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Thread: 29er 1x9 setup

  1. #1

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    29er 1x9 setup

    I am Building a SURLY KM. I plan on using a set a Truvativ single speed cranks up front for a 1x9 set-up. Will I need a chain guide system? Any tips, insights on running this style?

    Thanks,

    Mike B

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the forums Mike!

    If you do a search on "1x9" a wealth of info will come up on these forums.
    Short answer : yes, you'll need eather a full-wrap chainguide like the Rohloff. or both a bashring and an inner guide. You can try without it, like me, and suffer.

  3. #3
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    Yes

    I'm running a bashguard outside and an N-Gear Jumpstop inside to keep the chain on the ring and it works, eh, OK. I've had better luck with a regular triple ring setup. Plus the triple ring setup gives a bigger range of gears (duh!). And I guess it's lighter but not by much. So I'm a 1X9 guy thinking about going back. Maybe not tho, I guess it's a tough call....

    But you'll need something to keep the chain on, yes.


    Quote Originally Posted by brandt6223
    I am Building a SURLY KM. I plan on using a set a Truvativ single speed cranks up front for a 1x9 set-up. Will I need a chain guide system? Any tips, insights on running this style?

    Thanks,

    Mike B

  4. #4
    mechmann_mtb
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    if you do a search there are several threads in the Drivetrain forums that outline what most of us have on our 1x9's. here are the basics about my setup...

    short cage RD
    XT cranks (small ring removed, big ring replaced by ring guard)
    Spot Brand ring guard
    N-gear Jumpstop
    ExtraLite 30T chainring (optional)

    a SS specific crankset is fine, although i wouldn't want to go with anything that didn't have a ring guard (doesn't have to be a heavy as hell bashring). i do too much playing around on boulders and stuff to leave my drivetrain unprotected.

    got my 29er frame (Niner S.I.R 9) yesterday and will be building it up for double duty (SS and 1X9).

    as far as running 1X9 goes, it isn't as demanding as riding SS. it gives you some climbing gears and some gears for flats. downhill you will be free-wheeling for the most part. make sure you pay attention to your setup, it is a good idea to get a reputable mechanics opinion on position so that your knees don't give you any trouble since they see more stress than they would with the sit and spin gearing (22T CR and 32 or 34 cog)

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    I rode yesterday for the first time with my 1X9 setup. I'd ridden it on the road, but this was the first off road test. I have a 34t salsa ring, spot bashguard and an N-gear jump stop--all the gear that's been recommended here. I had problems with the chain jumping off though. It would come off only to the inside, once it squeezed through the N-gear thing and landed on the BB, but the other times it just sort of bounced off and landed on top of the Ngear. I think that maybe the problem is that i have too much chain bouncing around (?) or maybe it's that I'm using a long cage derailleur or both. When I installed everything it shifted fine so I left it at that. People have great success with this setup, and I intend to continue to use it, but will need to make some modifications first.

  6. #6
    mechmann_mtb
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    steevo...

    you don't have all the gear that i listed if you don't have a short cage RD.

    you can get a long cage to work though. it definitely sounds like you don't have enough chain tension or too long of a chain and you might also need to get you N-gear adjusted to a better location.

    a good place to start would be to put the chain in the largest cog and then remove links untill your RD is almost maxed out. ideally you shouldn't run on the ragged edge of maxing it out. throw a few extra links in your camelback so that you can make repairs on the trail if necessary.

    a well set up 1X9 is WAY less of a hassle than having a FD and WAY easier to set up.

    if you are in socal drop me a PM and we can hook up for a ride. i will help you dial in your rig if you need it.

  7. #7
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    Never dropped a chain...
    Same setup now on my Cube.
    I like the simplicity of having just one shifter to choose from.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mechmann_mtb
    steevo...

    you don't have all the gear that i listed if you don't have a short cage RD.

    you can get a long cage to work though. it definitely sounds like you don't have enough chain tension or too long of a chain and you might also need to get you N-gear adjusted to a better location.

    a good place to start would be to put the chain in the largest cog and then remove links untill your RD is almost maxed out. ideally you shouldn't run on the ragged edge of maxing it out. throw a few extra links in your camelback so that you can make repairs on the trail if necessary.

    a well set up 1X9 is WAY less of a hassle than having a FD and WAY easier to set up.

    if you are in socal drop me a PM and we can hook up for a ride. i will help you dial in your rig if you need it.
    thanks mechmann, i meant to point out that I had all the recommended gear except the shortcage derailleur. And I definitely need to shorten the chain to get the right tension, i never bothered to check that when I first installed it.
    Despite the chain drop problem I had, I really like the 1X9 gearing. I see no need to go to a double or triple up front right now.

    And I wish I was in SoCal right now! I'm actually in the frosty northeast. No snow on the ground but very cold.

  9. #9
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    You 1x9 guys are so stubborn. 1x9 is like a motorcycle with a sidecar - the worst of both worlds. You lose the simplicity of a single-speed but you don't get the gear range of a fully geared bike and it isn't even any lighter. Sure, front derailleurs can be a hassle to set up but usually a good one won't need much adjustment after the initial setup. I really can't see any good reason for a 1x9 set up. That's just my opinion, of course.

  10. #10
    mechmann_mtb
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    Thor29..

    i dropped a pound off my bike going to 1X9. who said it isn't lighter? (minus shifter, cable little ring and hardware, grind cranks to remove extra material, remove big ring (zero sum with ring guard, replace front mech with much lighter N-gear, short cage derailer, less chain)

    FD's are a pain in the butt. i don't care what you say.

    my new 29er is going to see double duty as SS and 1x9. i will ride it SS when the wife is riding hers. i will ride it 1X9 for super long climbing days and if i decide to race it.

    believe me, the only time i ever long for more gears is when i am either being a wimp (after a few hours of climbing) or when i am blazing downhill on fire-roads (which i hate because they are not as fun as technical singletrack). i tried to ride the big steep ups on slickrock with the SS and it SUCKED. but i can ride them just fine 1X9. of course not everyone has legs like mine...

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    Have you tried it? when a buddy borrowed my KM setup 1x9, he liked the one-dimensional shifting. Much like a seqential car gearbox. Much less spinning and pushing than a SS. Tighter chain than a 3x9, on average.
    we both find that we stop looking down to check what gear we're in, we just shift when we feel like it, and for steep climbs just hope we make it up when the shifter bottoms out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thor29
    You 1x9 guys are so stubborn. 1x9 is like a motorcycle with a sidecar - the worst of both worlds. You lose the simplicity of a single-speed but you don't get the gear range of a fully geared bike and it isn't even any lighter. Sure, front derailleurs can be a hassle to set up but usually a good one won't need much adjustment after the initial setup. I really can't see any good reason for a 1x9 set up. That's just my opinion, of course.
    Could also be the best of both worlds--more gear choices than a single speed, but simpler than fully geared. Also, better clearance without the big ring up front. Not the same gear range as a fully geared bike of course, but more choices for those days you decide to pedal to the trail instead of drive. I still have a dedicated single speed and I'll probably use it the most, but for some trails i ride, there's a defiinite advantage to having a few more choices in gearing. And I mean just a few more, not 26 more. But that's my opinion and it's subject to change without notice.

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    It would be great if someone dares make a 11-36t cassette for a slight better range still. I bet it would work with current MTB derailers just like that. Maybe even 10-34 or 10-36. I've heard of 10t longrings once, but nothing latety.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cloxxki
    Have you tried it? when a buddy borrowed my KM setup 1x9, he liked the one-dimensional shifting. Much like a seqential car gearbox. Much less spinning and pushing than a SS. Tighter chain than a 3x9, on average.
    we both find that we stop looking down to check what gear we're in, we just shift when we feel like it, and for steep climbs just hope we make it up when the shifter bottoms out.
    You've got me there - I haven't actually tried it. I did run a 2x9 set up when I had gears. I rarely ride on fire roads or anywhere flat so I didn't need the big ring. But I did like having the granny. For me the whole point of gears is so that when I am climbing a really long hill I can sit and spin. If I have to stand up to climb I figure I might as well be riding a single speed. 32/34 isn't low enough to sit for a lot of the hills I ride (and a bigger gear can be hard on the knees when seated).

    The weird thing is that I realized that sitting and spinning my way up a long climb was almost as tiring as grinding up the hill on a single-speed. On the single-speed my lungs and legs burn but it is over in half the time. And since I never sit down, I don't have to worry about how comfy my seat is and I can wear much more comfortable shorts without a big ol' butt pad. Heck, my bike looks better, it is more reliable, it's lighter, I go faster up hills with no loss of downhill speed... the only downside is the rare flat section where I spin out and can't go any faster. And since I like to ride where it is mostly up or down that isn't much of a problem. Maybe in flat places like Holland a 1x9 is the perfect set up, but I'll stick with one gear for the West Coast and the Rockies of the USA. Again, this is just my opinion - ride what you like.

  15. #15
    mechmann_mtb
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    30T chainring with 34T granny cog is plenty low to sit and grind for me. with very few exceptions (some of the fire-road climbs on maindivide like the one that goes from bluejay to trabuco 1000ft of climbing in less than 3 miles) that gearing is fine. i rode the wife's bike (full 27 speed) a couple of weeks ago and found that when i went to lower gearing i actually could not clean anything more than i do with my bike. the lower gearing only provided more torque to spin out with.

    i do agree about the elegance of single speed, but i am not quite fit enough to ride SS on most of our rides.

  16. #16
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    Yes, I expect 1x9 with a nice 36t front to be the ideal Dutch race 29" setup, so that's what I'm running now. 12-27 cassette right now. Not something I plan to train on though, it makes you lazy.
    I make it up the climbs decently and in 36x12 I should be able to keep up on most straights. Can always resort to an 11-27 custom Ultegra/Dura-Ace, or an 11-32 XT when it gets really tough. If I weren't a cheap weight weenie I'd try to run an 11-32 everywhere because I think that's best. Or the freaky 1x4-1x5 where you effectively take out half the cassette gear for much reduced shifts.

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