Nuvinci N360 and Patterson-Metropolis CVT

Discussion in 'Conversion Kit' started by chrisblessing, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member

    Finally, I have the Nuvinci N360 paired with the Patterson-Metropolis CVT on my 20" folder. It was no easy task doing this in Malaysia, requiring long waits on the postal service for niggling little parts. The biggest difficulty was in getting the chain length correct, which required the use of a "half link" and a chain tensioner. Ride reports to follow.

    alt="Nuvinci n360" [​IMG]

    alt="nuvinci n360" [​IMG]
  2. hamishbarker

    hamishbarker Well-Known Member

    what's the total bike weight

    what's the total bike weight without water bottles etc?
  3. Eric Winn

    Eric Winn Zen MBB Master

    Hi Christian,I had been

    Hi Christian,

    I had been wondering how this was turning out for you.

    Any idea about net weight gain or loss compared to what you started with?

    Benefit of Patterson over Schlumpf?


    Edit: Dang, Hamish beat me by 1 min... (my post time before this edit)
  4. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member


    Gentlemen, I'll weigh the bike tomorrow. It's heavy. The Nuvinci, as you know, is likely 2-3 times the weight of the freewheel it replace, and the CVT is probably at 1.5 times heavier than the compact it replaced. And the bike was relatively heavy before the conversion.

    As for a comparison with the Schlumpf, I don't know. I opted for the Patterson-Metropolis because of the price, and because I calculated that I'd get something close to the gear inch I had when fully geared. The Schlumpf has a bigger big gear for certain. I have a 16 tooth cog on the Nuvinci but may get a 15, because I suspect I have more low/less high than I'd like.

    I have to say, as I ride in a city that is nothing but hills, and where traffic is such that I can't help but be stopped suddenly, in an awkward gear, both bits are great to have. The PM can shift under load or stopped, and about 70% of the 360 gear range on the Nuvinci is available to me when stopped. Getting going has never been easier, and on my first test ride I immediately found myself dialing the Nuvinci around my cadence. Buttery smooth shifting, and no jolting or disruption when I'm climbing and need to shift.
  5. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member


    Ok, I weighed it. Without water 37 lbs/17 kg. There are trikes that weigh less. When I first completed the conversion, with nothing added, it weighed 33 lbs/15 kg. So it;s gained some weight. Anticipating this, over the course of the time it took to put this together, I lost 7 kg.

    My aim was to have a bike I could squeeze into a airline allowable suitcase for air travel. With the exception of one wheel, I can do that. And, of course one of the benefits of the CVT and Nuvinci is that putting it back together at my destination should take somewhat less than the hour I spend now.
  6. Doug Burton

    Doug Burton Zen MBB Master

    Very interesting...

    Hi Chris,

    I'm surprised you needed both the tensioner and the half-link. Did you experiment with moving the hub back/forward in the adapter bracket dropout? No criticism in this post (sometimes what I say comes across that way, it's not intentional). Just exploring what you've accomplished here, which is a great deal.

    37 lbs for a conversion isn't unreasonable, particularly with unavoidably-heavy components (my first conversion was nearly 50 lbs and it worked fine) and the result you produced seems to be an excellent city-bike setup.

    Looking at your first picture; I don't know if you feel a need for a kickstand, but I mounted one on the front wheel/fork on one of my conversions and it worked very well - I think you could do something similar. When folded, the kickstand swings to the front. This worked well with the somewhat heavier steel conversion kit I was using.





  7. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member


    Thanks Doug for your thoughts. You know, I was convinced that the half link would do the job, but, try, try as I might, I couldn't get it right. The primary issue was the V brakes I'm using. They didn't have enough movement to assure pad-to-rim contact if I moved the wheel out of the bottom of the dropout. I filed out the post hole to extend the reach but to no avail. Frankly, I don't know what brake options there might be, but I couldn't find them here in Kuala Lumpur. Your insights in making this work would be appreciated. Getting the tensioner off would please me.

    I like the kickstand you attached. Currently, it swings around and rests neatly on the CVT. I throw my glove under it to protects the finish, but it all works well.


  8. floridabike

    floridabike Active Member

    Nuvinici N360 Hub

    Hi Chris,

    Interested in your opinion of the Nuvinici Hub after a few more miles of riding. I used the hub and liked it very much but it seemed like it was less efficient than some of the other internal hubs that I tried.


  9. Charles.Plager

    Charles.Plager Recumbent Quant

    I've read that some hubs need

    I've read that some hubs need hundreds (~ thousand) miles before they are properly broken in and have their nominal efficiency.

    I've never seen an IGH with more than 3 gears in person, so I'm hardly an expert, but sounds somewhat plausible.

    As with many of my posts, I'm not sure I've actually imparted anything useful here, but here's hoping... :D
  10. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member

    First impressions

    I rode a quick 16 km yesterday. As usual, it was up or down, but enough to give me some first impressions. First, climbing is easier than before. I honestly can't remark about efficiency, as it seems previously I spent all my climbing trying to find the right gear and cadence, all while keeping the bike tracking straight at slow speed. Yesterday I found it far easier to get to the right "gear" and stay there, concentrating on cadence instead. I wasn't watching my speed but my sense is that I climbed at near my previous speeds. By the way, I have way more bottom gearing than I can use.

    Descents were a different story. Whereas previously I easily hit 40-45 kmh on a couple of descents, the fastest yesterday was 38. It's true I don't have the top gear I had (which I hope to correct with a smaller cog) to help me down, but the effect of the Nuvinci was, I think, unmistakable.

    On the few level stretches, where I could keep about 28-30 kmh, I was able to do around 27-28, so not a significant difference.

    All in all, with this being a small wheel commuter, in a place where I can't stretch out and just ride, the efficiency of the Nuvinci is likely not to matter a lot. And, even after a very short test ride, I can say that losing the derailleurs front and back makes managing the bike through hilly, sometime congested roads far easier. For that I'll forsake some efficiency.

    When I've had it out on the open roads in Thailand I'll report on that as well. For now, the bike is trick.

  11. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member

    3rd ride

    I did a 30 km ride today, still learning about the Nuvinci/Patterson-Metropolis combo. The loop I did is nothing but short, steep hills. Very urban, but light traffic at 6:30 am on a Sunday.

    I approached a short but extremely steep hill that previously required a dismount and walk. It's concrete, and this morning it was wet, and I had a car on my tail. I dropped the PM to the bottom gear while simultaneously rotating the Nuvinci to about a middle position and kept riding. At the first sign of slippage I rotated a tiny bit more and regained traction. I easily, if slowly, reached the crest. In one motion I shifted the PM back the top gear and rotated the Nuvinci and I was shooting down the other side. No jerking, no pausing, no sudden loss of momentum, and no slipping. That 40 second experience is all I need to justify the expense and work in making the combination work.

    I ordered a 14 and 15 tooth sprocket. Like the fixie folks, I guess I'm going to have to get used to swapping them out, depending on the ride. My current gear inch is 16-93. A 15t sprocket yields 17-99, while a 14t sprocket gets me 18-106. Should be something to like here.

    I can't stress enough how much more pleasant riding is without having to fiddle with derailleurs and gears, especially given conditions here. I no longer dread the numerous speed bumps, traffic lights and unanticipated sudden stops that I encounter.

  12. Eric Winn

    Eric Winn Zen MBB Master

    Your 3rd ride description is

    Your 3rd ride description is what intrigues me about bicycle CVTs like the Nuvinci.

    It seems like the course of evolution of more and more gears on a cassette and sizing and count of front rings is to provide a wider range of gear choice to try and get around the Goldilocks problem - e.g. this gear is too small, this gear is too big, ahh this gear is just right...

    Seems like the CVT solves this but at a cost of weight and complexity of manufacturing if not operation.

    Every once in a while when I find myself searching for a more comfortable gear, I wonder how a Nuvinci would feel.

    Wheelie likes this.
  13. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member

    3rd ride...

    Thanks Eric for your insights. It certainly does seem that trying to find that "magic" middle must necessarily involve a balance between weight, efficiency, ease or difficulty of use, and countless other variables. I'm not pleased, for example, with how heavy my bike is, but it's something I accept because I require something to better manage my circumstances. So I notice the ease of use and ignore the weight (until I'm wrestling it onto my motorcycle or into a suitcase).

  14. floridabike

    floridabike Active Member

    Nuvinci Hub

    No question, you can get really spoiled with the Nuvinci hub. I found myself using it like your gas throttle in a car. You keep your cadence constant and compensate with the hub in complete silence.

  15. Bryan P.

    Bryan P. New Member

    Hi Chris:

    After speaking to a Nuvinci Rep. who told me that there would be issues if I put a cog that's smaller than 16T on a Nuvinci N360 hub, I was wondering if you had any problems with running either a 15T or 14T cog on your Nuvinci N360. I believe the rep said that the chain would rub against a dust cover with a smaller cog. Does that make any sense?


  16. ratz

    ratz Wielder of the Rubber Mallet

    Can't be done it's a physical limitation of the hub, that said at 16T is too small for most people any how.
    joy likes this.
  17. chrisblessing

    chrisblessing Well-Known Member

    Hi Bryan. I just saw your post. I have had no issues with rubbing that I'm aware of. I was concerned about possible issues as the chain does nearly brush the cover, but thus far there are no signs of abrasion. For the record, I completed a 750 km trip last summer in southern Thailand, pulling a Burley and running the 16t sprocket, without issue. Without a load I always run the 15t. I haven't tried the 14t.

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