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  1. #1
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    Big Man Needs Big Gears (1x9 Cassette)

    Hey howdy, Been MIA forever I know...long story...too long.

    Annnnyway, I'm still rocking my '08 TNT XL Spot and I'm still deep in the Clydesdale end of the scale.

    Opinions: Is switching from a 11x34 to an 12x36 9spd cassette going to make a big difference in hard climbs? and if so, would going to a 10spd 36T be even better (due to the ratio spacing)


    Here's the background:

    I the rides around here have tons of short but draining, steep, technical climbs. up,down, up up up, down up... every few mins, not long spinning grinders.

    Late last season I changed my Spot from a 2x9 to a 1x9. I dropped the granny and only have 32t chainring now.
    I like the simplified setup, and the reduction in chain slap that came with adding a guide and a short cage Rder.

    BUT

    It appears my climbing has degraded tremendously. I'm standing where I used to spin, and Burning out much much sooner on the really hard climbs, It also seems my recovery times are taking longer if I recover at all. overall I seem to suffer more than I flow.

    A lot of the climbing is with zero momentum and is inch for inch pedal to ground. This seems to me typical of pushing a ratio too high for me. My knees are noodly all the time, my quads too.

    I've put in a fair bit of training time but it almost seems like I'm suffering from overtraining where the harder I try the less I accomplish.

    Is going to a 36T going to help much or do I need to go back to the Granny?
    Anyone with a single chainring riding 32x34? or do most folks use 36T?

    Now I know being in better shape and personally lighter will help but first I have to get there and I'm not doing so now, I feel like I'm getting weaker, slower and having far less fun. I can hammer my ass off on rolling, DH or even steady grinders but hauling 240lbs up the steeps is sapping me where it did not nearly so much before I tossed the granny. Seems to me I'll be better overall if I'm in a reasonable spin/trundle than the edge of stall and expiration the entire climb.

    Will a 36T do the trick?
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  2. #2
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    Holy Chit, it's the Zilla out of cryostasis (hibernation didn't seem long enough).

    I'm okay with 32 up front and an 11-34 cassette out back. Without changing your whole drivetrain you could try and pickup a Shimano HG61 12-36 cassette to give that a try.
    Rolling on 29", 650b, 8.3" and 23mm

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by 6thElement View Post
    Holy Chit, it's the Zilla out of cryostasis (hibernation didn't seem long enough).

    I'm okay with 32 up front and an 11-34 cassette out back. Without changing your whole drivetrain you could try and pickup a Shimano HG61 12-36 cassette to give that a try.
    Heh. While I'm between jobs I'm trying to harden up between interviews.

    I actually bought an HG-61 last fall and forgot I had it till today. I'll put that on with an extra couple of links and see what's-what. Comparing it to a 10-spd the ratio on 3 largest cogs are the same and that's what counts the most for me.

    The tooth count of the 12-36 is +2T on the 3 largest cogs compared to the 11-34 so it should be a help across several gears.

    What suxors is it's a stack not a set so each cog is a single plate spider and all rather than a bunch pinned to a carrier. These tend to dig into softer driveshells. I destroyed a CK alloy shell with one of these once. (different ratios though) Since then I have a HD driveshell on my CK and a steel alloy on my XMXL. so I should be G2G. Just need to add some links I guess... I wonder...How many for 2Tmore?
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  4. #4
    It's carbon dontcha know.
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    What you might be able to do is pickup a wider Ti 36T cog to use behind a decent cassette, so it won't chew the freehub. Then you would just need to juggle the smaller cogs and use a suitable lockring. I think Actiontec used to make a suitable 36T...
    Rolling on 29", 650b, 8.3" and 23mm

  5. #5
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    Thanks.
    I think I'll be alright on a HD or steel freehub. I hope so anyway!
    If I like it enough, maybe I'll get a 10 spd shifter and a proper cassette. (as compared to the HG61 stack)

    I saw a thread about a company that makes 30T chainrings... that might be next if this is not pedally enough.

    I'll stick with my chainguide though.
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  6. #6
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    You must be generating some incredible amounts of torque pushing those gears uphill. Wouldn't this lead to failures, bent cogs, exploding chains, etc?

    Anyway, I'm no help, my single front ring solution requires a chairlift or shuttle.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by airwreck View Post
    Anyway, I'm no help, my single front ring solution requires a chairlift or shuttle.
    I guess that's the issues I've been facing for some time. I like climbing everything I can find before descending. Therefore, gears, gears gears..............

    Note: I do not have the 11 or the 36 on my gears, I just left them in the spreadsheet to have numbers.

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    Zilla, there isn't much difference between the 34 and 36, I tried that on my bottom end of my cog-stack. Ended up going 38. That 30 front sounds like the ticket. I love the 29 in front on my bike, I can stay middle for a very long time and very rarely need the 20 or the 42.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmats View Post
    I guess that's the issues I've been facing for some time. I like climbing everything I can find before descending. Therefore, gears, gears gears..............

    Note: I do not have the 11 or the 36 on my gears, I just left them in the spreadsheet to have numbers.

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    Zilla, there isn't much difference between the 34 and 36, I tried that on my bottom end of my cog-stack. Ended up going 38. That 30 front sounds like the ticket. I love the 29 in front on my bike, I can stay middle for a very long time and very rarely need the 20 or the 42.
    Holy cow, where do you get your components? I'd love to rock a 29 chainring and/ or a 38t cog.
    Do you need special cranks for that? From what I can tell even a XT HT-II needs to be filed down to support a 30T much less a 29.
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  9. #9
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    Or you could pick up the Widgit: Widgit | Get the MTB chainring that will turn your ride into a lightweight mountain bike.
    You can go as small as 28T on the front chainring.

    _MK
    .
    "No man goes before his time -- unless the boss leaves early."
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  10. #10
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    Wazzup Homies?

    Zill, your title says it all. Agree with Gmats. Fuggetabout what the jackrabbits are suggesting, they aint carrying around an extra 75 lbs of hard work like us clydes.

    Beware of turning your back on grannie:



    Therefore recommend:



    For graphing purposes, following gear inches with 26" wheel and meaty rubber:

    32x34= 22.8"
    32x36=21.6"
    24x34=17.2"
    24x36= 16.2"

    The new Shadow RD and others versions are pretty stellar at reducing chainslap.

    Cheers.

  11. #11
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    Hey Zilla - 6th is hella fit and strong based on his exploits. I think mere mortals like us need a little extra help. A 36 cassette definitely helps if you're running a 32 up front for the trails we ride and helped me tremendously and to the point that I ditched my granny - But at the end of a 3 or 4 hour ride at say Blue I found myself occasionally wanting one more gear so I got XX1. I rarely use the 42 out back but it's nice to have. Plus the 32 x 11 doesn't spin out on the single track just occasionally on the fire roads.

  12. #12
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    Most old fat guys that I know either buy a motorcycle, or give up altogether, and just settle down in front of the TV and rot. Which choice suits you, "he who posts like once a year?"
    You could try actually working out once in a while. Jeez.
    Shut up and pedal, is what people tell me. Come out here to 9,00 feet of altitude and let my 56 year old corpse kick your butt on some climbs.

    Miss you.
    ****

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla View Post
    Holy cow, where do you get your components? I'd love to rock a 29 chainring and/ or a 38t cog.
    Do you need special cranks for that? From what I can tell even a XT HT-II needs to be filed down to support a 30T much less a 29.
    I run a 29 middle by using old school square taper 94mm/58mm cranks. It might be tough to find 29 tooth chainrings these days, I'm starting to run low.

    I saw them at Homebrew (guess they're gone?) and now here:
    5 Bolt 94mm BCD Chainring

    The 38 cog is Action Tec set up with my 9 speed Shimano bar end shifters (thumb shifters on Paul's). I loose the 11 and make it a 13-38 cassette. I've tried a few other "Steel" stuff from ebay but bent them. The Action Tec has lasted me two seasons. My friend's running the 38 Ti with his 10 speed Shimano XT set up.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by wilks View Post
    Hey Zilla - 6th is hella fit and strong based on his exploits. I think mere mortals like us need a little extra help. A 36 cassette definitely helps if you're running a 32 up front for the trails we ride and helped me tremendously and to the point that I ditched my granny - But at the end of a 3 or 4 hour ride at say Blue I found myself occasionally wanting one more gear so I got XX1. I rarely use the 42 out back but it's nice to have. Plus the 32 x 11 doesn't spin out on the single track just occasionally on the fire roads.
    I rode with 6E...I'm pretty sure he's got a couple of midgets stashed in each leg.

    I'll try the 36x11 and look for a 30T chain ring while I research a few of the creative options mentioned above.

    3-4hrs at Blue? Right now 2 will put me near cardiac arrest. WTF? I must be doing something wrong.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renegade View Post
    Most old fat guys that I know either buy a motorcycle, or give up altogether, and just settle down in front of the TV and rot. Which choice suits you, "he who posts like once a year?"
    You could try actually working out once in a while. Jeez.
    Shut up and pedal, is what people tell me. Come out here to 9,00 feet of altitude and let my 56 year old corpse kick your butt on some climbs.

    Miss you.
    Rennybro!

    9000 ft? Come out here and I'll show you a dozen 450ft climbs that'll make you wish you had a lift pass. And that's just getting out of the parking lot.


    Good to be back.
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  16. #16
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    Moose, Renny and Zilla all in one recent thread - can't wait to see TS, CC and Aqua (maybe even Smokey) chime in.

    FWIW, I spend so much time granny/granny I can't imagine EVER going single up front. There are a couple of super short/steep climbs on my regular routes (Green Mountain - haha) that even in granny/granny I still only make the climbs < 50% of the time.

    You guys are animals.

  17. #17
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    At your weight Zilla, I'd have to agree with those who suggested putting the granny back on and getting a new clutch RD to help minimize the chain slap. I only weigh about 180lbs geared to ride, but have long legs and my granny/granny of 24/32 makes me suffer on super steep climbs and makes my knees hurt a bit, can't imagine going to a 1x setup unless I went to a 30t front and 36-11 outback. FYI I'm on a 29er though, so bit harder ratios, my 24-32=21.8 gear inches.
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  18. #18
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    Zilla! Nice to have you back.

    Another option for 11 speed gearing at 10 speed price is this cluster made by an Italian (of course!) company - Leonardi racing:

    SRAM
    Shimano

    XX1 cranks are the cheapest option for light cranks with the possibility of using a chainring with 28t (if you are going to invest in new cranks), or switch between 1x and 2x setups (all you need to do is replace the spider with one of the X0 2x spiders).

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmac View Post
    Moose, Renny and Zilla all in one recent thread - can't wait to see TS, CC and Aqua (maybe even Smokey) chime in.
    ...and rmac, and NYCB, and Wilks and, and and...
    it's like a college reunion, without the beer and the underwear.

    FWIW, I spend so much time granny/granny I can't imagine EVER going single up front. There are a couple of super short/steep climbs on my regular routes (Green Mountain - haha) that even in granny/granny I still only make the climbs < 50% of the time.

    You guys are animals.
    I used to be a granny grinder too. Then all my fast friends went to 1x, so I figured I'd give it a go.

    I learned while I'm strong enough to ride pretty much anything I'd granny, it steadily ground me down. Maybe I'm getting stronger, maybe my endurance is increasing, it's hard to tell when after the first 20 mins all I can see is my front wheel and flat-line EKG .

    For the moment I'm between jobs so I'm taking the cheapest route to something pedaly. I'd like to avoid going back to the granny, but holy cow looking at the gear-inches I used to spin at 22/34 compared to what I mash now at 32/34... I can see why I'm burning down like a candle under a blowtorch.

    Today I'll put on the 12x36 cogset. I suppose I'll have to add some links to my chain.

    If the benefit is only incremental, then I'll look for a 30t chain ring I can put on my XT HT-II crankset. If that still isn't enough, then I'll sell some spares and look at the new funky stuff.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    At your weight Zilla, I'd have to agree with those who suggested putting the granny back on and getting a new clutch RD to help minimize the chain slap. I only weigh about 180lbs geared to ride, but have long legs and my granny/granny of 24/32 makes me suffer on super steep climbs and makes my knees hurt a bit, can't imagine going to a 1x setup unless I went to a 30t front and 36-11 outback. FYI I'm on a 29er though, so bit harder ratios, my 24-32=21.8 gear inches.
    It's not the chainslap that is so much an issue. I had pretty good results with a short der, 2xchainguide and a granny. I could live with that.
    But I've grown to like the clean simple setup of a 1x. And now I'm a fiend for flat pedals... no matter how technical the terrain I simply do not miss clipless.

    BUT at nearly 250lbs, (yes you read it right) I need a few more teeth out back and a few less up front. Put me on rolling terrain, or a decent and I can hang with almost anyone but hauling an extra 100 lbs my partners don't have up a hard hill is one heck of a disadvantage regardless of my fitness level.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by nybike1971 View Post
    Zilla! Nice to have you back.

    Another option for 11 speed gearing at 10 speed price is this cluster made by an Italian (of course!) company - Leonardi racing:

    SRAM
    Shimano

    XX1 cranks are the cheapest option for light cranks with the possibility of using a chainring with 28t (if you are going to invest in new cranks), or switch between 1x and 2x setups (all you need to do is replace the spider with one of the X0 2x spiders).
    That's some interesting stuff there. Basically I'd have to build my own cassette right?
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  22. #22
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    Makes every gear in back easier and looses weight up front. I use it along with a 12-36 in rear on same type of terrain as you in WV. Unbelievable difference.

    Product Info | Andersen Machine's Blog

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by WV_XCE View Post
    Makes every gear in back easier and looses weight up front. I use it along with a 12-36 in rear on same type of terrain as you in WV. Unbelievable difference.

    Product Info | Andersen Machine's Blog
    That would certainly help. $90 bucks for an alu chain ring though... wow.
    I can easily burn one out in a season.
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  24. #24
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    Big Man Needs Big Gears (1x9 Cassette)

    Picked mine up on classifieds here for $45. Got the non ramped version and when one side wears out I can reverse it.

  25. #25
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    Big Man Needs Big Gears (1x9 Cassette)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla View Post
    That's some interesting stuff there. Basically I'd have to build my own cassette right?
    Yes, that's correct. That's why they match the SRAM and Shimano clusters. I have been tempted to order one of those for my full suspension 29er which I am in the process of converting to 1x10.

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