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  1. #1
    t_s
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    10 speed crank with 9s drive train

    Hi all, this is my first post to the forum. I am a relative novice when it comes to drive train mechanics, so hopefully my question is not too ridiculous.

    I currently have a 9s 105/tiagra drivetrain and my crankset is a triple. My crankset is off of an older bike and has seen better days and I am looking to replace it with a double. My question is: Would a 10s crankset be compatible with my current 9s drivetrain, specifically the front derailleur, or would I be better off finding a 9s crankset?

    thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    10 speed crank will be fine. I'm using one with an 8-speed chain and FD and it works just fine. Make sure you're ok with giving up that granny ring though!

    IMO the search function on this site is pretty bad, but doing a Google search with site:bikeforums.net after your search gets great results, only from this site. Try it next time, this question probably gets covered weekly.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  3. #3
    t_s
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    Thanks FastJake. I am quite ready to give up the granny gear! Thanks for the tip on google search. Did not have much luck with the forum search function.

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    t_s
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    Well, I took my bike in to the LBS today, 10s crank in hand, and was told that installing the crank on my otherwise 9s drivetrain would significantly compromise performance. He offered to install it but was not optimistic that it would work well, if at all. I guess we'll see how it all shakes out when I pick up the bike later this week. A little bit nervous at this point to say the least.

    If it's a total fail, I guess I'll just have to buy the bike I really want...

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    t_s, Quite likely the new double will require a shorter BB spindle. Did the shop mention that? In some instances I've read that thin washers have had to be installed to space the inner chain ring further from the large chain ring, but that seems to be the only possible problem.

    Brad

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    t_s
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    Thanks Brad, for inspiring confidence that I didn't just waste my money on the crank, which is how I felt after leaving the shop. Should have mentioned - I'm actually replacing the bottom bracket in addition to the crank.

    I asked the gentleman at the shop about spacers for the chainrings and he looked at me like I had two heads. Frankly, I don't think we ever got past the fact that I wanted to put a 10s crank on a 9s drivetrain. Intuitively, it should work, perhaps with spacers.

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    I have Ultegra 10 speed compact doubles on two otherwise 9 speed bikes. Works fine for me.

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    It should work without any spacers. Similar to FastJake I'm running an 8-speed chain on a 9-speed crank with absolutely no difficulty and 9 and 10-speed cranks are actually closer in dimensions than 8 and 9-speed cranks.

  9. #9
    Cottered Crank Amesja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by t_s View Post
    Well, I took my bike in to the LBS today, 10s crank in hand, and was told that installing the crank on my otherwise 9s drivetrain would significantly compromise performance. He offered to install it but was not optimistic that it would work well, if at all. I guess we'll see how it all shakes out when I pick up the bike later this week. A little bit nervous at this point to say the least.

    If it's a total fail, I guess I'll just have to buy the bike I really want...
    You need to find another LBS. That mech is clueless.
    '74 Raleigh Carlton Competition w/ Ultegra | '97 Trek 720 Singletrack CX-er w/ 105 | '64 Raleigh LTD-3 modernized w/ all alloy components |'69 Raleigh Twenty | '54 Raleigh Sports

  10. #10
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amesja View Post
    You need to find another LBS. That mech is clueless.
    +1

    Employed as a mechanic at a bike shop is no reason to believe he/she will know anything about bikes...
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  11. #11
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    I too have run 10-speed chainrings on a 9-speed drivetrain with no problems. Theoretically the chainrings are slightly closer spaced, I think, but in practice I didn't have issues with the chain rubbing in small/small combinations.

  12. #12
    DOS
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    "You need to find another LBS. That mech is clueless."


    +2
    My Opinions > My Knowledge

  13. #13
    Cottered Crank Amesja's Avatar
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    You can even run 8-speed drivetrains on 10-speed rings. Rarely is there a problem other than maybe a little more rubbing when extreme crosschaining, more so on a compact double or when there is a larger difference between chainwheels. If that does become an issue there are always chainring bolt spacers. Add 0.5mm and it pretty much goes away. You can always run 9-speed chain on that 8-speed drivetrain too, or 10-speed chain on that 9-speed system. This isn't rocket science. If your LBS thinks that a 10-speed crankset can't be used on a 9-speed bike RUN AWAY. Gods only know what other stupid things they think. The only "performance" you will be losing is that extra gear out back.
    '74 Raleigh Carlton Competition w/ Ultegra | '97 Trek 720 Singletrack CX-er w/ 105 | '64 Raleigh LTD-3 modernized w/ all alloy components |'69 Raleigh Twenty | '54 Raleigh Sports

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DOS View Post
    "You need to find another LBS. That mech is clueless."
    +3 (or more)
    Riding the Ohio MS Central Ohio Challenge tour, July 12th.

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    I have put a 10s crankset on a 9s drive chain, there is a bit of problem. the 10s is a double crank, when it is on the lowest gear there is little noises of front chain rubbing on my bigger chaining ring. Also i think you need to use a 10s chain. i end up switching my small chain ring into a 9s chain ring

  16. #16
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Hey, here's a thought - you probably don't want to pay someone to install chainring spacers. It's a fiddly job that could take 15 minutes or more, but it's not rocket surgery.

    Mechanics don't do this often enough to get any better at it than some guy off the street, unlike say, replacing V-brake pads.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amesja View Post
    You need to find another LBS. That mech is clueless.
    +4

    Quote Originally Posted by edwardlui531 View Post
    I have put a 10s crankset on a 9s drive chain, there is a bit of problem. the 10s is a double crank, when it is on the lowest gear there is little noises of front chain rubbing on my bigger chaining ring.
    I think you mean the highest gear on the small ring, ie small/small. This isn't all that uncommon, but isn't generally regarded as a problem because you're not meant to run that combination, particularly on 9s and 10s bikes with closer chainrings with up to a 16t gap.

    Also i think you need to use a 10s chain. i end up switching my small chain ring into a 9s chain ring
    If you have anything 10s (crank, cassette, maybe derailers) you should probably use 10s chain, same for any number down to 8. Anything in the drivetrain can handle a size narrower chain, but some parts may not be happy with a size wider.

    Or you could have employed the spacers mentioned above, to make your 10s crank effectively 9s by giving it a 9s ring spacing.

  17. #17
    Cottered Crank Amesja's Avatar
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    It's so easy to add spacers. The rings themselves have almost no difference. We are talking about tiny spacing differences here between 9 and 10-speed. Many folks never check derailleur hanger alignment when a tiny bit of misalignment can throw things off by more than a millimeter or two yet they are worried about tiny fractions of millimeters when it comes to the difference between 9 and 10 speed.

    Penny-wise and pound foolish if you ask me.
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  18. #18
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    Just to clarify, you do NOT need to use a 10-speed chain with a 10-speed crank and rings. An 8-speed chain will work just fine, even without chainring spacers.

    You do need the chain to match the number of cogs on the cassette though, i.e. you can't run an 8-speed chain on a 10-speed cassette (it'll be too wide.)
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  19. #19
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Cranks don't have speeds , just tooth thicknesses .. like the chain has thicknesses ..

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