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Thread: 8 speed

  1. #1
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    8 speed

    Is it possible to run an 8 speed set up with nine speed front chain rings? I can't seem to find 8 speed front chain rings with 4bolts anywhere and I'm sick and tired of deal with 9speed.

  2. #2
    John Galt
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregz12
    Is it possible to run an 8 speed set up with nine speed front chain rings? I can't seem to find 8 speed front chain rings with 4bolts anywhere and I'm sick and tired of deal with 9speed.
    Yes, you can run 9-speed chainrings. You can also run a 9-spd chain with 8 cogs if you need to, but the 8-speed chain and 9-speed chainrings won't cause you problems, either.

    I just converted my wife's bike to 8-speed today (mine always was) and the shifting problems seem to be solved based on a test ride with some good shifting under load.

    Here's what I changed:

    1) Cassette - now using SRAM PG-850, 11-32
    2) Right shifter - now using SRAM 7.0 (NOS)
    3) New 9-speed Shimano HG chain (that's what I had in the toolbox)

    Here's what I kept:

    1) SRAM 9.0 rear derailleur
    2) SRAM 9.0SL left shifter
    3) Shimano 9-speed chainrings (Deore)
    4) LX front derailleur

  3. #3
    John Galt
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    As an update, the 9-speed chain broke recently on this bike. I suspect this is due to the plates being squeezed over the cogs, which were designed for an 8-speed chain and thus are a little wider. The break occured during out-of-seat, steep climbing (probably the maximum normal load for a chain).

    I'll be running an 8-speed chain on this bike from now on. I don't anticipate problems from the 9-speed chainrings but will report back if anything is amiss there.

    So...I no longer recommend running a 9-speed chain with an 8-speed cassette!

  4. #4
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    Hmm I learned it 9 speed teeth on 8 speed chain ok. Other way around is trouble!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregz12
    Is it possible to run an 8 speed set up with nine speed front chain rings? I can't seem to find 8 speed front chain rings with 4bolts anywhere and I'm sick and tired of deal with 9speed.
    I convert my old HT to new XT 760 crankset (middle chain ring with the N'gear Jump Stop) with a XT 8 speed cassette, and a 8 speed chain. The nine speed chain is too narrow for the cassete.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregz12
    Is it possible to run an 8 speed set up with nine speed front chain rings? I can't seem to find 8 speed front chain rings with 4bolts anywhere and I'm sick and tired of deal with 9speed.

    I used to do this all the time, no problems, works fine.

  7. #7
    John Galt
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    You're exactly right and I think I had simply let logic escape me!

    So, to clarify because this keeps coming up:

    1) If you have 8-speed cogs and/or chainrings, you must use the wider 8-speed chain or it could break like mine did, as the wider teeth will pull apart the chain
    2) You can run an 8-speed chain on 9-speed chainrings because the wider chain can work with the narrower teeth and the front spacing is the same for 8-speed and 9-speed
    3) It's not 100% clear to me whether you can run an 8-speed chain on 9-speed cogs, as the narrower spacing of the cogs is the reason narrower chains were made for 9-speed. That being said, I've read on this forum that it will work, but I've never tried it.

    Another FYI: I installed a SRAM (PC-68) chain on the ETSX and love the powerlink! I'll be sticking with SRAM chains from now on. No more pins to buy and keep track of...

  8. #8
    Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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    Wouldn't Recommend #3

    Quote Originally Posted by cegrover
    3) It's not 100% clear to me whether you can run an 8-speed chain on 9-speed cogs, as the narrower spacing of the cogs is the reason narrower chains were made for 9-speed. That being said, I've read on this forum that it will work, but I've never tried it.

    Sometimes....

    I wouldn't recommend an 8spd chain on a 9spd cassette but it can work. For something like an 11-34 9spd cassette the cogs for the most part are of different enough diameter that the ramps dont catch on the slightly wider 8spd chain. On something like a 12-25 or similar "road" cassette the chain will catch on neighboring cogs and try to "shift" itself.
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