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Old 05-20-06, 09:35 PM   #1
LastPlace
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Cassette Crisis...............

I have asked this question before but I now have more info and am trying to ask a more informed question.

To begin with, I have a Trek 1200 with a 30-39-50 triple up front and a 12-25 in the rear.....and want lower gearing. Since I am older (55) and have two bad knees and other health issues I'm probably not going to get much stronger but do have a desire to ride the Blue Ridge Parkway and other terrain with similar hills.

Not that I dispute the gospel of Sheldon Brown/Harris Cyclery,but has anyone ever installed their '13-30 Century Special', which they claim can be used with any Shimano derailleur, and if so, how did it work out? Never having changed a cassette before, is this something I can do and/or does it take special tools?

Also, if that doesn't work, will I get much help from a 12-27?

As always,
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Old 05-20-06, 10:56 PM   #2
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Changing cassette is a piece of cake. You need

1) chain whip
2) Cassette lockring tool

You can substitute chain whip with a short section of old used chain if you really don't want to buy the whip. The lockring tool you will need to buy though. Should be about $5 for a park tool.

If you're running a short cage derailleur you might not be able to slap on a 13-30. 12-27 should be ok though. Going from a 12-25 to a 12-27, isn't really worth it imho. Try and get the 30.
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Old 05-21-06, 06:32 AM   #3
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Casette Crisis...........

operator,

The Sheldon Brown says the 13-30 works with all derailleur's, including the short cage versions. Thanks for the reply.

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Old 05-21-06, 07:04 AM   #4
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Another help would be to change the 30T small chainring for a 26T or 24T. This is an easy and inexpensive change and will make a big difference in your gearing. It will reduce your low gear by 15 to 20% which is a major improvement.

I know this works having done it an numerous 7,8 and 9-speed Shimano cranks.
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Old 05-21-06, 08:43 AM   #5
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I've used the "Megarange" 11-32 cassette before with no problems. I like the advice of HillRider, though to use a smaller chainring - same effect with your existing cassette!
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Old 05-21-06, 11:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LastPlace
operator,

The Sheldon Brown says the 13-30 works with all derailleur's, including the short cage versions. Thanks for the reply.

LastPlace
Cool, good to know.
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Old 05-21-06, 06:19 PM   #7
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Yep, I replaced my little chainring with a 24t and in conjunction with my 10 speed 12-27 it gives me some nice low gearing.

How low you need to go is very much a personal choice, but I find my new low of 24 gear inches to be just right for me and 20% hills while carrying some stuff for light touring (very minimal stuff). Other people might find it too low and some may need to go lower of course.

Keeping a road cassette has the advantage of nice closely spaced gears.
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Old 05-22-06, 09:07 AM   #8
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Yeah, I'd simply replace the 30 chainring with a 28 or 26. Either should work fine with your current gearing without messing up your ratio gaps or paying a weight penalty.

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Old 05-22-06, 09:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HillRider
Another help would be to change the 30T small chainring for a 26T or 24T. This is an easy and inexpensive change and will make a big difference in your gearing. It will reduce your low gear by 15 to 20% which is a major improvement.

I know this works having done it an numerous 7,8 and 9-speed Shimano cranks.
That would be my recommendation too. See: http://harriscyclery.com/74

Sheldon "Granny" Brown
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|   Once more upon the waters! yet once more!         |
|   And the waves bound beneath me as a steed         |
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Old 05-22-06, 11:25 AM   #10
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Cassette Crisis..........

WOW! Words from the master. Thanks for the affirmation that I might have actually understood what I read on your site, and thanks for the e-mail the other day about this. I will probably be ordering the 'Century Special' in the not too distant future.


As always,
LastPlace

BTW, in 2004 I came to Boston for the convention (as a photographer) and stayed in Newton and thought it was a lovely place. Too bad this was just before I began cycling as I would have loved to visit the shop.

Last edited by LastPlace; 05-22-06 at 11:32 AM.
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