Wednesday, 26 May 2010

First Rohloff Oil Change

The Rohloff Speedhub on the Raven Nomad requires an oil change every 5,000 km to keep it running smoothly. Conveniently, I've just passed that mark before I go to Canada. So today I did my first Rohloff oil change.

Rohloff Oil Change Kit: Speedhub Oil, Cleaning Oil, Syringe and Drain Plug

It's quite an easy task, but looks a bit strange on the first look as the Rohloff Oil Change Kit contains a great big syringe! Is this bike maintenance or a medical procedure I'm about to perform on the Rohloff?

Ok, so it's a tiny bit late...

The first step is to use the Rohloff Cleaning Oil to help remove the existing oil from the hub. Draw the contents of the blue labelled bottle into the syringe. Then, after removing the small drain plug on the hub, connect the syringe and squirt the contents inside! (Then draw some air back out through the syringe to equalise the pressure).

Drawing the old oil from the hub before adding the clean stuff

Refit the drain plug and turn the cranks for a few minutes in gears 3 and 5. (This engages all the hub's planetary gears and ensures the Rohloff Cleaning Oil gets in all the nooks and crannies). Reconnect the syringe and leave with the syringe at the bottom. After 15 minutes draw the old oil out of the hub. Return the contents to the Cleaning Oil bottle for safe disposal.

Fill the syringe with about 15-20ml of clean Rohloff Speedhub Oil. Add this to the hub (then equalise the pressure again) and fit the new drain plug. Job done.

Continue riding, with a near maintenance free transmission system, for a further 5,000 km...

Monday, 24 May 2010

Two weeks to go and some bicycle maintenance

Well, I've only got two weeks to go before I depart for Canada! Everything has been progressing nicely and I'm just about ready to go! In fact, these next two weeks just waiting around are going to be quite hard. I'm really excited about the trip, but a bit scared as well...

New Components for the Nomad...

One of my final tasks is to get the bike ready for 9,000 km of riding over the next three months. As a precaution, most of the components that will wear out or eventually break are being replaced for new ones. I've done just over 5,000 km on the Nomad since new and all the current components still have plenty of life left in them, so they will be reused at a later date.

Nomad undergoing a transmission rebuild

I decided to replace the following:
  • Bottom Bracket
  • Chainring
  • Sprocket (swapped for a 17T sprocket for slightly lower gearing)
  • Chain
  • Brake Pads
  • Brake Cables
  • Rohloff gear cables
  • Tyres
  • Pedals (precautionary, one side on my right SPD has a click)
Shiny new transmission. Nice!

A short test ride later and everything's sweet! Just an oil change to perform on the Rohloff Hub and that's about it.