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Long distance - how old is too old?

Discussion in 'Time Trial, Long Distance and Endurance' started by r04DiE, 20 Mar 2017.

  1. OP

    r04DiE 300km a week through London on a road bike.


    To continue with gaining the first class advice I've had so far - I have another question.

    Dynohubs - what are my options? I'd really like one that can take a brake disc, laced into an aero front wheel (aluminium should be fine), maybe something like a 50mm section. Does anybody have an idea of how much I am looking at here? If its too much then I will consider a less posh version!

    Thanks :smile:
  2. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah Staff Member

    Barmy in Barming
    Contact David at DCR wheels. He'll give you options and costings and an all round bloody good service. www.dcrwheels.co.uk
  3. OP

    r04DiE 300km a week through London on a road bike.

    Thank you, @ianrauk! Since posting that I have also received a quote from the legendary Chris White, author of the Ride Far site. I didn't think I was going to hear from him, but he got back to me with a few prices. I will check DCR out too. Thanks again.
  4. Wow, @r04DiE seems to be my alter ego.

    I'm in the process of researching the same thing. Here's my current research and thinking. Partly to give @r04DiE the benefit of my searches, and partly to give People Who Know the chance to point out that I'm an idiot.

    Best in class dynohub seems to be SON. There are two main variants, the SON 28 and the SON Delux. The delux was designed for 20" wheels and has lower power output (actually a different power output curve). By all reports not so good if you want to run lights and charge things at the same time. But it does have (indetectably) lower resistance than the 28.

    Alternatives are Shutter Precision (SP) and Shimano. Have to admit I haven't looked in to SP so much.

    The appropriate Shimano model for road riding is the N80. THere's also an N30 but I read reports that it has significantly higher resistance, and just isn't as good.

    Rightly or wrongly I discounted SP and other Shimano models so it's down to SON28 vs Shimano N80.

    Resistance: I think that the SON has marginally (but by all reports indistinguishable to humans) lower resistance. And the resistance overall of a hub when riding has been described as "the square root of f-all". I still remain a bit concerned that a weeny bit of extra resistance over multiple 100s of km could be the straw that breaks the camel's back. But I suppose that could also equate to carrying an extra pork pie. It still preys on my mind a bit.

    Servicing: SON seems to require servicing after 50,000 km. Which is, in my book, never. Shimano servicing consists of having the innards completely replaced. The dynamo is going to outlast the rim easily (if using rim brakes, that is).

    Price: SON costs a heap more than Shimano.

    They all come in disk brake versions, I think. Not sure, because that's not a requirement of mine.

    On balance I've decided to go for Shimano N80 because the advantages of a SON seem marginal, and the price jump is big for not all that much. The SONs do look much nicer tho. Hmmm...

    Lights. There's a big choice, and some have built in cache batteries or capacitors to give you stand lights. Other features include sensors that switch themselves on and off, and various other goodies. I've decided to push the boat out on the light and get one with built in USB charging facilities and lots of bells and whistles. This is the Busch and Muller Lumotec IQ2 Luxos U. At the rear there is again quite a wide choice.

    Wiring. In the old days you attached a bottle dynamo to the seat stay and tightened a little grub screw that dug into the frame and everything used the frame for earth, and you had a single wire. These days I think you use two core wire. I'm still concerned that if I buy all this stuff the wiring project may have extra demons in it that I haven't foreseen and I end up having to buy more stuff, and my bike ends up looking like a half unravelled piece of knitting. I've looked at the Shimano N80 manuals and they seem to only show you how to connect up a front light, not rear.

    USB charging: This subject seems massively complicated and confusing. It requires the purchase of a "thing" (e-Werk or Igaro D1 or other) that converts the dynamo output to an acceptable voltage for USB. I've not been able to make any sense out of it at all, and I fear that it may make the wiring even more of a rat's nest. That's why I've gone for a front light with this built in.

    I'll be buying from Spa because I'm a regular customer and trust them and I don't have (and have no intention of acquiring) wheel building skills myself. My current thinking (not pulled the trigger yet) is:

    I'll be sticking with 32H rims because that's what I have at the moment, and it doesn't seem to be at all broke. I've never had problems with spokes, despite being a 92kg porker.
    Last edited: 11 Sep 2017
  5. Heltor Chasca

    Heltor Chasca Out-Riding the Black Dog

    I am now in possession of a Thrunite charger which I got from a great seller here https://www.ebay.co.uk/p/ThruNite-C...sized-Compact-Protable-Charger-With/544179330

    So far it has been great 'indoors' and I'll get to use it in anger recharging my GPS on 'Slaughtered in the Cotswolds' 200. Hopefully I have charge in my legs.
    r04DiE likes this.
  6. OP

    r04DiE 300km a week through London on a road bike.

    Hello, @Dogtrousers! It's your Alter-Ego here ;)

    Excellent pool of information from you here and I have referred back to it many times since you posted it! Thank you for getting me started on this and for having somebody to cross reference what others have recommended.

    Please also check out Chris White's excellent site for all things long distance. You might want to read what he has to say about lights and chargers.

    Apologies for it taking so long to reply, life has just taken over recently. Anyway, here's where I have decided to go:

    I spent many years, hobbling along on 2nd hand bikes that survived on a budget. The only treat money I spend is on the bike, and I took advantage of the Bike to Work scheme to buy myself something half decent, I use the bike to go to work most days. This means that it gets treated like any other vehicle; we all shell out who-knows-what for MOTs, servicing, new tyres, VED, fuel, insurance, blah, blah, blah... on our motor vehicles, so I treat the bike the same. If I need something, I get it. You can no doubt see where this is going! ;)

    Bear in mind that I am still dreaming of the TCR one day, so this is all kind of in preparation for that too.

    Yep, the Schmidt SON Deluxe seems to be the Rolls Royce of dynamos, they come with a 5 year warranty and 50,000km service intervals. Drag is reportedly low on these models and they also come in 24h, which means fewer spokes and less drag.

    So, I'm having the hub built into a 51mm carbon rim with aero spokes. This will cost over half what the bike cost me in the first place, but I can always transfer it to my next bike. I've read lots of places that the first thing to upgrade is your wheels. Also, I've always wanted a deep section carbon rim and just think of how sexy it will look - so that's fine, isn't it?

    I think I'll go with the Lumotec IQ2 Luxos U front, the same as you are. I like the fact that I can charge my USB thingies with it as I my navigational skills leave a lot to be desired, and that is putting it mildly, believe me. Things like Garmins and smart phones CANNOT go flat on me, it just can't happen, okay? I hadn't even considered a rear light, but you've gone and found one, so I'll be buying that too, I think.

    I will probably go with the same shop as you, too. Since you say they are a decent bunch and they look to me to be competitive price-wise. Also, I want somebody I can phone up and ask about mounting it, since I have disc brakes.

    Being hurried off the PC now as somebody wants to use my up-to-date copy of Office, so I'll see you all soon. :smile:
    velovoice likes this.
  7. @r04DiE

    I'll write a detailed review of the stuff I've just bought, but only after I've been riding it for a while. Some notes for now. This is based on some early morning/evening riding and one full night ride.

    I wouldn't bother with a rear light. In retrospect I don't think it's necessary, and it was a PITA to install. A handful of AAA batteries weigh nothing and will keep you covered for ages with one or two Cateyes on the back. If you change your mind later and want to add one you can. I'm still running a Cateye (and carrying a spare Cateye) at the rear in addition to the B&M rear light.

    I've fitted a Shimano dynohub. I just couldn't' justify the cost of the SON. I went the other direction to you as I have a 36 spoke wheel. I actually ordered that by mistake, I was originally going for 32 spokes. I noticed it in time to change it but decided that it was fate, so left it as it was.

    If/when you get your stuff delivered from Spa you will find instructions for the light, instructions for the hub, but no instructions at all to cover the pair of them. Installation was a real headache because of this. Once you know what to do it's not so bad. But figuring out what to do with the endless little bags of bits is a real challenge. Ask if you need help.

    The charging thingy on the handlebars for garmin/phone and the light output from the Luxos get a thumbs up from me so far.

    I don't have such exalted ambitions as you. TCR is most definitely nowhere near my bucket list, and never will be.
    Last edited: 16 Oct 2017
  8. OP

    r04DiE 300km a week through London on a road bike.

    Hello, @Dogtrousers,

    Excellent - many thanks for that.

    I agree regarding the rear light, especially if its a PITA to fit. I was talking to a lady with a dynohub on the recent Richard Ellis Memorial 200 that I did, about her dynohub, and she reckoned most people just use LED rear lights as they are so cheap to run and so effective.

    I'll get the light from Spa, but the wheel and dynohub will be coming from DCR Wheels (thanks, @ianrauk). I'll almost certainly be in touch with you to get some tips on installation! Think I will need to mount the light off the headset as I have disc brakes.

    I hope you enjoy your new setup and I am really looking forward to a review after you have a few more miles and a bit more experience with the kit. LWL is getting nearer and nearer! How is your training going?
    Ha ha ha, this probably means that you are just realistic.

    All the best ;)
  9. The only problem I'm having with the dynohub so far is mental. When I'm struggling, which is a large proportion of the time, the thought occurs to me that it is due to power stolen from me by the hub. It probably isn't of course, but you know how your mind gets when you're tired.

    As to LWL I'm not feeling very positive. I may DNS it again.
  10. Heltor Chasca

    Heltor Chasca Out-Riding the Black Dog

    Keep an open mind about the dyno taillight. The B&M IQ2 Luxos U and a rear light couldn’t be easier to fit. Run the cable behind the brake cable, seat stays or rack and no one will ever know. Hooks up with little spade + & - connectors and that literally is it. I have been runnIng that set up for 3+ years and I have only had to repair the Lego block that clips onto the hub (Shimano) this weekend. I really couldn’t be bothered with separate led lights. Less to worry about. Just pedal and go. I have the Toplight Line Plus but I really like the look of their new mini taillight which is only about £17.00.

    The Schmidt hub and light set up on my Audax bike is slightly more fiddly.
    Last edited: 23 Oct 2017
  11. Heltor Chasca

    Heltor Chasca Out-Riding the Black Dog

    Just an observation on charging your Garmin on the hoof from the Dyno hub. My Edge Touring would shut down as soon as I slowed down at a junction or climb. Rather charge your battery or phone on the hub and use a battery for your Garmin. This annoying problem is well known to Garmin.

    Doesn’t happen with my Wahoo Elemnt.
    r04DiE likes this.
  12. I too have a Luxos U and Toplight Line Plus. I didn't find fitting it particularly easy. I found it an enormous faff, involving miles of electrical insulating tape, and several failed installations, but I suppose we all have our own faff-tolerances. I personally always run two tail lights, just in case one fails, therefore for me there's no advantage of having it connected to my hub, as I still check the batteries in the (non dyno) second light (and the spare front & rear lights that I carry) so I may as well have two non-dyno ones. That's mainly my own fault for being obsessive. But I agree the OP should keep an open mind. The option's always there to fit one later.

    The propensity of the Edge Touring* to shut itself down without warning if charge power is withdrawn is a lovely feature isn't it?

    Edit: *Yes, I know pretty much all Garmins shut down if charging power is cut off, but in my experience the Edge Touring is the only one to do it (sometimes) without the warning countdown.
    Last edited: 23 Oct 2017
    Heltor Chasca likes this.
  13. Aravis

    Aravis White-Haired Trundler

    Have you looked at this? It seems to have much of the character of LWL, but in a more manageable package:


    No doubt those who really know about Audax can offer an informed opinion!
    Dogtrousers likes this.
  14. Nice, but a big hassle to get to the start and get home after. I think if I wanted to ride 300k I'd just ride my own "Transkentinental" route from last year again as it starts and finishes on my doorstep. The thought of having to get home after LWL is one of the biggest worries. Getting home from The Kingdom of the East Saxons 400k earlier this year was no fun at all.
    Aravis likes this.
  15. Aravis

    Aravis White-Haired Trundler

    Ah, OK. It seems my assessment that Oxford isn't much harder to get to than Gerrard's Cross is broadly accurate, but not as helpful as I thought.