I'll be looking for a new touring bike later this year and am currently doing one of my favourite past times, dreaming and looking at new bikes on the internet! One of the biggest decisions I need to make is whether to switch over to Rohloff hub? Maybe on a Thorn hand built bicycle. I like the idea of low maintenance after becoming increasingly annoyed with my dérailleur starting off perfectly at the start of a tour, but after a week it starts to get a bit erratic after picking up dirt and grime along the way. I like slightly off road dirt tracks. I do clean them up along the way, but over time it can be a losing battle until you get somewhere where you can give them a complete clean, when normality is restored :-) There are worse problems in the world, but when riding for mile and mile, it is the little things sometimes that drive you mad! :-)
Anyway, I hear lots of good about Rohloff - the only bad is if they break you are stranded. That doesn't bother me, there is always a way out of situations and the history of reliability appears to be good. What I'm after is what are they like on a day to day basis? Good or bad feedback. The one thing I'm slightly concerned about is the noise; people mention they are noisy. Is this true? Lets say I'm a little sensitive to bike noises! :-)
Look forward to some replies.