BFS2017: Brik Bikes’ the chainless bicycles, no maintenance Dutch commuters

Brik Bikes was founded around the concept of building chainless Dutch-made commuter bikes that would operate trouble-free for years without any real need for maintenance. Starting with the principle of an enclosed driveshaft they developed a series of steel Brik Sec commuters where you never had to worry about getting dirty with a chain.  That grew quickly into the aluminum framed Brik Brut above, which trimmed off a bit of weight down to around 17kg/37.5lb and even a bit of the cost down to a starting price of just 920€, all while sticking with the same shaft-drive. Now Brik is adding a belt-drive version of their commuter to the line up, with the new Brik Belt that further drops both price and weight, while still delivering up several internally geared hub options to get pretty much any cyclist around town…

The shaft drive is still also available in the steel-framed bikes called the Brik Sec that started it all. Like the Brut, this one also gets the option for a reinforced diamond-esque men’s frame or this step-through women’s model, and like the Brut above is available in 2, 3, 7 & 8 speed internal hub versions with either coaster or roller brakes. The 2 speed SRAM Automatix coaster is again the cheapest at 950€ (and lightest at 18kg/40lb), while a 8 speed Shimano Nexus rollerbrake hub is the most expensive at 1180€ (and up to 19kg/42lb.)

Of course the heart of the chainless bike is the alternate drivetrain. Up until this year Brik Bikes had worked exclusively with an enclosed driveshaft system that pretty much bolted right on to the bike at a special bottom bracket and replaced the driveside chainstay. Although relatively heavy and a bit mechanically complex, the totally closed system bathed in grease/oil is said to run smoothly and efficiently for years on end without any maintenance, even when left out in the elements like most Dutch bikes are.

 

The bigger news is probably the addition of the Brik Belt this season. The new bike gets a slightly more sporty look to go with the reduced overall weight of the steel framed ride. It still is all about being a simple and practical upright urban commuter, and comes in both men’s & women’s frames, as well as including features like full coverage fenders and a rear wheel lock that are standard on all of their bikes.

But while keeping with the same concept freed from the chain, Brik has gone the way of the belt…

The heart of the Brik Belt is then the carbon belt drive system. Here Brik Bikes opts for the German-made Continental Conti Drive System as opposed to the Gates drive setup we most often see.

The reason for the Continental system comes down almost entirely to these injection molded, reinforce plastic cog and ring. While both Gates & Conti belts are relatively similar in basic design and cost, the molded plastic gearing of the Continental design keep the total system cost much lower when compared to the more expensive to produce machined aluminum gears of the Gates Centertrack setup.

That helps Brik keep the cost down to just 800€ for the single speed coaster Brik Belt, which also happens to be their lightest at 15kg/33lb. There are still options for the same 2 speed coaster from 870€ up to the 6 speed roller brake build for 1100€.

 

Each of the Brik Bikes is available in their range of 10 muted colors, or even custom solid RAL colors for a 90€ upcharge. Not to be overlooked from Brik Bikes either are their accessories. While the bikes get fenders, a lock & kickstand standard, they each can be fitted with color matched rear racks, a heavy-duty platform-style porteur rack that bolts to the downtube, a solid child’s saddle that also bolts to the downtube & includes foot pegs, or a dynamo hub powered lighting setup.

All of the bikes are painted and built up to order in Holland down to the in-house wheel builds, then get shipped out to either a participating bike shop or delivered direct to the buyer. Brik ships for free in the EU, and will coordinate a shipping estimate for worldwide delivery.

BrikBikes.com

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mmmfriedrice
mmmfriedrice
5 years ago

Every spring, thousands of mechanics groan at the influx of horribly-weathered ‘Dutch bikes’ that come into their shops, and riders are upset when they find out that the bike advertised as ‘maintenance free’ now requires large sums of money for maintenance.

Just because there’s a shaft drive doesn’t mean that a well-ridden IGH doesn’t need service.

fiddlestixob
5 years ago
Reply to  mmmfriedrice

word

fiddlestixob
5 years ago
Reply to  fiddlestixob

also it should read: it doesnt get dirty quickly

vs “maintenance free” which is basically a lie.

Flatbiller
Flatbiller
5 years ago
Reply to  mmmfriedrice

You’re telling this to the bike crowd, which for some reason also think that suspension components shouldn’t need to be serviced every 200 hours. (Have you looked inside a suspension fork or rear shock these days? Those aren’t non-precision components in there!)

Ironically, these same (deleted) drive Porsche 911 Carrerras, which they take in religiously every 10 miles for an $800 oil change. Go figure.

JBikes
JBikes
5 years ago
Reply to  Flatbiller

Have you ever priced a new engine from Porsche?
Although given your oil change estimate, you’d guess about 4x too high.

James Fryer
5 years ago

Step-through frames are not gender specific.

Gillis
Gillis
5 years ago
Reply to  James Fryer

word

Dylan
Dylan
5 years ago
Reply to  James Fryer

Reminds me of the flow chart of how to tell if a children’s toy is for boys or girls:
step 1) do you operate the to with your genitals?
–> NO –> the toy is for boys or girls
–>YES –>the toy is not for children

R Grouch
R Grouch
5 years ago

I want the Paul Brodie shaft drive he was showing at NAHBS

Heffe
Heffe
5 years ago

word

iperov
iperov
5 years ago

lol internal gear hub needs huge of maintenance.
No thx.

Pete
Pete
5 years ago

Extraordinary lengths taken to do something new… when a chaincase and a normal chain would achieve exactly the same result in terms of longevity.

I do like the shaft drive though.

Martin G Ugalde
Martin G Ugalde
3 years ago

Me and my wife got 2 brik bikes with shaft drive system.
They’re heavy bikes, and we brink kids to school and go for grocery with, they’re the best in those works.
I should say because of the shaft drive they have none suspention in the rear wheel, and the frame doesn’t flex at all. The bike is really hard when pavement is not perfect.
My bike has 8 speeds, rear rack, front basket, axa defender, hub dynamo… Is totally full. I love it…… But I should say my bike weights 27 (twenty seven) kilograms. Is like a japanese mamachari.
And is totally low mantemainte. Not free. But low.