Cool Dyno Wheel & LIght Mount


by Mark V on Oct 25, 2009 at 11:34 AM

Recently I’ve been thinking about dynamo (generator) hubs as an alternative to light systems with rechargeable batteries. Though Shimano makes several popular dyno hubs, the acknowledged gold standard is Schmidt Original Nabendynamo (SON). Schmidt makes the lightest hubs with the least amount of drag, but they are premium priced. You can buy the SON hubs direct through the US importer Peter White Cycles, though your LBS may already have a relationship with him.



Schimdt hub and light.jpg



Recently I did a tune-up on a bike with this particular wheel with SON hub and a Supernova E3 light. What I thought was particularly sweet was the fact that the light attached to a special nut on the quick release skewer. Thus the light came off with the wheel and would not need to be disconnected from the hub at all. Awesome! Easy to move the wheel from one bike to another, and powerful lighting without ever having to charge a battery.

If it were me, I would have built the wheel on a Mavic Open Pro Ceramic rim for better braking in the rain and vastly improved longevity in the grimy, wet NW winters.

One thing about dyno hubs….they all feel super notchy when you turn the axle in your hand. All of them. It’s just the poles and magnets of the dynamo attracting each other. At speed your momentum while riding largely cancels this out, but just twiddling the axle in your hand makes it seem like the hub has something wrong with it.

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You won’t be charging batteries, but without an LED light, you will be replacing bulbs.  Granted, you won’t do it nearly as often (I probably go through 2 @ $5 apiece annually), but they seem to burn out at inconvenient times.  Spares and field installation are tricky, so I don’t bother.  It is glass, after all, and the coating is very sensitive to handling, so replacement is anywhere from tricky to just south of futile.

True, but there are many generator lights with LED, such as the Supernova pictured here.  While I do agree with some others that halogen light is easier on the eyes, the power of LED has come a long way in the past few years.  My first choice would be LED.

Do you have a make/model for that QR light mount or is it a custom job?

I have an E3 / 3N80-Open Pro setup and would love to be able to move mine from commuter to road bike with no bolts / wiring hassles.

Aha! Thought I’d seen it before, is it Steve & Dick’s Low Down Light Mount?:


well spotted.

Is there a particular E3 Supernova mount (multi, lefty, or bar) that’s needed to use with the Low Down Type 2 mount?