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  1. #1
    Bandit 29 FTW!!!
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    I've got a noob question about climbing...

    Someone told me today that you're not supposed to shift while climbing. No aggressive shifting for sure. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    you can shift going uphill but you want to take pressure off the chain.

    for instance... pedal hard to get a bit of momentum and let off a bit to shift, wait for it to engage. then continue pedaling normally. you dont want to shift when applying full power going up a hill. not good for the drive-train.
    Gary Fisher HiFi Deluxe 29er

  3. #3
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    My roommate is a track sprinter and is yet to figure out that a 200 pound person with 27 inch quads that can generate 1,800 watts should not shift at full power going up a hill. His poor drive train makes these sounds like it's in agony. He breaks his chain all the time. Someone gave him the nick name Chain Wreck.
    I like to ride bikes.

  4. #4
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    I was guilty of that nasty noise & broke 2 chains before figuring out how to do it right.

    1)momentum gets you up a hill further and faster than an easier gear anyway. When possible select your gear before the hill, and then stand up & keep on pushin'. A friend with a single speed was outclimbing me on every hill when I'd try to drop all the way down to granny gear. Gradually I figured out I was relying way too much on shifts to get me up the hills.

    2)When you do need to shift, as long as you release the load on the pedals long enough for it to shift gears you'll usually be alright. When I was figuring it out people kept saying "don't shift under load" but didn't give any details on how not to. So, here's my attempt at some detail. First, give it 2 hard pumps to get momentum, then as you're finishing the 2nd pedal stroke, hit the shift. Hopefully you got enough momentum going that the bike will coast because your next pump should be gentile & easy, you don't want to propel the bike, just spin the chain for the shift. Assuming your drivetrain is adjusted right & you're shifting at the right time, it'll be in the next gear by the time you've made a half revolution of the pedals & you can go back under load again pedaling to get your butt up the hill.

  5. #5
    Class Clown
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    It takes finesse. Ideally you'll already be in the correct gear. Chain crunch is your drivetrain screaming in agony.

  6. #6
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    I'm a newbie to trails but... I can shift uphill on the road no problem even when attacking. There can be a slight dead spot in crank rotation when your crankarms are around the 12 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions (especially if out of the saddle). If you shift just before your cranks reach that position and let up just a bit on the pedal pressure, then you can gently shift without grinding your components to dust.

    Sent from my MB860 using Tapatalk

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill-E-BoB View Post
    Gradually I figured out I was relying way too much on shifts to get me up the hills.
    That's me right there ... I'm finally figuring that out, though. I think for the next ride I'm just going to pick a gear that will give me a goodly amount a resistance, to keep me standing while pedaling uphill, and keep with it. I find myself relying on the granny gear too much.

  8. #8
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    Most drive trains can tolerate a RD shift down, with all but a minor relaxation of power....it is all in the technique.

  9. #9
    Bandit 29 FTW!!!
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    Thanks for the help fellas...I'm trying to remind myself that the only stupid questions are the ones you don't ask.

    I'm going with some buddies to an area called Flat Rock Ranch tomorrow. It will be the first more technical ride I've done with clips so I'm a little nervous.

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