Two bikes; almost identical, one with internal hub and electric shifters

canrocks

New Member
Hi all - I have the choice between two bikes and I want your opinion.


One has a normal cassette and normal mechanical shifters.
(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)


The other has an internal Alfine 8 hub and DI2 electric shifters. This one is an extra $200 CAD ($143 USD).
(Link Removed - No Longer Exists)


Our main goal is to minimize the total lifetime cost of maintenance. I understand that internal gears are cheaper to maintain?


My wife and I are anxious about the electronic shifters. We don't know the first thing about them - if they fail, could there be a massive cost to fix them? Would we be able to swap them out for normal shifters at a lower cost?
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
Well, I can buy the rear 9 speed Shimano Acera derailleur for $33 USD. What is that, $44 Cdn. An easy replacement for the lower cost bike.

I don't know that you would even repair the electric 11 speed. Probably have to buy the whole unit and it's probably best done under warranty. To change it to mechanical might get expensibe. New hub. New derailleur and shifter, Not like the above where a derailleur is dirt cheap,

The 11 speed does sound like fun and bleeding edge. Could be a maintenance headache.
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
I'm still reeling from buying Trek bikes with 3 speed automatic powered by a front hub dynamo. The biggest loss in $$ on a bike ever. Unless I spend big bucks on a Rohloff, I run from the Shimano electric automatics.
 

JRA

Well-Known Member
From the CL ad:

"This model is unique because it also has a internally geared 11spd electronic hub. You can set it and forget it (autoshift), or shift manually."

It is actually an 11spd hub and as far as I know, having owned the same system, there is no autoshift feature that you can set and forget, only the shifter that you have to activate manually.

The Di2 system can work just fine if you don't demand too much of it torque wise, in other words pedal in a gear that feels easy and shift down at stops to start in a lower gear which is a bonus with IGH that you can't do with a derailleur system. Keep the rear axle nuts tight and make sure there are the right ones for the drop outs as there are three different styles. I would assume as a factory type bike they are ok.

If you are looking for ease of maintenance an IGH and belt drive is hard to beat. But the most important thing to consider is how the bike fits you.
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
According to this the Di2 variant of the Alfine 11 is not compatible with a regular Alfine 11 IGH so if you wanted to switch to a manual you would need to buy a new IGH and have it laced in the wheel and replace the shifters and cables, which would probably cost $500 for parts plus shop labor hours. I like the idea of automatic shifting, does it run off the ebike battery?
 

canrocks

New Member
I rode this and I'm certain it's not an 11-speed; it's only an 8-speed. Does tat change things?

Yes the shifter runs off the battery so that's another thing - forget about riding it without the battery.
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I rode this and I'm certain it's not an 11-speed; it's only an 8-speed. Does tat change things?

Yes the shifter runs off the battery so that's another thing - forget about riding it without the battery.

Ok, no the price would be only a bit less for a Nexus 8 or Alfine 8 manual conversion. Did you like how the auto-shifter functioned on your test ride? Wasn’t there a version that automatically shifted down to 1st gear when you came to a stop.
 

canrocks

New Member
Haha no, not really. It's not a selling feature, even the sales guy was downplaying the automatic transmission. It's okay on flats apparently but not intuitive on hills, of which we have many out here.