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Cassette choice for tougher hills

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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

Cassette choice for tougher hills

Old 09-06-12, 03:38 PM
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Cassette choice for tougher hills

I have some long and steep hills on some of the century rides which I ride every year. I have been barely made it over those hills with my 12-25 cassette and 50/34 compact. I need to buy a cassette that help me on those hills. The cassettes are 11-28; 12-27 or 11-26 to choose from. Also need to consider the ease of shifting between the gears on those cassettes.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-06-12, 03:42 PM
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Get the new 12-30 shimano cassette. It works with the short cage RD. Barring that I would choose the 11-28.
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Old 09-06-12, 03:42 PM
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I would consider the new Ultegra 12-30 ten speed cassette. All of these cassettes shift well.
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Old 09-06-12, 03:50 PM
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I just switched my 105 12-25 to a SRAM PG1070 12-28 and it works great. If I had to do it again, I think I would have gone to the Ultegra 12-30.
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Old 09-06-12, 03:59 PM
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contadore was running a 11-32. I run an 11-32. he's faster.



here's the link to the article where he has started using the new Sram red RD that allows use of up to an 11-32 cassette.

https://www.cyclingnews.com/features/...-red-at-vuelta

Last edited by rangerdavid; 09-06-12 at 04:13 PM.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:04 PM
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Try the 12-30, but if you need more just go with a MTB RD.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:14 PM
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I can't find the 12-30 anywhere in stock online.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:17 PM
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Originally Posted by WorldIRC
I can't find the 12-30 anywhere in stock online.
3 sizes:
https://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/roa...te/shimcass926
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Old 09-06-12, 04:19 PM
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If you really want to climb hills and don't mind a cassette aimed at the MTB world try a 12-36:

https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=31059 (9sp, 12-36t)
https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=69268 (10sp, 11-36t)
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Old 09-06-12, 04:20 PM
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https://www.ebay.com/itm/2013-Shimano...item3f1aa3263c
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Old 09-06-12, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by contango
If you really want to climb hills and don't mind a cassette aimed at the MTB world try a 12-36:

https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=31059 (9sp, 12-36t)
https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=69268 (10sp, 11-36t)
That will require a new rear derailleur & chain.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels
Should've specified: Ultegra.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:33 PM
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How do you tell if you have a short cage?
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Old 09-06-12, 04:35 PM
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buy a triple.
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Old 09-06-12, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by robabeatle
How do you tell if you have a short cage?
If your bike came with a double crankset (Compact or Standard), you have a "SS," short-cage. If your bike came with a triple crankset, you have a "GS" mid cage rear derailleur, sometimes called a long-cage.
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Old 09-06-12, 09:24 PM
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My opinion: get a 12-28, given that you are = "barely" - able to make it up hills with a 25t cassette. Of course, this is somewhat dependent on your weight and your age.
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Old 09-06-12, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv
If your bike came with a double crankset (Compact or Standard), you have a "SS," short-cage. If your bike came with a triple crankset, you have a "GS" mid cage rear derailleur, sometimes called a long-cage.
1. What if your bike was bought used and likely has had parts changes out? (I have a double up front.)

2. Looking for a 9 speed ultegra cassette 11 or 12 by 29 or 30. Any links?

Last edited by beatlebee; 09-06-12 at 09:58 PM.
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Old 09-07-12, 02:59 AM
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Originally Posted by robabeatle
1. What if your bike was bought used and likely has had parts changes out? (I have a double up front.)
https://sheldonbrown.com/harris/derailers-rear.html

Originally Posted by robabeatle
2. Looking for a 9 speed ultegra cassette 11 or 12 by 29 or 30. Any links?
https://harriscyclery.net/itemdetails.cfm?ID=702
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Old 09-07-12, 06:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Barrettscv
That will require a new rear derailleur & chain.
Probably, but if the OP wants lower gearing the decision how much money to throw at it comes into play. Going from a 25t to 28t large sprocket will make some difference; going to a 36 will make a whole lot more. And a new RD is probably cheaper than swapping out the chainrings or going to a triple and also having to swap out the front derailleur and shifter as well.
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Old 09-07-12, 08:13 AM
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Hmmm, not sure of your status but when I first started riding I could not make it at all over the local mountain passes with my 50/34 and 12-27T combo. Then a year later I could do it routinely but it was tough. Then this year I've been able to easily ride every pass with a 53/39 11-25T combo. Maybe additional riding will get you strong enough to make these hills next year with your current setup?? Just a thought, do you work hills in your training at all??
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Old 09-07-12, 08:32 AM
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This type answer cannot be answered so simple to many factors involved grades of the roads you are talking about, your weight, conditioning all play into the question what is right for you.
Are you just going slow and want to get up and over then the largest gear (30t+) you can install would be nice but you will be going slow.
But given what you have said that you now have 12-25 cassette and 50/34 compact a 28t over a 25t is quite a difference is it enough for you thats were you only know Im sure with some repeated training it will be a big help over time but climbing never really gets easer because as you get better you get faster so in the end it still fills the same to me you are just going a little faster.
The problem with a very wide range cassette is the spacing gets really big which I don't like, with 3t jumps.
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Old 09-07-12, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by rangerdavid
contadore was running a 11-32. I run an 11-32. he's faster.



here's the link to the article where he has started using the new Sram red RD that allows use of up to an 11-32 cassette.

https://www.cyclingnews.com/features/...-red-at-vuelta
But what crank was he running? Contador was probably trying to stick with a big 53t chainring for the downhill. Not that the OP climbs like Contador, but if we're trying to mimic pro gearing, an equivalent on the OPs compact crank would be slighly smaller.
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Old 09-07-12, 10:52 AM
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I hit 50 mph last weekend on a 50/11 spinning 139 cadence thats fast enough in most cases LOL when I had a 53/12 I did 53mph same road and that was fast enough also.
So if you have no intention on getting that kind of speed do not worry about that combo worry about that low gearing to get you up and over.
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Old 09-07-12, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by icyclist
My opinion: get a 12-28, given that you are = "barely" - able to make it up hills with a 25t cassette. Of course, this is somewhat dependent on your weight and your age.
+1 on the 12-28,thats probably all you'll need
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Old 09-07-12, 11:54 AM
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I run an SRAM 12-32 w/ 50/34 up front. Haven't (yet) found a hill that can beat me. I'm a clyde, so hills are my nemesis. If you can fit a 12-28 or 12-30 w/out changing your RD, I'd go that route.
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