Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Dude, Where's My Chain?

Not sure what I was searching for in Google when I noticed this site advertised on the side, Dynamic Bicycles.

The company makes a range of bikes for a range of uses. No high speed, superlight roadie bikes and no seriously hard core off road basher bikes.

But what they specialize in is chainless bicycles. That's right, they will totally give you the shaft......drive. Combine a shaft drive with an internally geared rear hub and you've got a solid recipe for a pedal and forget bike.

I've long been fascinated with shaft drive bicycles after I bought a Kawasaki Concours years ago. The Concours is a big, big sport touring motorcycle with a big engine connected to the rear wheel via a, you guessed it, shaft drive.

The promise of a shaft drive bike is awesome. No grease, no mess, no hassle and nothing to get caught or break apart (well, maybe, maybe not). But with the combination of the internal rear hub, no derailleur to get bashed against rocks and logs. I'd also think this set up shaves some weight too.

The only downside to a shaft drive system I've heard of is that they can be over-torqued. That is, if you hammer too hard on them then you can strip the bevel drive gears and then you're stuck.

Which is likely why shaft drives haven't made their way into the hard core mountain biking scene yet. But if you're in the market for a bike that you can get on and just ride and you aren't planning on hammering it on some trails.

I'd like to give one a try to see what it's like. And hey, I'd definitely be into seeing about a retrofit for my cruiser. Especially with that sweet wide-range geared hub! Oh yeah!
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