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Cycle Monkey

Internal Gearing Specialists, Bicycle Distribution & Service Center

Tout Terrain Amber Road Commuter with Rohloff SPEEDHUB and Schmidt Dynamo Hub

A local Bay Area business owner came to us wanting a new commuter - a bike he could depend on day-in and day-out to get him where needed to go. This was his first new bike purchase in over 20 years, so we started by introducing him to all the options that are now available for making an everyday bike easy for a rider to just get on and go.  He wanted his new bike to be low maintenance, user friendly, rain ready, and easy to ride up the hill he lives on. He was excited about the Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14 internal gear hub because it could give him a range of gears capable of getting him home comfortably and still pedal a comfortable cadence on flats.  He also liked the simplicity of the Gates' Carbon Drive belt system and was interested in getting a generator hub to light up his ride home after work. With the basics in place, all we needed was the right frame for the job, and the Tout Terrain Amber Road was the perfect fit.

Tout Terrain is a company based in Germany with a passion for incorporating bicycles into an everyday cycling lifestyle. Tout Terrain translates from French (the company is located on the German/French border) to mean "all terrain", which they apply to their design philosophy in making excellent bikes for daily transportation and extended tours. 
They design their various models to meet requirements for a specific type of riding, but also include features intended to afford flexibility for multi-purpose riding. Their frames are all built from steel for the strength and durability to handle a bit of everything and have a number of innovative design features that set them apart:

  • Built in racks for improved strength and stiffness when carrying heavy loads
  • Flexible cable routing for configuring various drivetrains
  • Multi-purpose dropouts that allow for running derailleurs, internal gears hubs, and belts
  • Conducting plates on the forks to use Schmidt's connector-less dynamo hubs
  • Taillight wire routing through the rear rack to keep the wires away from panniers
  • Steering stops on the head tube to prevent bars from spinning around and damaging the top tube or lights from hitting the down tube and getting damaged
  • Steering locks that prevent the fork from moving when the bike is parked to reduce the chances of it tipping over
  • Eccentric bottom bracket design that allows for lateral adjustment to achieve precise belt alignment

Tout Terrain's 3 in 1 dropout has inserts available with or without a derailleur hanger and separates to install a belt into the rear triangle.
The Amber Road is a model in Tout Terrain's Trekking series that is designed to be a 29" wheeled bike for everyday use, weekend touring, and riding on pavement, dirt, or gravel. With most of the brand's unique design features included, the Amber Road is well equipped for the daily commuting needs of this customer. The frame will clear up to 2.35" tires (without fenders) such as Schwalbe's large volume Big Apple model, but for this build, we went with medium width Marathon tires and fenders for blend of comfort, speed, and staying dry during our winter/spring rain season.

3 in 1 dropout without derailleur hanger
Once the frame had been chosen it was time to turn to our Wheel House to build the wheels for this bike to roll on. Since this customer wanted his commuter to be ready for riding every time he got on it, we spec'd Velocity Dyad rims--a durable,700c option--and double-butted Sapim Race spokes with brass nipples. He added a Schmidt SON28 SL dynamo hub for connector-less, self-powered lighting of both the front and rear tail lights. The dynamo ensures that the bike will light up every time he pedals, so he can head for any destination safely with the road lit and knowing he can be seen by cars.

Taillight wire runs through the built-in rack
The rear wheel was outfitted with a Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14, which is a great fit for any commuter because of its hardened steel internal gear wheels, wide gear range, and sealed shifting system, which protects shifting components from everyday wear and tear. The SPEEDHUB provides dependability in all riding conditions, making it the perfect choice for a bike being ridden daily. With the addition of the Gates Carbon Drive belt, which has a usable lifespan at least twice as long as a conventional chain (and typically much longer) and does not require lubrication, this is one of the most low maintenance and dependable drivetrains available. This set-up is perfect for a hassle-free commute every day of the week. Just get on and get going.

Before this build was ready to hit the road, we added a riser bar with Ergon grips and a Selle Anaomica Titanico saddle for comfortable riding. Throw in the fenders and kickstand, and this Tout Terrain Amber Road was officially ready for it's commute.

Our customer came to us looking for a bike that would do everything with no adjusting or fuss: lights that are self-powered and thus not reliant on a battery, a rack strong enough to really pack, fenders to keep him dry, a drivetrain that he wouldn't have to adjust or lubricate regularly, and gearing that could take him uphill. He got it all in this Amber Road built around his specific needs.

If you are looking for a new commuter or another type of Rohloff/belt drive bike, get in touch with us to start a conversation.

Build Details: 

• Frame: Tout Terrain Amber Road
• Fork: Tout Terrain Amber Road
• Headset: Velo Orange Grand Cru
• Stem: Dimension 4-bolt
• Handlebar: Dimension Riser Bar
• Shifter: Rohloff Twist Shifter
• Grips: Ergon GPI Large
• Seat post: Velo Orange Grand Cru
• Saddle: Selle Anatomica Titanico
• Front Hub: Schmidt SON28 Dynamo Hub
• Rear hub: Rohloff SPEEDHUB 500/14
• Spokes: Sapim Race
• Nipples: Sapim Brass
• Rims: Velocity Dyad
• Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Supreme
• Cranks: Shimano Deore
• Pedals: MKS RMX
• Bottom Bracket: Shimano Deore
• Chain ring: Gates Carbon Drive
• Rear Sprocket: Gates Carbon Drive
• Chain/Belt: Gates Carbon Drive
• Brakes & Levers: Magura MT2 Brake, Magura rotors
• Fenders: SKS P45
• Front Light: Schmidt Edelux II
• Tail Light: Schmidt SON