nikishi frame cassette options
my front is 52/42 and rear 5 speed is 14-17-20-24-28 and that just dont give me what i need on these hills. what do i need to do to go to a triple front and a nine cassette rear or is this even possible?
You could do that, but it won't be cheap.
You'll need a new crankset and bottom bracket, cassette, chain, shifters, derailleurs and rear wheel. You'll have to cold set (bend) the rear drop-outs to accept the new wheel. The parts cost will be way more than you could sell the bike for. You'll do better buying a bike with the gearing you want.
How far off in gear range are you? If it's just a bit, changing the small chainring to 39 tooth may be enough, that's easy and quite cheap. You also just get a triple, probably need a new BB as well.
If you stay with friction shifting you could avoid replacing shifters and derailleurs and go 9 speed. Still need new wheel, cassette and chain.
Last edited by Steev; 02-10-09 at 03:13 AM.
What's the budget?
You could go to a low cost MB triple up front, like this- Note the 160MM arms. Rather short for most of us.
You'd need a longer BB and PROBABLY a FDER.
Your current FDER may or may not have enough "travel, in addition to the "travel" being located where it needs to be.
Nashbar lists FDER as low as $5.
Thought I said this earlier, but going to 9 speed won't actually get you any lower gearing, just closer steps between gears and one or two higher gears.
It will definitely be cheaper to buy a newer bike with a more recent drivetrain. Can be had on Craigslist (at least here in Boston) in the $400 range or cheaper. Which is less than you would pay for all of the aforementioned upgrades, unless you're a ridiculously savvy shopper.
Real Men Ride Ordinaries
Buy a new freewheel. The shimano mega-range would be a good idea in your case, a 34 tooth large cog.
If that still isn't good enough, use a compact double. Cranksets with the proper 110 bcd can be had off ebay for $20, and a new 34 tooth chainring isn't too much more. Those two combined give you an incredibly low gear for not much money
With the Mega-range or the MTB crank, you'll need a new longer cage rear derailleur to take up the slack on the extra gearing range. Fortunately, Alivio rear ders are pretty cheap and work just fine. The MTB crank would also require a new front der to handle the wide range and three chainrings. I'd try the mega-range first.
Originally Posted by fuzz2050
If it were my bike I would probably start by changing the crank to something with smaller chainrings... the current crank probably has a 130mm bolt-circle-diameter and these can only accept a slightly smaller chainring, if any.
A basic MTB crankset has a 94mm bolt circle diameter (or 110 mm if you shop around for old stock)and generally come equipped with 22-32-42 chainrings, which can be changed to larger. Changing the crank probably also means you will need a different length of bottom bracket spindle as well. Both these changes can likely be done for around ~$100 - 150 or so.
This change might be all you need to do, but you might also have to change your front derailleur to a triple-chainring specific one (probably about ~20 for a decent quality FD).
As others have said, consider getting a new used triple-chainring road or touring bike. This is likely to be much simpler and not too much more money.
I had similar gearing on my old Trek (although mine was 12-28 in the rear, 52/42 in front) and needed something for the surrounding foothills. I went to a SRAM Rival compact crank -- 50/34. It was on sale at Performance 2 years back, less than $200 installed. That's the only change I had to make. The existing FD worked fine. I'm very happy with it and actually like it better than the triple on my new bike.
Originally Posted by jamesearlgibson
Real Men Ride Ordinaries
if you use a compact, you only need to switch out the crank, a triple involves bottom bracket and front derailer as well. If you need really low gears, it may be worth it, but you can get plenty low with a compact double and a wide range freewheel.