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Old 08-30-11, 07:14 PM   #1
AndySchleckfan
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Junior Gearing- Best Combo for Climbing

I have been riding my new CAAD 10 for around 50days now and I have around 1300miles on it. I have the 3 setup, which is SRAM Rival with Force Carbon cranks. It is a really nice racing machine, the first real bike I have ridden. I ride with Speedplays and everything else stock, ie. (RS-10 wheels, Prologo saddle) I am a junior, and I have a 53/39 - 15-25 setup which is not really impressing me. I do a lot of climbing because I'm just good at it (125 pounds, 5''8.5) I was hoping another junior or knowledgeable person would have a better gearing setup, I think the junior rules at 6.73meters for rollout. I was thinking maybe like a 49/39 - 13-25 setup

I haven't raced my new bike yet, but I did a few crits in the 5 field and was able to get pack finishes, best being 10th. How important is it to have 53/39 setup if you have junior gearing going, drawbacks/downside?
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Old 08-30-11, 08:29 PM   #2
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have some fun with this:

http://sheldonbrown.com/gears/
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Old 08-30-11, 09:06 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by AndySchleckfan View Post
I have been riding my new CAAD 10 for around 50days now and I have around 1300miles on it. I have the 3 setup, which is SRAM Rival with Force Carbon cranks. It is a really nice racing machine, the first real bike I have ridden. I ride with Speedplays and everything else stock, ie. (RS-10 wheels, Prologo saddle) I am a junior, and I have a 53/39 - 15-25 setup which is not really impressing me. I do a lot of climbing because I'm just good at it (125 pounds, 5''8.5) I was hoping another junior or knowledgeable person would have a better gearing setup, I think the junior rules at 6.73meters for rollout. I was thinking maybe like a 49/39 - 13-25 setup

I haven't raced my new bike yet, but I did a few crits in the 5 field and was able to get pack finishes, best being 10th. How important is it to have 53/39 setup if you have junior gearing going, drawbacks/downside?
i don't really get what you are saying. are you asking about a better high gear if so get a 52/14 or are you asking about a low gear (and if u are then htfu ur 125 lbs you should be able to ride a 42/21 as your lowest gear) get a compact if you really need it.
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Old 08-30-11, 09:53 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by jsutkeepspining View Post
i don't really get what you are saying. are you asking about a better high gear if so get a 52/14 or are you asking about a low gear (and if u are then htfu ur 125 lbs you should be able to ride a 42/21 as your lowest gear) get a compact if you really need it.
Depends on where he lives. 39/25 can put some Cat 4s here in the hurt in some of our hill climbs. After what I learned this season, I have nothing wrong with running an exceptionally low gear for training purposes.

Granted I'm not a junior, and granted this was my ride on Sunday. Well, I went 30 miles in and turned around, 60 altogether.
http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/36035856/

So my short answer, give yourself gearing to play with. Make sure you can still spin on an easy day. Some of the juniors around here just ride stock compacts/cassettes, and still kick ass.

Of course disregard my advice if you are a killer rider, who is good enough for a development team, coach, etc. because then you already know more than I do. If you are still finding your legs, I wouldn't worry so much about gearing unless you are struggling with your current set up.
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Old 08-30-11, 10:52 PM   #5
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Juniors have restricted gear ratios, from memory if you want to race junior with a standard 53-39 you need a cassette where the lowest sprocket is 16 tooth.

http://www.mnjrc.com/Junior%20Gearing.htm

Shimano makes a cassette where the smallest sprocket is 14, which with a 52 tooth chainring should get you close to passing the rollout test.

Last edited by Minion1; 09-04-11 at 11:52 PM. Reason: Removing a meaningless list of numbers
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Old 08-31-11, 07:54 AM   #6
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When I raced Juniors I used a 52/36 with a 14-26 cassette.

In fact I still use the 52/36; it's a great compromise between a 53/39 and a 50/34. With a 11-26 in the back, it's perfect for almost any situation.

Last edited by vanno.velo; 08-31-11 at 06:24 PM.
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Old 08-31-11, 08:12 AM   #7
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it's perfect almost any situation.
... for you.

Gearing is very personal. Riding terrain, pedalling style, and power output all play into it. Not to mention the lenght of your rides- you'll need a lower gear to get up a hard climb after 7 hours of riding than you would on the same climb in the first hour.

To the OP- what is wrong with your gearing for climbing? Is 39x25 not low enough for you? Would you like different gaps between the gears? More crossover between the large and small chainrings? Asking for "better for climbing" does not give enough information.

A point of information- I was at a climbing race this weekend that had some juniors who do these kind of races often. They all ran compact cranks with smaller chainrings than you are using.
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Old 08-31-11, 09:34 AM   #8
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Yes, I definately agree that in the 3rd, 4th hours of a long ride the climbs begin to sting much more and a lower gear would help. I think a 52/36 14-25/6 might be a good change. I have a 53/39t, what does the t mean? I go on 3-4hours SST rides once or twice a week and the gearing I have doesn't really facilitate good climbing.
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Old 08-31-11, 12:26 PM   #9
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I am not a JR but my hardest gear is a 50x13. My easiest is 34x26. I can guarantee I would climb a steep hill faster, after 3-3.5 hours, with easier gears than I have. But I like having a relatively tight cassette (compared to a 13-29).
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Old 08-31-11, 05:15 PM   #10
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You will need a new crank to use 52/36 chainrings.

If you use the gearing chart linked above you can make a pretty good guess how much lower a gear you need.
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Old 08-31-11, 07:09 PM   #11
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Don't forget tire size changes rollout too.
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Old 09-02-11, 09:52 AM   #12
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Why new cranks? that sounds expensive? Plus, does anybody know what the "t" means on the 39 I currently have
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Old 09-02-11, 09:56 AM   #13
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Because a 38t is the smallest that will fit on 130mm BCD cranks. 't' = teeth.
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Old 09-02-11, 10:17 AM   #14
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hmm, when the bike came it has a compact crank of 52/34, so the LBS should be cool about the switch? They're usually pretty nice-

Is there any way for a CAT5 to upgrade on results, if he hasen't done 10starts?
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Old 09-02-11, 12:02 PM   #15
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Measure the crank to see if it's a 110mm or 130mm BCD. You can find instructions on the internet.

You can ask your district rep to be upgraded, but you really should do all 10. The requirement is so new guys will gain experience in safer smaller packs and won't be in over their heads quite so much in cat 4. Before cat 5, cat 4 was a truly awful crashfest. It's better now. If you want to move up sooner, do some more races.
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Old 09-02-11, 06:09 PM   #16
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Its says 130BCD on the Big chainring, Ill chat up my LBS- any idea how many miles for a set of the tires (the rubber part, not the rim) the RS-10s I have are durable and heavy, but my rear tire is losing traction from nearly 1400miles, Im thinking brake pads need replacement- any other things like that? Also, do Junior races count for an upgrade to Cat 4? Im thinking Ill just do Cat5
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