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Drivetrain Suggestions for Vintage 1x Build?

Old 10-15-20, 12:59 AM
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speedyspaghetti
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Drivetrain Suggestions for Vintage 1x Build?

Hey guys -

So, long story short, I have two Bridgestone MTBs - an MB6 and an MB3. I broke the freewheel and hub on my MB6 which eventually prompted me to decide to move all of the 3x7 Deore parts from the MB3 onto the MB6 and to build the MB3 with a 1x setup. I already got a new wheelset with a compatible hub, and I ordered a new crankset with a 32T N/W chainring. The last thing I need to decide is what kind of drivetrain to go with.

As I see it, I have a couple of options and a couple of questions:
1. Will an 11 speed MTB cassette fit on an 8/9/10 sped hub? If so, is there a major reason to go with 11s over 10s?
2. Regardless of whether I go with 10 or 11s, for NEW options I could go with a Deore setup like this or potentially a Box Two setup like this or even a Microshift build. For those of you who have experience with these, which would you go with?
3. On the flip side, if you guys think I can get better bang-for-my-buck going with USED component, what would you recommend going with? I've found some Deore XT 10s stuff for about $40-50 for an RD and $30-40 for the shifter. Anything else I should look for?
4. Anything else I should be thinking about?

Thanks!


The MB-3 as it currently sits today.

The MB-6 before its freewheel/hub failure.
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Old 10-15-20, 06:54 AM
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I see no reason to get an 11 speed. The newest drivetrain I own is 10 speed, I only went with that to get a clutch derailer. If you can get everything in 1 box, that is great. You will spend more in shipping than it is worth trying to piece together used vintage parts.
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Old 10-15-20, 07:27 AM
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Any shimano style 11sp mtb cassette will work on your 8-9-10 sp hub.

10 vs 11 really just comes down to the range and gear spacing YOU want/need. Nobody else can possibly answer this question for you.

For the overall range.... Best thing to do it figure out what the highest and lowest gear ratios are that you used with your 3x7 setup, and go from there. Or if you tell us we can help you with the math to figure out how that translates to 1x.

As for gear spacing.... are you OK with the spacing between ratios getting wider than you have with your 3x7?

Are you using this strictly for trail riding, or for a mix of trails and roads?

Without answering the above questions, you may as well be asking people what shoe size they like.
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Old 10-15-20, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
Any shimano style 11sp mtb cassette will work on your 8-9-10 sp hub.


10 vs 11 really just comes down to the range and gear spacing YOU want/need. Nobody else can possibly answer this question for you.


For the overall range.... Best thing to do it figure out what the highest and lowest gear ratios are that you used with your 3x7 setup, and go from there. Or if you tell us we can help you with the math to figure out how that translates to 1x.


As for gear spacing.... are you OK with the spacing between ratios getting wider than you have with your 3x7?


Are you using this strictly for trail riding, or for a mix of trails and roads?


Without answering the above questions, you may as well be asking people what shoe size they like.

Hey - thanks for the response.


1. I currently have a (28-38-48) up front and a 12-28 on the back, giving me a low (or high? easiest gear) of 1.00 and hardest gear of 4.00. I rarely use the the 48 ring as I mostly ride trails. I do sometimes ride to the trails, but the main ones I do are 2-3 miles from my house and I don't mind having to go a bit slower on the way there.


2. With a 32T up front and a 11-42 in the back, I would have an easiest gear of 0.76 and a hardest of 2.91. What would the theoretical max speed of the 2.91 be then? Should that be enough for riding on flats?


Thanks guys.
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Old 10-15-20, 10:08 AM
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32/11 would give you 21.5 mph spinning 90 rpm. That is about what I spin on the road.
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Old 10-15-20, 12:52 PM
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Lets clarify something any cassette that starts with an 11 tooth will fit on a your 8+ speed freehub any that starts with 10 will not. So you could even go 12 speed if you wanted. I currently run an 11 speed XT and Box 1 setups on my mtn bikes and both are fine but I do prefer the XT shifter. MIcroshift, Box, Deore whatever. I'd just want to spend as little as possible on that bike so even one of the 8 or 9 speed wide range setups from Microshift and Box would be fine if the price is right. The reason to go more gears is tighter spacing which is nice on my road bike but I really don't care on my mtn bikes. Only thing I care about is range on my mtn bike.
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Old 10-15-20, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Canker View Post
Lets clarify something any cassette that starts with an 11 tooth will fit on a your 8+ speed freehub any that starts with 10 will not. So you could even go 12 speed if you wanted. I currently run an 11 speed XT and Box 1 setups on my mtn bikes and both are fine but I do prefer the XT shifter. MIcroshift, Box, Deore whatever. I'd just want to spend as little as possible on that bike so even one of the 8 or 9 speed wide range setups from Microshift and Box would be fine if the price is right. The reason to go more gears is tighter spacing which is nice on my road bike but I really don't care on my mtn bikes. Only thing I care about is range on my mtn bike.
Cool - thanks for all of the advice. So based on what I read here and researched on my own, I went with a Box 2 11s setup which I was able to find for an awesome deal ($160 for RD, shifter, 11-46 cassette, and chain). My last question is: is the Box RD a direct mount, and so will I need a goat-link or some other sort of derailleur extender? Or will the hanger on my MB-3 work without it?

Thanks!
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Old 10-15-20, 05:37 PM
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You even can use the 11-50 12 speed cassettes from SRAM or Sunrace.

These days, just go 12. You will appreciate the range and gaps. Go with Shimano, not that hackery.

Or 11 speed with the 11-51 Deore cassette.

Look at gearing calculator. Obviously all gearing advice depends on your riding and fitness.
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Old 10-15-20, 08:39 PM
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Direct mount was something Shimano wanted to try about ten years ago, but they got run off the road by the success of SRAMís 11 speed. I donít know what its present support status is, but most stuff is still the old standard Campy hanger. You only need a Goatlink or Roadlink to use an RD that is too small for your cassette. Since you bought a groupset youíll be fine.

Remember your present front ring is made for shifting, so the chain will want to fall off. A narrow wide ring is in order. Your ring bolts may also be too long.

32-11 top gear on a 26er sounds verging on too low to me. Iíve got 30-11 on my 27.5+ and it spins out with the least advantage. Since you got the 46t cassette, try a 36t front. In gearing threads someone always says they need a triple to get their 6:1 range, but you are already used to shorter gearing

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Old 10-16-20, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Direct mount was something Shimano wanted to try about ten years ago, but they got run off the road by the success of SRAMís 11 speed. I donít know what its present support status is, but most stuff is still the old standard Campy hanger. You only need a Goatlink or Roadlink to use an RD that is too small for your cassette. Since you bought a groupset youíll be fine.

Remember your present front ring is made for shifting, so the chain will want to fall off. A narrow wide ring is in order. Your ring bolts may also be too long.

32-11 top gear on a 26er sounds verging on too low to me. Iíve got 30-11 on my 27.5+ and it spins out with the least advantage. Since you got the 46t cassette, try a 36t front. In gearing threads someone always says they need a triple to get their 6:1 range, but you are already used to shorter gearing
I already ordered a new crankset and narrow/wide ring. I got the 32T round ring, should I look at an oval ring for a 34 or 36T as an additional option?
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Old 10-16-20, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by speedyspaghetti View Post
I already ordered a new crankset and narrow/wide ring. I got the 32T round ring, should I look at an oval ring for a 34 or 36T as an additional option?
Bicycle Gear Calculator

Oval improves traction on slippery ground. snow, mud etc. it shouldn't change gearing. A 32T oval changes from 30-34 depending on where in the stroke it is. Since you already bought a 32T, I would just ride that and see.
I have Oval (AB) on my fatbike and hybrid and love it. but it doesn't give you more power, it smoothes out the stroke force. I guess that could make your legs more efficient, a tiny bit.
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Old 11-20-20, 09:58 PM
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Let us know how the Box 2 drivetrain works out. I've been looking at those.

I converted a bike to 1x using Microshift last year. It works okay, but I still haven't obtained the best chainline.

Funny once I got the bike done, I build another for the purpose, commuting, by single speed, and haven't gone back. The Microshift equipped bike hangs in the garage like a queen.

But that points out the one thing you may have to fuss with - the chain line.

I think you made a good choice. Hope it works great- right out of the box!

It'll be great in St Joe's and Sierra Azul!😃
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