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Bicycle technology innovator Bernhard Rohloff, 73, dies

Published June 2, 2023

(BRAIN) — Bicycle technology innovator Bernhard Felix Rohloff, inventor of the Rohloff SPEEDHUB, died on May 19, according to the company he founded. Rohloff, who suffered from Parkinson's disease, was 73.

Rohloff grew up in Kassel, Germany, and began a long technical career with an apprenticeship as an office machine mechanic at Olympia. In 1986, he founded Rohloff GmbH with wife Barbara. As technical director, he developed the Rohloff S-L-T 99 derailleur bicycle chain.

The popularity of the S.L.T 99 chain grew as did the Rohloff product range to include bicycle tools.

The Rohloff SPEEDHUB 14-speed IGH was introduced in 1996, an innovation that "set new standards to this very day," according to a Rohloff company obituary. "But all that aside, Bernie was much more than just a brilliant inventor. He was an inspiring character who could not only impress with his expertise, but also respected and had time for the ideas and concerns of his employees. It is this humanity which made him a role model people trusted and were happy to follow.

"Bernie leaves a void which simply cannot be filled. With him, the bicycle industry not only loses a visionary, but also an exceptionally warm and approachable character. The company's employees and friends will miss his sincere and humorous manner — a trait which never failed to bring a smile to your face."

To send condolences, email: Address: Rohloff AG, Mönchswiese 11, 34233 Fuldatal, Germany.

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