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Old 02-16-12, 09:48 PM   #1
egear
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What Chainring Sizes are you Running?

I have been building/riding my Origin-8 700CX for over a year now and I am at the final point of replacing the crankset. This is one of the few remaining parts from my Pilot which were moved over to the tour bike. It's a 105 compact crank with rings @ 50/39/30. I am interested in what everyone else has. Oh I am using a 10 speed, external bearing bottom bracket setup. The 10 speed eliminates all but a very few cranksets. I was ready to buy a T780 from a shop in England and bite the bullet on pricing/shipping. Shipped I was looking at about $330 dollars, ouch. The T-series is Shimano's trekking line which is not available here in the states. I believe it's rings were 48/36/26. How many are using MTN bike cranksets with rings @ 42/32/24? If you are what are your impressions when loaded does this size spin-out to fast? Thanks fo the help.
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Old 02-16-12, 10:05 PM   #2
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i determine what my lowest gear needs to be to keep me happy (in gearinches). then determine what high gear will keep me happy (in gearinches) then i decide how many i need in between the two to keep me happy. then i hunt around for chainrings and cogs that satisfy those numbers.
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Old 02-16-12, 10:50 PM   #3
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I use 42/26 front rings on a 110/74 triple (I leave the outer ring off) with an 11-34 cassette to give a gear range of 103" to 21" with not much duplication.
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Old 02-16-12, 11:38 PM   #4
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I use 42/26 front rings on a 110/74 triple (I leave the outer ring off) with an 11-34 cassette to give a gear range of 103" to 21" with not much duplication.
As someone running a 46/22, I have to ask, what derailer are you using to take up slack? I get about 12 usable gears (out of 16), the rest the chain is just to slack.

Aside from that, it's a good set-up for solo touring; you get the ease of not having to worry about your front derailer, but the range to climb just about anything. Of course, with a 22 tooth chainring, you can only climb very slowly, so it's not great if your with a group, you get dropped on all the climbs.
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Old 02-17-12, 12:43 AM   #5
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44/30 w 12-28 8spd on Cross-Check

46/36/24 w. 12-28 8spd on 26"LHT

Last edited by LeeG; 02-17-12 at 12:17 PM.
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Old 02-17-12, 03:44 AM   #6
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22/32/44 combined with 11-34
At 80rpm and a wheel circumference of 2055mm this allows me to ride comfortably 6-39km/h, no need to go any faster really.
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Old 02-17-12, 07:29 AM   #7
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As someone running a 46/22, I have to ask, what derailer are you using to take up slack? I get about 12 usable gears (out of 16), the rest the chain is just to slack.
A Shimano XT, many MTB rearer derailleurs should work.
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Old 02-17-12, 07:50 AM   #8
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52-42-26 with 12,14,16,18,21,24 28,32,36 (9sp cassette) gear inches between 19.4 and 116.7
I found this calculator invaluable in helping me select the gears that work best for me.

http://home.earthlink.net/~mike.sherman/shift.html

Nun and I have discussed this before and like him if I was only to use the bike for touring I would be tempted to leave the 52 at home, but I use it also as a commuter and all around bike so the 52 stayed on. I did have to add a link to the standard chain length. I also would nearly go slack or nearly full tight if I were to cross chain. I made sure that couldn’t happen just in case, but I would never cross chain those extremes, but never say never. I also tried a mountain bike crank for a short time 44-32-22 for a short time and hated it. Hated it with an 11,32 cassette and also the 12,36 cassette. I found my middle chain ring selection to be the most important one to get right and my riding style likes to do sequential shifts in the back while staying put on one chain ring in the front. The 42 middle worked out best for me across the full 12 thru 36 in the back. When I tried the mountain crank I was doing way too many double shifts for my liking. Road bike riders most time don’t mind the double shifts and are looking for very small steps in gearing I guess I’m just not as critical of the smaller steps and like the simplicity of sequential shifting. For me that was the beauty of 9 and 10 speed cassettes they got the gears close enough for me to shift this way. Like I said many others will disagree.

I did a lot of debating about the 52t top ring and thought about dropping it to a 48 or something and it really wouldn’t have changed its usage for me that much by just moving everything over one in the back. I thought 116.7 gear inch to be a little extreme but then again I didn’t really need to ever use it as I liked the other combinations it gave. I started reading more and experimenting more with it on downhill’s and tail winds. Even on the flats I have found I can enjoy mashing a little at a much slower cadence and it’s much different than trying to mash your way up a steep incline. I feel more in control of the bike on a downhill while doing a slow cadence in a tall gear than coasting and keeping the legs moving and warm also helps. So even though I listed the top position as seldom used last year it got used more and more and I’m glad I left the 52.

When you start looking at the calculator pay close attention to the cadence range you feel best at spinning in, and then look at the output speeds. I used to make mental notes of cadence and speed and tried to figure out where is the ideal combination for me. Then I would plug in some numbers and remember the effort in each gear and went from there.

Typed a bit more than I wanted to with having happy fingers this morning here are a few pictures of how my quest went. Yours will be different but the process is the same.




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Old 02-17-12, 08:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by egear View Post
I have been building/riding my Origin-8 700CX for over a year now and I am at the final point of replacing the crankset. This is one of the few remaining parts from my Pilot which were moved over to the tour bike. It's a 105 compact crank with rings @ 50/39/30. I am interested in what everyone else has. Oh I am using a 10 speed, external bearing bottom bracket setup. The 10 speed eliminates all but a very few cranksets. I was ready to buy a T780 from a shop in England and bite the bullet on pricing/shipping. Shipped I was looking at about $330 dollars, ouch. The T-series is Shimano's trekking line which is not available here in the states. I believe it's rings were 48/36/26. How many are using MTN bike cranksets with rings @ 42/32/24? If you are what are your impressions when loaded does this size spin-out to fast? Thanks fo the help.
I also have an Origin 8 CX700. I verified that a ten-speed road triple crankset, like the Shimano 105 and 2012 Tiagra with Hollowtech II will not clear the chainstays. You need to use a MTB crankset only. This is a photo or a Sram CX crank, but I also tried a 5603 Shimano 105 with the same failed results.



I'm very happy with this set-up;



It's a Shimano Deore FC-M590 48-36-22t with a 12-27 nine speed casette. I also have a 11-32 cassette, but really don't need it. The crankset comes with a 48-36-26t chainring set, the 22t chainring is a Shimano part for $8.

The 12-27 with a 48,36 & 22t chainring set offers a tighter set of combinations in the range, without sacrificing climbing range.

What shifters are you using? I considered a ten-speed Shimano drivetrain, but decided against the ten-speed Deore triple crank. I like having a taller big chainring than 44t. I also like a 36t middle ring to use for more relaxed riding on flat ground.

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Last edited by Barrettscv; 02-17-12 at 08:50 AM.
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Old 02-17-12, 08:54 AM   #10
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46-36-24
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Old 02-17-12, 09:01 AM   #11
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egear, Last year when I built my first tourer my searchs showed that the most common GI range was roughly 20-100. I'm currently running a 22-32-44 crankset along with an 11-30 8S cassette for ~20-108 GI. A spare 28-38-48 crankset will yield about a 25-117 GI range.

I have some pretty steep, but usually less than a 1/2 mile long (often shorter) hills I sometimes ride west of my home and haven't spun out yet, but perhaps could on a longer downhill.

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Old 02-17-12, 10:43 AM   #12
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How many are using MTN bike cranksets with rings @ 42/32/24? If you are what are your impressions when loaded does this size spin-out to fast?
That's what I'm using and it works great for me. I'm running a 12/28 7-speed in the back. I spin out at about 22-23 mph but the only time I'm ever going that fast is downhill and/or with a monster tailwind, and on a loaded bike I have no desire to pedal any faster than that anyway.
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Old 02-17-12, 10:46 AM   #13
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For me, a 42 big ring is a bit to small, but a 50 or 52 is overkill... right now I'm using a 42/34/24 but ideally I'd like a 46/34/22
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Old 02-17-12, 10:55 AM   #14
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I like to have a few really high gears that are rarely used, but when I have a long shallow downhill I can use them with little effort instead of simply coasting. And of course the "must have" couple of really low gears for steep hills. But, I try to have a lot of gears in the range where I spend 90 percent of the time so that I can make slight changes for variations in windage or grade. Unladen around town I am in the 60 to 90 gear inch range 90 percent of the time, with camping gear I find that I am in the 50 to 80 gear inch range the vast majority of time.

I have used an 8 speed system with an Sram 11/32 cassette (11/12/14/16/18/21/26/32) and a campy road triple with an aftermarket 24t (52/42/24). The big and middle chainrings are one and a half step gearing with this setup. I do not use the two most cross chained gears with each chainring (e.g. don't use the 24t front with the 11 or 12 rear, etc.) Thus, I am effectively using 18 gears instead of 24 and only those 18 gears are shown on the graphs. Charts and calculations assume a 26X2.0 Dureme tire diameter and show gear inches.



But, I recently bought a 46t that I will try on my next tour instead of the 52t. This will be half step gearing. I will loose some of the high gears but I will gain one gear at about 56.5 gear inches, this is an area that I have notice I lacked a gear in the past on some days with strong headwinds that I had to push through. Note that with this setup I have a huge number of gears in that 50 to 90 gear inch range where I spend a lot of time.



Since I am commenting on half step gearing and one and a half step gearing, it is quite obvious that I frequently shift between the middle and large chainrings to get the optimal gear. But, if you are one of the many (probably majority) of cyclists that only shift their front derailleur when they run out of high or low gears, disregard my discussion because you would probably be unhappy with my gearing.

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Old 02-17-12, 10:58 AM   #15
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I currently use the stock gearing on the LHT, which is 48/36/26 and 11-34 on 26" wheels. I'm happy with it but I might try a 42/26 in the future.

My other bike had a 42/32/22 and 12-32 7s cassette on 700c wheels. I liked it too except for the middle ring. It was too small to cruise and too big to climb.
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Old 02-17-12, 11:28 AM   #16
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Oh I am using a 10 speed, external bearing bottom bracket setup. The 10 speed eliminates all but a very few cranksets.
Don't worry about bottom bracket compatibility; they're cheap and easy to swap around...

My touring bike started life with a 10-speed Ultegra 52/39/30 crank. That's fine without a load, or with a minimal load on relatively flat terrain. Most of the time I use a 9-speed Deore M532 trekking crank with 48/36/26 rings. I neglect to install one of the 2.5mm drive-side spacers to make the chainline work with the rest of my Ultegra drive-train. The 9-speed Deore crank works fine with my otherwise 10-speed drivetrain. The 48/36/26 gearing works well for moderate loads with steep climbing, or a heavy load on less-challenging terrain. It's possible to spin-out on a steep descent, but I usually decide to coast once I hit 30-35mph. If I ever needed to push a heavy load over big climbs, I'd buy a 9- or 10-speed 44/32/22 mountain bike crank and think about swapping my 11-28 cassette for an 11-32 or 11-34.
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Old 02-17-12, 11:42 AM   #17
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For my touring bike (Trek 720): 22/32/44 Deore crankset with 13-15-17-19-21-24-28 freewheel. Works great. I rarely need a higher gear than 92", and the low of around 22" is generally low enough, and the steps are not too bad between gears. However, I am having a new rear wheel built up with an 8 speed cassette (custom 13-15-17-19-21-23-26-30) which should be even better.

For my road bike (Cannondale CAAD9-6): 34/50 Tiagra crankset with custom 13-34 9 speed cassette (13-15-17-19-21-23-26-30-34). A 27" low is low enough for this bike because it's light and doesn't carry panniers, etc. I rarely run out of high end.

For my winter beater (Trek 750 hybrid): 22/32/44 STX crankset with 14-32 7 speed cassette (14-16-18-21-24-28-32). It is a slow bike with the studded tires so the 85" high is plenty for me.

It's pretty easy to get a custom cassette built up. For example, for the 8 speed, I'll use a standard 13-26 cluster (13-14-15-17-19-21-23-26), remove the 14 tooth cog, and put a 30 tooth cog at the end.
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Old 02-17-12, 11:59 AM   #18
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Rohloff,16t cog, 26" wheel, 38or39t,.. with a 20" wheel chainring is a 53t.

Prior derailleur bike 13~34 t freewheels, so crank is a 50,40,24t, 700c wheel, 40 wide tires.

Since new cassettes start at 11t, now, thus making a 42t About the same ratio .
with a 12t a 46t chainring would do.
only potential spin out is when I'm descending, recovering from the climb
so not putting out more effort trying to overrun my top gear,
savoring the coasting down the hill, stopping to admire the view.

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Old 02-17-12, 12:07 PM   #19
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For me, all about the middle ring cruise and granny bail. The top gear is just what comes with the other two.

48-36-24 on my 700c road touring bike (46 would work for the top also)
48-38-24 on the 26in gravel grinder. (The 24 to 38 is not a smooth shift)

Is there anything thing I would change?

Nada on the gravel grinder I love the front with the density of a 13-28 9sp campy on the back.

On the road touring bike, the 7 speed free jump from 36x17 to 36x15 is a bit clunky. In unloaded city riding this double shift bar con conundrum occurs all too often. On a county road it's a double shift but in the city I usually clunk it.
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Old 02-17-12, 01:06 PM   #20
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105 triple on the Origin-8

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barrettscv View Post
I also have an Origin 8 CX700. I verified that a ten-speed road triple crankset, like the Shimano 105 and 2012 Tiagra with Hollowtech II will not clear the chainstays. You need to use a MTB crankset only. This is a photo or a Sram CX crank, but I also tried a 5603 Shimano 105 with the same failed results.



I'm very happy with this set-up;



It's a Shimano Deore FC-M590 48-36-22t with a 12-27 nine speed casette. I also have a 11-32 cassette, but really don't need it. The crankset comes with a 48-36-26t chainring set, the 22t chainring is a Shimano part for $8.

The 12-27 with a 48,36 & 22t chainring set offers a tighter set of combinations in the range, without sacrificing climbing range.

What shifters are you using? I considered a ten-speed Shimano drivetrain, but decided against the ten-speed Deore triple crank. I like having a taller big chainring than 44t. I also like a 36t middle ring to use for more relaxed riding on flat ground.

Actually the 105 triple will fit. You have to use the plastic spacer on the drive side. Thats what I am looking to replace. Not a terrible crank just not low enough fully loaded.
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Old 02-17-12, 01:12 PM   #21
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Deore XT is what I have just borrowed from the local shop. This one is the M770 and was a take off from another bike. Stuck at work now but I will install it tonight and see how it works. I have decieded that I don't want to give up the external BB setup nor the 10 speed gearing so I'll give this one a try. It's never been riddden and they want $120 for it, $100 without the new BB. The owner of the LBS is great about stuff like this. It's a 42/36/24 I think. It may be to low. Thanks to everybody for the replies, I am looking forward to several trips this year and large hills are part of at lerast two of these trips.
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Old 02-17-12, 01:24 PM   #22
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Actually the 105 triple will fit...
... not on my frame and not according to Origin 8 and others owners I have spoken too. I used the drive side spacer and the arms still did not clear the chainstays.
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Old 02-17-12, 01:38 PM   #23
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If you can do it with just a new crank that’s great. I couldn’t and went with just dropping the granny to a 26 you could do 24 with the 39 in the center position. And then go for a big cassette across the back. A 36 would give you a granny under 18 gear inch (17.7). Like I said above for me it was more important what happens with the rest of the gears when you make the total package smaller.
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Old 02-21-12, 09:34 AM   #24
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Ya it fit but JUST! and I mean just. Yours may be newer then mine. I know they changed the frame the year after mine and it may have been widened. No matter now as I bought the M770 Deore XT crank and love it.
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Old 02-21-12, 09:52 AM   #25
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48-38-28 with an 11-32 cassette. A 26 or even a 24T granny ring would be nice at times...
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