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  1. #1
    Senior Member vision646's Avatar
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    Info about switching from standard to compact/triple crankset?

    I bought a late 70's steel bike in January and it has a standard double crankset (52/39T) with 14-30T (6 Speed) in the back. My cadence is flagging a bit while climbing long hills (and a local mountain). There is a bike swap this weekend and I'm thinking about keeping my eyes open for either a compact or triple. What do I need to know or look out for? Is this something I can just switch out? Will the FD need to be changed or just adjusted?

    I'm really leaning towards a compact because I'm not dieing on the hills but I could use a bit of a lower gear for the mountain climb.
    I'm gonna throw in my 2 cents. Not because I'm an expert but because I have a keyboard. -canam73

  2. #2
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    vision646, You may want to take this to the C&V forum as they're knowledgeable on the older drivetrains. Be sure to let them know what you have, bike manufacturer and components... pics help too.

    Brad

  3. #3
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    repeated topic in mechanics section, too.. ,
    http://www.bikeforums.net/forumdisplay.php/10-Bicycle-Mechanics
    a 110 bolt center lets you run a 34t.
    a 74 - 110 for a triple, the 3rd ring can be a 24t
    and there are race-road triples bigger outer 130, 135, for 38,39t minimums..

    my road bike has a Campag race triple its a 50,40,
    sells with a 30, takes a 24, so thats what I run.
    50,40 24.. theyre still square taper BB, only 1 left in the <C> lineup.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-15-11 at 10:15 AM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by vision646 View Post
    I bought a late 70's steel bike in January and it has a standard double crankset (52/39T) with 14-30T (6 Speed) in the back. My cadence is flagging a bit while climbing long hills (and a local mountain). There is a bike swap this weekend and I'm thinking about keeping my eyes open for either a compact or triple. What do I need to know or look out for? Is this something I can just switch out? Will the FD need to be changed or just adjusted?

    I'm really leaning towards a compact because I'm not dieing on the hills but I could use a bit of a lower gear for the mountain climb.
    If you can find a Compac crankset that will fit you should be fine with the front derailleur but you still might need to change the FD. I have had an 8 speed and a 9 speed and now a 10 speed compact. But I did discover that you have to be a bit more careful of cross chaining on a compact that you did on a standard. Still with a small ring of 34 and a rear ring of 30 you should have no problems with hills.

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    I mostly agree with Robert, but don't believe you'd need to change your FD. Just lower it. This is the route I'd go as well. With a triple, you'd probably have to change a bunch of stuff (FD, front shifter, BB, RD, new cables, etc.)
    Demented internet tail wagging imbicile.

  6. #6
    Senior Member vision646's Avatar
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    Alright, thanks for confirming my initial thoughts. I'll keep my eyes open for a compact this weekend, if not I'll just work on HTFU'ing.
    I'm gonna throw in my 2 cents. Not because I'm an expert but because I have a keyboard. -canam73

  7. #7
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    I struggled with a standard 53/39 Ultegra crankset on my Klein for a few years because I'm too wimpy to handle the hills in some of the places that I like to ride. I kept looking for someone who had a lightly used triple and wanted to trade, but never found the right deal.

    I bought an Energy 50/34 double that had the same bottom bracket interface. It took me around an hour to swap out the cranksets but that included resizing the chain and reprogramming all the gear ratios in my flight Deck computer. Everything else worked so all I had to buy was the crankset and lower my existing front derailleur a bit.

    If everything else was equal, I'd prefer to have a triple because the gear range is a little wider and the shifting patterns are a little better. Changing to a triple (and making it look factory) requires a new crankset, bottom bracket, front and rear derailleurs and maybe even new shifters. That's a lot more stuff.

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