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Old 06-05-18, 07:24 AM
  #11  
Retro Grouch 
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: St Peters, Missouri
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Bikes: Catrike 559 I own some others but they don't get ridden very much.

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Originally Posted by jgwilliams View Post
Yes, I don't disagree. Obviously you can't reduce the spoke count without making the rim stronger. I was simply using it as an illustration of the way things have moved on. There are so many areas where bikes are better than ever. Back in the 70's we had what were laughingly called '10 gears'. This might have been technically correct but since my chainset was 48 and 52 teeth I probably had at most six or seven useful ratios. Now look at us - 22 gears with a much smaller overlap. I remember riding an early aluminium bike which flexed like a ripe banana. Now we can build good bikes from all sorts of materials. I even met someone the other day whose bike was a composite of bamboo.
Absolutely right!

Your 58/48 crankset had half step gearing. The idea was, that to squeeze the most ratios our of a 2 X 5 to keep the steps between gears tight, you'd make a front shift between each rear shift. Some guys would tape the ratios to their handlebar to help them keep track of which gear to shift next. Every once in a while we still get a poster extolling the merits of half step gearing even though we now have 10 cogs on the back. I suppose there must be a smart phone app for that now because there isn't room to tape all those ratios on your handlebar.
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