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Old 03-03-14, 10:30 PM   #76
5ofus
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So we're stuck at 126? Doesn't mean we're stuck with 7s.

You can have 8 or maybe 9 of 10 on your existing hub. Or, you can totally have the full monty if you lace a 8/9/10 hub (or your old hub with a new cassette body) into an off-centre rim; see the link in my sig for details.

You don't even need a new axle when going from 130 to 135 - the amount of axle in the dropout doesn't matter as long as it's enough to locate it; the locknuts and skewer do all the holding. The only part required is the spacer.
OK. Read the link. Here is a pic of my wheel. I was told both of the bits and bobs on the left are nuts and each one is indispensable. I was hoping that the inner one is a spacer??? I wasn't sure if there is a consensus in your post regarding offsetting the wheel via removing a spacer and adding more speeds. 9 speed would be nice = new shifters/brifters which I wanted anyway but maybe not all at once expense wise. Don't laugh at my plastic shield (: My bike still has ALL of the original stickers in full. I'm a paradox b/c I'm messy but I take care of my favorite things. When my kids break stuff I like to point out my complete monopoly set from the 70's and my bike that they all covet, etc.(:

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Old 03-03-14, 11:40 PM   #77
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true .. there are no extra spacers cone , washer and locknuts that's it.

Note: "speeds" is just a hardware cog count , what ratios do you need , rather than the Corncob

how about a Shimano K cassette 7 speeds 13~34t?
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Old 03-04-14, 12:50 AM   #78
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I was told both of the bits and bobs on the left are nuts and each one is indispensable. I was hoping that the inner one is a spacer???
Okay, you don't have a spacer. But that's a very common axle type, so it should be easy to find a replacement cone that doesn't have the cylindrical extension on it. Also, it looks like there's a 1mm washer between the cone and locknut, which you could lose. I've also seen thinner locknuts. You can probably get away with a cone only 2mm narrower if you lose the washer, leaving you 1mm oversize, NBD.

But if you go this way you'll need to re-lace the hub into an off-centre rim (or maybe remove half the NDS spokes; it's a 32h so you'd have a triplet-laced 24h. Not sure if doubling the NDS tension like this would do the job though).

If you're under 65kg or so, you could use a light (400g) Velocity Aerohead OC, and from what I can see of your rim you'd probably be able to re-use your spokes. If you're heavier, Velocity has a couple of beefier OC models around the same ERD (the dimension relevant to your spoke length), or there are a few other companies with OC rims too.

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Most recently I've ended up being on the small chain ring going uphill, chagrined to say.
Looks like you mash big gears instead of spinning - this is inefficient, and hard on you and your drivetrain. Try concentrating on your pedal stroke for a couple of months, working to train your muscles to smoothly apply power through ~250 and unweight your legs on the upstroke, and work towards being able to apply that at least around 80rpm, so that it feels like your feet are just floating in circles on the pedals. When you achieve this state of cycling grace, you hardly ever run out of legs; rather, the problem becomes getting oxygen into them quick enough, and this is how you gain cardiovascular fitness.

So if you're not spinning like a pro (big guys push bigger gears slower, but most everyone's sweet spot is between 80 and 100rpm), I'd advise getting that down before upgrading your drivetrain. Unless you're spinning, you don't have much clue what ratios are best for your needs.
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Old 03-04-14, 03:37 AM   #79
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Yes, did you read my original post? I said "except uphill". I do get it spinning on the largest gear, but my corncob cassette is really small so no big deal.
I'll try again. This is your post #70 "I usually have my cassette on the largest gear except on extreme uphill."

Cassette = thing on the rear wheel.

I think you are talking about your crank/chainrings, not the cassette.


If you are talking about your cassette - are you using "largest" as in "most gear inches", "hardest to push" etc, or are you using largest as in "biggest diameter/most teeth"?

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...my corncob cassette is really small so no big deal.
I still think your pedalling technique is way off. A 39/53 crank together with a 12-21 cassette on a 28"/700C/622 mm wheeled bike should give you a comfortable speed range of around 13-25 MPH on the small ring, while the speed range on the big ring is something like 18-35 MPH.

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I am experiencing all 14 of the gears and with its current teeth it's not enough!
For serious hills I can see that.

Changing to a (supposedly) MTB cassette and rear derailer (34T big) will drop your lower comfortable speed range to about 8 MPH. But even on 9-speed, I wouldn't like the big steps from one gear to the next.

Me, I'd much prefer a MTB/Touring triple crank and a more tightly spaced cassette instead. Outside a race setting, staying on power at 30+ MPH doesn't bring any practical benefit.
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Old 03-04-14, 07:41 AM   #80
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Corncob + triple = win.

Pretty much covers all the bases.
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Old 03-04-14, 09:29 AM   #81
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Corncob + triple = win.

Pretty much covers all the bases.
Yes, I've been thinking about this lately, because it annoys me that so much of my gear range is overlapping between my 52 and 39 chainrings with 11-34 cassette. Surely it would be better to get an 11-25 and a triple. And I like the idea of a SRAM Yaw FD to try to maximize usable cross-chaining.
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Old 03-04-14, 09:59 AM   #82
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Problems:

I doubt the Yaw FD is triple compatible despite its epic throw. Maybe a half-step triple (which I figure 38/50/53 is optimal for); AFAIK it's only meant for up to a 16t spread.

Less overlap seems great on paper but there's a downside: when you shift the front you have to shift further on the rear, greatly increasing the chance of being off a cog or two. I briefly ran a compact, and after switching out the 34t for a 40t the relief was surprising; there's something to be said for a 10t gap.
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Old 03-04-14, 10:08 AM   #83
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Hmmm. I typically run a standard 52/39, but I have a compact 50/34 which I like to swap on for long hilly rides sometimes, but I dont' leave it on because the Octalink V1 118 BB that came with it is too long and messes up the chainline and makes front shifting difficult, and I haven't gotten around to getting the 109.5 that I think would be correct. But I'm not worried about big rear shifts when changing rings; that's the point of limiting overlap, no?
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Old 03-04-14, 10:54 AM   #84
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If you are talking about your cassette - are you using "largest" as in "most gear inches", "hardest to push" etc, or are you using largest as in "biggest diameter/most teeth"?
I usually have the largest diameter on the chain ring, then I work my way through the gears as I spin. So if I am spinning freely on the smallest diameter gear, then I gradually moved up to the largest diameter on the cassette. Doing this in the past I was only able to get up to around 22MPH downhill, freely spinning on the largest chain ring and cassette diameter. Does weight factor in? I know that in surfing a mature, heavier person can drive down the face of the wave, resulting in more power and speed, more easily than a younger, lighter weight grom.

I would like to do a wheel building clinic. But for now I probably should keep these wheels as is to maintain the vintage integrity of this bike. This bike was offered in 8sp and I am pretty sure it was the exact same frame so I will take your other suggestions into consideration to maybe get it to 8sp without changing the wheel spokes.

Thanks again for EVERYONE's input. It's helping me make a decision I will be happy with.
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Old 03-04-14, 12:12 PM   #85
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I usually have the largest diameter on the chain ring, then I work my way through the gears as I spin. So if I am spinning freely on the smallest diameter gear, then I gradually moved up to the largest diameter on the cassette.
Sorry, still not making sense.

If you want more speed from the same effort/pace of pedalling you change to a smaller sprocket(rear) or to a bigger ring (front). Or both.
If you want easier climbing you change to a bigger sprocket(rear) or a smaller ring(front). Or both.

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Doing this in the past I was only able to get up to around 22MPH downhill, freely spinning on the largest chain ring and cassette diameter.
That does make sense. As said before, the big-big combo will have a lowest comfortable speed range at about 18 MPH. But big-big is kinda silly to use on a downhill, for top speed you want big front and small rear. And as even the small ring(front) would take you to about 25 MPH, you'd pretty much have to hit a descent to actually need the big ring.

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Does weight factor in?
Yes.
A heavier person hasn't got much more air drag, but more weight pulling the rider down the slope. Rolling resistance and bearing drag stays about the same too.
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Old 03-04-14, 02:04 PM   #86
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I usually have the largest diameter on the chain ring, then I work my way through the gears as I spin. So if I am spinning freely on the smallest diameter gear, then I gradually moved up to the largest diameter on the cassette.
If this is really what you are doing, you don't seem to have any grasp of how gears are used or what "direction" to shift in as speed and terrain vary. It's also possible that you are using the terms "cassette" and "chain ring" incorrectly since reversing them in your description makes more sense. The cassette is the cluster of multiple cogs at the rear wheel and the chain rings are attached to the crank.

The largest chainring coupled with the smallest rear cog is the potentially fastest but hardest gear combination and is usually used only for downhills and/or with a strong tailwind. As you shift to larger cogs in back or to a smaller chainring, the bike goes slower at the same pedaling cadence (spin rate) but the effort gets easier. Large cogs and small chainrings are used to climb hills and fight headwinds.

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Old 03-05-14, 11:15 PM   #87
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Hey guys, I am doing what you are saying with gears. I must not be explaining it correctly - sorry. I just run out of gears on the large chain ring going uphill right now. Probably will improve as I get back into bike shape (:

Brought my bike into my almost L(trek)BS. Very pleased b/c the tech does not think bikes make wall art. He put a 130mm wheel on my bike and it slipped right on there. Ta Da! He also inspected my carbon comp frame and said it it is in excellent condition and is a really good frame. Yeah!
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Old 03-06-14, 12:20 AM   #88
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I just run out of gears on the large chain ring going uphill right now.
But why are you using the big ring for climbing anyhow?
It's not bringing you any advantage.
Quoting myself from above: " A 39/53 crank together with a 12-21 cassette on a 28"/700C/622 mm wheeled bike should give you a comfortable speed range of around 13-25 MPH on the small ring, while the speed range on the big ring is something like 18-35 MPH"
For an inexperienced solo rider, most of your riding should be on the small ring. The only times you can put the big to good use is in a wicked tailwind or on a serious descent.
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Old 03-06-14, 03:04 AM   #89
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I just run out of gears on the large chain ring going uphill right now. Probably will improve as I get back into bike shape
In all probability - no.

Or at least not much. The big ring is nobody's climbing ring.

Oh, sure, a strong rider may choose to stay on it for a while to intimidate the competition, or you can have an incline that's so mild that it can be tackled at almost 20 MPH, in which case the big ring will "work". But otherwise, save it for tailwinds and descents.

Bike riding is a lot more about stamina than it is about strength. Cranking slow-and-hard as your regular riding style will only put you in the running for the "most messed up knees" or "bulkiest legs of the year" competition.
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Old 03-07-14, 12:08 AM   #90
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OK What happens is that when I go downhill I spin TOO freely on the smaller chain ring and larger cassette gear so I move up to the larger chain ring and smaller cassette gear and then move all the way up to the largest cassette gear, still spinning freely downhill. My computer is extinct but in the past I only was able to get up to 22 MPH this way and I think if I were heavier I could get more downhill momentum or maybe my computer is off. 14 gears (in reality feels more like 12) on so few teeth might not be enough for me. I'm not as crazy as I used to be (I met my husband skydiving and used to love whitewater rafting) so I don't really feel the need to go as fast as possible anymore but I'd like to have a better climber.

I started using the large chain ring when there weren't enough gears to get me comfortably uphill with the small chain ring - so this gave me 14 gears to get uphill with a downtube shifter- I know it sounds weird. I bought my first "10 sp" when I was 12 and it did not have down tube shifters. Before I got my Trek 2300 I rode a Specialized mountain bike in a road biking club in the city of Atlanta for two years. That was great training even though I never thought about getting into racing. It's fairly hilly there. I've rode my bike intermittently over the years especially before I had our first child. My husband doesn't like riding and my oldest screamed about 10 miles out in the bike carrier. Very inconvenient (:

I understand the idea is to spin comfortably and I am not over-powering. I would just like a larger cassette overall. In most recent years we became avid hikers and my husband enjoys long walks but not bike rides. However, I would like to see what kind of optimal shape I can get into at my age now that our kids are a older and my middle child wants to get a race bike. I love riding my Trek so it's not like exercising - it's recreational for me at any speed.

Out of curiosity I googled "Love" and "Trek 2300". It is a well loved bike! Too bad the paint job is so loud but I am going to do all my upgrades in black when possible and feel pretty confident I can come up with an aesthetic I am happy with and fall in love with my bike all over again!
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Old 03-07-14, 03:43 AM   #91
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I'm sorry, but you're either telling it wrong, remembering it wrong or doing it wrong.
Keep in mind that when it comes to ratios, rear shifting and front shifting works in different directions. For the same pedalling effort( how hard and how often you push) on the rear, a bigger sprocket makes you slower/stronger, while on the front, a bigger chainring makes you faster/weaker.
And the reverse of course, smaller rear= faster/weaker, smaller front stronger/slower.

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OK What happens is that when I go downhill I spin TOO freely on the smaller chain ring and larger cassette gear so I move up to the larger chain ring...
Good so far. Smallest ring(front)/biggest sprocket(rear) should spin out at about 13 MPH. Smallest ring/smallest sprocket should spin out at about 25 MPH, so using the big ring on descents makes sense.

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...larger chain ring and smaller cassette gear ...
When you're on the largest ring and smallest sprocket, that's your highest gear. For a certain pedalling pace, that's the fastest you can go.

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...and then move all the way up to the largest cassette gear,
Remember bigger sprocket= stronger/slower? Even if you're on the big ring(front), your shifting down on the rear when you do that.

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...still spinning freely downhill.
Yeah, well, the big/big combo will spin out as about 18 MPH, so that's not surprising.

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...I think if I were heavier I could get more downhill momentum
Kinda-sorta.
If you're in the right gear, and a steep/long enough descent, your bike would happily take any reasonably skilled rider well past 30 MPH. Until you're up there, don't blame the lack of speed on your weight. But you're basically right, a heavier rider does have an advantage on descents.

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.... 14 gears (in reality feels more like 12)
Bikes with external gears and more than one front chainrings do have overlapping, repeating ratios. Expect to have about 2/3 as many usefully different gears as you have combinations.

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I started using the large chain ring when there weren't enough gears to get me comfortably uphill with the small chain ring
But this isn't helping you at all - remember big front = fast/weak. For climbing you want slow/strong, which means small front and big rears.
Your small ring will give an average rider a comfortable speed range of 13-25 MPH, while your big ring offers a speed range of 18-35 MPH. Now, which speed range do you thing you do most of your riding in?, and which do you think is the suitable ring to use?

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I understand the idea is to spin comfortably and I am not over-powering.
Insisting on using the big ring in speeds below 18 MPH I'd say you are over-powering, unless you're just pootling along like on a cruiser bike.

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... I love riding my Trek so it's not like exercising - it's recreational for me at any speed.
Even if it's recreational, doing something right is usually more fun than doing something wrong. And if you were entirely happy with how things are, I guess you wouldn't be posting here. And you do keep saying that you want to be able to handle climbs better.

Anyhow, pushing hard-and-slow, whether it is for recreation or for exercise, isn't good for the knees, long term. So do yourself a favor and get your riding habits, and your equipment, sorted out.

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I would just like a larger cassette overall.
I can understand that. But if you stick with the 7-speed, a larger cassette would require another rear derailer, and to me, annoyingly large steps between gears.
But hey, if you're OK climbing on the big ring I don't suppose big steps would faze you.
If it was me, I'd look for another crank instead. At the very least a road compact. Quite possibly even a triple. That'd let you tackle almost any hill with ease, and still let you keep a nice and tightly spaced cassette.

Last edited by dabac; 03-07-14 at 03:58 AM.
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Old 03-07-14, 10:34 PM   #92
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OK. My current go to ride is a steep downill decent about 60+degrees and I end up on the LChain Ring and I like the extra power from that to boost the longer 45+degree ascent where I end up on the SChain Ring. This is a little over 20 miles of hilly terrain and usually a heavy headwind on the return. I appreciate what you're saying Dabac. I will revisit it after my upgrade, which I think will help with climbing and resolve any new bike pining I have.
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Old 03-07-14, 11:12 PM   #93
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45-60 degree inclines? I call BS.

Your hills might be steep, but they're not that steep. 60 deg = 172% grade. 30 seconds of web searching suggests the steepest roads on the planet are around 37%, which is well below even the 100% you claim for your less steep (45 deg) hills.
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Old 03-07-14, 11:15 PM   #94
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Corncob + triple = win.

Pretty much covers all the bases.
Exactly. Perfect tight gears for flat terrain, a low for mountains and middle aged spread, and no ADHD shifting between rings with too little overlap. I've been doing that since 1997 after realizing 50-40-30 x 13-21 8 cogs yielded a 13-19 straight block for the plains east of Boulder, CO and low like 42x28 for the mountains west apart from the failed 50-34x13-23 9 cog compact experiment.

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Old 03-10-14, 10:01 PM   #95
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Exactly. Perfect tight gears for flat terrain, a low for mountains and middle aged spread, and no ADHD shifting between rings with too little overlap. I've been doing that since 1997 after realizing 50-40-30 x 13-21 8 cogs yielded a 13-19 straight block for the plains east of Boulder, CO and low like 42x28 for the mountains west apart from the failed 50-34x13-23 9 cog compact experiment.
Hmmm. That's really interesting. That would be a $ saver. I like your derailleur too. I'd kind of like to upgrade my wheels though. And I don't like the friction shifting, although indexed shifting probably needs to be tweaked more. I wish I could test drive a setup like yours to see if I like it.
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