Riese & Müller Abbreviations, Model Names, Etc.

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Many people have questions about the significance of the abbreviations appended to model names on the Riese & Muller bikes so I figured it might be helpful to make a post to explain some of these nuances. Some of these ideas actually come from the car industry, like GT and GX which you may have seen on popular car companies.

Model Trim Level Nomenclature:

HS - High Speed - 28 mph
GX - Grand Crossover - Mixed use bike, mountain bike tires, setup to handle on/off road
GT - Grand Touring - Wider tires, setup to handle touring
GH - Grand Heavy - wider tires, made for riders up to 325 lbs.
Touring - Derailleur
Mixtie - lower top tube

I plan to update this with the individual models and their main functions shortly. But I figured this could be helpful in the meanwhile.
 
Last edited:

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Chris,
Can you tell me if the Charger GX Rolloff is chain or belt driven?
Thanks,
-dan
The Rohloff is chain driven on both the Charger and the Delite. They were unable to get a proper chainline with the belt. So only the Nuvinci has a belt drive.
 

BurbManDan

Member
The Rohloff is chain driven on both the Charger and the Delite. They were unable to get a proper chainline with the belt. So only the Nuvinci has a belt drive.
Bummer. I'd really like a belt for low maintenance, but I'm concerned about how the Nuvinci will hold up with high mileage commuting. Any idea what the warranty is like on the Nuvinci in an e-bike application?
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
I totally understand. I think if you're looking for low maintenance with a belt Nuvinci is the way to go. I've had several people battle between these two models recently due to the lack of a belt drive on the Rohloff. I think the Nuvinci doesn't get enough credit though. It's super smooth and very reliable. I don't think you'd see so many ebike brands spec'ing it if it wasn't. It's built to be handle of ebike systems like the Bosch system so there is no issue with warranty.

I've been taking some time recently with some of the recent R&M bikes with the Nuvinci and I have been growing really fond of it. It's definitely a different experience than a derailleur or a traditional IGH. It's very simple and intuitive to use. I was slightly hesitant about it for sometime but I have been embracing it the more that I use it. I'm always hesitant with new technologies, we were burned many times with early ebike technologies, but I feel pretty good about what the guys at Fallbrook are doing.

The Rohloff is quite awesome in it's own right though too. It's still the most bad ass bike we offer I think.

I hope that helps.
 
Bummer. I'd really like a belt for low maintenance, but I'm concerned about how the Nuvinci will hold up with high mileage commuting. Any idea what the warranty is like on the Nuvinci in an e-bike application?
I have the Charger GX Rohloff myself, and with the Hebie Chainglider installed, the chain requires very little maintenance.

There are reports on UK eBike forums from people who have managed to get thousands of kms of use from their chain and they only applied a little chain oil every 1000 km or so!
 

Tbone

Member
I'm about to order a Charger GX Touring (11x speed derailleur), which I've picked over the Charger GT (and over a--much cheaper--2017 Stromer ST1). I'm taking the charger because of the included extras like the Brooks seat with thudbuster, the wider handlebars, cork grips, front and rear racks, etc., etc. Btw, I tested the Nuvinci drive on the Charger (belt) and the R&M Cruiser (chain). The Nuvinci's not for me. I might be exaggerating here but when I changed the Nuvinci gear-ratio I felt power being sucked out of every pedal stroke. Once the Nuvinci has its gear ratio set it's fine. I have a similar feeling with the Rohloff. To me these new fancy final drives are like Mozart--too many notes--or in this case too many moving metal parts all rubbing on one another. Then there's the issue of cost--which I think won't be a problem for me if I "only" ride 2000-3000km a year. I guess I'm old school. I have no problem caring for a chain and derailleur with some WD40.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Great to hear your reasoning. It's always interesting to me to understand these different perspectives. The Charger is quickly becoming our hottest seller in the shop. We haven't done too many GX versions, but I think it's just the nature of the terrain around here. Did you get the black or the curry color?

Some quick notes about the Nuvinci and the Rolhoff, there is a slight loss of efficiency during the break in period, usually the first couple hundred miles, but once broken in they are just as efficient as a derailleur. I hope I'm not overstepping, but I would also just like to note it's not good to use WD40 on your chain, unless it's their bike specific line. I apologize if that's what you're speaking of. Many commonly use it, but the issue is WD40 will clean the chain but it doesn't lubricate it leaving it prone to rust. Our general recommendation is White Lighting chain lube, for most a dry lube works well, but if you're often riding in wet weather a wet lube will stick better.

I hope this helps. Keep us posted as you get your new bike! Make sure to share some pictures of your adventures :)
 

Tbone

Member
According to my wife, I'm getting the curry version of the GX.

Thanks for the tip about the Nuvinci and Rolhoff. I'm still not convinced, though. Too many intricate, little metal parts rubbing on each other inside those things. But I think my wife is gonna get a R&M Cruiser w/ Nuvinci--which means, eventually, you're right!

I don't agree regarding WD40. You're right about rust. But since I regularly care for my chains, I have no problem with rust. My experience has been that oil and lubes on bike chains are nothing more than dirt and gunk collectors--for those who don't regularly take care of their chains--and especially their derailleurs. My oldest bike right now has somewhere between 5000-8000km on it with the original chain and I owe that to WD40. Sorry. Again, I'm old school.

Here's the thing I'm kinda bugged about with buying the GX with chain and derailleur. What really appeals to me about the R&M Charger is how they've raised the bottom bracket of the frame above the chain or belt. That is, a chain or belt is not fed through the frame to the rear wheel. Nuvinci w/belt, therefore, is a perfect fit on this frame. (I'm just not ready for all those rubbing, friction, moving parts of the Nunvinci--or Rolhoff.)

;-)
 
Last edited:

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Really great response! Thanks so much! I really appreciate the comments on WD40 and I stand corrected. Frankly I used to do the same back in my BMX days, but since then more skilled mechanics than I advised me otherwise. If it's working for you I certainly can't dispute that.

I also understand about the Nuvinci/Rohloff feelings as I share some of the same concerns although the more I ride the nuvnci the more it's growing on me. It's really helpful for me to understand some of the other perspectives though.
 

Tbone

Member
Ok. Enough buttering-up. Here's the real truth.

I want the Rohloff.

But the cost!

I'm working diligently on/with my wife to convince her that the money, in the long run, is worth it. (To hell with what I said previously about rolling friction metal parts moving on each other like young people growing up!)

e-bike safe.

-t

PS Wait. Did I say that about young people?
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
You sure are a funny guy! Where are you in Germany BTW? I usually go to Eurobike every year in Friedrichshafen. It's really a beautiful place.
 

Tbone

Member
Bike riding in Germany is great. I'm in Düsseldorf on the Rhine river. I ride mostly between Köln and D'dorf (on both sides of the Rhine river.) I've never been to Eurobike but Friedrichshafen I've heard is a nice place. As far as being funny... I'm American and have been living among z'Germans for quite a while now--and I'm finally tired of being passed by (German) e-bike riders all the time.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Bike riding in Germany is great. I'm in Düsseldorf on the Rhine river. I ride mostly between Köln and D'dorf (on both sides of the Rhine river.) I've never been to Eurobike but Friedrichshafen I've heard is a nice place. As far as being funny... I'm American and have been living among z'Germans for quite a while now--and I'm finally tired of being passed by (German) e-bike riders all the time.
Looks like a beautiful place! Eurobike is pretty crazy, but it's definitely cool. They pack quite a bit of people in a really small town, but I guess that adds to some of the charm. Good luck with your new ride.
 

Drumulac

Member
Regarding the Rohloff: I have been living with one on my Greenspeed trike for 8 years - in combination with a Schumph HS it gives me a full internally geared setup and has proven to be bulletproof over 20,000+ miles of hard touring and daily abuse.

As Chris mentions, it does take a few hundred miles to break in and lose the noise, but after that, it doesn't really seem to be less efficient than a derailleur setup . . . though I did not have a derailleur on the trike previously to compare it with. I installed an EcoSpeed mid drive on the trike last year. This is a 1000 watt unit and with two 48V/20ah batteries, it cranks out a lot of torque. Absolutely no problem with the Rohloff handling it.

So, when it came time for getting a two wheel ebike, there was no question about laying out the extra bucks for a Rohloff. Just purchased a Delite GX Rohloff HS from Propel. I fully expect to be happy with the Rohloff on this setup, but will keep all posted.

Sorry, I don't have experience with the Nuvinci - heard mixed reviews over the years, but I'm sure it is a fine alternative, particularly with the belt drive setup.

And, getting back on topic . . . thanks Chris for the explanation of the Riese & Muller Model Trim Level Nomenclature!
 

BurbManDan

Member
Reliability seems to be a real strong point for the Rohloff, which I'm convinced would be a more reliable option than the Nuvinci, but I'm quite taken with the belt drive, or at least the idea of lower maintenance it affords. I'm questioning my assumptions about typical life expectancy of the belt compared to a chain. In my usage it would be stored protected from weather, and my riding is mostly pavement (not much dirt or mud, but some rain and temperature extremes).

For my usage, if the chain paired with a Rohloff only lasts a few thousand kilometers I'll be replacing the chain monthly, despite weekly tune and clean, which has been my experience the past few years with a standard derailleur 10spd Bosch drive.
  1. Is a belt going to last significantly longer than a chain?
  2. And, how difficult is it to replace and properly tension?
  3. What is wear like on the rings (are they still called chainrings on a belt drive)?
Thanks,
-dan
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Reliability seems to be a real strong point for the Rohloff, which I'm convinced would be a more reliable option than the Nuvinci, but I'm quite taken with the belt drive, or at least the idea of lower maintenance it affords. I'm questioning my assumptions about typical life expectancy of the belt compared to a chain. In my usage it would be stored protected from weather, and my riding is mostly pavement (not much dirt or mud, but some rain and temperature extremes).

For my usage, if the chain paired with a Rohloff only lasts a few thousand kilometers I'll be replacing the chain monthly, despite weekly tune and clean, which has been my experience the past few years with a standard derailleur 10spd Bosch drive.
  1. Is a belt going to last significantly longer than a chain?
  2. And, how difficult is it to replace and properly tension?
  3. What is wear like on the rings (are they still called chainrings on a belt drive)?
Thanks,
-dan
Dan - the belt should last a lot longer than a chain. Some of their marketing says twice as long, but I've heard many users say it's more like 4 times. If you keep it clean it should give you significantly longer life than a chain.

Reolacjng the belt isn't really challenging and tensioning is pretty straightforward. You can use an app to check the tension based on the frequency or you could get the cricket tool to check it in more of a mechanical way.

You should see about 4 belt replacements before you'll need to replace the cogs.

Here is a good article about belts. They saw 31,000KM before the belt snapped. Obviously you should replace the belt before it has the potential to snap, but it gives you an idea of what's possible.


The chain on the Rohloff should last longer than a deraileur variety though since you're not shifting through cogs which can wear the chain. You might want to consider looking at an ebike specfic chaib for your current bike. Check out Connex Wipperman Ebike chains.

I hope that helps.
 

BurbManDan

Member
Dan - the belt should last a lot longer than a chain. Some of their marketing says twice as long, but I've heard many users say it's more like 4 times. If you keep it clean it should give you significantly longer life than a chain.

Reolacjng the belt isn't really challenging and tensioning is pretty straightforward. You can use an app to check the tension based on the frequency or you could get the cricket tool to check it in more of a mechanical way.

You should see about 4 belt replacements before you'll need to replace the cogs.

Here is a good article about belts. They saw 31,000KM before the belt snapped. Obviously you should replace the belt before it has the potential to snap, but it gives you an idea of what's possible.


The chain on the Rohloff should last longer than a deraileur variety though since you're not shifting through cogs which can wear the chain. You might want to consider looking at an ebike specfic chaib for your current bike. Check out Connex Wipperman Ebike chains.

I hope that helps.
Thanks Chris! That is really helpful, and makes the dual-battery belt drive IGH Charger and DeLite very appealing to me.

I've tried a number of ebike specific chains, and have settled on using the Shimano E6090 which I can buy for <$20. By replacing these every 1500 miles, I can stretch the replacement interval on the cassette and front sprocket to about 6k miles. Given my commute, this means monthly chains and six months on the rest of the drive train, which is why the belt and a very reliable IGH are so appealing.

So, how can I properly size and test ride an R&M bike when they're made to order and I'm in Denver?
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Thanks Chris! That is really helpful, and makes the dual-battery belt drive IGH Charger and DeLite very appealing to me.

I've tried a number of ebike specific chains, and have settled on using the Shimano E6090 which I can buy for <$20. By replacing these every 1500 miles, I can stretch the replacement interval on the cassette and front sprocket to about 6k miles. Given my commute, this means monthly chains and six months on the rest of the drive train, which is why the belt and a very reliable IGH are so appealing.

So, how can I properly size and test ride an R&M bike when they're made to order and I'm in Denver?
I totally understand. There is actually a dealer in Denver called Best Electric Bikes, but I know very little about them. Maybe you should give them a shout or stop in.
 

BurbManDan

Member
I totally understand. There is actually a dealer in Denver called Best Electric Bikes, but I know very little about them. Maybe you should give them a shout or stop in.
Visited Best Electric Bikes today, and test rode the DeLite, of which they have the high speed dual battery belt drive on the floor as a demo. It is *very* nice! Between the relatively fat tires and suspension, it is a very luxurious ride. The belt is silent, so the only noise is the motor, which is pretty quite at ECO and TOUR, and more noticeable at SPORT and TURBO, perhaps heightened for me by the lack of drive-train noise that I'm used to. Having ridden many thousands of miles on a Bosch speed pedelec (Felt NINEe) setup for commuting duty in similar tires, fenders, rack, but a significantly lighter bike without the full suspension and second battery, it does seem like ECO is not so practical on the R&M, while it's required on the Felt by the lack of battery capacity. However, my interest in twice the battery capacity is to be able to run at higher speeds on higher assist, so not feeling like ECO works as well seems an acceptable tradeoff. I am curious how much efficiency is lost due to the belt and Nuvinci, though again this to me is an acceptable trade-off for lower maintenance.

At this point, I am ready to pull the trigger, and will probably place an order in the next week, but not necessarily for the DeLite. I'm still drawn to the Charger. I'd love some feedback from anyone regarding maintenance and reliability of two models and trim levels, as follows:
  1. DeLite with full suspension vs Charger hard tail. The charger is bound to be lighter, and more efficient, and simpler, which means lower maintenance. Any thoughts on how the extra roller in the belt on the DeLite will effect belt life? How about suspension care?
  2. Each of these models is available in either chain/Rohloff or belt/NuVinci configurations. I'm drawn by lack of need to clean and lube the belt and the long duty cycle of the belt to go with the NuVinci config, despite reservations that it will hold up like the Rohloff. But I'm afraid with the Rohloff I'd wind up doing frequent chain maintenance, and/or need to replace the chain and sprockets frequently.
My riding is all commuting, year round, on relatively smooth, clean paved paths and roads. I'm used to a hard tail, and rode the last 30k miles on one, so the full suspension has more future use case appeal than any daily justification. So I'd happily trade simple, lighter, and durability for suspension, but what really is the impact of the suspension on reliability? And with the price difference of the NuVinci and Rohloff, I'd be happy with the NuVinci provided it lasts something in the neighborhood of 15k miles or more...

As nice as the DeLite is, I'm leaning toward the Charger because I'm aiming to put 1500+ miles per month on it, and my preference is for reliability. Thoughts on reliability between the two configs? And is there any justification to consider the Rohloff, given the chain drive?