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Walt Brown

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Reply with quote  #1 
How necessary is a one to one ratio front to back? I've heard at least 2 sources mention it. The best the 11 speed Shimano 105 can do is 34 in front and 32 in the rear. Is that good enough for 95%? Especially in hilly areas like the northeast.
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BluesDawg

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Reply with quote  #2 
I am running a 34/32 combination (SRAM 10 speed) on my Crux. It is fine for most rides, but when I get into the really tough hilly areas or go to the mountains (I live in Georgia), I want lower gearing. I can get a MTB derailleur and run a 12-36 cassette with my setup, but I don't think that is possible with 11 speed Shimano.

I wonder if the SRAM 11-36 11 speed cassette would work on your setup with a little B screw adjustment.
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Walt Brown

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks BluesDawg. Has anyone used an 11-34 on Sora?
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Walt Brown

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Reply with quote  #4 
Shimano Alivio has that cassette
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kriskexplorer

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Reply with quote  #5 
I run 10 speed and ran 46/36 with a 12-28 and had no issues.  Did the Dirty Kanza 100 twice with this.  This year I'm going with a 50/34 and a 12/32.  So far loving the new combo.  
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Noah_Deuce

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Reply with quote  #6 
I did Dirty Kanza with a 46-11x32 a few years ago; this year I'm doing it on 44-11x36 (I like the faster spin).

If you're climbing lots of steep hills where you are, a 36-46 and 11x32 might be fine. Check out sheldonbrown.com/gears to get an idea of what your gear ratios look like.
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drwelby

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Reply with quote  #7 
Gear-calculator.com is really great for figuring out gearing. You can compare two setups and most common cassettes and internal hubs are included for convenience. For example, here's the setup from two posts up.
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GravelMN

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Reply with quote  #8 
I've got a 44/34/24 Deore crankset with an 11-32 9sp cassette and have been quite satisfied. I rarely get into the granny gear, but I'm 50 years old and weigh 230# so on a few occasions I've been glad to have it. As you probably guessed from the gearing, my gravel mutt is no spring chicken and no featherweight either, a 1993 Trek 700. Chrome-moly and 27# in field dress.
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Adam V

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Reply with quote  #9 
Running a 38/46 Wick works rings on a 7800 DA crank with a 12-27 9speed ultegra cassette, running a shim ergo drivetrain, yeah not really low, and kinda odd, but works well for me, Chorus 10speed levers, Dura Ace 7800 rear derialler and a 10speed record front.  Some of the steep hills are difficult but I don't want to make it too easy on myself.  Perhaps a compact and a slightly smaller 36/46 setup might be just as good with slightly easier gearing, but I found a good deal on the DA crank to upgrade a older octalink ultegra crank I had been running for years.
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mosinglespeeder

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Reply with quote  #10 
gearing is dependent on your area, like some said, they run 11-28 in kansas, and prob have plenty to spare.  Where i ride, we need the 32.  If you have alot of climbing, its a great gear.  I've never heard the 1:1 gig and truthfully, not sure that really even makes sense now days with the drivetrains we run, perhaps you may roughly think in that terms if your a singlespeeder, but not with all the combo's we have available.
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Craig

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Reply with quote  #11 
Walt,

I run the 34 front and 32 back on my GT Grade 105 and have no problem with up to 15% grade for sort climbs. The is weekend I was bikepacking fully loaded with an average 15% grade for over a mile. I did a lot of hike a bike on that section. As soon as the grade decreased to 10% I was able to get back on and pedal the rest of the way out of the canyon.

I do not regret getting the additional gears.

Craig
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FlashBazbo

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Reply with quote  #12 
I did Dirty Kanza with 50-34, 11-32 this year and did fine.  But I really wished that I had had another, lower gear for going up The B*tch and a couple other climbs.  Plus, living in Middle Tennessee, we have a lot of 12%, 15% and steeper climbs that would be a lot more fun with a lower gear.

Right now, I'm running a 1x setup.  40/40 (your suggested 1:1 ratio).  I will probably go 38/40 for the 2016 DK, just for the extra ease up the steeper climbs.  40/40 is essentially a "half ratio" better than 34/32.  38/40 is a full ratio spacing better. 

My setup uses a SRAM 1x front with a 40T (and a 38T in the drawer).  In back, I'm using Shimano XTR Di2 with an 11-40 cassette. 
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jruhlen1980

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlashBazbo
I did Dirty Kanza with 50-34, 11-32 this year and did fine.  But I really wished that I had had another, lower gear for going up The B*tch and a couple other climbs.  Plus, living in Middle Tennessee, we have a lot of 12%, 15% and steeper climbs that would be a lot more fun with a lower gear.

Right now, I'm running a 1x setup.  40/40 (your suggested 1:1 ratio).  I will probably go 38/40 for the 2016 DK, just for the extra ease up the steeper climbs.  40/40 is essentially a "half ratio" better than 34/32.  38/40 is a full ratio spacing better. 

My setup uses a SRAM 1x front with a 40T (and a 38T in the drawer).  In back, I'm using Shimano XTR Di2 with an 11-40 cassette. 


I did DK this year with a 46/36 crank and 11-36 10 speed. The 36 on the back was nice to have but probably could've gotten away with a 34.

I'm curious about your 1x setup -- I'd like to do 1x next year (because front derailleurs suck) but I'm a little worried about getting spun out on the top end. With a 46/11 I don't use it that much but especially on group training rides I'll find myself using it or getting dropped. (I get dropped anyway.) Worried if  drop to a 42 or 40 I'll miss the top end, but if I can't stick with a 46 front ring on the hills unless I went with an even wider range cassette.

The SRAM 10-40 cassette would be great but I can't afford it. 
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DrSpoke

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Reply with quote  #14 
As others have said - it depends.  That is, only you can decide.  If your current gearing isn't low enough then get something lower.  I'd much rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

Out here in SoCal, and riding some big mountains, personally I want as low as I can get.  My old bike was a cyclocross bike and came w/standard Cx gearing - 46/36 front & 11-28 10-sp rear.  I changed it out to 46/34 and 12-30.  That gearing was an improvement but still barely enough for some climbs and not what I was hoping for.  There is a big difference between a 15% grade at mile 12 vs. mile 112 for example - see Belgian Waffle Ride.

My new bike will be 50/34 to start but think the 50 is larger than necessary and will probably end up back at 46/34 at some point.  Stock cassette is an 11-32 11-sp and I'm going to change that out for a SRAM 11-36.  Most reading I've done say it will fit with no adjustments necessary.  So step 1 will be to purchase and install it and see if it works.  If so, I'm done.  If not, I may have to play with the B screw and or chain length.  If that doesn't work then step 2 will be to install the new dropout extender from Wolf Tooth - the GoatLink.  At $20 it's worth a try.  I would expect that to work but, if not, then step 3 will be to install a different RD.  Regardless, I plan to find a way to get the 11-36 to work.

This article is exactly relevant for me:
http://ridinggravel.com/gravel-news/salsa-cycles-warbird-in-search-of-gravel-in-socal-part-3/

The Wolf Tooth GoatLink:
http://www.wolftoothcomponents.com/products/goatlink
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jruhlen1980

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Reply with quote  #15 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrSpoke
  Regardless, I plan to find a way to get the 11-36 to work.


Don't know if this helps or not but I'm running the 11/36 SRAM 10 speed cassette, a Deore 9-speed long cage RD and Shimano 105 shifters; works fine. 

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DrSpoke

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Reply with quote  #16 
Thanks JR - I've heard of some work-arounds like that before.  A friend just tried a mtn 10sp RD w/105 shifters and it didn't work.  Thankfully, I've read web articles where the 11-36 is a drop in. It's really not that much larger than a 32 anyway.  And I think the manufacturers are pretty conservative with their factory approved options.  The only problem I can see is cog/pulley rub in the large cog.  If that happens I think the GoatLink will fix that easily.  As for chain wrap I'm pretty confident that a med cage RD will wrap enough if I've got the chain length right.  But will see.
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FlashBazbo

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Reply with quote  #17 
A couple pros at this year's DK200 were riding 42T 1x chainrings.  I'm no pro.  With a 40-11, I spin out at a touch over 29 mph.  At Dirty Kanza, there aren't many places where a non-pro can or should ride faster than 29 mph.  If this were my primary road bike, I would go back to a 2x front setup.  But since this is my gravel bike and DK is my "A" race, a 1x at 40T is just about perfect.

In my earlier post, I talked about maybe going to a 38T chainring.  I've decided against that.  I will likely stay with 40T up front and go to a Shimano 11-42T cassette.  Those two teeth provide all the range I'm looking for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jruhlen1980
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlashBazbo
I did Dirty Kanza with 50-34, 11-32 this year and did fine.  But I really wished that I had had another, lower gear for going up The B*tch and a couple other climbs.  Plus, living in Middle Tennessee, we have a lot of 12%, 15% and steeper climbs that would be a lot more fun with a lower gear.

Right now, I'm running a 1x setup.  40/40 (your suggested 1:1 ratio).  I will probably go 38/40 for the 2016 DK, just for the extra ease up the steeper climbs.  40/40 is essentially a "half ratio" better than 34/32.  38/40 is a full ratio spacing better. 

My setup uses a SRAM 1x front with a 40T (and a 38T in the drawer).  In back, I'm using Shimano XTR Di2 with an 11-40 cassette. 


I did DK this year with a 46/36 crank and 11-36 10 speed. The 36 on the back was nice to have but probably could've gotten away with a 34.

I'm curious about your 1x setup -- I'd like to do 1x next year (because front derailleurs suck) but I'm a little worried about getting spun out on the top end. With a 46/11 I don't use it that much but especially on group training rides I'll find myself using it or getting dropped. (I get dropped anyway.) Worried if  drop to a 42 or 40 I'll miss the top end, but if I can't stick with a 46 front ring on the hills unless I went with an even wider range cassette.

The SRAM 10-40 cassette would be great but I can't afford it. 
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hooter

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Reply with quote  #18 
I have the 11-36 SRAM PG1170 cassette on my Shimano 105 11 speed Caadx. The 105 rear derailleur clears the cassette with a mountain bike rear derailleur mounted on it and the B screw turned around. The set up works great.



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BluesDawg

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hooter
I have the 11-36 SRAM PG1170 cassette on my Shimano 105 11 speed Caadx. The 105 rear derailleur clears the cassette with a mountain bike rear derailleur mounted on it and the B screw turned around. The set up works great.



Please explain what you mean. Makes no sense to me.
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hooter

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Reply with quote  #20 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BluesDawg
Quote:
Originally Posted by hooter
I have the 11-36 SRAM PG1170 cassette on my Shimano 105 11 speed Caadx. The 105 rear derailleur clears the cassette with a mountain bike rear derailleur mounted on it and the B screw turned around. The set up works great.



Please explain what you mean. Makes no sense to me.



The Caadx comes with a standard road bike rear derailleur hanger. I swapped it out for the mountain bike rear derailleur hanger, which is 1/2" longer. The mounting holes on the hangers are the same.

The longer hanger and turning the B screw around, so the head of the screw sits on the hanger, gives enough adjust for the stock 105 medium cage rear derailleur to clear an 11-36 cassette.



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sillyyak

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Reply with quote  #21 
So I actually went a little different in that I put a large spread on the front (38/22) with a tighter cassette (9-spd 11-28).  This allows me to have tighter jumps for cadence and still drop way down if needed.  I rarely spin out due to the fact that I am usually so exhausted that I prefer to coast at anything approaching 30mph.
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bnystrom

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Reply with quote  #22 
I agree with you. Being primarily a roadie and a former racer, I really like smaller jumps between gears. For the past few years, I've been riding a Pinarello CX Carbon with a 39x24 crank (a road triple with the outer ring removed) and an 11-25 10 speed cassette. It gets me up pretty much anything, including the brutal dirt climbs in Vermont, and it works pretty well on logging roads and single-track.

OTOH, my new bike is a Niner BSB 9 RDO 5-Star build (I wanted disc brakes and a fork that doesn't shudder under braking) that came with with a 46/36 crank and an 11-32 11 speed cassette. The low end isn't low enough for me and the terrain I ride. I'm looking at switching to a Sugino crank with a 44/30 and probably dropping it down to a 28 on the inner ring. Ideally, I'd love to drop down to a 42/26 or 40/24 with an 11-28 cassette, but either of those would require changing the front derailleur for one of the MTB Di2 models. It may not be worth the cost just to tighten the gearing jumps.

I've considered an MTB crank, as there are several nice cranks that are available cheap on sale, but as best I can measure it, the chainline on the frame appears to be designed for road cranks, which is what the bikes are spec'd with. I'm still waiting on the definitive word from Niner. If an MTB crank will work OK, I could get a crank with a ceramic BB, plus the front derailleur for less than the same price of the Sugino crank & BB.
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #23 
I live here in Pa. and yes we have mts. here. I have a triple road bike a 2006 Lemond Victoirre that climbs like a sweetheart. I bought a 2016 Raleigh Tamland 1. It weighs 24.5 lbs stock and 25.15 lbs with my mt pedals on it. I went to climb y local  mt. the 1st ride out and though my heart was going to explode out my chest and I conider myself a decent climber. I had the LBS put on the Sram 11 x 36 and the road link and a new chain. I haven't had a chance to climb the mt with it yet but know that it has to be better than before. Since I am going to be doing some gravel grinding in those leetle hills in WV. I am going to need those lower gears.


Zman

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owly

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Reply with quote  #24 
My gravel areas can be quite hilly and steep at times. So coming from a roadbike compact double with a 12-30, I used that gearcalculator site and settled on 11-36 with a 38t. Downhills I'm quite happy to coast.
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bobknh

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Reply with quote  #25 
My $.02: There are really 2 questions here -- what gearing do you need or want -- and what gearing is possible with today's popular drive train components. The first question, only you can answer. It all depends on your ability, riding style, strength, and physical limitations; as well as the terrain you ride on. The second question is easy -- with modern 11 speed medium cage der's, from Shimano and SRAM, perhaps with a  Wolftooth Roadlink hanger adapter, you can comfortably run an 11-36 in the back, and a 46/36 chain ring combo in front. This is the set up I'm now running on all of my bikes. You will have to fiddle with the chain length and "b" screw adjustment to make it run smoothly at all gear combinations- even the extreme's of 46/36, and avoid to slack a chain at 36/11. Last year, I even ran a 11-40 11 speed mountain bike cassette with a 46/36 in front on a Shimano Ultegra 11 speed medium cage der. BTW, my current set up on my Swiss Cross Canti is a SRAM eTap wifli with a 46/36 in front and a 11-36 back -- with a Wolftooth Roadlink. Works for me. One other point about 10 and 11 speed chains. In the old days, we avoided cross chaining like the plague. But 10 and 11 speed chains are more flexible than 7-8-9 speed chains of old. While I still try to avoid cross chaining, it is much less of an issue than it was in the "old days". This is one of the reasons that 1x systems are possible. In effect, I use my 46/36 CX cranks as 2 1x systems. I like the fact that I can cover most of my riding on either the 46  or the 36 without frequent front der. shifting.
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