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Changing rear cassette on a 92 Trek 2300 - 11/28? 13/34? Advice appreciated.

Road Cycling “It 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.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Changing rear cassette on a 92 Trek 2300 - 11/28? 13/34? Advice appreciated.

Old 06-28-11, 03:09 PM
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budster
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Changing rear cassette on a 92 Trek 2300 - 11/28? 13/34? Advice appreciated.

A couple of weeks ago, I bought my first road bike in many years, a Trek 2300. It came with a 53/42 front chainring and a 7 speed 11/23 rear cassette.

Here's a picture if you want to see it: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=143821969020807

Sunday, I went for a 45 mile ride which included a couple of moderate hills. Going up was ridiculously hard! (Going down was a lot of fun and the flats were fine).

The friend I rode with suggested I get a 13/34 rear cassette and a long cage rear derailleur, since the original derailleur won't work with the big 34 cog. He suggested Alivio.

I ran this by my friends at my old LBS (now 600 miles away) and they suggested an 11/28 cassette instead. They said the existing derailleur would work just fine with 11/28 and that the difference between 28 and 34 wasn't as much as I might think. They also said if I did go with the 13/34, to get a Deore derailleur (or better) to avoid shifting issues.

So...I'm looking for advice. Is the difference between 28 and 34 a big deal or not?

And if so, should I get Deore? From other posts I found on here by searching, I believe the Deore 9 speed derailleur will work with the 7 speed cassette - but I wasn't sure about the chain. 7 speed chains are thicker than 9 speed chains, right?
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Old 06-28-11, 03:16 PM
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MikeyBoyAz
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23 to 28 is a big jump. I would stick with that. derailleurs don't control the shift, the indexing is controlled by the shifter, so as long as the movement is the same there is no problem. If you need a long cage deore is fine. 7/8 speed chains are definitely thicker than 9, I would match the derailleur speed to the chain speed.
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Old 06-28-11, 04:02 PM
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I believe the phrase is HTFU, but in my case I changed the crank for a 48/34 and the cassette for 13-23 9 speed. The bike originally had 52/42 and 14-28 six speed freewheel. Here you can see that I ended up retaining the same gear range, just with more cogs. There is also less duplication of ratios.
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Old 06-28-11, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeyBoyAz View Post
23 to 28 is a big jump. I would stick with that. derailleurs don't control the shift, the indexing is controlled by the shifter, so as long as the movement is the same there is no problem. If you need a long cage deore is fine. 7/8 speed chains are definitely thicker than 9, I would match the derailleur speed to the chain speed.
The short cage derailure will have a hard time reaching 34 tooth sprocket.
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Old 06-28-11, 10:03 PM
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So, that's one vote for 11/28 and 3v1lD4v3, looks like you don't think I would need anything more than 11/28 would give me either. I like the ratios you got. For now, I'm going to hold off on changing the crank. I'm just getting back into road cycling and don't want to spend too much right now.

Does anyone think 13/34 would be significantly better than 11/28, better enough to justify swapping out the rear derailleur?
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Old 07-02-11, 12:05 AM
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In case anyone is curious, after consulting with my "new" LBS here in Somerset, I decided to have them replace the 42 front chainring with a 39 and replace the 11/23 cassette with an 11/28. No derailleur changes necessary. I hope to have it ready to ride next weekend...

Thanks for the help - especially 3v1lD4v3. The gear calculator is really cool and helped me to decide.

Last edited by budster; 07-02-11 at 12:07 AM. Reason: forgot to say thanks !
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Old 07-02-11, 12:12 AM
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Originally Posted by longbeachgary View Post
There's no friggin way a short cage derailure will reach 34 tooth sprocket.
But seriously, since you're running 23 in the rear, 28 is a HUGE jump so you should try that first. If that ain't enough, you can get a long cage MTB RD and pop on an 11-34, but you'd probably be better served by putting a 50/34 compact crank in front with the 11-28. Not as wide, but you'll get significantly lower gear ratios and the rest of the gears will be spaced closer where you need them.
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