WHAT: White Industries ENO Singlespeed Components HOW MUCH: See individual reviews for prices WHERE: www.whiteind.com
After a mid-nineties frenzy of pumping out high-zoot parts, the CNC machines at White Industries ran silent for a while. Then, a couple years ago, sensing a whole subculture with a unique set of needs just waiting for some shiny new functionality, Doug White and his army of robots introduced the ENO line of dedicated singlespeed components.
We've been pedaling around on the White Industry's drivetrain for a year now and can report the following:
Freewheel ($90): The ENO freewheel is totally rebuildable, with a sealed-cartridge bearing, three-pawl engagement and is available in sizes ranging from 16 to 23 teeth. For even more options, the company also makes the Dos-Eno two-speed freewheel in three sizes.
This is the first time that the word "bling" could be applied to BMX freewheels. After a year of use, it hasn't been cared for in any way whatsoever, and is still running smooth and solid. While it costs a hell of a lot more than garden variety BMX freewheels, it is sealed against the elements and lasts longer than a few months, something most unsealed BMX freewheels can't boast.
Cranks ($200 w/ring): Ahhhh, square-taper cranks. Gawd, I miss 'em. The ENO cranks slipped right onto an old but smooth Shimano UN-71 bottom bracket, didn't feel flexy, and featured a clean and stylish crank/chainring interface. Rings are replaceable, and offered in 32, 34, 36, 38, 44 or a double 35/38-tooth size to match White Industry's unique double freewheel. Using a standard 3/32-inch chain, the ring felt a little notchy at first in the stand, the teeth fitting tightly into the chain. But that wasn't noticeable when riding, and the notchiness went away entirely after a few rides. However, after a few teeth succumbed to rocks, we'd have to say the material is more brittle than ductile, and it doesn't like trying to grind granite.
Hubs (rear, $150-170; front, $120-140): What is there to say? They're light, simple, shiny and smooth. Bearing life has been fine so far, and they haven't made any funny noises. We used a disc front, and a standard non-disc rear. They are available, however, in both disc or non-disc options, as well as a rear ENO eccentric style, which allows for clean adaptation of vertical-dropout-equipped-bikes to singlespeed use without tensioners.
Bottom line? The ENO line is quality stuff. There are more affordable ways to go single, but style never comes cheap. And this gear has style in spades. —Mike Ferrentino