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SRAM XPLR grinding/droning sound

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SRAM XPLR grinding/droning sound

Old 10-11-21, 04:10 PM
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SRAM XPLR grinding/droning sound

I'm new to gravel riding having gotten a Canyon Grizl with the new SRAM XPLR group recently but have been riding road and mountain enthusiastically for a several decades now. I have put about 300 miles on my Grizl so far and am curious about an annoying grinding or droning sound coming from the XPLR drive train (10-44 XPLR cassette, flat top chain, 40t ring, SRAM 1 DUB crankarms). The rear der has been setup per SRAM instructions (micro adjust upper pully to line up on second to largest cog and set pulley gap with B screw while in that 2nd to largest gear). The flat top chain is the correct length. I've tried a couple different lubes, Squirt and T9. I haven't tried wet lube as SRAM recommends because i ride in dusty Utah and wet lube off road will attract lots of grit.


The sound isn't bad immediately after cleaning/lubing but a short time into a ride the drive train is making a droning sound like there is some poor fitting of the flat top chain on the cogs. Doesn't matter what cog i'm in. I've tried X-Sync and Wolftooth (the version compatible with SRAM flat top chains) chainrings and the sound persists.


The shimano 12 spd group on my mtb and shimano 11 spd drivetrain on my road bike using the same Squirt or T9 lubes don't make noises anything like this.


Has anyone else experienced this noise with XPLR or other SRAM flat top 12 spd drivetrains?
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Old 10-12-21, 03:21 AM
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What chain do you have?
I run a std rival setup 42x 11-42 (or 10-42 depending of the rims) and it was quiet with squirt. Then, I swap for a KMC X11 TiN coated chain (£40) and it got noisier. When I move to 36x 11-46, I fitted a new chain but went back to a cheap SRAM P1110 (polished steel (£12) and the noise went I tried with the 10-42 cassette and it is quiet too. The problem came from the KMC chain; I think the "x bridge" feature interferes with the cogs.
Talking to a bike mechanic, he found similar things and advise me to use sram chain on sram groupset.
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Old 10-12-21, 09:16 AM
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I'm running the SRAM flat top 12 spd chain that came as part of the group.

On my road bike with Red 22 mechanical i was able to get quieter running & better shifting by using a Shimano 11 spd cassette and chain. But that isn't an option with SRAMs XPLR and road 12 spd groups cause the flat top chain has larger rollers and the cassettes are designed accordingly.
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Old 01-23-23, 01:13 PM
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Iím having the same issue on a brand new bike with XPLR etap. The bottom 4 gears are like a metal chain dragging on concrete. The cassette was on so tight I couldnít even get it off to reinstall & had to have 2 guys at a shop work on it to release it. I reinstalled it (they are a little tricky to thread as I had to gently back it off & back in a couple times so it didnít wobble), but it was the same. I asked the manufacturer is this XPLR set up is just ďloudĒ, but they didnít indicate tell it was. Itís much louder than rival 1, force 1, & force 22. The 1x set ups were even with a mullet, & they werenít half as loud. Iím gonna check the b again, video the noise for the manufacturer, & possibly install another identical cassette I bought out of pocket.
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Old 01-23-23, 01:25 PM
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Iím really curious to see if the initial poster has had any success. Iím running this on a trainer half the time (I have other bikes) & I live in a condo.., so it simply cannot be this loud.
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Old 01-24-23, 09:02 PM
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This thing is SO loud in the smaller half of the cassette… I think I’m returning the entire bike. I can’t live with it. It’s crazy. Like a braided steel chain on asphalt. I just don’t get it. I’ve done & redone the setup repeatedly. If it’s this bad brand new…. Man, I am disappointed. I’m out the 2 flat top chains I bought, the XDR hub I bought for my Neo 2t, many many hours… I think I’ll return the cassette I bought because I’m not going to risk it on the off chance the original was defective or damaged in assembly or shipping. It’s a Canyon Grail by the way. Hopefully, they make good on the 30 day trial. My las Canyon experience was fantastic by the way. Loved that bike.

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Old 06-19-23, 02:43 PM
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Was never able to solve the noise problem. Annoying droning/light grinding sound.
I had a shop adjust it. The friendly mechanic said he only made minor adjustments.
Still the same sound.
So i switched to an AXS Eagle X01 rear derailleur, X01 Eagle 10-50 cassette, YBN SLA chain and Wolftooth 44t ring and all is quiet now.
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Old 09-07-23, 09:01 PM
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I was happy to come across this thread but sad there was no resolution. I agree that it is insanely loud.

The best fix I have found so far was to use a ZTTO 10-44t cassette from AliExpress. That is reasonably quiet on my gravel bike. But on my road bike, the Sunshine cassette which looks identical is about as loud as the SRAM Force XPLR cassette. Perhaps shorter chain stays and larger ring exacerbate the noise? I might try the rubber band kit that was for the original regular 10-33 AXS cassettes, if those can be installed.

The noise is terrible and does make me consider switching to 2x on the road and switching to a MTB mullet for the gravel bike.

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