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  1. #1
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    some suggestions for clyde-proof drivetrain parts

    right now have a shimano crankset, shimano deore rear der, front der, and shifters, what are some proven options for upgrading this parts, and also rear cog. thanks for the help

  2. #2
    turtles make me hot
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    The last bike I hand assembled served me well for many years. I had Raceface cranks, XT hubs, gears and derailleurs and Mavic 217 rims all laced up with 14 guage spokes with brass nipples..

    6' 4", 250 pounds. Been as high as 288. As low as 209.
    Last edited by NYrr496; 08-26-2009 at 05:37 AM.
    I like turtles

  3. #3
    56-year-old teenager
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    Aluminum is not your friend in the drivetrain. Shimano LX, SLX, or XT bits are pretty close to the optimum combination of weight and strength for us Clydes. If you're breaking XT stuff, you should probably go down to (S)LX.

    edit: I'm a firm believer in stainless steel granny rings. But you can wait til you wear out the aluminum ring first.

    edit 2: To the OP: are your existing components working correctly? If so... save your money. No reason to fix what's not broken.
    Work is the curse of the biking classes.

  4. #4
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    ONCE everything breaks. Get XT Shifters and Derailleurs. XTR cranks are quite strong even though they are light. The other XTR stuff is too skimpy.
    [SIZE="1"]2008 Rig[/SIZE]

  5. #5
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    Your weight has nothing to do with shifters or derailleurs, the world's fattest MTBer is no more likely to break those than an 80# kid. I'd stay with steel cassettes, chains... I don't know of one chain that's stronger than any other so I'd just say buy cheap and carry a spare powerlink or shimano pin.

    Really, the crank is the only one of those components that your clyde-ness has any bearing on. IMO SLX is the crank to beat. Steel rings are a good idea, but I'd wait till you wear out stock first.

  6. #6
    Making fat cool since '71
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    XT cranks, cassettes. Sram 990 cassettes. Any chain, I've never seen any last longer/shorter due to rider weight. RaceFace Atlas cranks. Enduro bottom brackets are better than stock RF or XT (if you have an external BB...get the BB shell faced, period). Whatever cassette you choose, my advice would be to *only* get one which has a "carrier" which the majority of the cogs are attached to (like XT and 990). They are tough to kill and kinder to rear hubs. Hadley, Hope, Chris King, Industry 9 and DT hubs are good.

    Those are the only "Clyde approved" drivetrain components I recommend; based on being an aggressive fat-boy rider and mechanic for years (been fat longer than a wrench though!). As mentioned already though, don't replace stuff until you really need to...rock what you got until you have to spend the dough.

    Brock...
    Are the wheels roundish? Ride it.

    Disciples Of Dirt, come ride with us.

  7. #7
    slow uphill
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    Saint ftw!

  8. #8
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    You guys are all too hung up on Shimano stuff.

    After years of trying different parts combinations, my current setup looks like this:

    - Bombshell Fat Daddy wheelset:
    (36 spoke, all 14 gauge, 45mm wide rim, Bombshell 20MM T/A front hub, Bombshell 135mm rear hub) I've abused these wheels to death in the last couple months. They still don't need any truing, besides the bit I did when I first received them. And the front hub quickly converts to standard drop-outs with the included axle.

    - Bontrager Big Earl platform pedals:
    By far, the most reliable pedals I've ever run. I was getting discouraged with other pedals, I kept wearing through the bearings on all of them. It got to the point where I was buying generic pedals in bulk because it was cheaper than spending money on expensive pedals that kept failing. I would just carry 2 spare sets of generic pedals with me at all times. Then I gave the Bontrager Big Earl pedals a try, and they lasted 3 years before I removed them from my bike and put them on someone else's. I only removed them because I upgraded to clipless pedals, and I was less worried about the bearings now that I weigh 255 pounds. The Big Earls continue to function flawlessly on this other person's bike. I will always recommend them to any larger riders. For someone who weighs over 325 pounds, I'd go one step further and recommend the King Earl pedals instead. They have 3 sealed bearing cartridges instead of 2.

    - Race Face Atlas AM crankset:
    (22/38/light bash ringset) I wish I'd gotten the Atlas FR instead, for the 6mm chainline adjustment. But the 3mm adjustment on the AM is enough for most people. This crankset is indestructible, stiff and looks great. My power transfer has never been better. The X-Type bottom bracket has been awesome.

    - Shimano XT front derailleur:
    (top swing) I looked at the XTR derailleur, but didn't trust the flimsy titanium cage. So I picked an XT instead, and I couldn't be happier. It adapted perfectly to the extreme gap of my 22/38 chainrings (that's a 16T difference!), and it doesn't interfere with a wide rear tire. The chrome steel cage is super-resilient, and allows me to use all 9 speeds in both chainrings. I did add a N-Gear Jump Stop to prevent the chain from falling on the bottom bracket shell when shifting from 38 to 22 on a really bumpy trail.

    - SRAM PC-991 Cross Step chain: One of the ways (not the only way) to gauge chain strength is to see how hard it is to push a pin out of it with a chain tool. I've never come across a chain that required as much pressure to push the pin out as the PC-991 Cross Step. When I find a really long, steep hill, I tend to upshift 3 times and stand up to power through it as hard as possible. This chain survived my piston-like legs from the time I weighed 325 pounds to now (255 pounds).

    - Shimano XT cassette:
    The spider on this thing makes it almost impossible to damage your freewheel. 6 of the 9 cogs are riveted to the spider, which gives those gears a wide footprint on the freewheel and prevents gouging. It helps that those 6 gears are the ones that generate the most torque. All gears on the XT cassette are steel. To be honest, I actually run a SRAM PG-970 DH cassette, but only because there's no 11-26 or 11-28 version of the Shimano XT.

    - SRAM X.7 rear derailleur:
    I don't like Shimano rear derailleurs. The shifting happens so gently, sometimes the chain ends up being only half on its cog on the way to the next one, which can bend some teeth on the cassette if done under power. That's what happened to my old Deore cassette. SRAM rear derailleurs shift super-fast, and there's no "transition" between gears. You're either in one gear or the next, never in-between. It may not be as smooth and gentle, but it's way more reliable. And I like the solid feel of the shifts. I never have to wonder if a shift was missed. I picked the X.7 for the black, all-alloy body and the lower price. No composites on this thing. Then I bought an X.0 carbon fiber short cage (just the cage, not the whole derailleur) and bolted it in place of the X.7's medium cage, so I have the best of all worlds.

    - SRAM X.9 trigger shifters:
    SRAM shifters are required since I use a SRAM X.7 rear derailleur, but I also like them better than Shimano shifters. The effort when shifting from 1st to 2nd is no different than shifting from 8th to 9th, all shifts are super-snappy, and I can downshift up to 5 gears in one stroke. In 1.5 strokes, I've traveled the whole cassette. I only wish I could do the same on the upshifts (only one upshift at a time), but that can be accomplished with grip shifters if it ever bugs me enough.

    I think that pretty much covers the drivetrain. The rest of my bike is composed of Avid Code 5 hydraulic disc brakes (super cheap and super powerful), Race Face Atlas stem, Race Face Diabolus handlebars, Race Face Diabolus seat post, WTB Laser V saddle and FSA Orbit Extreme Pro headset. These have all been flawless as far as reliability goes, despite the abuse of my weight and riding style. All these components are mounted to a 2008 Kona Hoss frame, which I bought bare from Kona.

  9. #9
    Former Bike Wrench
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    Quote Originally Posted by chucko58
    I'm a firm believer in stainless steel granny rings. But you can wait til you wear out the aluminum ring first.
    I wouldn't wait, they usually wear out somewhere 5 miles from the trail head with another 1500 feet of granny gear climbing...and your bike is doing nothing but chain sucking in the granny (yep, this happened to me!)

    Never, ever, ever, ever, will I ride a bike with an aluminum granny again...and I'm only 220 lbs.

    Some products not already mentioned:
    -Truvativ Stylo Crankset
    -Shimano CN 7701 chain (super strong) with Connex or SRAM quicklink
    -Shimano HG-61 Cassette (SLX level)

  10. #10
    R.I.P. DogFriend
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    I know a lot of y'all have love for XT cassettes, but I have not had such a great run with them. I have bent two of them and ripped four consecutive teeth off of a cog on another. Not from crashing either.

    The cassette I have had a good run with is the M580. I don't use aluminum freehub bodies for obvious reasons, so the presence of an aluminum carrier doesn't really tickle my fancy. Yes it weighs more, but it doesn't break or bend, so I have that going for me.
    ===========
    Race Face Evolve DH crankset: My son and I have beat the tar out of these things on our Giant Reigns. Hard to beat when you pay $120 -$140 for them. A little heavier? Yes. Again, it goes with clyde territory.
    ===========
    Mavic 321 disc rims: After having a 717 disc rim literally split apart, I will not use lightweight rims for all mountain riding, especially for a rear rim. They're fine on an XC hardtail or maybe a front wheel, but for thrashing, the 321's take quite a licking and keep coming back for more.
    ===========
    Sunline V-One handlebar: Nice and wide and worry-free.
    ===========
    Fox DirtPaws (gloves): They come in sizes all the way up to XXXL and fit great (the fingers are plenty long). They last well too.
    ===========
    Thomson seatpost
    ===========
    F.U.N.N. Big Bertha front hub: It's a shame this company doesn't have much of a presence here in the states. This hub has been thrashed for almost five years and still spins better than any hub I've ever owned or felt. It's convertible between 9mm QR amd 20MM and pretty flex free. It uses cartridge bearings and has never needed any maintenance or adjustment. It just flat out works.
    ===========
    2008 Rock Shox Tora 318 Solo Air: Great clyde friendly XC for that adjusts easily to my hulking girth and has a smooth action.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffj
    I know a lot of y'all have love for XT cassettes, but I have not had such a great run with them. I have bent two of them and ripped four consecutive teeth off of a cog on another. Not from crashing either.

    The cassette I have had a good run with is the M580. I don't use aluminum freehub bodies for obvious reasons, so the presence of an aluminum carrier doesn't really tickle my fancy. Yes it weighs more, but it doesn't break or bend, so I have that going for me.
    That's interesting. I didn't run my M770 XT cassette for very long, so I don't really know how resilient the sprockets themselves are. I just liked the design of the big 6-cog spider. I just inspected my old cassette closely, and after 3 months of hard abuse, it's still in perfectly good shape, even the 3 separate smaller cogs. But I don't doubt your word! I've heard others complain about the same thing.

    In any case, the cogs on the SRAM PG-970 DH cassette are BEEFY! I don't know how the regular SRAM cassettes are, though, I assume the DH version is beefier than most. It's definitely way beefier (and heavier) than the XT cassette, despite being only an 11-26. But then, most people have no use for an 11-26 cassette anyways.

    And no, I don't do DH, I mostly do XC. I just never used the 28+ cogs on my old cassettes, even on the roughest trails. My 22T granny chainring is small enough that the 26T cog gives me more than enough torque for any situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by jeffj
    2008 Rock Shox Tora 318 Solo Air: Great clyde friendly XC for that adjusts easily to my hulking girth and has a smooth action.
    I'm generally against air-suspended forks, but I don't have any reasoning behind this other than negative past experience. I use a Rock Shox Domain 318 U-Turn coil fork with adjustable travel, and it's been the best fork I've ever used. I'm frequently changing my travel and compression damping because I always switch from rough trail to gentle trail to road. I can even do most of the adjusting right from the seat! (except increasing travel, I have to get off the bike for that) The thought of having to pull out a pump to adjust my fork doesn't appeal to me. I've also found that coil-sprung forks are more resilient, especially for heavier riders who put their bikes through a lot of abuse.

  12. #12
    R.I.P. DogFriend
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    I think the cassettes I used were 760 and not 770. The 34t 760 cassettes have 5 arms and the 760 32t uses 4 arms. The ones I had were 34t....
    Last edited by jeffj; 08-23-2009 at 12:12 AM.

  13. #13
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    sorry guys, i got busy(slightly forgot about this thread) i apprecaite all your answer now its time to do a little research on what you guys said, i really appreciate it.

    if there is one thing you all could do is edit your posts with your height and weight that would give me a better idea

  14. #14
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    6'4" 315lbs.

    Indestructible cheap, stiff crankest
    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=17960

    Been riding this for a year now and its very stiff, almost no flex. CroMo chain rings will last (as long as you keep a good chain on it). I would recommend buying the park tools chain measuring tool to keep good track of your chain wear.

    SRAM 970 chains are great, as wells as their cassettes. I hear SRAM derailleurs are better than Shimano, but this is a heated debate.

  15. #15
    29 some of the time...
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    In this forum we are all clydes or tall, so torque on components is guaranteed
    During my cycling life I have ranged 225-240lb

    You can see there are already certain schools of though here from the other posters. Some are the bring a bazooka to the gunfight type of guys. I am more of the right tool for the task at hand type myself. If you are just riding fire road and mellow paths then there is no need to ride a 40lb bruiser of a bike.

    Personally I like Shimano cranks, any of the external bb hollowtech designs are bomb proof. I like SRAM chains, shifters, and rear derailleurs. Shimano gets my vote for cassettes and front derailleurs. I typically like XT or X9 components but do find that the value lines X7, SLX to be plenty robust if trying to save a few bucks.
    Quote Originally Posted by saturnine
    that's the stupidest idea this side of pinkbike.

  16. #16
    Team NFI
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    Run DMR cranks on the 29er and Mistress oops I mean Chromag. No flex in any capacity.

    Chain rings, Truvativ makes a whole bunch of various sizes in steel.

  17. #17
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    okay, i am thinking about replacing my shifters and rear derailleur soon, the debate is shimano or SRAM what are the differences? whats more durable? looking at the XT or X-9's those are in my budget.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerjon7
    okay, i am thinking about replacing my shifters and rear derailleur soon, the debate is shimano or SRAM what are the differences? whats more durable? looking at the XT or X-9's those are in my budget.
    In my opinion, Shimano derailleurs have a "smoother" shift, but don't shift as quickly. SRAM shifts lightning-quick, but you really feel each shift. I think the latest Shimano XT triggers allow you to upshift and downshift more than one gear at a time, whereas the SRAM triggers allow downshifting multiple gears (like 5 at once), but only upshift one gear at a time.

    For me, the ultimate combination was SRAM X.9 shifters and an X.7 medium cage rear derailleur with a Shimano XT cassette. Shifts were the fastest I've ever experienced. I've since switched to a SRAM cassette and am seriously considering going back to a Shimano cassette. The shifts have slowed down noticeably, especially the downshifts, and those are most important.

    I use an XT front derailleur on Blackspire-38T/Race Face-22T front gears and it works flawlessly. I don't shift the front very often so it's not terribly important for me. I only liked the XT front derailleur because it seemed to handle the 16T difference in my front gears better.

  19. #19
    slow uphill
    Reputation: orangedog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerjon7
    okay, i am thinking about replacing my shifters and rear derailleur soon, the debate is shimano or SRAM what are the differences? whats more durable? looking at the XT or X-9's those are in my budget.

    check out Saint by Shimano - should run you around the same as XT and is a little more rugged being designed for downhill - good for clydes. the weight is comparable, except in the brake calipers, because they are four piston.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by orangedog
    check out Saint by Shimano - should run you around the same as XT and is a little more rugged being designed for downhill - good for clydes. the weight is comparable, except in the brake calipers, because they are four piston.
    What exactly is your idea of "about the same" as far as money goes? XT rear derailleurs retail for $120 or so, while Saint rear derailleurs retail for $200. A far cry from "about the same".

  21. #21
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    If it hasn't been said already, screw gears go single speed. I'm rolling a gxp stylo 180mm crank with a 32/18 set-up.
    Chris, 6'1" 275lb clyde, Giant Anthem x 29er w/FULL 2012 XT group, Giant Defy Composite Ultegra. Team Truly Spokin!

  22. #22
    -Lee
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffj
    I know a lot of y'all have love for XT cassettes, but I have not had such a great run with them. I have bent two of them and ripped four consecutive teeth off of a cog on another. Not from crashing either.

    The cassette I have had a good run with is the M580. I don't use aluminum freehub bodies for obvious reasons, so the presence of an aluminum carrier doesn't really tickle my fancy. Yes it weighs more, but it doesn't break or bend, so I have that going for me.
    ===========
    Race Face Evolve DH crankset: My son and I have beat the tar out of these things on our Giant Reigns. Hard to beat when you pay $120 -$140 for them. A little heavier? Yes. Again, it goes with clyde territory.
    ===========
    Mavic 321 disc rims: After having a 717 disc rim literally split apart, I will not use lightweight rims for all mountain riding, especially for a rear rim. They're fine on an XC hardtail or maybe a front wheel, but for thrashing, the 321's take quite a licking and keep coming back for more.
    ===========
    Sunline V-One handlebar: Nice and wide and worry-free.
    ===========
    Fox DirtPaws (gloves): They come in sizes all the way up to XXXL and fit great (the fingers are plenty long). They last well too.
    ===========
    Thomson seatpost
    ===========
    F.U.N.N. Big Bertha front hub: It's a shame this company doesn't have much of a presence here in the states. This hub has been thrashed for almost five years and still spins better than any hub I've ever owned or felt. It's convertible between 9mm QR amd 20MM and pretty flex free. It uses cartridge bearings and has never needed any maintenance or adjustment. It just flat out works.
    ===========
    2008 Rock Shox Tora 318 Solo Air: Great clyde friendly XC for that adjusts easily to my hulking girth and has a smooth action.

    Hey guys just wanted to say thanks for all the great advise on this board. Also I just so happen to have a new Evolve DH crank and Raceface FR BB coming in tomorrow. It's always nice to hear you chose a quality part. Thanks again guys.

  23. #23
    slow uphill
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    dup post, my bad

  24. #24
    slow uphill
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoremanX
    What exactly is your idea of "about the same" as far as money goes? XT rear derailleurs retail for $120 or so, while Saint rear derailleurs retail for $200. A far cry from "about the same".
    ymmv, but I "piecemealed" a saint component group (excl front der and crankset) for prices comparable to XT retail (actually a bit lower than retail). took some effort, go figure.

    check out chain reaction - Saint M810 rear der (the latest one) for $130.
    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...?ModelID=27695


  25. #25
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    My bike has some parts off the beaten path, but I love them.

    Wheels were custom built speed dream wheels from dave. Awesome job and still holding up 6 yrs later. Had them built with Hadley hubs - still bomber. I'm still using the same cranks I bought 11 yrs ago - the old e cranks and I still dig them.

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