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  1. #1
    Evlkneevljr
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    Single chainring up front?

    Was thinking about running a single chaingring upfront for my do it all bike (Intense Uzzi VPX). Recently, I was forced into running a single 36T up front when my granny ring sheared all bolts (this was a first). It forced me to run the single and I only had to walk a few steep sections. Had to stand on a few sections to mash up the hill (which I never usually do).

    Have any of you gone to a single chainring up front? Do you just get stronger and adjust to it?
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  2. #2
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    I started riding with a single 32t chainring after a year hiatus...
    It wasn't all that tough! Of course you don't have the granny...but I think that helped with getting fit. Right now I'm in the verge of going up to a 34t ring!

    I guess it all comes down to what terrain you ride on...It's not that steep were I live, so I can get away with riding a 32 to 34 (for my fitness level) ring...

    I think you should go with a 34t.

    Oh, and it also helps if you ride a 10 speed geared bike! The steps are much closer...and takes a lot less effort than a 9 speed!
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  3. #3
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    Yeah I ride single ring exclusively and yes you get stronger. I started with a 32t and within a few short months was up to a 38t and no hiking, I pedal everything.

    I highly recommend it, although dont wuss out and get one of the stupid E13 XCX guides, do yourself a favor and man up for a real chainguide like an MRP Mini G2 SL or S4, heck even a Lopes would be good, otherwise your just doing it wrong.
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  4. #4
    Evlkneevljr
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    Well, our stuff can get steep and rocky (AZ). I'm thinking to try it out for a while since I'm outta luck on the granny for now. I was just curious about making it work. It sure would simplify things and if I went to a single ring up front with a Gamut guide, my bike would drop to just a hair under 35# with my fox 180 on the front and a coil shock. It can handle anything....just making sure I could. I don't want to hike a bike anywhere; that's not my style.

    If I just need to get stronger, then so be it!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Single chainring up front?-chainring.jpg  

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  5. #5
    Crash Test Dummy
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    How the hell did you manage to strip all of the bolts like that?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by daverach2478
    Have any of you gone to a single chainring up front? Do you just get stronger and adjust to it?
    Serious question, were you using alloy chain ring bolts? If yes, what the hell were you thinking?!? They're for weenies with more dollars than trail miles.

    Anyway. Been running a single 36t on one bike and a 32 on the other (11-34 on back of both). I've found that if I can't climb it with the 36, I still can't climb it with the 32, or on a bike with a granny gear either. The limits of my climbing turned out to be skill and not power related.

    36t ring means lots of standing, but I've yet to spin it out off road.

  7. #7
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    i did the 1x9 for awhile but then switched to 2x9 last year. Gotta say, not going back to 1x9. It was nice to be able to get up a lot of sections that I had struggled with and still have energy left for the ride back down. Riding hasn't been about the fitness for me. Its been about having the most fun. If I'm exhausted from not having as many gears, the ride back down wouldn't be as much fun and riding in general wouldn't be as much fun.

  8. #8
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    Use steel bolts when riding 1 ring (a lot of stress on the bolts).

    I use a Mrp 1.x Chain Guide, and it works great! It's light and quiet. I have experienced chain drops but a simple adjustment cured it.
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  9. #9
    Evlkneevljr
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    Well, I was thinking a 160lb dude wouldn't be able to shear them all off in one fell swoop of a crank turn. They didn't strip - they sheared off riding up a hill about 10 miles out. Had no chioce but to go single up front the next 10 miles out.

    Gamut makes aluminum chainring bolts (which is what these were). I've always used alloy chainring bolts because that's what Shimano put on the XT cranks I had. Never had a problem, until now. Seeing as the bolt holes are nice and sealed, thought it might be time to explore going to a single chainring. Thought about it before, but, nothing was pushing me.....until now....seeing as I can't put one on....at least until I get a screw remover bit and do some praying.
    Last edited by daverach2478; 04-04-2011 at 03:11 PM.
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  10. #10
    meow meow
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    you could always get the e13 shift rings. should be coming down the pike soon.

  11. #11
    Shortcutting Hikabiker
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    I've seen that before, usually its because of loose bolts.

  12. #12
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    1x10 on a 2011 Trek Remedy 9. With a 34 up front and a 36t cog in the rear, there is almost nothing I can't climb in and around Portland, OR.

    Of course, the 10+ years of riding singlespeed helped prepare me for the 1x10...

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  13. #13
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    Using a larger chainring will be harder, depending on your terrain! I havent made the transition yet, have a 36t single ring waiting to be installed. made the jump from 32t to 36 when i changed to a dual ring crankset, I still used the granny every once in a while.
    I used to pedal up everything on my 32, cant say the same for the 36t. I still have to downshift to the granny after really long rides, but its less and less every day!

    I say go for it! it'll make you stronger, make your bike simpler and make your rides more challenging.

  14. #14
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    this was one of the unusual incidents. I actually used a torque wrench (45 in lbs) and loctited them in. Even though it was only blue loctite, it's certainly going to make it a pain to try and get them out.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe_Jitsu
    1x10 on a 2011 Trek Remedy 9. With a 34 up front and a 36t cog in the rear, there is almost nothing I can't climb in and around Portland, OR.

    Of course, the 10+ years of riding singlespeed helped prepare me for the 1x10...

    Joe
    After riding 1X9 for the last three years, I think this is probably the ideal gearing setup...

  16. #16
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    I started my 1x9 with a 32/12-36 then I got sick- really really sick with a viral infection in my lungs 3 months out of action- moved to Utah which I was excited about but its been winter so now its more like 6 months out of action....had to go to a 28/12-36. Gotta work it back up to a 32...I love the simpleness of a single gear up front. Wish internal geared hubs would come down more in price- that would rock.

  17. #17
    Shortcutting Hikabiker
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    Quote Originally Posted by daverach2478
    this was one of the unusual incidents. I actually used a torque wrench (45 in lbs) and loctited them in. Even though it was only blue loctite, it's certainly going to make it a pain to try and get them out.
    Oh yeah, I've never seen one do that exact thing. Most of the time the bolts end up stripping out of the crank. Usually steel bolts though.

  18. #18
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    I recently switched over to running a 32 up front only and fairly new to the MTB scene. I picked up a nice bashguard so what would be a a good alternative to the MRP mini G2, I just need a nice guide to keep the chain in place.

    Also, when you when to a single up frotn, did you shorten your chain a few links too?

  19. #19
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    If you want to walk nearly as often as a singlespeed rider, go with 1x9.

    If you want to be hip and trendy and pretend to be Mark Weir, go with 1x9.

    If you want to get stronger because you're lazy and prefer to use that 22t granny ring far more often than you should, go with 1x9.

    If you want to look like a pro DHer and have no front der and no cable or front shifter, go with 1x9.

    If you want to have a bike that looks like you might do an occasional Super D race even though you never ride much, but like posting pictures of your bike on the Web, go with 1x9.

    .............................

    some or all of the above may apply. use your best judgment to know which works for you.

    .........................

    Quote Originally Posted by daverach2478
    this was one of the unusual incidents. I actually used a torque wrench (45 in lbs) and loctited them in.
    Dude... why?

  20. #20
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    I come from a BMX background and prefer the simpleness of it, that I and for my area it makes sense . Actually, if I could make a bike purchase again I would go with a single speed 29er.

  21. #21
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    I ride rugged terrain so I have no use for the big rings. I run an 11-34 cassette and a 26T front granny ring. Rarely do I spin out. When I used to ride mellow XC terrain I used a 34T front ring and 11-28 cassette. It all depends on your terrain.

  22. #22
    Big Gulps, Alright!
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    I'm riding a 32T chainring, BBG bash, Blackspire Stinger, med cage derailleur, ghetto jumpstop and 11-32 cassette here. Several thousand miles on this setup and no issues with chain drop or shifting. Even chain/cassette life was on par.

    Ride it everywhere and the gearing has never forced me to hike-a-bike. Other factors have, but not the gearing. :-(
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ash T. Abula
    If you want to walk nearly as often as a singlespeed rider, go with 1x9.

    If you want to be hip and trendy and pretend to be Mark Weir, go with 1x9.

    If you want to get stronger because you're lazy and prefer to use that 22t granny ring far more often than you should, go with 1x9.

    If you want to look like a pro DHer and have no front der and no cable or front shifter, go with 1x9.

    If you want to have a bike that looks like you might do an occasional Super D race even though you never ride much, but like posting pictures of your bike on the Web, go with 1x9.
    WOW someone has issues!! Guessing you tried the 1x9 and couldnt make it work out huh. so sad. Whats you issue with Weir, jealous???
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  24. #24
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    So I'm looking for a good chainguide to run with my raceface bashring.. would this work? http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=40435

    I already have the bash ring, so I would like to avoid having to buy the complete guide/ring and spending $150.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ash T. Abula
    If you want to walk nearly as often as a singlespeed rider, go with 1x9.

    If you want to be hip and trendy and pretend to be Mark Weir, go with 1x9.

    If you want to get stronger because you're lazy and prefer to use that 22t granny ring far more often than you should, go with 1x9.

    If you want to look like a pro DHer and have no front der and no cable or front shifter, go with 1x9.

    If you want to have a bike that looks like you might do an occasional Super D race even though you never ride much, but like posting pictures of your bike on the Web, go with 1x9.

    .............................

    some or all of the above may apply. use your best judgment to know which works for you.

    .........................



    Dude... why?

    Wait, wait, wait... How stupid is your thinking? One can seriously turn the table on what you wrote. Just, get out... now...
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blksocks
    Wait, wait, wait... How stupid is your thinking? One can seriously turn the table on what you wrote. Just, get out... now...
    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford
    WOW someone has issues!! Guessing you tried the 1x9 and couldnt make it work out huh. so sad. Whats you issue with Weir, jealous???
    to both of you:

    Your humor detector is broken in the most obvious way.

    Your projection of your own inadequacies is intact though.

    Carry on.

    Interim thought: here's my "All Mountain hardtail," which runs 1x9:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Single chainring up front?-green-curtlo.jpg  


  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ash T. Abula
    to both of you:

    Your humor detector is broken in the most obvious way.

    Your projection of your own inadequacies is intact though.

    Carry on.

    Interim thought: here's my "All Mountain hardtail," which runs 1x9:
    It's easy to change face on the internet, isn't it?
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ash T. Abula
    to both of you:

    Your humor detector is broken in the most obvious way.

    Your projection of your own inadequacies is intact though.

    Carry on.

    Interim thought: here's my "All Mountain hardtail," which runs 1x9:
    Meh humor detector works fine, but I take the 1x movement very seriously, possibly too serious and dont take well to people talking BS @ it just because they're candy a$$e$. Sorry for the misunderstanding, I stand corrected. Still unsure @ your Mark Weir comment though.

    Inadequate, doubtful I run a 1x9 on a 38 lbs rig and can outclimb dudes on hardtails with full 3x9 drivetrains, so no worries there.

    BTW, props for doing the 1x9 right, full chainguide is the only way to roll, unless your on a commuter then by all means mount up the Jump Stop!
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by smwill214
    So I'm looking for a good chainguide to run with my raceface bashring.. would this work? http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=40435

    I already have the bash ring, so I would like to avoid having to buy the complete guide/ring and spending $150.

    Sadly that is not going to work for you, that is just a parts kit (sliders, roller and nuts/bolts) for the D2 guide, youd still need the boomrang. Hate to say it, your probably going to have to pony up for a whole guide.
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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by osmarandsara
    After riding 1X9 for the last three years, I think this is probably the ideal gearing setup...
    Yup. Same here. I end up starting each season with 2 rings and a front derailleur, because I think I might need it after the winter months, but never seem to use it. It always makes it way off early. Two rides this season and its coming off now. Back to 32f x 11-34 rear w/ an e13 lg1 guide and salsa 32t ring. Best gearing Ive ever used. I also found that I can climb just about everything in the 32/34, sometimes with a little extra grunt but I get there.

  31. #31
    Evlkneevljr
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    Thanks for the comments - Right now, I'm thinking more toward my reasons of:
    "If you want to look like a pro DHer and have no front der and no cable or front shifter, go with 1x9"

    Turns out, it's forcing me to be stronger. Went out today and sure enough, I did have to walk some sections, but, I think I could have made them givne more time on a single up front. I have an Uzzi VPX with a 180mm fork on the front. Why? Cause it's the only bike I have. I need it to do everything.....and it does. Got it down to under 36# with a decent build and will drop another 1lb soon. I was trying to simplify and looking for encouragement. Some locals say I'm stupid and just keep the Granny. Others say go for it and it will make you stronger. Only thing I worry about are those Epic 4-5 hour rides in Flagstaff, AZ and the steep climbing on some of the mountains. I'll just have to see what happens; so far, I'm liking it, but, it does take more energy at times....that's where I'm hoping the getting stronger part will come in.
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  32. #32
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    9 speed
    11 - 34 rear
    22 - 32 front

  33. #33
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    Is there such things as 21T crank gear ?

    A custom made 21T ?

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by daverach2478
    Thanks for the comments - Right now, I'm thinking more toward my reasons of:
    "If you want to look like a pro DHer and have no front der and no cable or front shifter, go with 1x9"

    Turns out, it's forcing me to be stronger. Went out today and sure enough, I did have to walk some sections, but, I think I could have made them givne more time on a single up front. I have an Uzzi VPX with a 180mm fork on the front. Why? Cause it's the only bike I have. I need it to do everything.....and it does. Got it down to under 36# with a decent build and will drop another 1lb soon. I was trying to simplify and looking for encouragement. Some locals say I'm stupid and just keep the Granny. Others say go for it and it will make you stronger. Only thing I worry about are those Epic 4-5 hour rides in Flagstaff, AZ and the steep climbing on some of the mountains. I'll just have to see what happens; so far, I'm liking it, but, it does take more energy at times....that's where I'm hoping the getting stronger part will come in.

    You will get stronger believe me, you just have to have patience and heart, you have to really want it. When I started on the 1x9 I was using a 32t w 11/34 cassette and after a few months (@5) I was running a 38t with 11/34 and not walking anything. Its seriously all about determination. I thought for years about how much I wanted to do this, coming from a DH background it just made sense to me, but always figured it would be too hard. Then one day I decided to really go for it and after a while it got easier, then I started moving up rings and viola piece of cake. Good luck man, hang in there and dont listen to the haters, they're just jealous and lazy.
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  35. #35
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    I found 38T to perfect, great balance between high and low.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by asw7576
    Is there such things as 21T crank gear ?

    A custom made 21T ?
    Action Tec makes Ti granny rings in 20t and 21t sizes. ~$60 for the basic model, ~$90 for the heat-treated version

    It's a lot cheaper to just work on stronger legs though

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford
    You will get stronger believe me, you just have to have patience and heart, you have to really want it. When I started on the 1x9 I was using a 32t w 11/34 cassette and after a few months (@5) I was running a 38t with 11/34 and not walking anything. Its seriously all about determination. I thought for years about how much I wanted to do this, coming from a DH background it just made sense to me, but always figured it would be too hard. Then one day I decided to really go for it and after a while it got easier, then I started moving up rings and viola piece of cake. Good luck man, hang in there and dont listen to the haters, they're just jealous and lazy.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rivet
    Where do you live and ride?

    I live in Socal and ride all over - SoCal, Norcal, Nevada, Arizona. I ride a 07 Kona Coiler with Totem and Romic coil shock. Been eyeballing the Pivot Firebird or Phoenix as my next ride to replace the Kona,
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    1x9 is the only way to go, with a chain guide such as an MRP G2. I run a 36T with a 11-32 short cage der. Super tight, super responsive.

    What you gain? Closest to an instant pedaling response next to a single speed. No dropping chains, no chain slack, makes you stronger, ups the fun factor, less clutter on your bike--one less cable is a lot, or better yet save that for the gravity dropper seat post.

    Stick with a 1x9.....1x10's are a money sucking joke. You get the same gearing from a 1x9 save the 11-36, but do you need that? Compensate with the correct chain ring up front. 10 speed chains are weaker, wear out faster, cost a lot of money...and with the tighter spacing on the cassette, breathe on it hard enough, and your hanger is out of alignment. Tighter spacing, less room for the derailleur to be off, and in AZ, that equals many rides with bad shifting.

    Start with a 34T 11-34 cassette, and you should rock up everything. If not..like a Single Speed, the more you ride it, the stronger you will get and will clear the climbs in due time.

  40. #40
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    I run single 28t in the front with a cassete up to 32 on the rear. Next I'll be trying 32 up front so I can run conventional chainrings, but I'll probably need another cassette too.

  41. #41
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    Well, my bike seems to be heavier than most people doing this that I see (35.7lbs), but, I like to make sure I can litterally handle anything on the trail and not have to worry about my bike. Good to hear some people that ride in AZ/CA type stuff do it; gives me some courage to simplify.

    completely rebuild my Uzzi and the gearing set up I built is a single speed hub (zero dish) with a modified 10 speed XT cassette. Original intent was 2x8. Since the Granny chainring incident, it made me think 1x8 might not be a bad idea. May be tougher to start, but, hoping to grow into it.

    Had to walk 2 sections again but seem to be motoring up sections faster than my friend using a granny...and I don't feel all that bad (the first week I hurt, though)....still gotta replace my Gamut Dual with a single guide....chain keeps falling off on top without the derailer there.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Single chainring up front?-rear-der-cassette.jpg  

    Single chainring up front?-my-bike-2.jpg  

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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford

    BTW, props for doing the 1x9 right, full chainguide is the only way to roll, unless your on a commuter then by all means mount up the Jump Stop!
    quick, tell adam craig! dudes a newb!

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford
    I live in Socal and ride all over - SoCal, Norcal, Nevada, Arizona. I ride a 07 Kona Coiler with Totem and Romic coil shock. Been eyeballing the Pivot Firebird or Phoenix as my next ride to replace the Kona,
    If you "not walking anything" in Laguna with a 38-34 low you are either not riding very demanding trails or should be a pro XC/road racer.
    "Do not touch the trim"

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rivet
    If you "not walking anything" in Laguna with a 38-34 low you are either not riding very demanding trails or should be a pro XC/road racer.
    the only trail I can think of in Laguna, which I would have no reason to climb anyhow, is Canyon Acres. Meadows - check! Mathis - check! Moving along to El Morro, I think I can - check, Slow and Easy - Check. Other Socal trails I have clmbed and continue to, Holy Jim, STT to Old Camp, Harding, Maple Springs, San Juan, Blackstar did I miss anything?

    Now dont get me wrong Im not climbing Holy Jim at XC race speed, but I make it up without stopping and I dont walk.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by b-kul
    quick, tell adam craig! dudes a newb!

    RIGHT!!!! PM me with his email and I'll be sure to let him know.
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  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford
    RIGHT!!!! PM me with his email and I'll be sure to let him know.
    i thought all you 1x9 guys knew each other contact info? dont cult members usually know that sort of thing?

  47. #47
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    Reputation: boomn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rivet
    If you "not walking anything" in Laguna with a 38-34 low you are either not riding very demanding trails or should be a pro XC/road racer.
    Many singlespeeders ride big, long hills in even harder ratios. The difference is that SS riders stand to climb instead of sitting. Past a certain steepness and length most riders will have to do the same with a 34x38 ratio.

    In other words the real difference in what works or not for your climbs is just your preference for cadence and climbing style. They all work, but maybe not in the way you like or that your muscles are used to. I like single ring setups but I prefer to still be able to sit and spin at a fairly high cadence for extended climbs so I've stayed with a 32fx34r low gear, but when I was riding SS only for two years I was clearing the same hills with 32x20

  48. #48
    #THELEGEND
    Reputation: Guy.Ford's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by b-kul
    i thought all you 1x9 guys knew each other contact info? dont cult members usually know that sort of thing?

    Nah my 1x9 crue is a very discerning bunch and IMO Craig does it all wrong. His use of the MRP 1x guide is total weight weenie poser sh1t.

    for reference: Adam Craigs bike = fail
    #THELEGEND #MAKE****HAPPEN

  49. #49
    100% fuzz, 0% melody
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    You're not a real man unless you ride up Mont Blanc on a 34 lbs Carbon Nomad with a 200mm travel fork up front, and a 1x10 setup with a 42t ring on the front and an 11-21 cluster out back.

    Anything less is just like wearing a pink tutu and lemon-yellow ballet slippers to the rodeo.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford
    Meh humor detector works fine, but I take the 1x movement very seriously, possibly too serious and dont take well to people talking BS @ it just because they're candy a$$e$. Sorry for the misunderstanding, I stand corrected. Still unsure @ your Mark Weir comment though.

    Inadequate, doubtful I run a 1x9 on a 38 lbs rig and can outclimb dudes on hardtails with full 3x9 drivetrains, so no worries there.

    BTW, props for doing the 1x9 right, full chainguide is the only way to roll, unless your on a commuter then by all means mount up the Jump Stop!
    Gosh, I've confused an Internet Expert on MTBR All Mountain Forum Single Front Chainring threads.

    What will I do to recover from this horrifying existential setback?

    I think I'll sit back and watch The Expert comment further in other threads, expanding his Zone of Expertise. Maybe one day he'll teach at The University of Emptybeer!

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