any modern 29r that can run 2X drivetrain?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    any modern 29r that can run 2X drivetrain?

    still on my trusty cannondale prophet...really want to get into the 29r party...like all the new geometry updates and long wheelbase on the modern bikes...i can't seem to find any bike frame now that can accomodate a front derailleur...i am looking at a honzo hardtail because of price or the specialized stumpjumper to replace the prophet..

    i'm just not sold on 1X drivetrain because i climb big long hills and fireroads...i guess manufacturers have gotten greedy because by throwing out the FD and wider crankset you can cram in the 29 wheel and get no tire clearance issues as well as swingarm design freedom for FS...but what about old guys like me who like to have that granny gear...in fact my prophet is still 3X9 and i do use the big ring
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  2. #2
    change is good
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    If I can climb with Eagle I the mountain west, so can you. I wasnít sold either. I run a 30T oval ring.

    My friend runs grip shift......


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  3. #3
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    Same here: 28t oval and I have all the low gear I want, up to over 11k feet. Do run out of gear at the top end around 25mph, but rarely want to go faster than that. I'm 61, so not a kid.

    Mark

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamantane View Post
    ....i guess manufacturers have gotten greedy because by throwing out the FD...
    I don't think so. Nobody want's a FD if they can get away without one, and with modern drivetrains, you can get away without one quite satisfactorily in terms of lowest gear, highest gear, and gear spacing (for mtbs). On road and gravel bikes, gear spacing is can be more of an issue depending on how you ride.

    I'm all about climbing and tight technical terrain. 1X suits me perfectly. What doesn't is all the "trail" bikes getting longer/lower/slacker.
    Do the math.

  5. #5
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    I agree, the 1 ring was designed for racers not recreational riders.
    From memory i saw a front derailleur recently on some Ghost XC,
    and some 27+ from Rocky Mountain.
    Where i ride 46 and 50 just pick up stuff so my largest cog is 42.
    I kind of like the 10 S cassette 11-42 with a double in front.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    I agree, the 1 ring was designed for racers not recreational riders.
    you don't know what you're talking about. you can gear a 1x drivetrain every bit as low as a multi chainring drivetrain. how do you account for kids' bikes that have had 1x drivetrains for decades?

    I know lots of recreational riders who were using 1 chainring in the 8 and 9 speed days before manufacturers started marketing 1x drivetrains. it's the racers who were slow to adopt it.

  7. #7
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    You have your opinion, i have mine.
    Mine will not change, so no need to explain, i am not buying.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    You have your opinion, i have mine.
    Mine will not change, so no need to explain, i am not buying.
    then don't buy any products you don't want to buy. nobody's holding you at gunpoint until you install a 1x drivetrain on your bike.

    but my statements are not opinions. they are observations of what actually happened. you are entitled to your opinions, but when they're contrary to evidence, expect to get shot down.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    You have your opinion, i have mine.
    Mine will not change, so no need to explain, i am not buying.
    Lol even if your opinion is wrong?

  10. #10
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    i'm just looking to dive into 29r...i'm licking my chops for the long slack geometry that i always wanted back in 2008...anyway, i have a little stash of 9 speed stuff..it would be great to have a truly modern 29r frame with FD compatability to get to use up the stash...rather than having to just fire sale everything...i could even just buy a frame and build using the stash
    "He can make even a global summit meeting seem like a kegger." M. Dowd, NY Times, 19 July 2006

  11. #11
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    I have a Trek Marlin 6 and the Trek Marlin 7 both have a 2x drive train. They are aluminum hardtail frames with internal cable routing. Both are 29ers.

  12. #12
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    I believe that the Knolly Fugitive can run 2x

  13. #13
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    I'm running the 52-10 xx1 cluster with a 36 tooth chainring. I have been off the bike for 5 years for physical therapy. Yet I'm riding up 30% grades after 4 rides. The 36 gives me a lower gear than my xtr 9 speed 2x, as well as a far taller gear for that road ride home. I was concerned too. It's quite clear that this system works. At least I'm sold.
    Note to self: 85% of FTP for 20 min.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold View Post
    you don't know what you're talking about. you can gear a 1x drivetrain every bit as low as a multi chainring drivetrain.
    Agreed. Running a 32t oval up front and a 11s 11-50 cassette, I have all the range needed. I just upgraded to a 9-50 and cant wait to run that one.

  15. #15
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    Depending how steep your terrain is, or how strong you are, a modern 12 speed will give you the gearing you may need.

    A 30/50 is pretty low and I use it frequently. That's very similar to my 2x bike with 22/36. I prefer the 2x, but the 1x works well an really not too many complaints about it.
    I assume any modern bike will allow a 28t chain ring to be installed too, previous crank arms wouldn't accept lower than 30 due to the bolt circle diameter. If you ride flat out fast, the 28 may not net you top end like you want, 30t may also be too low for you at top speed. I don't ride that fast often enough to need a higher gear. Once in a while on a street connecting a trail head is the only time I go that fast, and that is almost never. Downhill I can spin it out but it's okay because gravity is on my side and I don't have to continually pedal.

    If the terrain isn't too steep, or you are strong, the 11s speed may well be suitable for you.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    You have your opinion, i have mine.
    Mine will not change, so no need to explain, i am not buying.
    Another reason you are wrong here...racers were the last to adapt 1X because they prefer the tighter gear ratios for even cadence. In fact, the new XTR 2X is for...you guessed it...racers.
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  17. #17
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    Again you are proven wrong.
    I use 22 front with 42 rear explain that with a single front??? 14 S???

  18. #18
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    2019 Pivot Switchblade takes a fd and has very nice ports for cable routing. It's not too expensive, either. Just save your money for a bit.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideit View Post
    Another reason you are wrong here...racers were the last to adapt 1X because they prefer the tighter gear ratios for even cadence. In fact, the new XTR 2X is for...you guessed it...racers.
    I still like 2x for racing so when I get stupid tired, and forget where I am, I can quickly dump down to the little ring, instead of up 4 or 5 cogs, to get out of trouble.

  20. #20
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    I don't race much but prefer 2x for the tighter ratio cassettes, lighter cassettes, and a front shift is worth about 3 rear shifts so that's convenient at times. The smaller ring in front increases antisquat so the bike climbs a bit more efficiently. I made the mistake of buying a trail bike frame that doesn't take a fd so it got an oval single ring front. It's ok. Not great, not horrifying. I call it "The 3.6".

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    Again you are proven wrong.
    I use 22 front with 42 rear explain that with a single front??? 14 S???
    52 rear with a 28t chainring is pretty close, no?

    Though at those gear ratios I'm more worried about tipping over from how slow I'm going. I certainly wouldn't be worried about the slight loss in power of a 28:52 vs. a 22:42.

  22. #22
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    It is always pretty amusing to read comments about "I figure I'd tip over if I went that slow/had low gears".

    1) Have any of you actually tipped over from going to slow?
    -yes: wow
    -no: okay then

    2) Do you have that same gear ratio to have actually tested whether or not it is a fall over thing.
    -no: well then maybe it's not true to tip over


    Experience: I have 30/50 and 22/36. I have never ever tipped over from using those gears. I am usually going up something steep that each pedal stroke is a struggle to the point where I am exerting some type of forward motion. Think of it like a track stand. Do you keep the pedal free and no brake? Nah, usually a brake with pedal force is what helps keep us balanced.

    I was pretty exhausted last weekend climbing a really tough loose rocky climb that started around mile 19. I struggled for the 17 minutes it took to climb (my fastest is 13ish/14ish I believe). Must of the steepest bits were in low gear, I could occasionally shift down to 3rd or 4th a couple times I think, maybe not that day but isn't out of the question I suppose. That was on the hard tail, 2.8" tired 50t geared bike.


    Anyway.....keep up the humor. There isn't enough of that around here.

  23. #23
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    I can stop and restart without touching down.
    Well no police jailed me for going up slow in the trails,
    just some web cops trying to ticket me.

  24. #24
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    Also the Intense Primer takes 2x. They're pretty cheap, $3800.

  25. #25
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    yeah i was just looking at the trek marlin...they are less than 1K..i'll look at the pivot and intense but at that point i will just finally go get the stumpy 29 ...i think front gearing will make a comeback someday
    "He can make even a global summit meeting seem like a kegger." M. Dowd, NY Times, 19 July 2006

  26. #26
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    just checked it out..you are correct...very interesting bike, but maybe too pricey for me
    "He can make even a global summit meeting seem like a kegger." M. Dowd, NY Times, 19 July 2006

  27. #27
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    To reply to the OP's question: reason I bought a Norco Optic is that it can run a front derailleur.

    I switched from a 2x9 26" (lowest gear 22x34) to a 1x11 29er. Optic came with 30t front ring and 11-46 cassette.

    I switched out the 30T to a 28T and have the impression I can ride everything I was able to ride before.
    Pedaling technique has changed a bit.

    However, I'm still glad I have a bike that can run a FD in case I would like to.
    Think the Norco Sight might also have this option (requires specific part that mounts to ISCG tabs).

    From my research remember that 2016-2018 Trek Fuel
    and Kona Hei Hei can run FD.
    Hope this helps.
    More options = better.

  28. #28
    change is good
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    I ran 2x on my Switchblade. Di2 - great range. The step off in the two lowest geared cogs is a little sudden compared to my old Di2 but not drastic. Iím not blown over by 1x say like droppers, disc brakes, the newer AM forks and multi- link suspension. But I climb like shite and Eagle has sufficed for me. Being able to drop to the small chainring for unexpected steeps is really the only thing I miss about 2x.


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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forest Rider View Post
    It is always pretty amusing to read comments about "I figure I'd tip over if I went that slow/had low gears".

    1) Have any of you actually tipped over from going to slow?
    -yes: wow
    -no: okay then

    2) Do you have that same gear ratio to have actually tested whether or not it is a fall over thing.
    -no: well then maybe it's not true to tip over


    Experience: I have 30/50 and 22/36. I have never ever tipped over from using those gears. I am usually going up something steep that each pedal stroke is a struggle to the point where I am exerting some type of forward motion. Think of it like a track stand. Do you keep the pedal free and no brake? Nah, usually a brake with pedal force is what helps keep us balanced.

    I was pretty exhausted last weekend climbing a really tough loose rocky climb that started around mile 19. I struggled for the 17 minutes it took to climb (my fastest is 13ish/14ish I believe). Must of the steepest bits were in low gear, I could occasionally shift down to 3rd or 4th a couple times I think, maybe not that day but isn't out of the question I suppose. That was on the hard tail, 2.8" tired 50t geared bike.


    Anyway.....keep up the humor. There isn't enough of that around here.
    On tech sections, I've absolutely dabbed when trying to spin a really low gear and moving through slower than normal.

  30. #30
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    Ibis Ripley LS on closeout.

    Nothing wrong with a FD, everyone loves putting more weight on the suspension- makes sense. Keep an eye on the 12 speed thread, several people commenting that the long ass RD is tending to get hit be trail crap more often.

    I've gotten used to 1x because I had a few frames that couldn't run a FD, but truth be told, now that I have a Ripley LS, looking at DI2 again for the synchro shifting. Had it on my OG Ripley and loved it. Having rolling terrain, I do like a tighter spaced cassette. That and when I do come on up on a short steep climb, I miss the FD dumb.
    Ripley LS v3
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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusBrody View Post
    Though at those gear ratios I'm more worried about tipping over from how slow I'm going. I certainly wouldn't be worried about the slight loss in power of a 28:52 vs. a 22:42.
    It's not the tipping that concerns me (I once won the "slow ride" competition at a New Belgium Tour de Fat festival, so I can handle slow without tipping). Once you get below a certain point, your gearing is soooo low that you're creeping along at such a slow pace and your cadence is still so high that your heart rate is elevated for a longer time period, and since you spend so much more time on that little hill crawling in a stupid low gear with a high HR, you wind up burning all your candles. It's pretty inefficient all in all.

    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    Again you are proven wrong.
    I use 22 front with 42 rear explain that with a single front??? 14 S???
    All that proves is that you have a bastard drivetrain. That's fine that you like it, but claiming that it says anything about anything else is ludicrous. Are you sure that your reasoning processes weren't fried by smoking too much meth?

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    I agree, the 1 ring was designed for racers not recreational riders.
    From memory i saw a front derailleur recently on some Ghost XC,
    and some 27+ from Rocky Mountain.
    Where i ride 46 and 50 just pick up stuff so my largest cog is 42.
    I kind of like the 10 S cassette 11-42 with a double in front.
    Just do the gear ratio math. 1x with the wide range cassettes available these days eliminates the need for a front derailleur with 2x or 3x set up.

  33. #33
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    I've never had a mountain bike with a front derailer and never wanted one. Started riding when 3x9 was cutting edge, which was not that long ago.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
    Just do the gear ratio math. 1x with the wide range cassettes available these days eliminates the need for a front derailleur with 2x or 3x set up.
    Just do the maths, more affordable cassette
    + more affordable chain = more smart option
    I win

  35. #35
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    Huh? A 12 speed cassette, single chainring and a chain costs more than a 2x chainring, front derailleur and a front shifter/cable?

    I'm not sure what you are winning.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
    Just do the gear ratio math. 1x with the wide range cassettes available these days eliminates the need for a front derailleur with 2x or 3x set up.
    The issue is the tooth gaps on the rear cassette. Not an issue mt biking, but bikepacking is something different.

  37. #37
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    Just set up my Krampus with a sram boost 2x11. Mostly for bikepacking but some trail as well. Getting something like 18-100 gear inches. It's 26-36 front, 11-46 back. Might try a little lower for some of my steeps.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    Just do the maths, more affordable cassette
    + more affordable chain = more smart option
    I win
    Quote Originally Posted by prj71 View Post
    I'm not sure what you are winning.
    The race to the bottom. Derp.

  39. #39
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    thanks, i'll look into those models
    "He can make even a global summit meeting seem like a kegger." M. Dowd, NY Times, 19 July 2006

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    I use 22 front with 42 rear explain that with a single front??? 14 S???
    22/42 = .524

    28/50 = .560

    Splitting hairs...1x for the win.

  41. #41
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    rocky mountain element
    Ill be out riding, youll still be trolling mtbr. Mtbr, where people who dont ride come to pretend they do.

  42. #42
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    If you are looking for a hardtail 29er, I believe Fezzari Wasatch Peak (either model) could be retrofitted with a front derailleur.

    I do not own a Fezzari, but it is one I've been looking at, that's the only reason I mention it.

    Completely understand the attraction to a 2x system.
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