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Catrike makes wider axles standard equipment on all large-wheel models
Catrike introduced a mid-season change to its large-wheel recumbent trike models including the Expedition, 5.5.9., 700, and Dumont. All future models will use a 12x142mm through-axle hub.
Through-axle hubs were designed for use in downhill mountain-biking to withstand high forces, and this move ensures that Catrike rear wheels will be some of the strongest on the market. With lateral forces being a factor on recumbent trikes, Catrike's move should result in more durable and possibly more efficient wheels. Furthermore, the through-axle design will prevent inadvertent shifting of the hub in the dropouts.
The new hubs rely on specially machined dropouts that allow rear-wheel braking for the first time in Catrike's history. Rear-wheel braking is mainly useful for parking brakes, and drag brakes under touring conditions. Under ordinary conditions, braking the rear wheel can cause skidding.
The policy move by Catrike make Catrike recumbent trikes incompatible with technology that relies on a 132mm dropout width. Such technologies include many rear-wheel electric motor systems and many internally-geared rear hubs such as the Shimano Alfine and Nexus hubs, and dual-use hubs such as the Sturmey-Archer RF3 and RK3 hubs that use an internal 3-speed mechanism in conjunction with an external conventional derailleur / cassette.
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