Rotor’s all new Spanish-made Rvolver hubs take a completely unique approach to engaging a freehub body with the hub. Most basic designs use flat, spring-loaded pawls to ratchet along & grab a toothed ring in the hub to transfer power, but Rotor wasn’t satisfied with that standard solution’s friction. Instead the Rvolver uses a series of cylindrical posts set at an angle into the cassette body and an engagement ring that moves out-of-the-way when freewheeling to cut down on drag even more…

The interface of those cylindrical pawls & the precisely machined floating ratchet ring are what really set the hub design apart. And for now we have just this one image of how they look from inside the hub. The cylinders are not set straight into the alloy body. But instead they sit at an angle, offering less friction when freewheeling, but plenty of bit when you put power to the pedals. Then their round shape means that when you coast, they push the engagement ring away into the hub shell a few millimeters where it is out-of-the-way from friction a bit more. Pedal forward and the top edge of the cylinders grab the tooth ring and pull it back into line for full power engagement. The totally unique design cuts down on internal friction and apparently helped Rotor keep the hubs very light as well.

The Rvolver hubs offer 25 point of engagement between what looks like 5 cylindrical pawls and the floating toothed ring to connect every 14.4°. Looking at that cassette body, it may even be possible to add 5 more pawls to cut that engagement time in half.

Rotor has developed the system into two basic hub sets – rim & 6-bolt disc brakes. That means they have you covered for everything from classic road to road disc to mountain with Boost spacing (you can build standard MTB on the road disc hubs we presume). All of the hubs get extended hub flanges optimized for either standard or 2:1 lacing, all with J-bend spokes and sealed bearings. The 7075 machined alloy hubs are all made in-house by Rotor at their factory just outside of Madrid, Spain.

Road rim brake hubs

The QR axle road rim brake hubs feature 16 or 20 hole front and 24 hole rear drilling. Shimano splined only, they weigh in at 89g/198g and will sell for 147€/328€, respectively.

Road disc brake hubs

Road disc brake hubs are also Shimano cassettes only and get 24/24 lacing with standard 12mm thru-axle setups, or a conversion kit to go 15x100mm up front. They weight 119g/230g and retail for 155€/344€, respectively.

Mountain Boost disc brake hubs

And mountain hubs get 28 or 32 hole lacing for both front & rear hubs, only in Boost 15×110 & 12x148mm spacing. Front hubs weight 112g, while the Shimano rear is 238g & XD rear weighs 244g. They’ll also sell for 155€/344€, respectively.

All of the new Rvolver hubs will be available through regular Rotor dealers starting in October 2017.

RotorBike.com

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36 COMMENTS

  1. Innovation is always good. But seriously…freewheel drag?! BR, if you’re publishing the marketing literature, publish the data alongside it.

  2. There appears to be some engagement lag. Maybe the hub has a more positive feel while riding. The video is less than convincing though

    • The “lag” you mention is present in nearly every hub on the planet. Per the text above:

      “The Rvolver hubs offer 25 point of engagement between what looks like 5 cylindrical pawls and the floating toothed ring to connect every 14.4°”

      360* / 25 engagement points = 14.4* between engagement points

      So, no surprises here. Some hubs are better, some are worse with respect to engagement delay.

      If that matters to a person, they just have to choose the one that meets their needs.

      • ‘Lag’ and ‘engagement’ are different things.

        Yes, it does look like there’s lag in the system between forward motion of the freehub body and when the piston-things interface with the ring.

        • Yes, technically they are different, but one leads directly to the other.

          Lag is any delay from the moment of pedaling input to the moment the hub actually rotates.

          The number of engagement points essentially dictates the lag.

          The 25 engagement points in this design yields a 14.4° lag.

          • With clutched systems like this and American Classic, there is extra rotation do so the engagement, so more lag than the degrees of engagement would suggest. If a ratchet on a conventional system has a huge back cut, it would also lead to extra lag

  3. It will be interesting to see how it wears, but super nice to see more companies moving past pawls which seem to the weak spot in many designs… at least through what I see in my world.

  4. Not a lot of points if engagement there. But- as another commenter noted, if lots of p.o.e. are your thing, there are other hubs that have that.

  5. seriously, do you folk really think that this is any less reliable than existing systems? No it fact it probably more robust.
    “wear out the hub shell..” seriously, is that the best negative comment you could think of? The movement of the ring is very slight and it moves in a well greased area. Less chance of this system wearing out when compared a ratchet and pawl system.

    “Too much room for dust to work in”… LOL. I guess you missed the seals and also all the available space for dust to migrate into compared to other systems where the dust is trapped and causes wear.

    p.o.e….. Oh come on, this is the idiots complaint to every new hub design. Notice there are more cavities available to fit more pins for more points of engagement. However,more p.o.e means more friction.

    • Yes. Seriously. The drive ring is probably steel, moving in an aluminum shell. Yes, it’s just a guess, but over time I would expect the harder steel drive ring to dig into the softer aluminum shell. The same thing occurs in a DT Star Ratchet hub with the aluminum ring nut, but at least the ring nut is replaceable. Certainly cool to see something new, and I hope I’m wrong, but that looks to be a fairly obvious Achilles heal.

    • No one has ridden and abused this design long term besides testers. Testers do miss things. The general public more time that not becomes beta testers unknowingly. So if you want to be that go ahead. For most people wheels are big investments.

    • So, we are supposed to know how this design fails? Without specifications? Without even a review of the actual product?

      Usually people criticize for ‘armchair engineering’ but you’re pissed that people didn’t do a good enough armchair engineering with no information but a couple pictures?

      You never can win.

  6. I’m honestly surprised these aren’t more expensive. If they came in other colors, these would be part of my next build.

  7. Judging from these internet pictures alone and using my degree in armchair engineering, the ring is probably unobtanium, which will never wear on the hub shell or the cylinders, meaning the system will last forever. But like that other guy said, it doesn’t come in other colors so not worth buying. Now, where did I put my toothbrush to clean off this verbal diarrhea?

  8. Seems like we are in a constant cycle of new attempts and building a better mousetrap, but Chris King did this better than anyone 30+ years ago.
    Perfect POE , über reliable with easy and infrequent maintenance and stable customer service.
    Honestly I do not understand the obsession with chasing every new free hub idea with virtually ZERO track record of long term service.
    Chris King, DT and Hadley are it. All others are chasing them in that order.

  9. I just want to know if we’re talking “swarm of bees” or “clack-clack-clack” DT swiss coasting sounds…
    Spin that sucker up!

    Seems like the latter.
    🙂

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