I have been riding my Onyx hubs for about a year now and they still bring me the same joy as the first day of riding them. You might be asking yourself what makes these so special?
Born in the world of BMX Racing, Onyx hubs have been slowly making a name for themselves in the mountain bike world. What makes these hubs so great is something called a sprag clutch which originally came from industrial applications. Instead of using pawls and a ring for engagement like other high engagement hubs, Onyx uses a bunch of little one way teeth that when force is applied in a direction, the teeth wedge onto the steel sleeve that is pressed onto the driver.
When you stop the force they slide seamlessly against the driver with almost no drag. This system allows the hubs to have what feels like infinite engagement which allows you to put the power down in an instant. This is an amazing feature especially for when you are ratcheting your bike to get through rock gardens and technical climbs. The other major benefit to the sprag clutch is that it allows the hub to roll with almost no drag. In a typical high engagement hub the pawls are dragging against the ring when you are coasting which is the noise you typically hear but it does create quite a bit of resistance when coasting. These hubs will not only help you ratchet your way through the most technical trails but they will roll for days. One of the amazing things that comes from this system is that they are absolutely silent as you roll down the trail.
A look at the inner workings of the sprag clutch:
The really only downside I have found to Onyx hubs was that they do weigh a bit more than a traditional hub so they are not something I recommended for the weight weenies out there. But if you demand high engagement and hate listening to the annoyingly noisy high engagement hubs on the market these are the hubs for you.
Onyx offers a ton of different powder coat or anodized colors for their hubs and boasts they have over two million combinations. As a bonus Onyx does custom laser engraving for those looking for that extra touch on their custom build.
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