Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 42
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    7,301

    What gear am I in ?

    I took a demo ride on a friend of a friend's 29er this past weekend (2x9 drive train). Hopped on the bike & went to shift and realized there were no gear indicators OK I have been on mtn. bikes for over 10 yrs. and have always had Shimano shifters w/ gear indicators. I test rode the 29er and found myself shifting quite a bit & more than w/ my smaller wheeled bike. So do you just get use to not having gear indicators or do you just look down @ your gears ? I will be building up a FS 29er in the coming weeks and it seems like gear indicators don't come on a lot of the newer shifters. Thanks.

  2. #2
    I like turtles
    Reputation: TiGeo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    4,184
    You shouldn't need gear indicators to know your gearing/figure what gear you are on in. You choose gears based on resistance/cadence...do it by feel man!
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  3. #3
    1*14*29*2.1 & 1*1*29*2.4
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,281
    I like indicators, but not everyone does. I like them for a few reasons...knowing what gear you are in tells you how you are dealing with a climb. Also seeing what gear you are in helps to prepare for a pinch climb after a racing descent. fashion says no to indicators but I like them, and would search them out. I have a rohloff though so I don't need to worry, when I can read them.

  4. #4
    TR
    TR is offline
    Angry bunny
    Reputation: TR's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    4,870
    there has not been gear indicators on shifters for about 3 or 4 years.
    You should not be looking down at your shifters anyway.

  5. #5
    1*14*29*2.1 & 1*1*29*2.4
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,281
    do you guys who don't have indicators ever look down to the drivetrain to see what gear you are in?

  6. #6
    Expert Crasher
    Reputation: GreenLightGo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    6,355
    Quote Originally Posted by finch2 View Post
    do you guys who don't have indicators ever look down to the drivetrain to see what gear you are in?
    Nope. Ride by feel. Road bikes don't have indicators either.
    Happiness depends more on the inward disposition of mind than on outward circumstances. Benjamin Franklin

  7. #7
    Professional Crastinator
    Reputation: Fleas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,876
    Quote Originally Posted by finch2 View Post
    do you guys who don't have indicators ever look down to the drivetrain to see what gear you are in?
    Only when I'm totally spent and I can't believe I don't have any lower gears.

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Nubster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    4,097
    Quote Originally Posted by Fleas View Post
    Only when I'm totally spent and I can't believe I don't have any lower gears.

    -F
    haha...this...I will be mid-climb and look back sometimes to be either happy to see I have a couple left or disheartened to see I'm topped out.

    I rode single speed yesterday for the first time and found it very liberating to not have gearing to worry about anymore.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    53
    Quote Originally Posted by finch2 View Post
    do you guys who don't have indicators ever look down to the drivetrain to see what gear you are in?
    Sure, I'll glance every once in a while. Mostly check cross-chain condition before shifting the front. Of course I once had the rear wheel eat the derailleur on the roadie when i dropped to the small ring.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    3,891
    Quote Originally Posted by TR View Post
    there has not been gear indicators on shifters for about 3 or 4 years.
    You should not be looking down at your shifters anyway.
    Current SRAM trigger shifters don't have gear indicators. Apart from XTR the other Shimano groupsets trigger shifters do still come with removable gear indicators though.

    Product

    For shifters without gear indicators one way to retrofit them would be with a set of Shimano St-700 Dura-Ace Inline Gear indicators.

    Amazon.com: Shimano ST-700 Dura-Ace Inline Gear Indicator (Black/Grey, 10 Speed): Sports & Outdoors

    .

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    7,301
    Riding in the correct cadence wasn't a problem it was just going for another on the rear and already being all the way high or low - needed a front ring shift. So change the front and quickly move the rear around caused a few drive train crackles or sags on climbs. The trails I ride do have quite a bit of slow to fast moving (lots of shifting) if that matters much. I guess I could tape my windows for a few rides and see if my adaptive skills kick in.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Nubster's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    4,097
    Quote Originally Posted by TR View Post
    there has not been gear indicators on shifters for about 3 or 4 years.
    You should not be looking down at your shifters anyway.
    All levels or just the higherend stuff? I ask because my RockHopper came with X5 shifters I believe, and they had indicators. But it's a 2009 model bike so that was 3 years ago. When I upgraded to X9 there were no indicators which I don't miss at all.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psycle151 View Post
    Friggin' coward. Give me a red chiclet instead of debating like a man. You don't deserve your green blocks.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    3,891
    The current SRAM X5 trigger shifters don't have gear indicators any more:

    X5 | SRAM Mountain | SRAM

    The 9 speed SRAM gripshifters have gear indicators but the 10 speed SRAM gripshifts don't.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,118
    I'm effectively riding a 2x10 setup on my 29er (that is, I don't use the big ring up front on the trails anymore, I just haven't replaced it with anything useful like a bashring yet). I spend 90% of my time in the middle ring, so it becomes pretty easy to judge which gear I am in by feel. Large gear range in the back makes this feasible (11-36). I only shift into the small ring up front for crazy climbs, and shift back into the middle ring as soon as the climb is done. I don't miss the indicators at all.

    On my old 26er, I had a smaller range on my cassette, and used all 3 rings up front fairly regularly. I found I looked at my gear indicators quite a bit more to ensure I wasn't cross-chained, etc.

  15. #15
    Clyde on a mission!
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    676
    I like the indicators, most of the time I ignore them and just go by feel but I like the option to pick a proper gear in advance when I'm about to hit a nasty climb.

  16. #16
    I like turtles
    Reputation: TiGeo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    4,184
    Quote Originally Posted by finch2 View Post
    do you guys who don't have indicators ever look down to the drivetrain to see what gear you are in?
    Rarely..same on a road bike, every once in a while I glance down and back at the cassette. I had mid-90s XTR shifters with gear indicators..its one of those things that I can have or not and not really care either way. I just shift based on cadence and whether or not I need more or less. When I run out on either end of the cassette..I know where I am
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    65
    Quote Originally Posted by TiGeo View Post
    Rarely..same on a road bike, every once in a while I glance down and back at the cassette. I had mid-90s XTR shifters with gear indicators..its one of those things that I can have or not and not really care either way. I just shift based on cadence and whether or not I need more or less. When I run out on either end of the cassette..I know where I am
    Don't you risk cross chaining?

  18. #18
    1*14*29*2.1 & 1*1*29*2.4
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    1,281
    I will look downto the drivetrain ont he roadie...not often but enough to make sure I am not cross chaining like others have mentioned. On a roadie it isn't a big deal as smooth road doesn't pose a threat. It's when I am too preoccupied to take my eyes off the road on loose lumpy stuff that it makes the differnce. Otherwise I'd end up stalling or crunching gears I am sure.

  19. #19
    MTB B'dos
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    18,078
    Keen, unless you want to follow the fashion police, SRAM and Shimano still offer the slightly lower end models with gear indicators - Shimano LX and SLX and SRAM X5 and 7. I don't need to have them, but I don't mind them and if you happen to have a very well adjusted drivetrain and chain maybe a bit too long with a triple crank you can end up in some bad gear combos if you're not paying attention. These days I run 2X mainly, so not an issue, but it saves me from looking down to see if this damn hard gear is the easiest I have or maybe I miss counted and have one more
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
    MTB Barbados
    My Phantom pics

  20. #20
    I like turtles
    Reputation: TiGeo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    4,184
    Quote Originally Posted by podoco View Post
    Don't you risk cross chaining?
    No - again, you just get to know where you are in your gear range.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2012 Specialized Stumpy EVO 29 HT

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    181
    The new XT shifters definitely have indicators (unless you're running ispec brackets). So they're not just on "low end" stuff unless you think anything under XTR is low end.

  22. #22
    MTB B'dos
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    18,078
    Ah ok, guess I was looking at the i-spec ones then. Knew that the older ones had had indicators, thought it strange they'd done away with them now (I have M760 which have the indicators).

    Quote Originally Posted by mobaar View Post
    The new XT shifters definitely have indicators (unless you're running ispec brackets). So they're not just on "low end" stuff unless you think anything under XTR is low end.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
    MTB Barbados
    My Phantom pics

  23. #23
    usually cranky
    Reputation: b-kul's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    10,137
    i like not having indicators. i feel like if you always know percisley what gear you are in it can get in your head a bit like, "im not pushing a tall enough gear here". i like just going with what feels good.

  24. #24
    Bite Me.
    Reputation: cutthroat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    4,529
    The SRAM gripshift do have indicators. I had old X9s that had the indicators and liked them, then got used to not having them. Yes, at times I do check where I am on the cassette to double check how much low end I have left - you can't always tell just by the resistance at the cranks since that varies with terrain.
    When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race. ~H.G. Wells

  25. #25
    AOK
    AOK is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: AOK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,621
    Quote Originally Posted by TiGeo View Post
    You shouldn't need gear indicators to know your gearing/figure what gear you are on in. You choose gears based on resistance/cadence...do it by feel man!
    Well said... Never felt a need to look at indicators or my gears.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •