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Does this gearing change make sense?

Old 10-05-22, 02:47 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by L134 View Post
I use a Mountain Tamer in triple mode. Looks like he has one 17t available. Mine with a 19t worked flawlessly. I experimented with it as a quad. It worked but wasn't worth it. Mountain Tamer Quad Plus
I have a Mountain Tamer on one of my cranksets. I forget what the the count is on it. I think it's 20 teeth. Here are two images for anyone wondering what a Mountain Tamer is.



Cheers
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Old 10-05-22, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
Careful with the sarcasm there. Remember some politician cracked a joke about arming school teachers because a bear might come into a school. Lo and behold, they did!

Bear in school grounds euthanized at request of Arizona Game & Fish Ė Parker Live (parkerliveonline.com)

and

Bear Family Takes Over a North Carolina Elementary School's Playground Video (people.com)
Oh, but I was totally serious. A 53t chainring is pretty tough to pedal, normally, but if a bear comes after ya, I bet it turns just fine. 😁

I noticed they were right by Lake Havasu City, in that first link. That's nice & flat, for the most part, and right by the old London Bridge. I went through there a couple years ago. 🙂
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Old 10-05-22, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
I wouldn't be okay with a setup where an accidental shift to three of the possible gears would break the rear derailleur or maybe even the RD hanger. You are suggesting that right?
No, I am not suggesting you would break the derailleur. My partner and I have used this setup for many years without problems. When you are in the large front chainring and coming to a climb, you normally shift the front first, then go down into the smaller gears. You normally avoid the crosschain geometry you get with large front ring and large rear cog anyway so it is no different from this situation. Perhaps a longer chain would avoid the issue altogether but I haven't been able to purchase one long enough and don't want to add links into an existing chain.
I doubt you would break any equipment if you mistakenly shifted into the low gears while on the large front ring. And we find we don't often use the large front ring while touring except for downhills and strong tailwinds.
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Old 10-05-22, 07:09 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
My LHT has a 24x34 low gear. Just did a ride across PA with some double digit grades. Makes perfect sense. Want to go to a 22 up front, but that will require a new crank.
Ha, I'm just about to catch up to ya. 😁 I found this 24t at the Davis Bike Collective today, along with a like new (under the crud, lol) 39t middle ring. I have a 53t SunRace ring, also black, on now, to go with these guys, and that'll put all 3 in very good condition. The 39t that was on it is pretty badly worn, so this upgrade will be well worth the time & energy. 👍

That's my old 30t in the middle, in the pic, that I took to make sure I got the right BCD, and a 26t Sugino ring, just in case there's any problem shifting, with the 24t. 🙂
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Old 10-05-22, 09:29 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Yan View Post
That a good idea in theory but in practice you don't get lower gears on a triple. Your lowest gear on a triple is 22 front 36 rear. On a triple you can't use a cassette bigger than 36. That's the same lowest gear as in a double. On a 1x, my lowest gear is 34 front 52 rear, which is not quite as low as the others, but very close.
yes, with 26" wheels and 1.90 tires, that's 15.75" vs.16.75". good in theory and great in practice, especially when climbing heavily loaded up a long, steep hill, which could make the difference between slogging up at 55 rpm for four hours, or pushing for six.

i'm not sure about not using cassettes bigger than 36. i'm pretty sure, tho not certain, there are doodads out there that allow for use of 40T or 44T cogs. 40T cog paired with a 22T would give you 14", at which point most folks will tend to fall over.

you've also got the option of getting a 20T front, giving you sub 15" with a 36T. not sure how complicated to adapt your reg'lar crank, or whether it requires a specific make/model.

Originally Posted by Yan View Post
Don't forget with a 1x drivetrain you have 12 speeds so the spacing is not too bad.
and with the 3x you have 27 speeds, although a couple may be unusium, or potentially duplicatium. irregardless, you should be able to get at least 20 workable gears, potentially 25 out of a 3x, for much closer spacing. i dunno about you, but closer spacing and more gear choice is ueber important for me. spinning up a hill, and having the right gearing running into the wind is important. coasting downhill is a feature, not a bug.
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Old 10-06-22, 10:48 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
yes, with 26" wheels and 1.90 tires, that's 15.75" vs.16.75". good in theory and great in practice, especially when climbing heavily loaded up a long, steep hill, which could make the difference between slogging up at 55 rpm for four hours, or pushing for six.

i'm not sure about not using cassettes bigger than 36. i'm pretty sure, tho not certain, there are doodads out there that allow for use of 40T or 44T cogs. 40T cog paired with a 22T would give you 14", at which point most folks will tend to fall over.

you've also got the option of getting a 20T front, giving you sub 15" with a 36T. not sure how complicated to adapt your reg'lar crank, or whether it requires a specific make/model.



and with the 3x you have 27 speeds, although a couple may be unusium, or potentially duplicatium. irregardless, you should be able to get at least 20 workable gears, potentially 25 out of a 3x, for much closer spacing. i dunno about you, but closer spacing and more gear choice is ueber important for me. spinning up a hill, and having the right gearing running into the wind is important. coasting downhill is a feature, not a bug.
Years ago I rode a 15-speed MTB from Toronto, Canada to Lindsay, Canada. That bike had big jumps between gears. It was frustrating on hills because a gear I was in would be too large and the next gear down was too low and I'd spin and slow down. I think that closer spaced gears are a real blessing on a long tour where there's a lot of hill climbing.

Cheers
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Old 10-06-22, 02:43 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Years ago I rode a 15-speed MTB from Toronto, Canada to Lindsay, Canada. That bike had big jumps between gears. It was frustrating on hills because a gear I was in would be too large and the next gear down was too low and I'd spin and slow down. I think that closer spaced gears are a real blessing on a long tour where there's a lot of hill climbing.

Cheers
I am squarely in your camp, and itís not just about slowing down for me. I like my cadence to be in the range that is comfortable for my larger-than-average legs as often as possible.
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Old 10-06-22, 04:16 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by afrowheels View Post
Hi All,

This is a continuation of a previous thread (Looking for some advice on LHT rejigging/components for tour) but a new topic so I am posting as such.

My current Surly LHT has a Deore 48-36-28 crankset at the front and a Shimano 8-speed 11-28 cassette (I don't remember which version) at the rear with an XT derailleur. I am switching to drop bars and in doing so moving to a 9-speed indexed shifter for the rear and a friction shifter for the front. Since I will be replacing the rear cassette it seems to make sense to take advantage of that to increase my lower gear range since I will likely be doing heavily loaded touring in areas that will have some steep climbs. I am thinking of getting a new 9-speed cassette that is 11-34. Does that sound okay/sensible? Would it also be straightforward to swap the smallest chainring from 28 to 24? Or would that be too wide a range for any reason? Presumably if I am using a friction shifter for the front it should not be a problem...? But I am really figuring this out as I go so would appreciate a thumbs up or down from any of you who know more about this.

Cheers
You will probably need a new chain, as well as new shifters, but you shouldnít have any issues with that gearing nor with swapping to a 24 tooth inner ring. Hereís your current gear system compared to you proposed gearing.

I have run gearing with a much wider range than what you propose. I had to add a road link for my rear derailer to be able to be used with the 36 tooth gear. Iíve also dropped the 48 to a 44 more recently because the 48/11 is just too high even for the fast downhill I like to ride.
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Old 10-06-22, 04:30 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
i'm not sure about not using cassettes bigger than 36. i'm pretty sure, tho not certain, there are doodads out there that allow for use of 40T or 44T cogs. 40T cog paired with a 22T would give you 14", at which point most folks will tend to fall over.
I donít know where this idea you canít use lower than 36 with a triple came from. A 36 tooth low gear with a road link works just fine with my system. I havenít tried it but going to a 40 or a 44 would not be difficult.

you've also got the option of getting a 20T front, giving you sub 15" with a 36T. not sure how complicated to adapt your reg'lar crank, or whether it requires a specific make/model.
I have a 20 tooth inner with the 36 tooth as well. My range is from 119Ē to 15Ē (700 C bikes) and from 113 to 14.4Ē (26Ē wheel). A 104/64 mm BCD crank can be made to work with a 20 tooth inner with a little bit of filing on the spacers for the inner ring. Itís fairly simple.
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Old 10-07-22, 01:21 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I don’t know where this idea you can’t use lower than 36 with a triple came from....
responding to post #14.
maybe he's thinking of stock mtb/touring gearing?

Last edited by saddlesores; 10-07-22 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 10-07-22, 06:45 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
responding to post #14.
maybe he's thinking of stock mtb/touring gearing?
Itís mostly just a lack of imagination. I canít see why a triple couldnít be used with a 52 tooth cassette. It probably would require a fair amount of tinkering and it would give a ridiculous low gear but it might be fun to experiment with. Iím already far exceeding what Shimano (and SRAM) says is possible in terms of capacity.
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Old 10-07-22, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Iím already far exceeding what Shimano (and SRAM) says is possible in terms of capacity.
So, you really ARE a mad bike riding scientist. I knew there was a good reason, for my liking you. 😁😉
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Old 10-07-22, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
So, you really ARE a mad bike riding scientist. I knew there was a good reason, for my liking you. 😁😉
On my road bike, Iím currently using a 44/32/20 with a Sora front derailer. Shimano says that the large to middle capacity is 11 teeth. The maximum capacity is 20 teeth which Iím exceeding by 4 teeth. I have used a 48/34/20 crank on the bike in the past without issues. Thatís a 28 tooth difference so Iím exceeding the capacity by at least 8 teeth.
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Old 10-08-22, 07:14 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Yan View Post
...
In the future when your chainrings wear out and you need to replace them, I suggest going for a double chainring setup. Triple chainrings are unnecessary weight.
We clearly have different opinions, but neither of us will convince the other that they are wrong so I won't try.

I have two derailleur touring bikes, both eight speed 11-32 in back, half step plus granny triple in front with 46/42/24 chainrings. I am not recommending that others try this, as I suspect they would be unhappy with it. But I switched to this eight years ago and am quite happy with it. One of those bikes is shown below. The bike looks so clean because I took the photo right after I was done building it up five years ago. The smallest granny gear being silver is easy to miss if you do not look hard for it.



Here is the gearing, it plots up with the two most cross chained rear sprockets not used for each chainring. Thus, it shows 18 gears, not all 24 possible. Lowest gear on this bike with 700c tires, 37mm wide is 20.7 gear inches. That said, this is my titanium light touring bike, thus should not need a lower gear than that because if I am carrying much more weight I am using a different bike.
https://gear-calculator.com/?GR=DERS...N=MPH&DV=teeth

What I really like about the half step plus granny is that I have very closely spaced gears up in the 40 to 80 gear inch range where I spend the majority of time, and also have adequate lower climbing gears although they are spaced wider apart.

My other derailleur touring bike has the same drive train components, but has smaller 26 inch wheels, thus the entire gear range is approximately 7 percent lower. I used either 40mm or 50mm wide tires on that bike depending on the anticipated conditions.

But for my heavier touring with heavier loads, I use a Rohloff bike, the gearing I use for touring on that is at this link. Lowest gear is 16.2 gear inches.
https://gear-calculator.com/?GR=RLSH...N=MPH&DV=teeth
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Old 10-09-22, 02:13 PM
  #40  
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In case anyone's wondering, I just now finished up on my upgrade. In the last week, I upgraded the BB to a Deore, using the Deore external cups with the shorter road inner sleeve. The Dura-Ace 7703 triple FD and Ultegra 6603 crankset were on the bike when I bought it, but both needed some love, to put it mildly. Neither is minty-looking, but they work just fine. 🙂

That 39t chainring isn't branded, but I think it goes with that SunRace 53t ring just great. 😎

I test-rode it in a parking lot, to check the shifting, but now I'll need to load it back up, for a real shakedown ride. 😁

OP, I hope your upgrade's going good too? Keep us posted. 🙂

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Old 10-09-22, 03:15 PM
  #41  
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I live in Phoenix, which is generally a 0.5% slope from northeast to southwest, but my neighborhood has several 17% grades, so low gears are useful. Plus, leaving town to the north or east involves long 6-8% grades.

My primary bike (26"/559 wheels & slicks) has a 46-36-26 crank and 14-28 7 speed freewheel and I'm very happy with the setup, especially the 2-tooth jumps across most of the freewheel to fine-tune cadence. My commuting bike (also 26"/559 slicks) has 36-24 in the front (outer ring is a chainguard made from sawing the teeth off a worn-out 48) and a 13-25 7 speed freewheel. I do end up using the 36-13 on city streets to keep up better in traffic when I have no other feasible route, and a 12 might be nice, but not (yet) worth the wheel build/swap to switch to a cassette.

On my nearly-40-year-old Rans recumbent (27"/630 rear wheel), for decades I ran a 46-42-24 half step with a custom 6 speed Perfect 14-17-21-26-32-38 freewheel (the 38 from an AG), as I can't stand up on hills. I finally tired of the "classic" shifting, and switched to a 41-38-24 in front and a 14-32 6 speed ramped freewheel. I can't pull tree stumps anymore, but still have a nicely low gear for noodling up long (or short) climbs without the clackety-clackety-clunk-clunk rear shift jumps.
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Old 10-10-22, 04:03 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
We clearly have different opinions, but neither of us will convince the other that they are wrong so I won't try.

I have two derailleur touring bikes, both eight speed 11-32 in back, half step plus granny triple in front with 46/42/24 chainrings. I am not recommending that others try this, as I suspect they would be unhappy with it. But I switched to this eight years ago and am quite happy with it. One of those bikes is shown below. The bike looks so clean because I took the photo right after I was done building it up five years ago. The smallest granny gear being silver is easy to miss if you do not look hard for it.

Here is the gearing, it plots up with the two most cross chained rear sprockets not used for each chainring. Thus, it shows 18 gears, not all 24 possible. Lowest gear on this bike with 700c tires, 37mm wide is 20.7 gear inches. That said, this is my titanium light touring bike, thus should not need a lower gear than that because if I am carrying much more weight I am using a different bike.
https://gear-calculator.com/?GR=DERS...N=MPH&DV=teeth

What I really like about the half step plus granny is that I have very closely spaced gears up in the 40 to 80 gear inch range where I spend the majority of time, and also have adequate lower climbing gears although they are spaced wider apart.

My other derailleur touring bike has the same drive train components, but has smaller 26 inch wheels, thus the entire gear range is approximately 7 percent lower. I used either 40mm or 50mm wide tires on that bike depending on the anticipated conditions.

But for my heavier touring with heavier loads, I use a Rohloff bike, the gearing I use for touring on that is at this link. Lowest gear is 16.2 gear inches.
https://gear-calculator.com/?GR=RLSH...N=MPH&DV=teeth
I understand your reasoning, however modern drivetrains are up to 12 speeds in the cassette. Half step plus granny was a valid setup back when cassettes had less than 7 speeds, but is it still desirable today? Your shifting involves a huge amount of double shifts, which is a total pain. This pain is further increased with bar end shifters, which many tourists use exclusively (including me).
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Old 10-10-22, 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Yan View Post
I understand your reasoning, however modern drivetrains are up to 12 speeds in the cassette. Half step plus granny was a valid setup back when cassettes had less than 7 speeds, but is it still desirable today? Your shifting involves a huge amount of double shifts, which is a total pain. This pain is further increased with bar end shifters, which many tourists use exclusively (including me).
It works for me. I rarely shift to the next up or down gear when I shift, as most times when I shift I have a big enough change in slope that the shift has to be greater than a half step. Thus, a half step or step and a half would both work. Most of the time I do not sequentially shift from one gear to the next where half the shifts involve the front shifter. That said, the half step was great to have on my Florida tour, a change of windage and I would make a half step shift quite often since the roads were all flat except for the occasional bridge approach.

My derailleur touring bikes have bar end shifters.

But the big advantage is that I have lots of closely spaced gears up in the 40 to 80 gear inch range where I spend most of my time, so if I want to do any fine tuning, I can. I do not spend much time in the lower gears, but I of course need them and that is where the granny on the triple comes into play.

My road bike has a compact double with a 10 speed in back and I often get tired of how many shifts I have to do in back to make a small change in gearing when that change involves changing chainrings. But that is because I am used to an eight speed 11/32 cassette, so adding a few more sprockets (from 8 to 10) means that quite often I am having to make a few more shifts than I would on a different bike. A friend of mine has the same complaint with the newer cassettes with so many sprockets, he bought a new bike a couple years ago with an 11 speed, I have not seen it yet because he almost never rides it, instead he usually rides one of his older bikes.

My rando bike that I built up about six years ago, I also set that up with a triple and the same eight speed cassette. On that bike I used a road triple (52/42/30) that has one and a half step plus granny gearing. I find that I frequently choose to ride my rando bike instead of my road bike with the compact double and ten speed cassette because I simply like the steps better on the eight speed cassettes when I also have that third chainring.

If you decide to go with a 1X system which I suspect you might, I think you will find that there is a really big advantage to a single shifter, you do not have to think about which shifter to shift when you want to change a gear. But there is an equally big disadvantage, I think you will get really tired of how many shifts it takes when you crest a steep hill. On my Rohloff bike with 14 gears, I can easily make three shifts with one movement, but if I am climbing a steep hill in gear 1, and then in a very short distance as I crest the hill I am shifting into gear 14, that ends up being four or five shift movements. Fortunately, I can make those shifts very fast with an IGH, that many shifts is much slower when you are moving a chain from sprocket to sprocket on something like the new 12 or 13 speed cassettes.
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Old 10-11-22, 06:09 AM
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afrowheels
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Reading these disagreements/different preferences was informative, thanks. In my current situation I had already decided to stick with 3 rings at the front but if I get around to another bike build in future I will think more about this.

Thanks for sharing stardognine that looks like a fun ride!

I have ordered a 9-speed 11-34 XT cassette and a Deore 24T front ring, the latter being desirable if I can get it to work but the former being crucial (not least now that I've ordered a 9-speed shifter set!). Postage is a little tricky to where I am so I am waiting and hoping that everything arrives in time to get the build done and tested before I have to fly 😬 Will probably be posting some more questions shortly..
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