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Do you make use of your 52 tooth chain-ring?

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Do you make use of your 52 tooth chain-ring?

Old 10-10-18, 09:19 AM
  #51  
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I don't understand this fear of the 52. Nobody says anything about 11t rear cogs, and that's a lot more ridiculous. When 13t was the typical smallest cog, 52/53 was sensible.

Larger chainwheels last longer. There's also a small but non-zero advantage in mechanical efficiency.
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Old 10-10-18, 02:04 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
I don't understand this fear of the 52. Nobody says anything about 11t rear cogs, and that's a lot more ridiculous. When 13t was the typical smallest cog, 52/53 was sensible.

Larger chainwheels last longer. There's also a small but non-zero advantage in mechanical efficiency.
now I am a slow rider for sure but I have to agree with u on the 11's. 11's and 12's are pretty much pointless for me. Currently using a freewheel that starts at 13.
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Old 10-10-18, 02:06 PM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
I don't understand this fear of the 52. Nobody says anything about 11t rear cogs, and that's a lot more ridiculous. When 13t was the typical smallest cog, 52/53 was sensible.

Larger chainwheels last longer. There's also a small but non-zero advantage in mechanical efficiency.
Okay, I'll say it: 11-tooth cogs are ridiculous. So, to a lesser extent, are 12s. A 14-tooth rear cog is correct, unless you need a 15.
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Old 10-10-18, 02:26 PM
  #54  
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13 is a good small cog tooth count.
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Old 10-10-18, 02:53 PM
  #55  
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I'm not slow... I'm glacial. And I am old and fat to boot so a hard no on the 52. That said I recently built up a touring bike with a 46t big ring and I am wondering if I should have gone with a 48t based on recent rides.
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Old 10-10-18, 06:26 PM
  #56  
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I have a 48/38 set of rings on the way to replace a set of 52/42. I can use the bigger ones, but I would prefer to avoid it. I started riding in the early 90's on mountain bikes with 46 tooth big rings and a 12 in the back. Since I was broke, I could only ever afford one bike. I just got used to spinning those and since I am not fast, I tend to stick to them.
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Old 10-10-18, 06:58 PM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
There's also a small but non-zero advantage in mechanical efficiency.
I’ve been wondering about this for a couple weeks now! If your gear ratio were the same with a smaller chain-ring and rear cog vs. larger ones, wouldn’t larger cogs be easier to turn due to the leverage of them being further out from the axle?

I wonder if the pros ride 11t cogs. That would tell you right away if the mechanical advantage outweighs the benefits of the smaller cogs(weight?). They put a Lot of money into figuring out the most efficient overall result.

I believe Sram came out with some seriously small cogs. A 9t maybe?
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Old 10-10-18, 07:00 PM
  #58  
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I suppose I've never been a fast spinner, and was never happy with the 54/13 on my old bike.

I've now left that gearing behind, fully embracing cassettes with higher gearing, and have started riding both faster, and with slightly (but not considerably) higher cadence.

While I can spin up from the small ring to > 20 MPH, I find that if I'm cruising in the small ring, my cadence drops, and my overall speed plummets.

I don't really pay a lot of attention to what gear I'm using on the rear, but am happy to be on the big ring, and land somewhere mid-cassette, with a couple of shifts each way for changing conditions.

Plus, I think the overall wear is better to have big/medium rather than being stuck with small/small.

If unloaded, I'll ride small rolling hills in the large ring, perhaps 53/21 or so. That is, unless I'm really pounding it, and will be in a slightly higher gear.

Oh, and while I don't like the highly technical Strava descent segments, I have a couple of straight drops that I like to push with all I have, and would easily spin out if I didn't have a couple of higher gears.

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Old 10-10-18, 08:16 PM
  #59  
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Here in the flatlands, I don’t need much gear range. With a close range fw, in my normal range of 70-80 gear inches, I tend to be cross chained more than I would like in both the 42 and 53. So yes I use the large ring, but It works out better for my chainline if the big ring is more like 48.
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Old 10-10-18, 08:25 PM
  #60  
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I rarely use my 52t ring. I’m almost always in the 60.
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Old 10-11-18, 04:50 AM
  #61  
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^
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Old 10-11-18, 04:58 AM
  #62  
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Around here we have two ubiquitous native crops, hills and rocks. On a bike riding most roads one doesn't encounter too many rocks but hills, yes. So I asked myself, self, given that you can have only so many gears, which gears do you need and which can you do without? The hills answered that question. So there is no 52. Well, to be honest one bike has a 53 (I think) and I do use it, but not with one of those teeny tiny sprockets. Come to think of it, I rarely use the 14t sprockets at all. But in the rear, that's where all the action is.
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Old 10-11-18, 05:28 AM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by 52telecaster View Post
I have a stash of several 52 and 53 tooth rings. They are never needed on my bikes. I choose gear ratios that make sense for me.
^this is my thinking exactly. I refuse to consider that manufacturers and those who spec the production bikes have any clue about how I ride or what I need. I simply change the gearing to what I want. Rarely do I keep a chainring that's above a 50T. I find that ranges between 40 - 95 gear inches work best for the type of riding that I do. Sometimes lower on a commuter or touring bike where I'll be carrying a load regularly.
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Old 10-11-18, 05:33 AM
  #64  
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52 gets used most of the time. 39 or 42 on climbs

Usually only need a 13 max cog with the 52 and that’s usually downhill or downwind.
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Old 10-11-18, 06:45 AM
  #65  
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I have one with 53, a bunch with 52, a couple with 50, and somewhat fewer teeth on my IGH bikes. I do need lower gearing options than I did 40 years ago, but my legs haven't fallen off just yet.
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Old 10-11-18, 08:04 AM
  #66  
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The one thing big chain rings have going for them is they look great. Nothing compares to a Campy Nuovo Record or Super Record or a Stronglight 93 with a 52t big ring.

I love the appearance of a big ring so much I'm tempted to get a Compass Rene Herse triple crankset and set my front derailleur up so it can't shift up to the big ring so it will never get scratched or worn.

Now I need manufacturers to offer more cassettes that start at 14t. If 52 x 14 was good enough for Eddy Merckx I can't see me needing a taller gear.
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Old 10-11-18, 09:26 AM
  #67  
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Yes. And I do use the 52/11 combination on my road bike.
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Old 10-11-18, 10:28 AM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by 3speed View Post

I’ve been wondering about this for a couple weeks now! If your gear ratio were the same with a smaller chain-ring and rear cog vs. larger ones, wouldn’t larger cogs be easier to turn due to the leverage of them being further out from the axle?


No, not quite. A gear ratio is a gear ratio, and 48x12 is the same leverage as 52x13. They are both 4:1.

The difference in efficiency comes from the chain having to bend around a smaller curve. More chain friction. It is however a very small difference. There are studies of this somewhere online. It's part of the reason larger derailleur pulleys are starting to show up. The old Cambio Corsa guys were not entirely wrong.

I wonder if the pros ride 11t cogs. That would tell you right away if the mechanical advantage outweighs the benefits of the smaller cogs(weight?). They put a Lot of money into figuring out the most efficient overall result.
I'm sure they do. I use mine on occasion (50x11), and i'm not hardly a pro. Last time was in a paceline going the downhill way on a false flat valley. It was about a 2% grade for miles. Nice to have the gear. OTOH I could have spun up a 52x13 or even 52x14.
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Old 10-11-18, 02:35 PM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
The one thing big chain rings have going for them is they look great. Nothing compares to a Campy Nuovo Record or Super Record or a Stronglight 93 with a 52t big ring.

I love the appearance of a big ring so much I'm tempted to get a Compass Rene Herse triple crankset and set my front derailleur up so it can't shift up to the big ring so it will never get scratched or worn.

Now I need manufacturers to offer more cassettes that start at 14t. If 52 x 14 was good enough for Eddy Merckx I can't see me needing a taller gear.
True, but a 50T looks just about as good as a 52, and only gearheads like us will notice the difference. The 45T on my Peugeot does admittedly look smallish, but so what? 45/13 is plenty of top gear for errand-running or commuting.
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Old 10-11-18, 02:43 PM
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The question is flawed, because the effective wheel size is created by the rear wheel and the ratio between chainring and rear cog. Stating which size chainring you are using is meaningless without also stating the cog size. The wheel size is implied as 700c or thereabouts. Cog size is not implied at all. Suppose I said I ride a 52t chainring all the time. Maybe you would be amazed or impressed or even skeptical, but maybe my cassette is a 20-34 for all you know.
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Old 10-11-18, 04:08 PM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
The question is flawed, because the effective wheel size is created by the rear wheel and the ratio between chainring and rear cog. Stating which size chainring you are using is meaningless without also stating the cog size. The wheel size is implied as 700c or thereabouts. Cog size is not implied at all. Suppose I said I ride a 52t chainring all the time. Maybe you would be amazed or impressed or even skeptical, but maybe my cassette is a 20-34 for all you know.
That's why a couple of my bikes have a 52 big ring and 15-34 freewheels. The heroism of the 52 kind of dazzles onlookers so much that they don't notice anything behind the bottom bracket.
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Old 10-11-18, 04:17 PM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
Larger chainwheels last longer.
Judging from what I've seen at swap meets, many riders found the 40T or 42T inner ring far more useful than the 52T. There's no shortage of vintage 52T rings, from any standard, in perfect shape. So, yes, big rings can last virtually forever.
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Old 10-11-18, 05:01 PM
  #73  
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I'm always on my 52 on my rides.
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Old 10-11-18, 07:29 PM
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On solo rides with a 42-52 when I'm not doing something stupid like intervals, the 52 is rarely used. But on group rides and above threshold efforts, the 52 gets used a lot. I just recently put a 53-39 on my Ironman and the 53 gets more action than the 52 it replaced because the 39 leads to cross chaining more often than the 42. 11 tooth cogs are noisy and I'm glad they are easy to avoid on my C&V rides.
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Old 10-12-18, 01:07 AM
  #75  
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I'm sure I could get by practically, with a 1x system comprised of a 39T front and an 11-28T rear. For the flats. And general boring commuting. I have improved my cadencing and can spin faster for longer and happily enough. Any time that road aims even slightly downhill, it's to the big ring we go. And on decent downhills and sprints, I'm either in or knocking on the door of that 11T rear cog. 13T max cogs are not enough by a long shot, per my riding environment and speed proclivities.
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