New Delite Mountain Rohloff E14 issue..

RMK!

Well-Known Member
I find it interesting that the blame is being directed at the Rohloff E14 when it could very well be the Bosch Gen 4 motor that is making the noise. The crank and motor are spinning faster in lower gears and even your informal tests point to the Bosch rather than Rohloff as the culprit. Perhaps I'm missing something. :confused:
 

dblhelix

Well-Known Member
If this is true, its absolutely unacceptable on a £8000 bike when my £2700 Cube and my wife’s £3200 Cube are both free of it. Precision engineering, my arse!
Here is a blog post written by N. America’s Rohloff expert on noise that is correlated to Rohloff grearing. The point of the article is that the noise is largely due to something else, including the frame. I would take the bike back to the shop and ask them to retorque every bolt on the frame, check the dropouts, etc. I would consider doing an early oil change on the hub. Most of the oil in the hub is there to dampen sound — very little is needed to counter friction. You can run the hub with just sufficient oil or go with the max recommended — but the latter invites leaking/seepage.

 

dblhelix

Well-Known Member
The OP describes the noise as a whine much like the noise coming from the motor. The cycle monkey article does not address anything resembling a whine or whir but rather clicks, creaks clicking or ticking.

Identifying the culprit is made more difficult by the infamous quality of bicycle frames for noises to appear like they are coming from a particular source but are actually being generated somewhere away from where they emerge. I am guessing this is mostly motor noise but there is certainly some Rohloff component to it based on the OP's riding without assist and getting most of the same noises without the motor running at all. Add to this the fact that the noises change significantly in different gears with varying leg power being put through them.

This is a new bike and both the motor and the Rohloff are know to be noisy when new and wear in after 700-1,000 miles. It should be ridden for that distance and if the noise level does not drop down significantly, that would be the time to bring it back into the shop for an oil change and more diagnostics. It may be something as simple as the oil level being low, which is known to reduce noise damping inside the Rohloff hub.
Yes, bc the article is written from the perspective of working with analog bikes, no? But a resonant cavity will amplify drive noise as well. making sureit’s bolted down properly should cost very little.

I read the OP’s comments as follows: the drive is coupling (possibly through the frame) to the hub when it’s in lower gears. Sound waves are just pressure pulses, so vibrational amplification via unintended (I assume) resonance is possible. It only takes small forces or unintended nodes/boundaries to create a large effect.
 
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Homet

Active Member
I am guessing this is mostly motor noise but there is certainly some Rohloff component to it based on the OP's riding without assist and getting most of the same noises without the motor running at all. Add to this the fact that the noises change significantly in different gears with varying leg power being put through them.
As I said earlier, there is virtually no noise coming from the Rohloff when the motor is off so I’m not sure where you got the idea that I was getting ”most of the same noises without the motor”!
 

Homet

Active Member
Thanks guys. I do understand that I may be getting a little obsessed with the sound but you have to understand that if the problem is the Rohloff, I should hear the noises when using just the Rohloff. I don’t.

If the issue is frame resonance, I should hear something similar from any of the other Bosch-equipped bikes in the family. I don’t.

I’m lucky enough to live in a hilly and quiet part of Wales, surrounded by countryside. All my rides are just riding through quiet country lanes, saying “good morning” and “hello” to the occasional walker, fellow cyclists and people enjoying their gardens. It’s all very tranquil. The noise that this bike makes is causing people to stop and turn around to look, long before I’ve got to them! I’m actually feeling guilty for disturbing the peace while out riding.
I’m obviously a little upset because I’ve paid a lot of money for something that looks like a supermodel but currently brays like a donkey. I’d like sort this out as soon as possible - I love everything else about this bike but just can’t keep riding it in the hope that it will eventually quieten down - more likely that I’ll simply just get used to the noise over time.
I’ll take the bike back to the store and ask them follow your suggestions and hopefully that will make a difference. If not, no more R+M for me.
I think that when you pay £8k for a bike, there’s a reasonable expectation that the bike will be better than pretty much any bike - this is what R+M trade on, after all. I’m just not seeing that right now.
 

Homet

Active Member
Yup, that’s where I am. I do think it’s the motor, I’ve just had the bike up on my stand, rotating the pedals manually and the sound is definitely coming from the Bosch and not the Rohloff. It could well be a faulty or just noisy motor - I know they’re mainly very reliable but someone’s got to get a faulty one!
By the way, the bike is not actually braying like a donkey. I was just using that as an example of something that looks beautiful but sounds horrible!
 

RMK!

Well-Known Member
The OP describes the noise as a whine much like the noise coming from the motor. The cycle monkey article does not address anything resembling a whine or whir but rather clicks, creaks clicking or ticking.

Identifying the culprit is made more difficult by the infamous quality of bicycle frames for noises to appear like they are coming from a particular source but are actually being generated somewhere away from where they emerge. I am guessing this is mostly motor noise but there is certainly some Rohloff component to it based on the OP's riding without assist and getting most of the same noises without the motor running at all. Add to this the fact that the noises change significantly in different gears with varying leg power being put through them.

This is a new bike and both the motor and the Rohloff are know to be noisy when new and wear in after 700-1,000 miles. It should be ridden for that distance and if the noise level does not drop down significantly, that would be the time to bring it back into the shop for an oil change and more diagnostics. It may be something as simple as the oil level being low, which is known to reduce noise damping inside the Rohloff hub.

Clearly, there are issues when diagnosing odd noises from a new ebike and frame resonance makes that more difficult. Mine had a tick tick tick sound that was very annoying. I found one other post from several years ago that described the very same thing but no one responded to that post and so I was left to my own devices. My dealer was quick to ride the bike, put it on the rack and tighten several suspect bolts to the recommended torque levels and voila, the tick was gone but no specific issue was identified. Several hundred miles later no ticks or other annoying sounds have emerged.

Since my bike is so quiet (especially the Rohloff E14), I think the OP should stay on this one and the dealer should make a serious attempt to identify the issue. This is a premium ebike and the dealer should provide service levels that are commensurate with the the product price.

As for donkeys, anyone who posts pictures of themselves in bike spandex should be careful when critiquing the relative beauty of other species. I saw this beauty while playing a golf course in southern Arizona. ;-)
Every donkey has his day.jpg
 

Homet

Active Member
Given your riding without the motor and still getting some noise out of the motor ...
No that’s not correct. The motor is off. It’s turned off at the Kiox. When this happens there is little to no noise in ANY gear coming from the Rohloff. When the motor is then turned on, it starts making the noise but obviously only when your pedalling and it’s providing assistance.
 

Homet

Active Member
Yes, a little more noise because I was pedalling more, all with the motor off. If I was a betting man, I’d bet on the Bosch being the culprit but I’ll see what the bike shop says after they need with it!
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
This was posted today in the R&M Facebook group (which @Alaskan is admin for so hit him up for an invite), and I thought it was relevant to post this here too for those reading and with concern about noise.

 

Jay Kay

Active Member
No that’s not correct. The motor is off. It’s turned off at the Kiox. When this happens there is little to no noise in ANY gear coming from the Rohloff. When the motor is then turned on, it starts making the noise but obviously only when your pedalling and it’s providing assistance.
That could still just be the Rohloff as a result of receiving a lot more torque with the motor on. Either way, get it checked out and it would be great if you reported back what they find out so others can learn if the same thing happens to them.
 

Homet

Active Member
OK just an update. I uploaded a couple of videos to YT so anyone who's interested or is worried that they have the same issue can take a look (and listen) to the problem:

Part 1
Part 2

Part 2 shows the problem more clearly, without all the traffic and starts with the Bosch assistance turned off completely.

Sorry for the sniffing on the second vid, my hayfever is slowly getting the better of me!
 
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Homet

Active Member
Thanks but I just put it out there to show that the finger of suspicion need not necessarily be right and sometimes, the most obvious answer is the correct one. The dealer has now accepted that the sound sounds like the motor and not the hub and is making arrangements to replace the motor and no doubt send the old one back to Bosch for analysis. The Australian Rohloff distributor just wrote to me and confirmed that it wasn’t the hub on the strength of the first video alone. No doubt he’ll hear the second video tomorrow.
I hope this helps anyone with a similar noise on their bike!
R+M should not have let this bike out in this condition. Where is their quality control?
 

Homet

Active Member
Oh so it’s ok to install a third party component on a bike and say “yeah, that’ll do” and let it go without testing it or even giving it the once over after blabbing on and on about your attention to detail and customer values?
I don’t think so.
Kissing a manufacturer’s ass will do end users no good. It just makes them complacent and gets them believing that people will simply lap up whatever they churn out, faults ‘n’ all. Complaining about problems that they are having is what makes them sit up, take notice and make better product in the long run.
Bikes of this price (almost 3x the cost of the average ebike) should be subject to some testing. I think most owners on here would happier if they knew that their bike had been thoroughly inspected prior to delivery. If I’m paying thoroughbred prices, I’m gonna want the teeth poked at and inspected.
 

Homet

Active Member
You ‘constructive‘ approach seems to consist of deflecting anything negative that’s said about R+M. Thats just not helpful when many others are genuinely offering help and advice and seeking it.
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
@Homet if you actually read what Alaskan has been advising, it is very sound and constructive. Likewise, if you looked at some of his other posts you will see he is no R&M white knight. Your beef should be with your LBS for handing it over to you if it is indeed in a faulty state (I remain unconvinced). They are supposed to do a test ride before delivery, and after every repair. If this is as bad as you are saying, I'd ask them why they handed you over a lemon. And if you are the person on the R&M Facebook group expressing the same concern, and your LBS was prepared to make a diagnostic that its is a faulty motor based on a video you sent, I would be looking for another LBS.
 

TimJohn

Active Member
I have a 2021 Multicharger with the Gen 4 motor with about 400 kms and I also noticed it makes a fair amount of sound. The Gen 4 motor has some major design changes that probably contribute to the louder sounds coming out of this motor than previous versions. There a couple of rather large straight cut gears that are known to make a drive train noisier that helical cut gears. The advantage of the straight cut is their mechanical efficiency. Also the aluminum frame, where the motor is mounted, probably amplifies the noise.

I have been on a couple of rides and for some moments wondered if this was OK. After listening to Homet's videos and recording some of my rides on my GoPro, I went back to these recordings and noticed when climbing up a steep incline and pressing hard on the pedals, the motor has a characteristic sound. I think with the mileage, this may get quieter and think under certain riding conditions still be present.

I prefer to see this as a trait rather than a fault. Maybe if you got your LBS to detune the torque down to 75nM but that defeats the purpose doesn't it. Please if there is anyone else out there with a Gen 4 motor, record it and let us know if you think its too loud or so annoying to distract from your enjoyment of this marvellous little engine.

Frankly, I would love to see you be happy and hope you get this resolved to your satisfaction. Good Luck.
 

Homet

Active Member
Thanks Tim
LBS have said that it’s a motor fault and agreed to replace it in the next few days. We have 2 other Cubes in the family with the same motor and both just a few months old and they don’t sound anything like this. Like I said before, I love the bike but just don’t think that a bike costing this much should have been let out without some basic post-assembly inspection or testing. Obviously an unreasonable opinion for some forum members!!
 

Jay Kay

Active Member
Thanks Tim
LBS have said that it’s a motor fault and agreed to replace it in the next few days. We have 2 other Cubes in the family with the same motor and both just a few months old and they don’t sound anything like this. Like I said before, I love the bike but just don’t think that a bike costing this much should have been let out without some basic post-assembly inspection or testing. Obviously an unreasonable opinion for some forum members!!
Have you asked your LBS why they did not pick it up before handing it over to you?