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1X11 v triple chainring

Old 12-17-18, 04:56 PM
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1X11 v triple chainring

Im sure this argument has been had before; please direct me. The current trend in off road drivetrains is one small chainring, w/10 or 11 cogs in back. For someone whos been riding triples for 30 yrs, this is hard to understand. Not enough range, rear end much too wide. Please explain for me?
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Old 12-17-18, 05:09 PM
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Trend Mongers..

Its Math .. count teeth Plug in the numbers https://sheldonbrown.com/gear-calc.html
after the width went from 7 to 8 cogs 126 to 130, .. after that the spaces got thinner to keep the width closer to what the 8th cog required

thinner chains thinner spacers .. ever more making dropout hanger alignment crucial..

I went over to internal gear hubs, myself ,

most the young folks feel compelled to Upgrade with every new thing the engineers and marketing are selling..

Advertising works, just less effectively on Skeptics who have been around awhile ..






...
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Old 12-17-18, 07:42 PM
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Many riders don't know how to shift a front der well. So they complain about how poor their bike's gears are. Bike companies hear this and see a market. Riders are greatfull they don't have to shift/drop the chain in front any more and they can also be "with the times". Also bikes with rear suspension have challenges with frt ders and suspension elements playing nice location wise. Andy
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Old 12-17-18, 08:13 PM
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I think that with mt. biking there can be, in some areas, a lot of short ups and downs, where you might run out of gears in say, a middle ring and a big cog, thus you cannot anticipate when to dive to the granny, plus shift down the cassette to find the right gear. This a desire for a greater range in the rear and no need to shift a front. As well and on some bouncy descents, with a double or triple, it’s easier to throw the chain off the crank.

I saw a YouTube review of XT Di2 vs, single ring XT mechanical and could see how the chain was bouncing around and where a chain might come off. Thus the move as well to rear derailers with a clutch that helps prevent chain drops.

OTOH the common complaint with an 11 Shimano or 12 SRAM single speed system is you have really big jumps between the cogs, which can be a problem when doing long climbs, etc.... if you want to maintain a steady cadence.

Wiyh 30 years f riding single track with a lot of short ups and downs, on FS and hard tails, I’ve never thrown a chain on a downhill. So I don’t see the point to 1x11 or 1x12. I like the range a triple provides, though with my normal rides I pretty much never use the big ring, so might as well have a double.

Last edited by Steve B.; 12-17-18 at 08:16 PM.
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Old 12-17-18, 08:33 PM
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Conversely, I've never seen the need for a triple because I don't need a walking-pace gear to get up a hill. I have 1x11 on one bike a 2x11 on the other, and my mileage is split pretty evenly between the two. I find the tiny steps and duplicate gears on the 2X more of a bother than the bigger steps on the 1X.

No one is making 1X mandatory. If you don't want it, don't get it. I genuinely don't see what all the angst is about.
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Old 12-17-18, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
Im sure this argument has been had before; please direct me. The current trend in off road drivetrains is one small chainring, w/10 or 11 cogs in back. For someone whos been riding triples for 30 yrs, this is hard to understand. Not enough range, rear end much too wide. Please explain for me?
What I never liked were triples on trail bikes. I ditched my big ring in 1999 and went 2x9 and never looked back.Best thing I ever did drivetrain-wise.

A 1x11 with a 10-42 cassette is a 420% range and 11-46 is pretty close at 418%. If that is not enough, 11-50 is 455%. Is that seriously not enough for mountain biking?

And what does “rear end too wide” even mean? 8, 9, and 10 speed cassettes are basically rhe same overall width. 11 is only a hair wider.

Is the simple fact that you can ditch an entire component of the drivetrain (the end that shifts worse) not an obvious advantage?

Other less obvious advantages have to do with frame design, especially full suspension.

Having only one chainring to deal with in the front allows suspension designers to optimize for that chainline rather than having multiple chainlines, which each effect the suspension differently.

Also, ditching the small ring position frees up space for shorter chainstays with bigger tires and more room for linkage components.

As far as the jumps in ratios being bigger..... GOOD! I have always thought MTB cassettes were spaced much much closer than they need to be. At least for me.

Last edited by Kapusta; 12-17-18 at 08:57 PM.
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Old 12-17-18, 08:46 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post

most the young folks feel compelled to Upgrade with every new thing the engineers and marketing are selling..

Advertising works, just less effectively on Skeptics who have been around awhile ..
...
Says the guy with the $1300 IGH so he could go with a single ring.

Last edited by Kapusta; 12-17-18 at 08:50 PM.
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Old 12-17-18, 09:11 PM
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Thanks to those that have replied. I will stick with my 3 x 9 for touring, I like the small steps when hauling a load, and I am not getting younger so granny gears help a lot. But after reading the above responses, I have a new found appreciation for the benefits of 1 x setups. Really shows how there isn't a right or wrong way, but a best tool for the person and job.
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Old 12-17-18, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post

Also, ditching the small ring position frees up space for shorter chainstays with bigger tires
this is the best reason to go 1x.

When folks want new tires on their bikes I often have to say "sorry, 2.2 is as big as you can go before the knobbies start buzzing your front derailleur."

135 OLD, 29er, wider tires, triple crankset - something's gotta give. If your rear tire doesn't buzz the FD you still have to worry about chain dragging on the tire when you get in to plus and fat sizes.

So you get 2x, 1x. 142, 148, 170, 190 OLD. 73, 83, 100mm bb shells.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 12-17-18 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 12-17-18, 10:39 PM
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Yea touring at a modest pace , vs racing mountain bikes is a whole different set of needs..

after 9 speeds,, the components diverge into 2 more separate camps..

The fat 29er plus tire situation does seem where the one by with No FD is a solution..
To a created problem..

52 t cassette cogs? takes all kinds..

...

Last edited by fietsbob; 12-17-18 at 10:45 PM.
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Old 12-18-18, 01:52 AM
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I am sure for some situations a single makes sense.
But not for me on a road bike.
Moving the chainrings from a triple to the cassette is silly. 50/42 /36 large sprockets on a cassette.
And big gaps are still unavoidable which is probably why we now have 12 speed and 300 dollar cassettes.
Which begs the question why?
I will stick with what works fine.
Aqua blue pro team tried it and it was a disaster which should have been obvious and probably was to everyone involved but money must have been the deciding factor.
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Old 12-18-18, 04:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Eggman84 View Post
Thanks to those that have replied. I will stick with my 3 x 9 for touring, I like the small steps when hauling a load, and I am not getting younger so granny gears help a lot. But after reading the above responses, I have a new found appreciation for the benefits of 1 x setups. Really shows how there isn't a right or wrong way, but a best tool for the person and job.
I think for road and touring use, 3x still makes a lot of sense.
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Old 12-18-18, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post


I think for road and touring use, 3x still makes a lot of sense.
Agree
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Old 12-18-18, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Many riders don't know how to shift a front der well. So they complain about how poor their bike's gears are...
I know this is the mechanics section, and not the riding technique section, but what is the proper procedure for shifting the front well? Obviously you want to avoid doing it under full load, but what other advice is there? When it comes to modern indexed brifters, isn't the downshift to the small ring completely reliant on your setup/installation, since it's a spring loaded click that you can't control? Genuine questions...
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Old 12-18-18, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by epnnf View Post
Im sure this argument has been had before; please direct me. The current trend in off road drivetrains is one small chainring, w/10 or 11 cogs in back. For someone whos been riding triples for 30 yrs, this is hard to understand. Not enough range, rear end much too wide. Please explain for me?
SRAM can't make a decent front derailleur, so they decided it was easier to market "one-by" drive-trains as a new trend.
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Old 12-18-18, 11:43 AM
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My bikes are 10 speed, not 11.

I've got a 2x10 Campy Chorus setup on the road bike. Compact drive, 12-30 cassette. Allows me to do things like climb up Pikes Peak and other steep spots around the Colorado region. I'll end up coasting after 45-50mph and that's OK. It's a big change from when I used to race on a standard crank an 11-23 cassette. I don't actually notice the jumps between gears.

My cross/gravel bike is 1x10 Campy/microshift/sunrace/shimano 40 x 11-42. It allows me to use the bike much as a mountain bike. Steep punchy climbs, semi technical trails, etc. All on a drop bar road bike. When I ride home from my adventures, usually on dirt or pavement, depending where I've gone, the gear ratio is enough that I can comfortably cruise at 26-27mph (with the wind at my back). Having a ton more gears to reach that same range seems pointless. I've never missed the front derailleur.

I think the only reason to keep 3x anything is touring. You might end up hauling 50-80 lbs, slowly, across extremely variable terrain.

Pointing out that one person's riding geography, speed, weight, and fitness are different than yours, then declaring them wrong for making different gearing selections is kinda dumb isn't it?
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Old 12-18-18, 11:45 AM
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And don't forget the 1 by 1 , by 11 .. Alfine IGH.. and an internally geared triple crank ..


shift gears even while stopped, or bogged down on a climb..


$378






..

Last edited by fietsbob; 12-25-18 at 02:58 PM.
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Old 12-18-18, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
I know this is the mechanics section, and not the riding technique section, but what is the proper procedure for shifting the front well? Obviously you want to avoid doing it under full load, but what other advice is there? When it comes to modern indexed brifters, isn't the downshift to the small ring completely reliant on your setup/installation, since it's a spring loaded click that you can't control? Genuine questions...
No chain tension. Obviously one has to keep the chain running through the cage and to allow for derailing but the less the chain tension the less effort the der is tasked with. It is easy to believe this is much more important when climbing up to the big rings but it's equally so when down shifting. There are some other techniques that help with this. Like shifting when you can afford to soft pedal for the stroke or three to shift without power AND not then stall or loose forward momentum. (I like to tell customers to think like a Boy Scout and plan ahead). Also the more chain links that are passing through the cage per moment the quicker the chain will derail, so a faster cadence when shifting helps.

Now think about these needs and how many actually ride. Many riders don't plan tool far ahead (and off road this is even harder to do). Many riders first try to power their way up the hill (or into that headwind) and their cadence slows, a lot sometimes, before they remember they have a gear shifter to their advantage. Some riders will really slow down a lot before down shifting, meaning that any delay of powering the cranks results in a stall/stand still.

As noted off road riding, a bike with rear suspension, a bike with tires wider then about 2.25" all make front der issues even worse. I have no issues with 1x mountain bikes, assuming enough low gearing. But for the road I see 1x as a solution for a problem that is otherwise dealt with and at the same time adding additional limitations. But for full disclosure I ride road mostly, I tour with large loads when I can, I ride in the Finger Lakes area of NYS dozens of times a year and I'm getting older and weaker. So I want those lower gears that a 3x system offers with no loss of close gearing jumps in the mid range either. Plus I grew up with systems that are far less responsive then todays designs are. To my eyes today's stuff shifts like a dream and is so easy. Andy
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Old 12-18-18, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by robertorolfo View Post
I know this is the mechanics section, and not the riding technique section, but what is the proper procedure for shifting the front well? Obviously you want to avoid doing it under full load, but what other advice is there? When it comes to modern indexed brifters, isn't the downshift to the small ring completely reliant on your setup/installation, since it's a spring loaded click that you can't control? Genuine questions...
To upshift the front, spin it up, back off on the force and hit the shifter. That works just fine climbing too, because the reason you want to shift up is that the load has lightened, making it easy to shift up. If you like to upshift your rings before you stand, same thing. It'll cost you a tiny bit of reserves, but you figure you'll get it back by changing the working muscles some.

Down shifting is really simple, just back it off. A big HOWEVER, as was said above, don't get trapped in your big cog and middle ring at 50 cadence before you go to the granny. On the upshift what can go wrong is that the shift just doesn't go and you have to try again. However on the downshift if you have too much pressure on the ring, you can get chainsuck (chain is trapped on the ring and tries to wrap over itself) which is approximately 100 times worse.

I very frequently downshift by hitting both shifters at once, the left down and the right up. On Shimano, that's both the little levers, easy to do. That slackens the chain, makes a nice easy shift, and frequently puts you in the gear you want anyway.

Yes, it's a spring loaded click, but what happens after the click may depend on your chain tension, see above.
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Old 12-18-18, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post


I think for road and touring use, 3x still makes a lot of sense.
They make a lot of sense off-road as well. All three of my off-road bikes have triples and I use all three chainrings with regularity.
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Old 12-18-18, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Many riders don't know how to shift a front der well. So they complain about how poor their bike's gears are. Bike companies hear this and see a market. Riders are greatfull they don't have to shift/drop the chain in front any more and they can also be "with the times". Also bikes with rear suspension have challenges with frt ders and suspension elements playing nice location wise. Andy
It doesn’t help that the front derailer is a poorly designed mechanism for what is supposed to do. Torque and tension on the chain are higher when moving towards lower gears. For the almost all rear derailers, except for Shimano’s Rapid Fail, the cable is used to move the derailer and chain while under this kind of torque and tension. In other words, the derailer is pulled onto the gear under load so it has to shift. Very seldom will a rear derailer balk at a downshift.

Compare that to the front derailer where the spring has to push the chain off onto the lower gears. If the spring isn’t strong enough, the cage will just rub up against the chain until the chain drops when the rider reduces torque on the pedals. Often it won’t drop at all. Years ago, Suntour made a front derailer for mountain bikes that was high normal like Shimano’s Rapid Fail. The cable drug the chain off the chain wheel which made shifts more like a high normal rear derailer does. It was a much better mechanism.

Rapid Rise was supposed to make shifting easier since the levers moved in the same direction for front and rear from low to high. If they would have made a high normal front derailer, we’d probably still have triples and front derailers.
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Old 12-18-18, 07:56 PM
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I find it curious that 1x is the norm on mt. bikes and becoming popular on road bikes.

Totally baffled by the road bike application. With most road bikes as 2x, it’s not as if road doubles suddenly started to suck. Shimano seemingly is fighting the road 1x trend with Di2 and Synchro Shift. If you can make it easy and near perfect, then the range AND tighter cog jumps work really well for the rider.
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Old 12-18-18, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post


They make a lot of sense off-road as well. All three of my off-road bikes have triples and I use all three chainrings with regularity.
Whatever floats your boat. Enjoy it.
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Old 12-18-18, 08:57 PM
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I'm on my second 1x11 bike and I think it's the cat's pajamas. I'm not buying another bike with a front shifter and I won't for my family either. I'm gathering parts to convert my tandem, too.

It's not about gear range, which does suffer a little. It's about front shifting, which sucks and always has.
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Old 12-18-18, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
Totally baffled by the road bike application. With most road bikes as 2x, it’s not as if road doubles suddenly started to suck. Shimano seemingly is fighting the road 1x trend with Di2 and Synchro Shift. If you can make it easy and near perfect, then the range AND tighter cog jumps work really well for the rider.
Yeah, I really can't see 1x working for road for me at this point. If they come out with 1x14 and a 11-42 cassette, then I'll get on board, as that can have the range and the spacing I want for the road.

And before fietsbob suggests it: no, I am not interested in a Rohloff.

Last edited by Kapusta; 12-19-18 at 06:32 AM.
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