Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Can I Convert A Triple To A Double?

Road Cycling ďIt is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.Ē -- Ernest Hemingway

Can I Convert A Triple To A Double?

Old 09-20-08, 10:28 PM
  #1  
min7b5
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Can I Convert A Triple To A Double?

OK, dumb newb question: Six months ago I got a Bianchi Nirone Triple http://www.bianchiusa.com/07_c2c_nirone_ult_tr.html I really love this bike, but Iíve had shifting issues.

Iíve taken it to three different respected bike shops a total of four times in two months and it still isnít perfect. It either wants to fall into the granny gear from the middle chain ring, or it wonít go into the granny at all...

So Iím wondering if I had gotten the double if I would have had all this issues? And moreover, can I convert this bike to a double? Or is the geometry all based around a triple? Is that expencive? Mostly what I enjoy doing here in portland is climb, so would I need to change the gears in the back to make them more hill friendly? And comments appreciated
min7b5 is offline  
Old 09-20-08, 10:38 PM
  #2  
AEO
Senior Member
 
AEO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: A Coffin Called Earth. or Toronto, ON
Posts: 12,258

Bikes: Bianchi, Miyata, Dahon, Rossin

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
it's your crankset.
easiest way to make it a double is just adjusting the front derailer limit screws so it doesn't move to the small ring.

but what I would suggest is getting a shimano hollowtech-II tiagra or 105 triple or compact double crankset
it's around $80~90 for a shimano tiagra crankset.
__________________
Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm
AEO is offline  
Old 09-20-08, 10:43 PM
  #3  
Beaker
moth -----> flame
 
Beaker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 5,913

Bikes: 11 CAAD 10-4, 07 Specialized Roubaix Comp, 98 Peugeot Horizon

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You can do this, but it's expensive from what I hear, esp. if you want to go to a compact double. You could probably artificially make a double by adjusting the limit screw to prevent you shifting to the 30T (anyone done that?), but I'm suspicious of the setup. FWIW I run a 105 tiple FD and it shifts just fine. I rarely use the 30T, but it's there when the going gets ridiculously steep. Have you checked out parktool.com to run through some of their derailleur tune ups?
Beaker is offline  
Old 09-20-08, 10:57 PM
  #4  
sfrider
Oil it!
 
sfrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 1,207
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
You'll need a new crankset and depending on crankset probably a narrower front derailleur. It's a pretty quick and simple job to switch these out.
sfrider is offline  
Old 09-20-08, 11:09 PM
  #5  
BarracksSi
Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped.
 
BarracksSi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 13,854

Bikes: Some bikes. Hell, they're all the same, ain't they?

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Before changing parts, I'd suggest riding and figuring out how much of your current gearing you actually use.

Easiest upgrade -- which will still likely improve shifting -- would be a Shimano triple crank.

A double would not give you as low of a gearing as you can get now with a triple. That's no big deal, though, if you don't already use the bottom range of your gearing.

If, for example, you change to a compact double in front (50/34 chainrings) and keep your 12-25 rear cassette, you'll lose the bottom two or three gear ratios. But, if you're never using the smallest 30-tooth chainring and biggest gears in back, you won't miss them if they're gone, either. Also, you can get to nearly the same bottom gear by switching to a cassette with a bigger cog, like a 26 or 27.

Fiddle with Sheldon Brown's gear calculator to see what I mean:
http://sheldonbrown.com/gears/

Don't worry about "spinning out" the 50-12 top gear combo of a compact and your cassette -- you'd have to be going over 40 mph before it gets too fast to pedal.

If you do end up changing to a compact double, you may need to change the front derailleur as well. I'd say to ride it with the triple FD for a while and see if it works okay.
BarracksSi is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 12:35 AM
  #6  
pista
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 195
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Why bother getting a double. Any reputable shop should be able to fix your shifting problems. I have a triple and 105 and I have no problems at all. The only thing I have found, now and then, is that to get from the middle to the big ring I have to shift the lever further out hold it there for a second or 2. But when I get it tuned it works great.
pista is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 12:40 AM
  #7  
BarracksSi
Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped.
 
BarracksSi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 13,854

Bikes: Some bikes. Hell, they're all the same, ain't they?

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by pista View Post
Why bother getting a double. Any reputable shop should be able to fix your shifting problems.
We're assuming that four visits to three different shops haven't helped yet.

Shimano cranks > FSA cranks, IMO, even with good derailleur adjustment.
BarracksSi is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 08:05 AM
  #8  
MONGO!
Senior Member
 
MONGO!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 4,279
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
You could switch it t a compact double, you'll need a new crankset and front derailleur.

I'm amazed no-one could get it working right for you, where did you take it?
MONGO! is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 11:43 AM
  #9  
sstorkel
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 5,427

Bikes: Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
We're assuming that four visits to three different shops haven't helped yet.
Which tells us only that: 1) He's got an unfixable problem, or 2) he hasn't had the problem looked at by a competent mechanic. FWIW, I'm no great bike mechanic but I've installed a couple of Shimano FDs with Shimano triple cranks and never had a problem getting them to shift reliably. If you follow Shimano's install directions step-by-step the whole thing just works...

Hard for me to imagine that the FSA cranks are so lousy they couldn't be made to work. Of course, as pista suggests proper shifting technique is required. Before I got the system completely dialed-in, I noticed that I did occasionally need to hold the lever in-place for an extra half-second to get to the big chain ring, or ease off on pedal pressure to drop to the small chain ring; never both with the same setup, though.
sstorkel is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 11:56 AM
  #10  
roca rule
Senior Member
 
roca rule's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Pico Rivera CA
Posts: 273

Bikes: trek 2.1, scott cr1 sl '06, ridley helium '10, univega gran premio and a look 595.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
a related questin can i use ultegra 6603 left shifter with a double derailer on a double crankset (53-39)?
roca rule is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 12:32 PM
  #11  
AEO
Senior Member
 
AEO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: A Coffin Called Earth. or Toronto, ON
Posts: 12,258

Bikes: Bianchi, Miyata, Dahon, Rossin

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by roca rule View Post
a related questin can i use ultegra 6603 left shifter with a double derailer on a double crankset (53-39)?
yes.

and you can continue to use a triple FD too.
__________________
Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm
AEO is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 12:39 PM
  #12  
RazorWind
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,225
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by MONGO! View Post
I'm amazed no-one could get it working right for you, where did you take it?
Same here.

Have you tried adjusting the front derailleur yourself? My FSA Vero/Tiagra setup was pretty easy to get working.
RazorWind is offline  
Old 09-21-08, 12:45 PM
  #13  
min7b5
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by MONGO! View Post
You could switch it t a compact double, you'll need a new crankset and front derailleur.

I'm amazed no-one could get it working right for you, where did you take it?
River City, Bike Gallery, Hollywood Cycle (twice)

Each fix lasted a little while, a week or two, but then it’s back to slipping around.

Last edited by min7b5; 09-21-08 at 12:49 PM.
min7b5 is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 08:22 AM
  #14  
min7b5
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by MONGO! View Post
You could switch it t a compact double, you'll need a new crankset and front derailleur....
Another dumb question: what's a compact?
min7b5 is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 08:32 AM
  #15  
longbeachgary
Senior Member
 
longbeachgary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Beautiful Long Beach California
Posts: 3,605

Bikes: Eddy Merckx San Remo 76, Eddy Merckx San Remo 76 - Black Silver and Red, Eddy Merckx Sallanches 64 (2); Eddy Merckx MXL;

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 141 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by min7b5 View Post
Another dumb question: what's a compact?
A compact crank would be a 50/30 rather than a 53/39.

My question would be that we bought my wife a Trek 4.5 - when she gets to a light and adjusts the position of the crank by moving it backwards, the rear derailure shifts to a higher gear. We've taken it back to the dealer and they say that it's the angle of the chain that causes this and she shouldn't use the big ring in the front and the 5 largest rings in the back. With that logic there are 10 gears out of 30 that can't be used (big ring bigger rings and small ring smaller rings).

Wounldn't changing to a double require a double left shifter as well as a double crank?
longbeachgary is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 08:36 AM
  #16  
Flatballer
No matches
 
Flatballer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Eastern PA
Posts: 11,217

Bikes: two wheeled ones

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1060 Post(s)
Liked 28 Times in 18 Posts
Don't forget a new BB. There is often different BB spacing for a triple versus a double. (to get the chainline correct I think)
Flatballer is online now  
Old 09-23-08, 09:05 AM
  #17  
min7b5
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by longbeachgary View Post
A compact crank would be a 50/30 rather than a 53/39....
So that would be better for climbing? ...sorry, not quite sure what thee numbers mean.
min7b5 is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:06 AM
  #18  
Campag4life
Voice of the Industry
 
Campag4life's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 12,596
Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1185 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Written about extensively. Perform a search. I love a triple if in the mountains...I ride a compact double now. People generally dislike triples because they can't adjust them. You either need to develop this skill or find somebody who can do it. Cheaper to learn to do it yourself. Buy a repair stand.
Campag4life is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:23 AM
  #19  
cparekh
bones should be attached
 
cparekh's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 391

Bikes: Scott CR1 Team, Scott S40, Schwinn Traveler III

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I think from what you are saying, if you want to make the switch, you want a compact double front crankset as opposed to a standard double crankset. The compact has smaller chain rings which means all the gears will be lower (easier to spin) than with the standard. What this means is that the bike will be easier to climb with than a standard, at the expense of not having the higher sprinting gears. For most people, this is a good thing because you have to be going pretty fast before you spin out of a compact double (e.g. sprinting down hill).

You would need a new crankset, possibly a new front derailer, and probably a new bottom bracket. I think the left shifter will work either with a double or triple, because the limit screws will keep the FD from shifting too far, but check with an actual mechanic.
__________________
Sometimes I forget that I have a photographic memory.
cparekh is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:28 AM
  #20  
longbeachgary
Senior Member
 
longbeachgary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Beautiful Long Beach California
Posts: 3,605

Bikes: Eddy Merckx San Remo 76, Eddy Merckx San Remo 76 - Black Silver and Red, Eddy Merckx Sallanches 64 (2); Eddy Merckx MXL;

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 141 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by min7b5 View Post
So that would be better for climbing? ...sorry, not quite sure what thee numbers mean.
Sorry, the numbers refer to the number of teeth on the chainring. The higher the number, the bigger the gear.
longbeachgary is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:40 AM
  #21  
jccaclimber
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Terre Haute, Lafayette, or Indianapolis, IN, depending on the day
Posts: 1,919

Bikes: n, I would like n+1

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Try lubricating your shifter housing with something like triflow. Also make sure there aren't any kinks in the system, that tends to cause shifting issues.
jccaclimber is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:42 AM
  #22  
cparekh
bones should be attached
 
cparekh's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 391

Bikes: Scott CR1 Team, Scott S40, Schwinn Traveler III

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by jccaclimber View Post
Try lubricating your shifter housing with something like triflow. Also make sure there aren't any kinks in the system, that tends to cause shifting issues.
This whole quote sounds dirty.
__________________
Sometimes I forget that I have a photographic memory.
cparekh is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 09:42 AM
  #23  
Mt.Hoodlum
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 199

Bikes: Windsor Wellington 2.0 (flame away)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Try turning the Barrel Adjuster for the Front D. Start in your Middle ring up front, and your largest ring in the back. With the bike on a stand or hanging slowly turn your barrel adjuster for the front D. about 1/4 to 1/2 turns until you figure out which way it moves the front derailer (you will be able to see your dereailer move back and forth while doing this). Then turn it just enough while pedaling and it should kick the front D. down to the small ring. Do not mess with the limit screws.

I printed off the park tool instructions for the front d. adjustment and had them sitting next to me while i did it. Sellwood Cycle, and Cycleworld 3 trips total all failed to adjust my gears correctly.

I had the same problems with my cheap Sora 2200 front D.

Most Derailer issues are problems with cable tension.
Mt.Hoodlum is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 10:12 AM
  #24  
min7b5
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by cparekh View Post
I think from what you are saying, if you want to make the switch, you want a compact double front crankset as opposed to a standard double crankset. The compact has smaller chain rings which means all the gears will be lower (easier to spin) than with the standard. What this means is that the bike will be easier to climb with than a standard, at the expense of not having the higher sprinting gears. For most people, this is a good thing because you have to be going pretty fast before you spin out of a compact double (e.g. sprinting down hill).

You would need a new crankset, possibly a new front derailer, and probably a new bottom bracket. I think the left shifter will work either with a double or triple, because the limit screws will keep the FD from shifting too far, but check with an actual mechanic.
Cool. I get it now
I'm going to River City (LBS) this morning to have them work another issue on my fixie. I'll ask them what that would all cost to make the switch if that's what I decide. Thanks for the info.
min7b5 is offline  
Old 09-23-08, 12:17 PM
  #25  
Phantoj
Certifiable Bike "Expert"
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It is possible that you have an inline barrel adjuster for the front derailleur, and it is slipping between bike shop visits.

Or you might have the cable stops on the frame with detents in the adjustment so that they don't slip.
Phantoj is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.