Truvativ HammerSchmidt Pro Review

Pro Reviews

Increased clearance

When you compare the HammerSchmidt setup to any typical double or tripple crankset, the HammerSchmidt system offers significantly more clearance in just about every direction. You get more clearance to the small ring which makes getting over logs and obstacles much easier.

If a frame were designed around a HammerSchmidt, it could prove beneficial by offering more flexibility on pivot locations, less front derailleur tubing variations / tweaks, beefier tubing options, additional tire clearnace, and much more.

In addition to the crankset area gaining more clearnace, the rear derailleur also can benefit as you can run a short cage derailleur which will improve clearance there as well without any loss of gearing.

Lastly, when you pick up the bike you won’t get the grease marks on your legs or clothes as the system is encapsulated quite nicely due to the smaller HammerSchmidt footprint.

All in one system

The HammerSchmidt is a system and as such was designed to work as one unit. To get a comparable setup is a lot harder as all parts are not designed to work perfectly with every single part. By designing the HammerSchmidt to include all these in one package was a smart idea. The HammerSchmidt takes either a 22t or 24t main gear and uses either a 22t or a 24t HammerSchmidt upper guide that is included. There are multiple positions for the upper guide to be mounted that helps it fit a wide variety of bikes. The durability of the HammerSchmidt seems right where it needs to be and the synergy of the system worked well.

Hasslefree shifting

The HammerSchmidt system shifts under load, while backpedaling, or standing still. It is very quick and effortless. Compared to a front derailleur system, this system blows it away in how easy it is to shift in the last second without fail or chain griding.

The system is smooth and is a vast improvement in terms of having reliable shifts no matter what the scenario is. With a typical front derailleur setup, you have to pedal to shift, the HammerSchmidt does not. This helps improve shifting as it is much quicker and easier to get out of rough situations with a quick push of the shifter.

While you can’t visually look down and see what gear you’re in, it is very easy to determine with a push of the shifter. The system shifts effortlessly and last minute shifts proved to be no problem for the HammerSchmidt.

Chain management

A big part of what the HammerSchmidt can do is manage the chain much better. It doesn’t have a lower roller to quiet the chain exiting the crankset, but it does have an upper guide that keeps the chain on the ring safely.

The chain is also able to be cut much shorter so you get a tighter drivetrain that has less chainslap as well. A short cage derailleur can be used in this setup much easier without fear of cross stretching the chain or going beyond the rear derailleur’s capacity. In a typical 18 or 27 speed drivetrain, often there are gears that are shunned against using. With the HammerSchmidt system, the chain line is improved over a front derailleur system, and all gears are encouraged to be used.

Improved chain line

The chainline of the HammerSchmidt is an impressive benefit. There was no rub on the system in any of the gears and it allows the rear derailleur to do its job easier. During the test rides there wasn’t any mis-shifts and the rear derailleur tracked impressively well without fail.

Essentially what I found was that the HammerSchmidt encompassed a lot of single chain ring benefits and dual ring benefits into one clean rub free package.

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  • Reginhild says:

    The concept might allow for what would be normally be a large front sprocket (without the size). A future combo that might be nice to see would be a new set of gear ratios to go with the Hammerschmidt. What if the Hammerschmidt did a 2.4x overdrive and went with a rear sprocket that had the following teeth – 15,16,18,20,22,24,26,30,34 ? It should allow you to shift up through all the gears on the rear sprocket and then switch to overdrive and shift up through the gears again providing continuous change of ratio.

  • Ralphy says:

    “The overall system weight of the HammerSchmidt will come down over time but currently it is a bit portly when compared to lighter setups.”

    So you’re saying the HammerSchmidt is heavier than a lighter setup?

  • J says:

    Yea, the HammerSchmidt is clearly not the lightest setup out there. Look at the numbers and compare them to other setups and you can see. Consumers have to think about the benefits and drawbacks to the HammerSchmidt system as a whole to determine if its right for them.

  • A says:

    how much is it in money

  • air says:

    Definitely not the type of crankset I want. Between Truvativ’s outstanding… err… alright… crappy bottom brackets to their crappy reliability with their crank sets, the company hasn’t given me any reason to spend 2x on a crankset compared to an opposing Shimano or even the B-Boxx by Bionicon/Nicolai.

  • james says:

    well, i heard that truvativs had a habit of dropping off but have been pleasently surprised; my stylos havetn fallen off yet in over a year of abuse.

  • jonas says:

    i wonder how it will work with a rohloff hub? (too bad the hammer doesn’t have twist shifting so the shifters match)

  • Jason says:

    The Hammerschmidt + Rohloff idea sounds good but it wouldn’t work as well as you think. The Rohloff needs a bigger (~32t) front chainring to give the correct gearing.

  • John says:

    The Rohloff already gives the same gearing range as a typical 3×9 setup, so the question is what would you do with the extra gearing range of the Hammerschmidt? If you plan to use it to set a speed record, then you only need the upper gears anyway. Just go with a huge chainring on a cpnventional 3×9 setup, or run a Rohloff with a huge chainring.

    If you go with a normally sized cog in the rear, as I do with mine, (a 16-tooth, I think), then running a 32-tooth chainring on the front with the Hammerschmidt would not only give a ridiculously, and unusably low ratio with the Hammerschmidt in low range, but would certainly over-torque the Rohloff beyond its design limits. Rohloff states that to avoid overloading the Speedhub the gearing ratio between chainring and the cog on the hub must be at least 2.35 to 1. If you are running a 16-tooth cog on the rear, for example, you would have to run at least a 38-tooth ring on the front, or the torque could damage the hub. So, with either the 22 or 24 tooth rings available for the Hammerschmidt, You would overlaod the Rohloff Speedhub, even with the largest available cog, (17 teeth). So, I can’treally see any good reason to couple a Speedhub with a Hammerschmidt.

    Incidentally, I’ve been running my Speedhub on my Santa Cruz Bullit on downhill and urban assault since 2001, with no problems. I’m on my third fork, second shock, and third rear rim, but the Rohloff has taken lots of abuse with no signs of wear. The only complaints I have are that it is heavy, and in certain gears, where you drive through all three planetary gearsets, the friction is noticeable.

    I imagine there will almost certainly be a bit of added friction in the Hammerschmidt, as well, although probably not very noticeable.

  • Paul says:

    Looks like a great front-end solution. Rear shifting is where it’s at, so when they introduce an alternative to the Rohloff hub, things will really get interesting.

  • Cracker69 says:

    Nice article, but didn’t you forget to subtract the weight of the front derailleur. This would mean around 160g less than quoted and make it pretty much a wash with the two-ring stylo.

  • Steve says:

    All those weight numbers are provided by Sram and looks to be included in the weight comparison part but not the savings table. So no it isn’t a wash.

  • Steve says:

    Also they include that Truvativ XR which is a tank (Stinger for example is a light/good two ring guide). Compare the numbers to a Shimano XT setup w/stinger and you’ll see that difference is quite a bit more. Hammerschmidt looks to offer some really nice benefits though as well that you have to take into consideration

  • Jordan says:

    Does anyone have any real world riding experience, instead of straight speculation?

  • somedude says:

    Good idea but poor execution. SInce rear cassettes already offer 1:3 ratio with 11:34 teeth on cogs the planetary front system should offer at least a 1:2 or ideally a 1:3 ratio. As is it there is the same wasteful overlap of ratios as found in classic derailleur based systems.

  • efd says:

    nice …Others may have other opinions but a light, capable “rear” geared hub would be more beneficial to me. Still, its great to see innovation and new products. I run a 2×9 now and would certainly consider this if not for the price, and the loss in efficiency

  • Hangdog98 says:

    The Rohloff doesn’t need a Hammerschmidt, it covers all the gears you need already. The Hammerschmidt is just a nicely packaged Schlumpf Crankset and the math has already been done to get a good gearing range with the Shimano Alfine 8sp internal hub. Check out Sheldon Brown’s gear calculator to work out your ratios. Nice job SRAM except for the obscure mounting requirements.

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  • TheRanch says:

    Most comments have missed one important point about this crank is and I quote competitivecyclist.com here… “The Truvativ HammerSchmidt AM crankset could very well revolutionize bicycle drivetrains from this point forward by eliminating that last bastion of low-tech: the front derailleur. Gone are the days of jammed or dropped chains, missed shifts and bent cages in favor of a seamless and bulletproof system that magically ekes two gears out of a single chainring in any condition, under any load (or even no load), any time you wish.”

    I’m looking for a system that uses this crank OR I go with a chain guide & a 10spd cassette, 32t front ring, 10spd shifter, 10spd rear derailleur and 10spd width chain.

  • Joey says:

    Will the Hammerschmidt fit a Santa Cruz Butcher without any frame modification?

  • GZ says:

    Intense Tracer….been riding THSchmidt for over two years..never go back
    Still using the same chain…ground clearance..Zero maintenance..Bullet proof.

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