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Is it worth the upgrade to go 1x?

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Is it worth the upgrade to go 1x?

Old 11-26-18, 08:16 PM
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little_squids
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Is it worth the upgrade to go 1x?

Beginner mountain biker here. I currently ride a 3x9 setup. I would like to upgrade to 1x9, or possibly 1x10 or 1x11. Do you think it's worth it to upgrade to a 1x setup? Also, I've been having shifting problems for a while and if I change to 1x10 or 1x11 would it resolve those problems, since I would be getting a new cassette, shifter, Derailleur, etc?
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Old 11-26-18, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by little_squids View Post
Beginner mountain biker here. I currently ride a 3x9 setup. I would like to upgrade to 1x9, or possibly 1x10 or 1x11. Do you think it's worth it to upgrade to a 1x setup? Also, I've been having shifting problems for a while and if I change to 1x10 or 1x11 would it resolve those problems, since I would be getting a new cassette, shifter, Derailleur, etc?
Well, going 1x9 can be done dirt cheap since you already have all the drivetrain components. Replace the big ring with a bashguard, lose the small ring, add something like an Ngear jumpstop on the inside, shorten the chain, and you have a 1x9 for under $50.

However, you are going to need to determine what is currently the lowest and highest gears you use, and see if 1x9 is going to have the range. If you are going to go with more than 9sp, just go 11 so you can get all the range you want.

As far as your shifting goes, it all depends on what is causing the problem. Impossible to diagnose with no info. If it is a bent hangar, the 10 and 11 sp setups might actually shoft worse until you straighten it.

What I would first suggest trying is swapping your big ring for a bashguard, shorten the chain to size it for you middle ring, and run 2x9. I found that to be a big improvement over 3x9 for real mountain biking.
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Old 11-26-18, 09:20 PM
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I went to 1x11 m7000 from 9 speed x5's.

If I were to do it again I'd probably go 2x11 and XTR for the front shifting. Or 1x12.

​​​​I went 1x because I ride very few 8% + grades, and any climb is short enough (I'm not climbing more then 3 minutes on a climb). So I sent with an 11-40 cassette. I miss the 12 tooth cog. The eleven speed cassette was an improvement on my 11-34 9 speed spacing.

9 speed is great, along with a 12-25 and triple. Buy some Triflow and replacement cable housing/cables for $50 before you drop $400 on 1x. Also don't be afraid of gently taking pliers to the 9 speed front derailleur cage, I had to slightly bend mine to get better shifting.
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Old 11-27-18, 12:16 AM
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Originally Posted by little_squids View Post
Do you think it's worth it to upgrade to a 1x setup?
If you decide to go to 1 X 10, just go to 1 X 11. But to decide if any of these changes are "worth" it, you have to determine how much it's worth to YOU. For me, a 1 X system works best with a narrow-wide chainring of either 28 or 30 teeth, and an 11-speed 11 X 42 rear cassette, but that will mean an entire drivetrain upgrade, including shifters, hub, wheel rebuild, cassette, chainring, and chain, and that can get pricey in a hurry. But a 1 X 9 conversion would be a compromise to the point that you really won't achieve the benefits of a 1 X system. Your gearing range will suffer, and/or you'll need a chainwatcher and/or a new chainring anyway, and probably a new chain, and you'll still only have a nine speed, which is probably enough, but why should you settle if you're going to all that trouble?

So my advice would be to go all the way or leave it as it is. Remember -- a LOT of world championships have been won on triple chainrings!

Originally Posted by little_squids View Post
I've been having shifting problems for a while and if I change to 1x10 or 1x11 would it resolve those problems, since I would be getting a new cassette, shifter, Derailleur, etc?
Probably, but shifting problems can almost always be fixed without replacing the drivetrain. Check for a bent derailleur hanger, damaged cable housing, errant cable routing at the derailleur, maladjusted low/high and B-tension adjustment screws, worn chain, worn cogs, etc.

Last edited by EdwinHeadwind; 11-27-18 at 10:33 AM.
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Old 11-27-18, 10:10 AM
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I converted my 3x9 trail bike to 1x9 two years ago. I removed the inner chain ring and front shifter and cable, changed the middle ring to a narrow/wide 32t, and replaced the outer (big) ring with a bash ring. I also changed the cassette from the standard 11x36 to a wide ratio 11x40 with a Wolftooth road link (to get more clearance on the derailleur for the bigger cassette gear). It works fine. If it was a bike I was going to do a lot of climbing with or my only bike, I might go all out and convert to 1x11, but I bought a new 1x12 enduro bike last year and use it on harder trails.
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Old 11-27-18, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
What I would first suggest trying is swapping your big ring for a bashguard, shorten the chain to size it for you middle ring, and run 2x9. I found that to be a big improvement over 3x9 for real mountain biking.
^^^ This is a good idea for the OP to consider. It's so much easier to dial in front shifting when there are only two positions. Bash guards are a good look too.

My friends and I have done several 1x9 conversions. Chain retention is an issue. Narrow/wide chain rings with tall teeth help here. Finessing the chain line using chain ring bolt spacers helps. You might need to run an anti-drop device. Of my bikes that are 1x9 now, one has the chain ring sandwiched between a bash guard and an anti-drop device. The other two bikes have chainring bolt spacers to bias the one-speed ring inward such that the chain is less likely to drop to the inside. I'm currently helping someone build a bike 1x9, and we have locked the front derailleur into position using the limit screws to act as a chain guide. My friends have moved on to 1x10 for the clutched derailleurs that are available, and I eventually will do the same. The advantage from a clutched derailleur is significant.
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Old 11-27-18, 04:34 PM
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My 1x10 conversion has been trouble-free (except for smashing derailleurs, haha) through a number of metamorphoses - - which I'd probably credit to the Renthal narrow/wide ring I'm running. The crank itself was a cheapie Sram S1000 triple. I did not go with an outer bash-guard, because the narrow/wide was doing its job but got some extra insurance anyway with a Gamut Trail SXR upper guide/bash taco. Even when I was running a non-clutch X7 derailleur, it never threw a chain. On top of that, I'm running a Chinese 11-42 10-speed cassette and have never needed to use the longer limit-screw that comes with range-extender cogs or cassettes - - and that's running a medium-cage derailleur. My next experiment will probably be a Chinese 11-46...hopefully one lower gear will get me those steeper grunts.
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Old 11-27-18, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by dminor View Post
My 1x10 conversion has been trouble-free (except for smashing derailleurs, haha) through a number of metamorphoses - - which I'd probably credit to the Renthal narrow/wide ring I'm running. The crank itself was a cheapie Sram S1000 triple. I did not go with an outer bash-guard, because the narrow/wide was doing its job but got some extra insurance anyway with a Gamut Trail SXR upper guide/bash taco. Even when I was running a non-clutch X7 derailleur, it never threw a chain. On top of that, I'm running a Chinese 11-42 10-speed cassette and have never needed to use the longer limit-screw that comes with range-extender cogs or cassettes - - and that's running a medium-cage derailleur. My next experiment will probably be a Chinese 11-46...hopefully one lower gear will get me those steeper grunts.
You will have to let me know how the off brand cassette works. I always see them out there, just never sure how well they would work (accuracy, weight, durability etc)
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Old 11-27-18, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
You will have to let me know how the off brand cassette works. I always see them out there, just never sure how well they would work (accuracy, weight, durability etc)
Will PM you. It has been an odyssey in range-extension
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