Originally Posted by guy909uk
Do I need to change BB, shifters and chainset plus deraillers or can I cut corners!? (Should I consider a compact chainset??)
Yes (sort of), and yes.
To accomodate the triple chain ring, you need to have a longer axle, hence a new BB. The rear shifter will be ok, but you'll need a new triple shifter for the front. You may or may not need a RD, depending on if yours will suck up the chain slack when in granny gear. It is doable, but you need parts and labor. The FD will probably need to be changed.
A compact crank is almost the same as a good granny triple, and alot cheaper. All you need is the compact crank - everything else should be ok.
Also, what cassette do you have on the rear? You can get a lot of additional low gear by coupling a compact up front with a taller gear in the rear. For instance, if you have a 25t rear, swap it out for a 27 or 28t.
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