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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 05-27-12, 08:45 PM   #1
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Lowest climbing cadence used regularly

My bike is currently equipped with a compact crank and an 11-32 cassette. On steeper pitches (10+%) I find my self in the 34-32 combination, sometimes my cadence down to 60 on 11 or 12% stretches. The climb I did yesterday had two miles never lower than 9.5% and peaking at just over 12% and I was generally comfortable in my lowest gear at 60-70 ; I wouldn't want to be there for 10 miles, but 2 miles seemed ok. BTW, the total climb was 2000' in 15 miles.

For the larger riders who frequent this forum, what do you generally find you lowest comfortable cadence to be (for 1/2 hour+)?

I recognize the conventional advice is to go triple and a triple with a 30t small ring would give me a 13% improvement, but for really tough rides I can always change out the cassette for an 11-36 as we have on our tandem. Triple doesn't seem worth the expense.
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Old 05-27-12, 10:00 PM   #2
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I haven't done any half hour climbs in a long time. On the stuff I'm climbing now, which can in extreme circumstances reach 20%, I'm frequently as low as mid to upper 50's. Any slower than that and it's a true sufferfest. I try to keep it at or above 80 when seated. 60-75 while seated isn't uncommon for me. And, don't really know my numbers when standing, as I'm usually "a bit distracted". And, it's hard to see the display of my computer on my stem when I'm standing. However, most of the climbs I'm currently doing are 3-12 minutes.
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