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Trek Marlin 7 too slow???

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Trek Marlin 7 too slow???

Old 10-02-21, 04:29 AM
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Ls1984
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Trek Marlin 7 too slow???

I just got my 2021 Trek Marlin 7 after ordering it back in March. My only issue is that I feel like it doesnít have enough gears. I easily max out the gears on trails and want to go faster. On the street this happens almost instantly. Anyone else notice this? Any ideas what to do? Other than that the bikes great.
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Old 10-02-21, 04:45 AM
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shelbyfv
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It's geared for more difficult trails than you are riding. Your shop can probably change the gearing for you if you are going to ride mostly flatter terrain.
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Old 10-02-21, 05:50 AM
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aclinjury
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see if a larger chainring will fit on it, assuming there is a separate chainring you could buy for this crank.
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Old 10-02-21, 06:09 AM
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Looks like it takes a 34t maximum chainring, unless you go to a triple crankset. It seems like you bought the wrong bike for your preferences.
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Old 10-02-21, 07:42 AM
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Specs indicate you have a 28T single crankset. This bike was not meant for speed on the road but to coast downhill on trails.

I have a 2014 Trek Marlin 6 with a triple 42/34/24 crankset and the fastest I have managed on road downhill is 40 mph.
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Old 10-02-21, 09:40 AM
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Thanks for the info guys. I had a feeling I grabbed the wrong bike for the type of riding I regularly do.
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Old 10-02-21, 10:01 AM
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Cheapest change is to go to a 34t 82mm bcd chainring, AlliExpress offers a 36t, and see if the gearing works.

Should be a pretty simple swap if it can be done without pulling the crank. You’ll need a longer chain.

If you like the bike, it’s not the wrong bike, just the wrong drivetrain. Worst case is swapping out the crank and going with a 38t or 40t.

John
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Old 10-02-21, 10:49 AM
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Ignore the haters.

Keep in mind that an mtb with a 1x drivetrain is usually going to be quite under geared for many pavement situations.

That said, a 28t ring seems on the small side to me for a cassette with a 46t cog in the back. Running that with a 32t or 34t ring is not unreasonable. Do you find you currently need the lowest gear on that bike?

Going from a 28t ring to a 34t ring will make a big difference. Keep in mind that you will almost certainly need a longer chain as well.

Last edited by Kapusta; 10-02-21 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 10-02-21, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by CAT7RDR View Post
Specs indicate you have a 28T single crankset. This bike was not meant for speed on the road but to coast downhill on trails.

I have a 2014 Trek Marlin 6 with a triple 42/34/24 crankset and the fastest I have managed on road downhill is 40 mph.
I didn't notice that it's got a 28t chainring as stock. OP should have the shop put on a 34t chainring - max that will fit. That will give noticeably higher gearing, and won't cost much money.
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Old 10-02-21, 01:39 PM
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Yup, that's the most useless road bike on the planet. LOL. Only slightly faster than a Vietnam SS. Slower than my SA 3 speed.
But a 34T will get you 90 GI, a fast granny bike. Close to my Nexus 7i IGH, at 38 to 92.5.
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Old 10-02-21, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53 View Post
Yup, that's the most useless road bike on the planet. LOL. Only slightly faster than a Vietnam SS. Slower than my SA 3 speed.
But a 34T will get you 90 GI, a fast granny bike. Close to my Nexus 7i IGH, at 38 to 92.5.
IKR. My Surly LHT has a middle ring of 36. If Iím traveling fully loaded Iíll often use that on unpaved, flat trails. On flat roads Iím usually in the 46 ring.
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Old 10-02-21, 02:23 PM
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Are the trails paved or well packed dirt or gravel. Probably the wrong bike.

If loose gravel, dirt or otherwise soft surface, then you must be a strong rider.

Last edited by Iride01; 10-02-21 at 02:27 PM.
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Old 10-02-21, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
Cheapest change is to go to a 34t 82mm bcd chainring, AlliExpress offers a 36t, and see if the gearing works.

Should be a pretty simple swap if it can be done without pulling the crank. Youíll need a longer chain.

If you like the bike, itís not the wrong bike, just the wrong drivetrain. Worst case is swapping out the crank and going with a 38t or 40t.

John
Don't do a 36t, Trek specifies that it shouldn't go larger than 34T which means you risk damage to the frame.

I would however go to a 34t. I run a 34t with 11-42 cassette and find my gearing perfectly fine for MTBing around me, I only went to a single ring because my bike is only used for MTBing. I'll ride it paved with my youngest kid but he's 6 and slow, my older two are 9 and 11, and it can't easily keep up with them on pavement nor can it do the paved or even gravel rail trail paths I like to do at a speed I would consider acceptable for more then short bursts without pedaling a ridiculous cadence for a more relaxing ride. But for those kinds of rides and speed I'd use a gravel bike, cross bike, or a flat bar equivalent as they're meant for being able to commute, exercise, and travel at a reasonable speed for reasonable effort in most places. Most MTBs are now really only designed for MTBing with the equipment they have and the gear range they come with.
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Old 10-02-21, 02:46 PM
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I donít have the bike knowledge that you guys have so it would make the most sense for me to just sell it and grab another bike. I called the bike shop about upgrading it and they pushed hard against it. Any recommendations for a decent quality bike around $800-900 that will have more gears? I like the large 29Ē also if thereís any someone could recommend. Thanks again.
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Old 10-02-21, 02:51 PM
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It's not necessarily more gears that you need need. You need to figure out what the lowest gear is on the current bike that you have to have for the conditions you are riding and then make sure that your next bike has at least that low a gearing and then a higher ratio gear than what your current bike has.

How many gears are between that is up to you.

You are in smallest rear cog during these times it's not going fast enough aren't you?
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Old 10-02-21, 03:21 PM
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Those kind of bikes just aren't made for all round riding. IMO, forget the steep trail option and get a road + gravel type bike.
For starters, NO road bike should have those crazy steep slope top tubes. I call them half frames. LOL. They're a ludicrous fad now. Zero all round capability.
1x is a really dumb fad now.
I never did like dirt, so I only have roadster IGH bikes. I ride all of them on 100+ mile day sightseeing rides. YMMV.
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Old 10-02-21, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53 View Post
1x is a really dumb fad now.
I do fully loaded tours. 1x is all the rage. Not even close to being on my radar screen.
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Old 10-02-21, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I do fully loaded tours. 1x is all the rage. Not even close to being on my radar screen.
I have a 1x bike, and I love it. ĎCourse, itís a SS. All of my other bikes are 2x, and I reckon that will always be the case.
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Old 10-02-21, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
I have a 1x bike, and I love it. ĎCourse, itís a SS. All of my other bikes are 2x, and I reckon that will always be the case.
I have nothing against 1x per se. Iíve often thought of getting a SS for riding around town. It just wouldnít work for me on loaded tours. I much prefer smaller steps between gears.
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Old 10-02-21, 06:17 PM
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I think the 1x setup works for certain people and certain situations. My wife loves her 1x setup for the road, always hated having to deal with 2 chain rings, so 1x works for her.
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Old 10-02-21, 06:27 PM
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Iíd suggest looking at Sheldon Browns Gearing calculator. It can be configured so you can compare your speed at a few set rpmís to get an idea of the gearing you want. I think going with the 34T will get you 20 mph at 80 rpm in the 11T. While a 28T in front only gets you 16.7 mph. This is a good excercise. I ride an old 26er 3X. Iíve been looking to upgrade and FS bikes are pretty much 1X.

https://www.sheldonbrown.com/gear-calc.html


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Old 10-02-21, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I have nothing against 1x per se. Iíve often thought of getting a SS for riding around town. It just wouldnít work for me on loaded tours. I much prefer smaller steps between gears.
I hear you.

A while back, the rear wheel on my SS had a broken spoke, so for a couple weeks I was commuting on a geared bike. It was very pleasant, actually. But at this point in my life, my only hipster cred comes from commuting on a SS, so I'm now back to flogging the bike up the hills around here and sweating like a pig.
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Old 10-02-21, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
Don't do a 36t, Trek specifies that it shouldn't go larger than 34T which means you risk damage to the frame.
While a valid concern, I’m guessing the 34t max is based on FSA not making a 36t since it is their oddball 82mm bcd.

I don’t know the frame differences between 2020 and 2021, (with the pandemic and no 2020 bikes it is hard to say if mfgs are making geometry changes), but the 2020 Marlin 7 offered a 2x9 with 22/36 chainrings. Hard to say if the extra 2.5mm outboard of the outer ring made it possible or not.

The 36t 82mm bcd is only found from sources on AlliExpress and the like.

John
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