 speed hub that need to work together.

For me the small gaps between the gears outweighs the draginess and weight even when fitted to a heavy bike like my 1939 Roadmaster. I still prefer the feel of a good derailleur but they don’t look right on a nice old cruiser unless it is a klunker.
06D5B057-93A4-4987-B658-6E280853E4B3.jpeg

68 Typhoon with a nexus 7 wheel set i picked up for $10. The rims are Japanese Arayas.
4CE88BCF-32CA-4972-ADBE-56EE2FA5BAE9.jpeg

1939 Roadmaster with custom built wheels with a nexus 7 and SA 100mm front drum.
EB4487E7-79E9-4019-9548-11B6C94905EB.jpeg

Schwinn heavy duty with roller brake nexus 7.
 
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RustyGold

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Rustygold what models are those beautiful Electras of yours? I have never seen either downunder.
They are both a bit odd. The Red/White/Blue bike (DX style frame) is an 'Eric Malone'...who was a jet ski champion? The Black one (straightbar style) is a 'Sunny Garcia'...who was a surfing champion?

Weird cross branding. I think they made them from '99-'02 or '03... pretty much all Nexus7 equipped bikes were around that time.
 

JA331

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They are both a bit odd. The Red/White/Blue bike (DX style frame) is an 'Eric Malone'...who was a jet ski champion? The Black one (straightbar style) is a 'Sunny Garcia'...who was a surfing champion?

Weird cross branding. I think they made them from '99-'02 or '03... pretty much all Nexus7 equipped bikes were around that time.
Very cool. pre flat foot i assume.
 

RustyGold

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Weight wise, the difference isn't that much if you compare a Nexus7 to a 7spd cassette, hub, and derailleur. Nexus7 to SA AW, AW is about 2/3rds the weight...or ~1lb lighter.

Nexus7 is more draggy than a 3spd SA...more gears more moving parts more friction. It's rather minor though.

I'm not a derailleur guy either, but will be getting more into such setups. Not for racing like Cap, but just the realization that a single speed can't do it all for mountain/trail trips. I've been stubbornly taking single speeds on trips, and I'm usually the only one, or one two or three at best. Even a trip where 70% is downhill, that other 30% can be a killer. Outside of a Rohloff (~$1500)…other IGHs just aren't up to the task. Alfines, for light trips, but they can be hard to find/afford as well.
 

Tallbikeman

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I've had many 3 speeds apart and was always able to get them back together and working properly. They have a lot of bits and pieces but it becomes rather self evident where they go as you put them back together. It isn't a proper rebuild until I've tried at least 3 times to get it all the way together without leaving something out or putting it in backwards. The coaster adds a little more drama to the rebuild. The newer Sturmey Archer 3 speed coaster hubs need a special wrench to take the drive side apart. Wildcat has it right about lubrication. I've had old and new Sturmey Archer 3 speed hubs with and without coaster brakes. They are a long lasting good operating hub. Never really wore one out. Wildcat I've had good luck with the newer Sturmey Archer 90mm front drum brake. A pretty strong good brake IMHO. Fairly easy to install on your BMX style fork.
 

Ulu

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No thanks guys. Those hubs are too heavy and I don’t need more than three speeds. If I decide that I want six I’ll put another sprocket on the front and add a front derailleur.
 

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By the way, if anyone is following this, I kind of compiled this data and the Manhattan bike thread data and I started a new thread in the build section called to Schwinn or Go Green.

It did turn out to be after all a build, and a very satisfying as a rideable one as well!.

Anyhow more data in the new thread, friends.
 
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No way! That’s what I should buy because I know how to fix them.

I guess when you make something really good it goes on and on.
You are correct on that one for sure. In terms of this statement, nobody here thus far, at least on this specific thread, has even mentioned the Sachs H3111 or 515 coaster 3-speeds? These older 70-s to 80's hubs have no competition imo. Superior in every way to all of these new hubs in terms of metallurgy, finish, dependability and rock solid design made to outlast you and your kids and theirs. Why has nobody here even mentioned them? Hoarding them like me maybe when you see them pop up on Ebay for under $50? Being a huge fan of IGH hubs and with tons of experience will the older ones, I would not even touch the new versions brought to market by Shimano, Nexus, etc. Too much negative feedback regarding the drag, sensitivity, weight, complexity and finish, etc. The older Sachs and Sturmey's had the early 3-speed coasters figured out way early in this game and when properly cared for and adjusted, are simply bomber. Sachs, with their super high quality German made IGH coasters, doubled down on the old Sturmey hubs by out-designing, out machining and out-finishing their hubs like jewelry far beyond the old Sturmey's even before their manufacturing equipment began to wear out and they went overseas. When you hold a good Sachs H3111 or 515 in hand, you immediately recognize it's highly polished outside finish and all around metal quality as superior and top notch. The H3111 you can take apart in the field by hand, tool free, and the 515 with some more effort. Both have superior internals with two impossible-to-break pawl spring/retainers and a design that allows for some mis-adjustment more so than any older Sturmey. Easier to take apart and put together than a Sturmey equivalent of that era and less drag than any other IGH hub new or old. There is only one negative to these stunning, underappreciated hubs. The axle nuts are made of softer metal and they tend to strip if they are gorilla-tightened. They take special 10.5 metric sized nuts that are very hard to get original although today some are being repro'd in China to fill the void of demand for them. This is why you see so many of them sold without axle nuts and/or the special anti-rotation washers. The older Sturmey Archer TCW coasters are demonized as deadly because of a coaster brake design that runs the cam through the planetary gears, but I have been running the TCW's they are just fine, work awesome and are not the dangerous slipping nightmare that some continue to state. The TCWIII runs the S3C brake mechanism that removes the braking forces from the planetary gears. The mythology remains regarding them but in my experience, they are still superior to the newer ones if you simply check the indicator chain adjustment before you ride. Good luck with your search!
H3111
1651503497963.jpeg

515
1651503516538.jpeg
 

Ulu

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Why has nobody here even mentioned them? . . . . This is why you see so many of them sold without axle nuts and/or the special anti-rotation washers. . . . View attachment 191803
515
View attachment 191804

I would say they were as rare as BBQ zebra in the places where I have lived.

I’ve never seen one.

But I quit paying attention to bicycles about 1972.
 
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