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  1. #1
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Custom Shimano 10 speed gear range.

    I'm considering a custom gear combination for my Century-ride bike. The bike has a 50-39-30 Shimano 105 triple.

    I plan to use the middle chainring 90% of the time. The large chainring would be used for traveling down longer hills. The small 30t chainring is my bail-out gearing.

    I'm considering this combination 11-12-13-14-15-16-18-21-24-27. I have all the parts except the 18t gear. I would expect to use 14-15-16-18 X 39t most of the time.

    Shimano sells an Ultegra 11-12-13-14-15-17-19-21-24-27. I like having a 16 and the 18 looks more usefull than the 19.

    Will this combination shift well with an Ultegra GS long reach RD?
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    You shouldn't have any issue using a one tooth smaller cog in the middle of the cassette. Unless you are using a Shadow rear derailler, the derailler will track to the cassette (instead of moving along a set path).

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    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Thanks, The bike has 105 STI brifters.

    Michael
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    Senior Member oldpedalpusher's Avatar
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    Hey Barrett,

    I know exactly what you mean... a 16-18 jump is smaller than a 15-17. I bought a whole cassette just to get an 18 for my "roadie" MTB.

    Too bad shimano won't just do like SunTour used to do and sell any single you wanted.

    Your total of 36 teeth is a fair amount of chain to wrap around a derailleur cage, but your long arm should do it just fine with just the right chain length. And wow... that's a range of 30 to 123 gear inches! That's not just "downhill"... that's "base jumping".

    On the rebuilt Raleigh I gave up everything on the top because I don't use them, and run a 24-34-44 with an "off the rack" 8 speed 12-13-14-15-16-17-19-21 for a range of 31 to 99 gear inches.





    Greg

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    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Hi Greg,

    That looks like a nice set-up.

    The funny thing is: I have been using a 12-27 and a 44t single chainring with good results. However, I started doing events away from home and hills with more than a 5 to 10% grade were a problem.

    With an 11-27 cassette, I'll be on the 39t from 12 to 26 mph. The big and small chainrings will be for special situations.

    I'm even considering removing the big chainring and putting a 46t on the middle ring. The 30t small chainring would be my bail-out for hills.

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-05-09 at 07:31 PM.
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    Refrigerator Raider Hater fordmanvt's Avatar
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    I was using a 30-39-52 crank and 11-28 9spd cassette with a Tiagra long cage without issue.

    I can't imagine anything less than 30 gear inches being helpful.

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    Senior Member oldpedalpusher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
    Hi Greg,

    That looks like a nice set-up.

    The funny thing is: I have been using a 12-27 and a 44t single chainring with good results. However, I started doing events away from home and hills with more than a 5 to 10% grade were a problem.

    With an 11-27 cassette, I'll be on the 39t from 12 to 26 mph. The big and small chainrings will be for special situations.

    I'm even considering removing the big chainring and putting a 46t on the middle ring. The 30t small chainring would be my bail-out for hills.

    Michael
    Hi Mike,

    If you did that, you could eliminate some rotating weight and still have a 113 inch high gear. That's one reason I went so small up front, to be able to run a very small tight cassette and still have a good low gear. I agree with fordman, 30 is more than enough.


    Greg

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    You could do that but if it was me I'd just run the standard 12-27. You can get more speed out of a good aero tuck than you can out of the 11. And that 18 to 21 is a big jump.

    Al

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldpedalpusher View Post
    I agree with fordman, 30 is more than enough.
    I'm sorry but I'll never understand why people make blanket statements like this. Perhaps for your terrain, your conditioning, and the kind of cycling you do, 30 gear inches is plenty low but that's just you and where and how you ride. There are a million different reasons why someone might want a lower gear and I certainly wouldn't want to see a new rider disuaded from cycling simply because all the "real" riders won't use a triple or a gear lower than 30 gear inches or whatever the latest arbitrarily set standard happens to be. I'm young, ride a light bike, have been cycling thousands of miles a year for 5 years now and I still use my 30/27 combo on certain hills around here. My new commuter will have a 28/27 (28 gear inch) combo and I know I'll need it.

  10. #10
    AEO
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    3T jump with a mixed cassette isn't that bad. just slightly slower in the shift and might be a bit more finicky when the chain starts to wear out.

    if my 9sp cassette mixes are any indication, chain wear is the number one cause of bad shifting performance, followed by cable bind and stretch.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
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    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    3T jump with a mixed cassette isn't that bad. just slightly slower in the shift and might be a bit more finicky when the chain starts to wear out.
    I was more concerned with what it does to your cadence. Mechanically the shift would be fine.

  12. #12
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al1943 View Post
    You could do that but if it was me I'd just run the standard 12-27. You can get more speed out of a good aero tuck than you can out of the 11. And that 18 to 21 is a big jump.

    Al
    I'm trying stay on the middle ring for most of my riding.

    The 11-27 cassette gives me a 10 to 25.5 mph speed range on the middle 39t chainring. I would only need the 50t chainring while sustaining speeds above that range. This might include a few longer hills and/or faster pacelines.

    The 11-16t upper range on the 11-12-13-14-15-16-18-21-24-27 cassette allows very close gearing for speeds in the 17 to 25 mph range. I'm in this range about 90% of the time. A standard 11-27t with 11-12-13-14-15-17-19-21-24-27 cogs starts to jump more than 10% at about 18.6 mph. I had a 11-25 cassette with a 11-12-13-14-15-17-19-21-23-25 on this bike before and did not like the 13.4% drop in cadence between the 15t and 17t cog at that speed.

    I can use the 11t on the cassette to keep me from shifting the chainrings at 24 mph, and I can sprint to 30 mph plus if needed in the 39t & 11 combo. The jump between 18 and 21 is at a low speed of 15 mph. I'm never holding that speed in normal riding, I'm usually 20% faster or more. If I'm climbing a long hill at that speed, I'll just change down to the smallest chainwheel.

    This is all about having a close gear range at my normal riding pace, and have reasonable options above and below that range.

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-07-09 at 04:58 AM.
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  13. #13
    AEO
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    16 > 18: 12.5%
    18 > 21: 16.7%
    21 > 24: 14.3%
    24 > 27: 12.5%

    so yes, it does give quite a big jump, but at this range it'll be a hill or severely strong head wind.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
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    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    16 > 18: 12.5%
    18 > 21: 16.7%
    21 > 24: 14.3%
    24 > 27: 12.5%

    so yes, it does give quite a big jump, but at this range it'll be a hill or severely strong head wind.
    ...and that's what the 30t small chainring is for.

    Michael
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  15. #15
    AEO
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    it will work fine, and I don't know why we are complaining about your custom gear ratio that you know will work for you.
    that's what custom is all about, for you, by you
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

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    Senior Member oldpedalpusher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joejack951 View Post
    I'm sorry but I'll never understand why people make blanket statements like this. Perhaps for your terrain, your conditioning, and the kind of cycling you do, 30 gear inches is plenty low but that's just you and where and how you ride. There are a million different reasons why someone might want a lower gear and I certainly wouldn't want to see a new rider disuaded from cycling simply because all the "real" riders won't use a triple or a gear lower than 30 gear inches or whatever the latest arbitrarily set standard happens to be. I'm young, ride a light bike, have been cycling thousands of miles a year for 5 years now and I still use my 30/27 combo on certain hills around here. My new commuter will have a 28/27 (28 gear inch) combo and I know I'll need it.
    Hi Joe,

    It's just an opinion of no more weight than anything anyone else says here. My comment was directed to Michael who rides a very light and fast road bike. My 33 pound road converted mountainbike has a similar 28 inch low gear as what you use (24/23)... but on my lighter road bike, 30 is fine. Any cyclotourist carrying gear or riding off road will certainly use much lower gears.

    As far as terrain and conditioning. I live in a very steep canyon, and can't ride anywhere without grinding uphill or screaming downhill.

    Perhaps you were addressing someone else because I said nothing about "real" riders don't use a triple. In fact I've never owned a bike that didn't have a triple and consider myself a "real" rider who is over 60 years old and has been riding bicycles for over 50 years...

    ...so, believe me... I need all the help I can get!


    Greg

  17. #17
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fordmanvt View Post
    I was using a 30-39-52 crank and 11-28 9spd cassette with a Tiagra long cage without issue.

    I can't imagine anything less than 30 gear inches being helpful.
    Thank you everyone,

    I'm primarily concerned about mechanical issues with the cassette & RD. I'm now sure this won't be an issue.

    The bike is a 60cm sized fast century bike, at about 23 lbs, and about 25 lbs fully loaded for an event. I agree the 30 gear inches should get me up 99.99999% of the roads I travel.

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-06-09 at 05:27 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldpedalpusher View Post
    Hi Joe,

    It's just an opinion of no more weight than anything anyone else says here. My comment was directed to Michael who rides a very light and fast road bike. My 33 pound road converted mountainbike has a similar 28 inch low gear as what you use (24/23)... but on my lighter road bike, 30 is fine. Any cyclotourist carrying gear or riding off road will certainly use much lower gears.

    As far as terrain and conditioning. I live in a very steep canyon, and can't ride anywhere without grinding uphill or screaming downhill.

    Perhaps you were addressing someone else because I said nothing about "real" riders don't use a triple. In fact I've never owned a bike that didn't have a triple and consider myself a "real" rider who is over 60 years old and has been riding bicycles for over 50 years...

    ...so, believe me... I need all the help I can get!


    Greg
    Yeah, I went a little overboard in my gearing rant Go to the road forum and read all the triple crankset scorn and you'll see what I mean though.

  19. #19
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldpedalpusher View Post
    Hi Joe,

    It's just an opinion of no more weight than anything anyone else says here. My comment was directed to Michael who rides a very light and fast road bike. My 33 pound road converted mountainbike has a similar 28 inch low gear as what you use (24/23)... but on my lighter road bike, 30 is fine. Any cyclotourist carrying gear or riding off road will certainly use much lower gears.

    As far as terrain and conditioning. I live in a very steep canyon, and can't ride anywhere without grinding uphill or screaming downhill.

    Perhaps you were addressing someone else because I said nothing about "real" riders don't use a triple. In fact I've never owned a bike that didn't have a triple and consider myself a "real" rider who is over 60 years old and has been riding bicycles for over 50 years...

    ...so, believe me... I need all the help I can get!

    Greg
    Hi Greg,

    I need to come visit you in Moab .

    Michael
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    Senior Member Tunnelrat81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joejack951 View Post
    Yeah, I went a little overboard in my gearing rant Go to the road forum and read all the triple crankset scorn and you'll see what I mean though.
    It's obvious that you feel attacked for having a triple crankset on your bike, and for that I'm sorry. The truth is, for many people in that forum, there is little need for a bailout chainring. It may come across as sounding prideful and belittling toward those who choose lower gearing, but I think most people who "wouldn't be caught dead riding a triple" simply feel that way because they'd be carrying around an unused ring if they had one. Gearing is very personal, and if a sentiment of "Triples are for Cripple's" is running rampant, it's probably a sentiment flowing between a small handful of people on that forum who feel it necessary to push the point at every opportunity, not even necessarily the majority. I think it's comforting to assume that those who suggest that Triples are somehow for lesser folks are simply stubborn people who aren't willing to admit that they really would benefit from the expanded gearing offered by a triple. But I think that's a damaging assumption to make. Some guys are actually strong enough to spin a 39/23 up a 7 percent grade. I'm personally not (yet) in that catagory, but it's surely not necessary to feel intimidated or defensive toward those who can. Just my $.02

    -Jeremy

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    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    ...And go to the long distance forum (you know, those Cripple's that do 400K in 48 hours ) and you will see that more than half use triples: What crankset is on your LD rig?

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-06-09 at 07:49 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tunnelrat81 View Post
    It's obvious that you feel attacked for having a triple crankset on your bike, and for that I'm sorry. The truth is, for many people in that forum, there is little need for a bailout chainring. It may come across as sounding prideful and belittling toward those who choose lower gearing, but I think most people who "wouldn't be caught dead riding a triple" simply feel that way because they'd be carrying around an unused ring if they had one. Gearing is very personal, and if a sentiment of "Triples are for Cripple's" is running rampant, it's probably a sentiment flowing between a small handful of people on that forum who feel it necessary to push the point at every opportunity, not even necessarily the majority. I think it's comforting to assume that those who suggest that Triples are somehow for lesser folks are simply stubborn people who aren't willing to admit that they really would benefit from the expanded gearing offered by a triple. But I think that's a damaging assumption to make. Some guys are actually strong enough to spin a 39/23 up a 7 percent grade. I'm personally not (yet) in that catagory, but it's surely not necessary to feel intimidated or defensive toward those who can. Just my $.02

    -Jeremy
    I certainly don't feel intimidated by someone who can spin a larger gear than me uphill. I'm far from the greatest cyclist to ever live. Nor do I feel attacked for using a triple. My whole point was that I really don't care and don't think other cyclists should care what someone else needs for gearing. They should choose their gearing based on their needs and not what's fashionable or cool to ride.

    BTW, my daily commute would seem easy if the worst grade I encountered was 7%. For others, the overpass might be the biggest hill they'll ever ride. For the same caliber of rider, it should be obvious that our bikes would be geared differently. For some members of this forum it's apparently no so obvious though.

  23. #23
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    The actual science of bike gearing is not that complex. It comes down to power, weight, friction, aerodynamic drag, slope and speed.

    A triple can be applied a wider range conditions and do it with less cross chaining than a double. Racers can use a double, but will change gearing for every stage. A recreational cyclist can also use a double, but may face compromises.

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 09-06-09 at 09:01 PM.
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    Senior Member oldpedalpusher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joejack951 View Post
    Yeah, I went a little overboard in my gearing rant
    Hey, no problem, Joe... you actually raised a very interesting issue.

    Go to the road forum and read all the triple crankset scorn and you'll see what I mean though.
    ooh... that sounds like fun. I'll go check it out.

    Greg
    Last edited by oldpedalpusher; 09-06-09 at 11:52 PM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
    I'm even considering removing the big chainring and putting a 46t on the middle ring. The 30t small chainring would be my bail-out for hills.
    This setup with 46-30 chainrings would be similar to what I run. I actually use 46-28 by doing the same thing - using only the inner and middle positions on a triple crankset. I then have an 11-26 stock SRAM cassette. The lack of a 16 tooth cog does bother me, and I decided that my ideal cassette would be 11,12,13,14,15,16,18,20,23,26. However, the largest three cogs are bound together on stock cassettes, making the 20-23-26 combo difficult to achieve without going fully custom. I've therefore decided to stick with the stock 11-26.

    For me, the 18-21 would be too big of a jump - I've tried the stock SRAM 11-28 cassette, but the 19-22 jump on that really bugs me every time I do it. I still wanted the 28 tooth cog, so I took a 12-25 cassette, removed the 16 tooth cog, and put a single 28 tooth cog at the top end that I got from an old MTB cassette (an 11-32 Deore LX I believe). That gave me 12,13,14,15,17,19,21,23,25,28, which I now keep on my cyclocross wheels (whereas the road wheels get the 11-26).
    Last edited by Chris_W; 09-07-09 at 07:49 AM.

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