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Triples on Road Bikes, any available anymore?

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Triples on Road Bikes, any available anymore?

Old 01-28-16, 11:20 AM
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Sceadu498
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Triples on Road Bikes, any available anymore?

Are there any road bikes that are offered with a triple crankset anymore? Or have they all be converted to the compact cranksets only?
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Old 01-28-16, 11:33 AM
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Campagnolo Athena is the only 11-speed I can think of.
Shimano Tiagra, Sora, Claris at 10,9,8 speed.

There are still plenty of other options out there if you don't mind to stray from the groupsets.
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Old 01-28-16, 11:33 AM
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You can still get a triple from Shimano (Tiagra series is the highest level), and FSA as far as I know. The thing is, with a compact double and a cassette that goes to 32, and even 36 teeth, a triple is added weight for little added benefit.
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Old 01-28-16, 11:36 AM
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Unless you include touring bikes in your definition of "road bike," I believe the answer is virtually, "No."

Of course, you can convert most bikes to a triple crankset, but the cost is considerable, and you will not have the high-end components to choose from. For example, Shimano's top-end triple road crankset is (I think) their 105. They retired the Ultegra triple crank some 4 years ago. There are many other crank brands; more knowledgeable folks, here, will likely make recommendations.

Last edited by patrickgm60; 01-28-16 at 11:39 AM.
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Old 01-28-16, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Sceadu498 View Post
Are there any road bikes that are offered with a triple crankset anymore? Or have they all be converted to the compact cranksets only?
If your interested in a Shimano Drive train your options are limited.

With the 5800 series (i.e. 105) they've done away with the triple option. The 5700 series did have it though.

Now the only think available in a triple in the Shimano range that is easily available is the Claris (8 speed) and Sora (9 speed). The Tiagra is supposedly available in a triple but I couldn't find it stocked *cheaply*.
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Old 01-28-16, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by silversx80 View Post
You can still get a triple from Shimano (Tiagra series is the highest level), and FSA as far as I know. The thing is, with a compact double and a cassette that goes to 32, and even 36 teeth, a triple is added weight for little added benefit.
True, although very little added weight and, depending on the rider's need, may be enough benefit. My Roubaix has a triple crank; although it is my "B" bike, I do like the smoother transitions, on long, rolling rides, gained by much less shifting in the rear.
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Old 01-28-16, 11:41 AM
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sugino makes triples that will work with 10 speed. Also there are "super compact" cranks that allow you to run smaller than a 34 in front. But yeah bikes that come stock with a triple tend to be touring bikes.
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Old 01-28-16, 12:05 PM
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Within the groupset, the Tiagra RD-4700-GS doesn't give you enough capacity to get significantly lower gears with the triple than with the compact. The compact setup spends all the cog capacity and the triple setup spends all the wrap capacity. The triple bottom gear of 30-32 is only a tiny bit lower than the compact bottom gear of 34-34, and the top gear is 50-11 either way.

Here's the RD specs
2015-2016 SHIMANO Product Information Web

When you start mixing and matching components you can get wider ranges but you need to pay attention to cable pull and chain wrap.
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Old 01-28-16, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Within the groupset, the Tiagra RD-4700-GS doesn't give you enough capacity to get significantly lower gears with the triple than with the compact. The compact setup spends all the cog capacity and the triple setup spends all the wrap capacity. The triple bottom gear of 30-32 is only a tiny bit lower than the compact bottom gear of 34-34, and the top gear is 50-11 either way.
Out of interest, does there exist a Shimano compatible 10 speed cassette with a 34T large cog?

EDIT: forget it, I was looking at 11 speed cassettes. I there are 10 speed ones.
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Old 01-28-16, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
Out of interest, does there exist a Shimano compatible 10 speed cassette with a 34T large cog?

EDIT: forget it, I was looking at 11 speed cassettes. I there are 10 speed ones.
XT 10 speed can go up to a 34.

Shimano M771 XT 10 Speed Cassette > Components > Drivetrain > Cassettes | Jenson USA
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Old 01-28-16, 01:32 PM
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The Shimano 5700 (i.e. last years 105's) are your best bet

Originally Posted by Sceadu498 View Post
Are there any road bikes that are offered with a triple crankset anymore? Or have they all be converted to the compact cranksets only?
OP, if you act quickly you can pick up the 5700 series from one of the UK sellers in a triple format. They are last year's model of 105 so presumably aren't be made any more so stock may dry up.

Good luck! I loved my triple
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Old 01-28-16, 01:45 PM
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Go compact. Plenty of options for chainrings, sub-compact even...There are plenty of wide range cassette options where with a bit of research (for compatibility's sake) you can get quite the extended gearing range. That's the way the tech is headed...the other way to go is a pure friction system and then the world is your very manual oyster...but that is cool too...
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Old 01-28-16, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Within the groupset, the Tiagra RD-4700-GS doesn't give you enough capacity to get significantly lower gears with the triple than with the compact. The compact setup spends all the cog capacity and the triple setup spends all the wrap capacity. The triple bottom gear of 30-32 is only a tiny bit lower than the compact bottom gear of 34-34, and the top gear is 50-11 either way.
If you don't mind straying from off-the-shelf, triples give way more gearing options than compacts. I have run a 52/42/28 triple which gives a wider overall range with more gearing at the top and bottom than a compact can offer even while using a tighter ratio cassette. You could also do a 50-39-26/24 if you needed more bottom end or wanted to a tight ratio cassette (like a 12-25) and still have really low gears.
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Old 01-28-16, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
Out of interest, does there exist a Shimano compatible 10 speed cassette with a 34T large cog?

EDIT: forget it, I was looking at 11 speed cassettes. I there are 10 speed ones.
Hell, you can get a Sunrace cassette that's 10x11-42
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Old 01-28-16, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Hell, you can get a Sunrace cassette that's 10x11-42
That's irrelevant as you can't use a 42T rear cog with a 4700 Tiagra shifter, at least, not within Shimano's specs which max out at 34T.
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Old 01-28-16, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
That's irrelevant as you can't use a 42T rear cog with a 4700 Tiagra shifter, at least, not within Shimano's specs which max out at 34T.
I thought it was a thread about cranksets! Once we are mixing and matching, all bets are off and I have a lot of ways to get that 3:4 low gear ratio.
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Old 01-28-16, 03:58 PM
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This super compact idea sounds interesting...who sells them?
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Old 01-28-16, 04:05 PM
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Yeah go with a compact. The disadvantage with triples isn't the weight because it's minimal; it's that triples are finicky and not as quick shifting chain rings. I've had several triples and despite trying all sorts of things, they just aren't the same in performance. That plus 11 speed cassettes makes them obsolete.
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Old 01-28-16, 04:22 PM
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Who wants Sram Red33?
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Old 01-28-16, 05:10 PM
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Might take some bottom bracket conversion, and a shifter that is not high end shimano, but this seems to be a high level triple crank...

FSA K-Force Light Mega Exo Triple Chainset Black 2014
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Old 01-28-16, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by StanSeven View Post
Yeah go with a compact. The disadvantage with triples isn't the weight because it's minimal; it's that triples are finicky and not as quick shifting chain rings. I've had several triples and despite trying all sorts of things, they just aren't the same in performance. That plus 11 speed cassettes makes them obsolete.
My FSA 50-34 Carbon Pro Compact didn't shift as well as the Campagnolo 50-40-30 Racing T crank which preceded it. With over 10X more ring changes required that was especially unfortunate.

11 speed cassettes are also insufficient when a triple is needed. Matching

53-39-26 x 13-14-15-16-17-18-19-21-23-25 10 cogs

range and spacing requires something like

50-34 x 12-13-14-15-16-17-18-19-21-23-25-27-30-33

14 cogs.

With 9 years between 10 and 11 cogs it'll be 2036 before doubles match 3x10.

Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 01-28-16 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 01-28-16, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post

11 speed cassettes are also insufficient when a triple is needed. Matching

53-39-26 x 13-14-15-16-17-18-19-21-23-25 10 cogs

range and spacing requires something like

50-34 x 12-13-14-15-16-17-18-19-21-23-25-27-30-33

14 cogs.
Couple things. Not that many people need that gear range. That's pretty extreme unless someone is riding mountains all the time. Even then a 26X25 is crazy unless it's for touring. And triples are still found on tour bikes.

The other is getting close gearing has become an obsession with people. Many think they have to ways maintain cadence with a 5 rpm range. Riders used to go as fast with 6 and 7 speed doubles.
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Old 01-28-16, 06:48 PM
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The death of the triple is a sad thing to see.

The Rise of the Compact Crank (aka ?The Death of the Triple?) - Bike Hugger
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Old 01-28-16, 08:02 PM
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I don't care for the 50/34 compact crank. I like the 50 but the transition to the 34 usually requires a shift or three in the rear. Too much anxiety when approaching a steep hill in a pack. The compact triple is 50/39/30, much better shifting from the 50 to the 39. With the 30 you can have a tight cluster AND low gears. I'm very impressed with the FSA compact triple and SRAM X7 shifters on my gravel bike. Shifts well and no chain rub.
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Old 01-28-16, 08:33 PM
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Specialites TA makes a gorgeous and strong triple crank (a modern one, too.) I have the previous version from about ten years ago, and the lowest cog on that is a _20_. I am not that much of a wimp but for loaded touring I use a 22-36-46. Unfortunately, the TA triples are not cheap.
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