Pino – the little things

David Rossi contacted me with some questions about the way the Rohloff gears are fitted on the Pino, he has seen examples of good and bad installations, the good one being from Thorn bikes who specialise in Rohloff so you’d expect them to do it properly. Here’s the Pino:

As it was sunny today despite the cold weather we wrapped up and took the Pino for a short spin down to Bragazzi’s deli for a coffee and drop in to the friendly Asian plumbers’ merchant over the road for some drainpipe fittings I needed, both old-fashioned neighbourhood places that give you personal service. I took the opportunity to photograph some of the details including the Rohloff.

As you can see above its a very neat job. The changer mech with the two control cables detaches when you unfasten the big knurled screw on the front and the whole wheel assembly just drops out if you want to change a tyre or brake pads, As far as I can see the anti-rotation work is done by a lump of metal that fits in the extended dropout slot below the axle, if you click on the photo and get the bigger size version you may be able to see that, depending on your monitor.

Here’s the other side, the chain tensioner might not be absolutely necessary but it makes for a simple life.

Mirrors and handlebar furniture

We are both keen on mirrors but you might be surprised by the fact that we have three.

On the right (for UK riding on the left) we have a rear view mirror for each rider, the one on the stoker’s left handlebar is positioned to allow eye contact  between us. We use the brilliant Mirrycle mirrors which I cannot praise too highly for robustness, clarity, vibrationproofing and adaptability. The Pilot’s mirror also carries the huge loud “ding-dong” bell which makes a lovely mellow sound and always gets a smile as well as attracting attention. Bought online from Bunney’s Bikes in Nottingham after we saw one on a friend’s bike in Norfolk. Yopu can also see on this photo how the Rohloff changer is fitted the “wrong way” round under the pilot’s wrist. This is technically sensible for mounting and cable routing, and it’s easy to change, but this arrangement conceals the gear number markings on the changer and I’m thinking of moving it to the other end of the hand-grip. It will mean longer cables. It is quite important to be able to check your gear while rolling, the change from 7 to 8 is a little tricky if you are not alert and it’s good to be able to check and change the gear if you are rolling up to a road junction or other traffic feature. especially in city traffic.

Here’s the stoker’s view

She has a smaller bell mounted on the arm of one mirror and a computer on theo other, so the Mirrycles give some useful extra real estate for accessories. The computer is easily visible from the pilot’s seat behind. Hase profided excellent “bar-end” style hand grips that allowed a lot of adjustment, they are supplied pointing rearwards but we reversed them as you see hear to make a more natural hand-hold and put the mirrors etc in the best position. Grab-On style foam grips work well and conceal the wire from the computer, which was easy to route neatly under the seat to the front wheel with a few pieces of Gaffer tape. You will notice that the seat foam projects forward from the fabric, in the normal position Isobel felt as though she was sliding forward in the seat. By pulling the foam forward she created a depression at the back of the seat which seems to give the right amount of support and the extra foam at the front gives a soft front edge and a bit more support there. Something to play with, we spent a lot of time on our first rides adjusting everything.

In this side view you can see how we mount a small bag for the stoker. There’s a small stub of tube projecting from the seat frame to carry the hand grips and there’s room for another bar end on there. When we went on holiday with the brand new Pino I collected together all the old bar ends we had in boxes of bike bits in the cellar and spent an hour or two trying out permutations. The big plastic bracket below the seat is the mounting bracket for a Halfords handlebar bag, fitted on with a combination of two different bar ends, a stubby one projecting downwards and a bigger one attached to that and projecting backwards. It’s not ideal and I’m still looking out for alternatives but it allows Isobel to have a good sized shoulder back very handy beside her.

For the Pilot I found a bag in decathlon, designed for walkers with a belt to carry it on your waist like a giant bum-bag (fanny pack if you are in the USA).  I cut off the belt but kept the shoulder strap which has a quick-release buckle. The strap fits nicely round the the frame/webbing of the stoker seat to give me a good handlebar bag. You could put a small back pack in the same place.

click for larger image

The pockets at the side expand large enough for a water bottle.

We haven’t yet taken delivery of our Ortleib panniers to go on the front low-rider racks (wedding present from friends) but packing for big trips is the next big challenge to have fun with so watch this space.

All my posts on the Hase Pino pino-ALLROUND-700-27k

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2 Responses to “Pino – the little things”

  1. gareth Says:

    Fascinating post and photographs Chris. How large is the front wheel and what does the steering feel like? I wondered because the twitchiness of folders is often put down to wheel size, although it may be a trail effect. I tis quite difficult to imagine how the Pino would steer.

  2. chrisrust Says:

    I guess handling is a subject for another post but the main thing is that it’s very stable and easy to ride. The front wheel is 20″ so bigger than my Brompton and I think the trail is fairly relaxed, plus the front suspension will soak up almost anything, including moderate kerbs. It takes a few minutes to feel safe the first time because the wheel is a way ahead of you and the boom moves in a slightly disconcerting way, but once you get used to it’s very satisfying, enjoyably different from normal rather like the forward control position on our VW camper. Having got used to Saturday traffic in Sheffield we find we can roll along at a very low speed with good control in a slow moving traffic stream.
    The test bike at JD cycles had the handlebars set quite wide because John and Ruth are both big people. Like that the steering is so sensitive that it took me a while to be able to ride smoothly, taking one hand off to scratch my nose nearly caused a pile-up. John is a very experienced cyclist but said it took a few days before he was really comfortable and in control, able to reach down for his water bottle. But I have gradually brought the bars in to a much narrower position, you hardly turn them much anyway so it isn’t a big deal if they give the stoker’s shoulder a light shove on full lock, and it’s now very stable. Friends who try it first time with our setup don’t seem to have a problem.

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