Staton Nuvinci setup

Discussion in 'Spare Parts, Tools & Product Developement' started by SirJakesus, Apr 14, 2008.

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  1. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    Well I just took my XR75 out for the first time today so I guess it's a good time to tell y'all my impressions with the system. Pros and cons. Here's my review.

    Pros: The system really does give you unlimited gearing freedom. I can go really slow with tons of torque for hill climbing or off roading and with the twist of the controller I can wind the thing out at about 32mph or anywhere in between. It was especially good for flat ground when keeping in the low 20's because you could keep the engine running rather low while keeping your speed up (overdriving.) I have my pedal chain attached to the large front chainring on my bike (44t i think) and it gives me some good resistance in the pedals when the engine is running throughout the gearing range. So much for Faux pedaling, I AM pedaling with the engine at any speed :)
    When the engine is off the bike can be easily pedaled throughout the NV hubs range with little resistance from the staton kit itself. High gear is way too much resistance unless going downhill un-motored.
    Everything in this kit is heavy duty and top of the line and I can't see myself having any major problems with it unless I beat the heck out of it.
    The Mitsubishi TLE43 is an EXCELLENT engine! The thing started up on the 4th pull after priming the FIRST time I used it, while warm it doesn't need any choke and the first pull will start it. It's extremely quiet especially while idling, but even while going at a good pace it's not irritating at all and has very little vibrations for a 2 stroke.

    Cons: As everybody else has said, yeah the staton gearbox is heavy and adds noticeable weight to the top of the bike. Once you're moving you don't notice it one bit though, its like having a rear rack loaded with groceries or camping gear. I'll have to install a rear mounted kickstand to be totally sure it will never tip itself over while parked or when its being worked on.
    The NuVinci controls work smoothly while gearing up for the most part but if there is any power going to the hub while trying to gear down the control has a fair amount of resistance to it, forcing you to stop pedaling and let off the gas whenever you need a little low end grunt. This is kinda annoying but I guess I'll just have to get used to it. After all you do have to clutch or let off the gas to shift any other standard tranny.
    This kit was tons harder to install than my old Raleigh Happytime MTB. The torsion straps in particular were a pain in the arse to bend and fit properly. The bike has taken me at least 30 hours to build HOWEVER I took my time to get things done on the staton rack perfectly, painted parts of the kit AND installed a head, tail and brake lighting system with smart charger. I also have a horn button attached and was going to wire that up before my journey today but I found my Tomos 12v horn doesn't work direct connected to the battery so I'll be ordering one that does. Sorry for trailing off there.

    All in all I'd say I'm very impressed with this kit and I'm extremely happy I purchased it. I can tell it will give me many thousands of trouble free cruising and trail miles.
    I'll be posting some pictures of the completed bike in my "XR75/Staton NuVinci" thread in the pics forum. If you guys have the money and have hills or rugged trails that straight gearing can't handle DO get this, you won't be disappointed.

  2. fetor56

    fetor56 Guest

    All this sounds very encouraging for the NuVinci and i'll look foreward to those pics.
    When/if i'm ready i'll start to take Oz orders for as many as possible but there's nothing stopping ANY group in ANY country getting together and buying in bulk.
  3. duivendyk

    duivendyk Guest

    I am pleased to learn that you consider your NV equipped bike a success.It's not cheap motoring in the hills,but at least now you can get up them .Where can you get a rear mounted kickstand?, I agree the torque bar attachment hardware is a Royal Pain in the arse,what's really needed is an L shaped torque bar,similar to those on backpedal brakes plus less primitive attachment hardware.I spent an inordinate amount of time messing with it and am still not all that happy with the end result.I have mounted the twist-grip throttle on the right and the NV control on the left,to make it it easier to shift "gears " and I kept the front deraileur to keep my cadence within the normal range.JJ
  4. flailer

    flailer New Member

    Sir Jakesus,

    WOW!!! is all i can say. Clearly you have done it right!!!

    Can i ask a couple questions of you??

    - First, regarding the pedal-to-wheel-hub chain, and the lack of a rear Derailleur;; As the rear shock compresses and decompresses (over bumps, and jumps), 1) what happens to the chain slack?? 2) How tight is this chain? 3) Any problem setting this tension, and are you comfortable with the level of tension you achived? 4) Do you ever "throw" the chain, or forsee it happening?

    - Second, regarding the NuVinci Hub;; 1) After 4+ months are you getting a feel for the reliability yet? 2) Have you, or anyone else that you are aware of, reported minor problems (ideally with a solution) or perhaps someone has reported major problems?

    i am drooling over the kit, and EVEN MORE SO over the excellent way you installed and incorporated it......
    ...i have considered doing pretty much the same thing with my Specialized dual suspension mtn bike. Do you think my currently installed hydraulic disk brakes add an undue level of complexity to the install? Do you think i would be forced to switch to rim V-brakes for example AS HOW IN THE HECK would the NuVinci hub hold/mount a disk anyway?

    Last edited: Sep 3, 2008
  5. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    Thanks! If you look closely at the pictures of my bike you may notice that the rear swing arm is one rigid unit, it only connects to the rest of the frame at a pivot point to the front of the cranks and at the shock therefore it was easy to mount the staton rack rigidly on the rear triangle independent of the rest of the bike. The rear portion of the bike is STEEL too which I thought was of the utmost importance. I'd be hesitant to use one of those fancy multi-link swingarms that you see on higher end full suspension frames as crucial mounting points move independently of one another. Since the cranks are actually part of the rear swingarm on this bike and many like it there are no chain tension issues. I used heavy duty single speed/BMX chain run from the chainring to the nuvinci freewheel so I have no concerns of it snapping or even stretching much. My rear dropouts are at an angle like this " \ " so as you slip the hub into the dropout the more you push it in the more chain tension you get. I leave just a little bit of slop in the chain so it doesn't stress out the moving parts but can never skip off the teeth either. A chain tool was needed to get just the right amount of links in it. Both chains have master links in them which are of good quality and have never fallen out on me. I carry extras in my storage box anyways.

    It feels totally reliable to me. It doesn't slip or make any noise or anything. It's really the perfect solution for MB gearing available as long as you can deal with the extra weight it adds to the bike. This probably only concerns people who have to carry their bike up stairs though. It would probably be useless to a flatlander but here in the hills its an essential piece of hardware for maximizing top speed when climbing and descending. I love the fact that I can cruise at pretty much any speed and keep the engine happy. The pedals are kept in good sync with the engine gearing too so pedaling is always an option and always adds power to your ride. No hyperpedaling at high speeds, you still have resistance on the pedals.
    All I've done to the hub itself was clean it and pack some more grease in the freewheel since it got dirt in it from off roading. The hub itself is totally maintenance free.The only thing I've had to fix on the bike was to re-lace the hub to the rim in a two cross pattern as the three cross was causing spoke breakage at the nipples.

    The nuvinci is made with disc mountings. You could definitely do it and I would highly suggest sticking with disc brakes if you have the option. The only complication I could see is you'd have to figure out where to mount the staton rack so it wouldn't interfere with the brake caliper. The only reason I didn't go with a dual disc (or even single disc) bike was that I already had this one hanging around and the rim brakes work well anyhow.

    Post a pic of your bike I may be able to give you some input. Thanks for posting.
  6. skyl4rk

    skyl4rk Guest

    Is it true that the NuVinci robs power? I mean there is power lost in the transmission compared to a straight gear?
  7. duivendyk

    duivendyk Guest

    I have a NV hub on a Raleigh comfort bike,with a TLE 43 engine like SirJakesus the hub works well, changing "gear" under power takes effort,treat it as a gear shift (throttle back)
    The range is quite wide which is nice,but the Staton NV is pretty heavy,lugging it up&down stairs is hard work.
    I tried to keep my front derailleur and use the rear one just as a chain tensioner but ran into trouble:unless I increased the chain tension substantially (by adding a spring) the chain would skip on the rear sprocket.The reason for that is that the teeth profile of the frear freewheel sprocket is triangular in shape causing the chain to ride up on the tooth flank and start to skip if you're pedaling hard,increasing the chain tension helps but makes it harder to use the front deraileur.I ended up not using it much it does serve to keep your pedaling rate down at high speed on the flats.I like to actually pedal a bicycle, just sitting there riding along, doing nothing makes me feel stupid,I have other 2 wheelers to do that on.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2008
  8. skyl4rk

    skyl4rk Guest

  9. duivendyk

    duivendyk Guest

    The NV hub spins down faster than a regular freewheel if you keep the engine drive sprocket on the gear box from turning but if you don't there's not much difference.If you use it the pedaling mode via the free wheel unit it behaves quite nornally like any other freewheel.In any case all this tells you absolutely nothing if you are trying to assess the internal power loss if it is in the normal operating mode, compared to say another multi speed hub.That requires input/output power measurements,or a comparative evaluation
    Any transmission inevitably has losses associated with it's operation,most have efficiencies in the 80/90 % range,there is no getting around that,but that does not make them any less useful
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2008
  10. SirJakesus

    SirJakesus Guest

    I just set up my staton friction drive that I've been sitting on for a few months waiting for my continental town and country tires to arrive (backorder). Judging by the power difference between the two bikes I would say the gearbox, hub, chain and all the extra weight that comes with it definitely robs some power from the engine. However the hub does come in very handy for keeping your engine in the right power band. I had to do a lot more pedaling up hills with the friction drive to keep my speed up and avoid slipping the clutch whereas with the NV I can sit there like a stump and it'll pull me up ANY hill. It's worth the extra investment if you plan on climbing hills. I bought mine so I could stop avoiding all the steepest hills and have lots of low end power for the dirt trails around here.