Dynamo Hub Recommendations for Bicycle Touring

Alee February 16, 2014 7

We love powering our devices from our dynamo hubs! High-end hubs have no noticeable resistance and coupled with a power supply provide ample power for most devices you carry when you travel.

This is an excerpt from The Ultimate Power Resource for Bicycle Touring. If you're interested in solar panels, power supplies and other batteries, make sure to take a look at our resource.

Most Popular Dynamo Hubs

Biologic Joule 3 – Self-claimed lightest and most efficient dynamo hub on the market due to the fact that it features an on/off switch in a package barely heavier than the competition. We haven't heard much about this hub, but we are sure that like the other Biologic products, it works just fine.

Sanyo – The H27 is the best value dynamo hub around. One for the super budget conscious, although if you're going to the effort to build a new dynamo wheel, we recommend investing a tad more money into a better performing Shimano option.

Schmidt – The industry standard and the hubs of choice for Alleykat. These efficient hubs include an incredible five-year warranty and due to awesome sealing from the elements are not expected to need servicing for 50000km. We recommend the SON28 for any 26-28″ wheel. We don't really see the need for the delux model on any touring bike – the delux is designed for 16-20″ wheels so with 26-28″ wheels it effectively has a lower resistance but is not suitable for charging. Available in many axle configurations including 15mm. Check out our review HERE.

Shimano – The Shimano T785 (XT) dynamo hub is excellent value for money (and the hub we'd choose from the Shimano range) and is popular on complete bikes.

Shutter Precision – Excellent value lightweight dynamo hubs. Similar internals to the Supernova Infinity S at a lower price. From all accounts these hubs are standing the test of time and rock hard.

SRAM – The D7 is good value for money and is generally found on complete bikes.

Supernova – Supernova do two hubs; the Infinity 8 (on-off switch but heavy) and the Infinity S (no switch and lightweight). Alleykat love Supernova products and wouldn't hesitate to use the Infinity S in the future.

Have you had experience with any other these hubs? Leave us a comment.


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  • Karl Grosvenor

    Hello according to the German manufacture of the Son Hubs the 28 is better on a 20 inch wheel and the Deluxe is meant for racing bikes which goes against what you are saying here.

    • http://www.cyclingabout.com/ Alee Denham

      Hi Karl. The reason the delux is great for 16-20″ wheels is because smaller wheels spin faster at any given speed, and the delux being a less powerful dynamo, can still generate enough power for lots of light at low speeds on small wheeled bikes. This hub is ALSO great for road bikes, because their “slow speeds” are much faster than loaded touring cyclists. If you are charging devices from the dynamo hub, it is best to use the SON 28.


      • Karl Grosvenor

        Thanks but as I said the manufacture doesn’t recommend the deluxe for anything but a racing bike so it is strange that you think differently and I do intend to charge devices and power lights.

        • http://www.cyclingabout.com/ Alee Denham

          The delux actually started out life as a model called the “20r”, intended for 16-20″ wheels. It was only recently that the hub has been given the go-ahead by German legislation to be sold for use on wheels bigger than 20″, hence the name change. Schmidt recommend using the delux for ANY wheel size between 16-28″, not specifically for racing bikes.

          • Karl Grosvenor

            That still doesn’t answer the question does it? the people that make the hub don’t recommend the deluxe for small wheels unless you race which I don’t.

          • http://www.cyclingabout.com/ Alee Denham

            Hi Karl. You seem to be stuck on this term “racing”. When Schmidt recommend that the delux is used for “racing” bikes, they are referring to road bikes (or any other full sized bikes) which travel at consistently high speeds, perhaps 20km/h and above. As I’ve already mentioned, the delux hub was originally designed for a 20″ wheel, so to say Schmidt doesn’t recommend the delux hub for 20″ wheels is plain wrong. Alee

  • http://www.cyclingabout.com/ Alee Denham

    Karl. I have supplied you with factual information about where the Delux model has come from to what it is now. Please read over it again from the start. If you want to charge devices, the SON28 is the best for the job on any wheel size. Alee