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  1. #1
    LCW
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    GX1 vs XT M8000 (value 11-speed)

    Anyone ride/demo/own both? Curious as to your thoughts. Shift quality, clutch performance, bang for the buck, etc.

    One obvious advantage of XT M8000 is being compatible with 10 speed hubs (no need for XD driver). Aside from that ?


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    I don't have any experience with the new 11 speed XT, but I have been enjoying the GX1 drivetrain on my fat bike. I got the full group, cranks included and I've been really impressed. The GX1 is really a sweet spot for a full drivetrain - the price is great and you really don't lose much from the X01 other than a little weight. I have no complaints other than the fact that you can't get SRAM 11 speed cassette for a standard freehub body. If I want to be really nit picky, the GX shifter isn't quite as precise as the 10 speed X9 shifter on my other bikes.
    Vermonter - bikes, beers and skis.

  3. #3
    LCW
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    Sounds like an XT 11 speed cassette will work with the GX shifter/derailleur, and eliminate the need for an XD driver. That may lean me towards the GX. I like the SRAM feel.

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  4. #4
    612
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    Lcw is correct and I am using it on my cx bike with rival 1. I'm a mechanic and our shop has built quite a few fat bikes with the x1 group and sram cassettes. I raced this season on the full xt group down to the hubs and love it. I'm not a sram or shimano fanboy but I prefer the xt group over the seam stuff by far. Clutch is great, haven't had any dropped chains In the 6 months I've been riding it. Shifter feel is much more crisp where as the gx is much more of the standard squishy sram lever feel. I'm not familiar with the price difference but whatever it is I'd take the xt any day

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    If I was going to go GX...I'd drop the extra cash and go with either a X1 or X01 shifter.

  6. #6
    612
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    Yeah if you're set on sram definitely get the xo1 shifter. I know the xx1 isn't that much more but I've heard more than a couple stories of them "blowing up"

  7. #7
    LCW
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    Does the XT shifter allow 2-gear shifts on the upshift (i.e. down the cassette) like XTR and Saint?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Does the XT shifter allow 2-gear shifts on the upshift (i.e. down the cassette) like XTR and Saint?
    Yes, but it's with thumb push only, xtr shifter allows double down on pull and push

  9. #9
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    Ok thnx

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  10. #10
    612
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    Quote Originally Posted by pharmaboy View Post
    Yes, but it's with thumb push only, xtr shifter allows double down on pull and push
    Who uses the pull anyway?!

  11. #11
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    Hi, I was running full xx1 for a couple of years, and when I broke my rear deraileur, I ended up swapping over to xt shifter and rear deraileur and keeping my x01 cassette to get back on the road.

    XT is the same shift feel as SRAM, has the extra advantage of double down, easier to tune the rear deraileur, especially for the 10 to 12 shift.

    Wouldn't go back, though might consider an xtr shifter for the finger double change

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by 612 View Post
    Who uses the pull anyway?!
    Shimano people? Although amazing how many people don't even know they have the feature - I've showed at least 2 friends who had no idea they had it ( 10s xt)

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    Quote Originally Posted by pharmaboy View Post
    Hi, I was running full xx1 for a couple of years, and when I broke my rear deraileur, I ended up swapping over to xt shifter and rear deraileur and keeping my x01 cassette to get back on the road.

    XT is the same shift feel as SRAM, has the extra advantage of double down, easier to tune the rear deraileur, especially for the 10 to 12 shift.

    Wouldn't go back, though might consider an xtr shifter for the finger double change
    I don't agree at all that they have the same shifter feel. The xt is much more of a 'click' where as sram is more 'squish pop'' if that makes sense

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 612 View Post
    I don't agree at all that they have the same shifter feel. The xt is much more of a 'click' where as sram is more 'squish pop'' if that makes sense
    Lol, love your prose. Sort of the same way that SRAM was more of a click compared to shimano 10s? 10s shimano is smooth and seamless, and they've gone towards the SRAM click , but I agree, they've probably overtaken SRAM - more SRAM than SRAM !

    Ergonomics of the xt I also prefer - I used to constantly get sore on the back of my thumb from the SRAM shifter rubbing, the shimano seems to be slightly further away and doesn't hit my thumb when not in use

  15. #15
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    Yeah the texturing on the xt and even better on the xtr shifters is a replay nice touch

  16. #16
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    Very interesting you guys saying Shimano has "out-SRAM'ed" SRAM... I'm used to the very snappy 9-spd SRAM. Similar feeling I find in a 10spd Saint shifter/Zee derailleur combo. Sounds like the 11spd XT has more this feeling than X1 or GX1 does?

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    Quote Originally Posted by pharmaboy View Post
    Yes, but it's with thumb push only, xtr shifter allows double down on pull and push
    edit: delete post, read the post I was replying to wrong

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alias530 View Post
    False... SRAM doesn't have multiple upshifts.

    High end Shimano caps at 4 downshifts or 2 upshifts--push or pull, SRAM is 5 downshifts or 1 upshift--push only.
    Are you on crack?

    The guy asked about xt 11 speed, so the answer was for, guess what ? Xt 11 speed, not SRAM , sheesh....... Go and have a beer

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    Quote Originally Posted by pharmaboy View Post
    Are you on crack?

    The guy asked about xt 11 speed, so the answer was for, guess what ? Xt 11 speed, not SRAM , sheesh....... Go and have a beer
    I read it wrong, calm down. I've been going back and forth all night in another thread about SRAM so SRAM was on my mind.

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    Lol, crack has the same effect as arguing on the interwebs - paranoia creeps in......

    Anyway OP, it's all budget related. If you have an xx1 suitable wheelset, the super expensive cassette from SRAM is better because of better range (nearly one extra gear) - the xx1, x01 will last a long time if you change chains regularly (cheapest SRAM Mtb 11s chain you can get). No idea about the pinned cassettes form SRAM - not around long enough to know if they are softer than the xx1 job. Shimano will shift as well, just lose that gear spacing, and about 8 minutes of sweating in weight.

    Cranks - lot to be said for direct mount SRAM cranks - light, plenty of aftermarket rings, and you can go down to 26t if you have to - that's a win versus shimano for the cranks. If lots of money, and eight weenie, carbon cranks are 100g lighter or more (real weights inlcluding BB)

    Shifter/ deraileur combo - I find deraileurs are not uncommon to get munched by tree branches, so value is important. Therefore 1st place xt, second place xtr, all other places SRAM - there no way an xx1 deraileur is worth 2 xtrs - none. Oh and cable replacement in shimano shifter is waaaay easier.


  21. #21
    612
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    SRAMs cassettes do have more range (obviously) but that comes with a horribly awkward gap between the 35-42 not to mention the xd driver pia. I'd say do whatever you like better for your shifter/der. But if your wheel set is 9/10 compatible just use an xt 11-42 with a shimano or kmc chain.

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    OP is talking about GX...not XX1. If you compare GX and XT...the prices are pretty close.

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    Ok, given it goes xx1, x01, x1, Gx versus xtr then Xt - gven they were the same money I'd go second string group rather than 4th string

    I don't believe sram are ahead of shimano in anything, so value would drive me to Xt with a tiny bit of X factor

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    Quote Originally Posted by 612 View Post
    Who uses the pull anyway?!
    This is the main reason that I use Shimano. But I do have to say that the pull lever on the 11sp XTR is harder than the 10sp XT.
    I think the the feel of XT and XTR 11 sp is the same.


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  25. #25
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    redacted
    Last edited by LCW; 12-17-2015 at 08:33 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 612 View Post
    SRAMs cassettes do have more range (obviously) but that comes with a horribly awkward gap between the 35-42 not to mention the xd driver pia. I'd say do whatever you like better for your shifter/der. But if your wheel set is 9/10 compatible just use an xt 11-42 with a shimano or kmc chain.
    The shift from 36 to 42 isn't that bad. It bothered me more when I had a 32 ring, but now that I have a 30 ring it isn't as bad. Even though the jump in teeth is the same, the smaller ring acts as a smaller multiplier so the actual speed gap between the two gears is smaller.

    And once you have the XD driver, it's much more convenient than a normal freehub. There's no gouging or cassettes getting stuck to it and the cassette is all one piece so it's a lot faster than trying to line up all the cogs at once, failing, and doing the carriers and individual cogs mostly by themselves with a Shimano cassette.

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    They are both solid drivetrains, and it probably comes down to personal preference. I have SRAM 1x11 on one bike and the new XT 1x11 on another bike. My personal choice would be XT for the following reasons:

    - I much prefer Shimano trigger shifters. The instant release, double release, push/pull release, and overall feel make them way better for me. I swapped to a twist shifter on my SRAM drivetrain because I really don't like SRAM triggers.

    - XT provides more versatile cassette and gearing options. I currently have it 1x11 with an 11-42 XT cassette, which works great, but for a long race or epic ride with lots of climbing I might want to make it a 2x11, which you can't do with SRAM since the SRAM rd doesn't support multiple chainrings. I could also install a Shimano 11-40 cassette if I prefer the rhythm step gearing. As a matter of fact, I'll probably install an XT or XTR 11-40 cassette and reinstall my XT front derailleur and shifter and double chainrings for some endurance races next year.

    - I've always just been a fan of XT and have used it since the early 90s. It has always been super reliable and durable and not finicky to keep adjusted. I also think it is the sweet spot as far as performance vs. cost.

    However, I do like the SRAM direct-mount cranksets. I use X0 cranks with my Shimano drivetrain.

  28. #28
    LCW
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    Do the new SRAM 11 spd derailleurs still stick out more vs the Shimano shadow plus? My old X0 (9spd) derailleur stuck out way more than my Zee 10spd derailleur. Result being the XO would sometimes get snagged or hit leading to a bent hanger.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jabrabu View Post
    They are both solid drivetrains, and it probably comes down to personal preference. I have SRAM 1x11 on one bike and the new XT 1x11 on another bike. My personal choice would be XT for the following reasons:

    - I much prefer Shimano trigger shifters. The instant release, double release, push/pull release, and overall feel make them way better for me. I swapped to a twist shifter on my SRAM drivetrain because I really don't like SRAM triggers.

    - XT provides more versatile cassette and gearing options. I currently have it 1x11 with an 11-42 XT cassette, which works great, but for a long race or epic ride with lots of climbing I might want to make it a 2x11, which you can't do with SRAM since the SRAM rd doesn't support multiple chainrings. I could also install a Shimano 11-40 cassette if I prefer the rhythm step gearing. As a matter of fact, I'll probably install an XT or XTR 11-40 cassette and reinstall my XT front derailleur and shifter and double chainrings for some endurance races next year.

    - I've always just been a fan of XT and have used it since the early 90s. It has always been super reliable and durable and not finicky to keep adjusted. I also think it is the sweet spot as far as performance vs. cost.

    However, I do like the SRAM direct-mount cranksets. I use X0 cranks with my Shimano drivetrain.
    I think the whole rhythm step thing is marketing nonsense... a SRAM 10-42 cassette is basically a regular 10spd 11-36 with a 42 slapped on the end and one slightly larger jump in the middle to accommodate starting at a 10T cog instead of an 11T cog.

    11-13-15-17-19-21-24-28-32-36 (Shimano 11-36)
    10-12-14-16-18-21-24-28-32-36-42 (Sram 10-42)

    It's all 2 tooth jumps at the beginning, except it goes from 18 to 21 instead of 19 to 21. That jump and the 36->42 are the only ones bigger than what's found on an 11-36. So if their 11-40 is "right" then it almost seems like they're saying their 10spd 11-36 was "wrong". Just my opinion though

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Do the new SRAM 11 spd derailleurs still stick out more vs the Shimano shadow plus? My old X0 (9spd) derailleur stuck out way more than my Zee 10spd derailleur. Result being the XO would sometimes get snagged or hit leading to a bent hanger.
    Yeah since they rotated the parallelogram it sticks out an extra half cm or so more than the shimano's

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by 612 View Post
    Yeah since they rotated the parallelogram it sticks out an extra half cm or so more than the shimano's
    Good to know - thanks. This is a big asset for the Shimano imho.

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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Good to know - thanks. This is a big asset for the Shimano imho.
    SRAM had a very good reason for it though. The parallelogram only moves on the z axis which is in turn affected less when your rear wheel hits anything so you don't get ghost shifts

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    Quote Originally Posted by thecanoe View Post
    This is the main reason that I use Shimano. But I do have to say that the pull lever on the 11sp XTR is harder than the 10sp XT.
    I think the the feel of XT and XTR 11 sp is the same.


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    The point he was making is that SRAM has it right and Shimano is doing what Shimano does and only offers the pull trigger to keep from offending people who refuse to take advantage of the innovations that they're making...kinda like why Shimano won't release a cassette that doesn't fit old cassette bodies.

    One finger brake levers need to be positioned further inboard on the bars, this either pushes the shiftier out of range of the index finger for pull trigger operation, or moves it outwards to the point where you have to bend your thumb to push to take up derailleur cable if placed outside of the brake lever. Placing it inboard of the brake lever means that your thumb is straight, yet still hits the outside portion of the thumb push lever for better leverage. But it makes it impossible to use the index finger trigger....

    Why? So you can ride like this:
    Index finger on the brake lever at all times, shift with the thumb. That way you always have three fingers around the grips (most importantly your second strongest middle finger), and your strongest finger on the brakes...both of which add confidence and control.

    SRAM probably thought about this and figured why offer the feature that shouldn't be used?

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    People who brake with their index finger are not doing to understand the pull system.

    Those that brake middle finger will value it.

    Me, I've always braked middle finger, so pull changing feels right, even after a couple of years using xx1 shifting, I still instantly felt at home back on shimano and pull shift.

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    I'm in the same boat; in Europe prices for 1x11 GX and XT are pretty much the same; IMHO the build quality of XT is slightly higher, but there are other deciding factors... This is my "armchair engineer" analysis, some real world experieces are welcome.

    GX Pros:
    - Cassette has steel cogs => more durable
    - Can mount 26/28T chainrings
    - Wider gear range

    GX Cons:
    - XD Freehub
    - Even if the overall cost is the same, the cassette alone is more expensive => greater TCO

    Shimano Pros:
    - Standard freehub
    - Higher build quality (?)
    - Cheaper cassette

    Shimano cons
    - Smaller chainring 30t (at least if you stick with Shimano crankset)
    - Aluminum 42 cog => premature wear?
    - Chain falling from 42 when backpedaling: this seems a design issue, many people tried to adjust the chainline from 51 to 49 (or even 47) and the chain keeps falling (don't know if it's a big deal, I don't see many use cases for backpedaling in lower gear)

  36. #36
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    Is this back pedaling chain issue a sure thing (i.e. every single one is affected) or more random?

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    Don't know... I've read about this issue on some boards (mtb-forum.it, singletrackworld.com and here); a nsmb user reports that he has no issues, other guys are saying the issue is mitigated using a SRAM chain. There's also a guy trying to fix this by adjusting the chainline (without success) on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_jows3vKsQ. Anyway I've seen that even SRAM setups can have the same issue... to be honest two of my riding buddies are using XX1 and they're performing flawlessly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zoorlen View Post
    I'm in the same boat; in Europe prices for 1x11 GX and XT are pretty much the same; IMHO the build quality of XT is slightly higher, but there are other deciding factors... This is my "armchair engineer" analysis, some real world experieces are welcome.

    GX Pros:
    - Cassette has steel cogs => more durable
    - Can mount 26/28T chainrings
    - Wider gear range

    GX Cons:
    - XD Freehub
    - Even if the overall cost is the same, the cassette alone is more expensive => greater TCO

    Shimano Pros:
    - Standard freehub
    - Higher build quality (?)
    - Cheaper cassette

    Shimano cons
    - Smaller chainring 30t (at least if you stick with Shimano crankset)
    - Aluminum 42 cog => premature wear?
    - Chain falling from 42 when backpedaling: this seems a design issue, many people tried to adjust the chainline from 51 to 49 (or even 47) and the chain keeps falling (don't know if it's a big deal, I don't see many use cases for backpedaling in lower gear)
    I don't have personal experience with the 11spd XT cassettes but the 10spd ones don't last much longer than ~1,500 miles and there's posts of people clearing 3,000-5,000 miles on their X01/XX1 cassettes and the GX cassettes are made from the same material. Just nitpicking here but it's worth acknowledging that the GX cassette may last longer than XT.

    Also, only the lower end GX cassette is all steel. I think the 1150 model. The 1175 model still has an alu cog and is ~70g lighter if memory serves.
    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Is this back pedaling chain issue a sure thing (i.e. every single one is affected) or more random?
    I would think this has more to do with individual setups. I've had individual setups do this when they were new then stop as they wore and I've had setups not do it when they were new and start to do it when they wore out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Is this back pedaling chain issue a sure thing (i.e. every single one is affected) or more random?
    I have XX1 on one bike and XT 1x11 on another bike, and on both of them the chain will drop off the 42t cog if you backpedal, so it's not specific to XT. It hasn't been an issue on the trail.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alias530 View Post
    the 10spd ones don't last much longer than ~1,500 miles and there's posts of people clearing 3,000-5,000 miles on their X01/XX1
    the people getting that much mileage from their Sram cassettes are either riding in different conditions or taking better care of their chains than you do. I easily get 4-5k out of Shimano 10s.

    I only have about 200 on my M8000, but it shifts a lot better than anything Sram I've used (also a lot better than Shimano 10s). It also works just fine with a 10s chain; well better than just fine, like I said it works really, really well compared to Sram. Combined with the fact that its significantly cheaper, works without a special freehub and the instant-release shifter being able to shift 2 at once made that an obvious choice for me.

    IMO the only thing Sram has going for them is the shift pattern and the 10t cog. The latter; I only spin out my 11 on road sections where I could care less about speed (and you can use a Sram cassette anyway, if a little more range is worth the shift quality hit you'll take and the ~$70 extra).

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    Yeah, tons of variables for component lifespan. Chain swapping/maintenance, chain lube brand, where you ride (decomposed granite vs loam, etc), how you ride (mashing or spinning), etc.

    Also a ton of variables for how shifting feels. There's more to it than just cable tension... setting b-tension at your sag point on a full suspension bike is something not everyone does and it makes a HUGE difference in performance.

    For me, SRAM is about the weight, simplicity, and gear range. You can get simplicity from Shimano but not the weight or gear range. That said, I run Shimano on my road and cross bikes but for mountain, SRAM just makes more sense for my preferences. YMMV.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joules View Post
    the people getting that much mileage from their Sram cassettes are either riding in different conditions or taking better care of their chains than you do. I easily get 4-5k out of Shimano 10s.

    I only have about 200 on my M8000, but it shifts a lot better than anything Sram I've used (also a lot better than Shimano 10s). It also works just fine with a 10s chain; well better than just fine, like I said it works really, really well compared to Sram. Combined with the fact that its significantly cheaper, works without a special freehub and the instant-release shifter being able to shift 2 at once made that an obvious choice for me.

    IMO the only thing Sram has going for them is the shift pattern and the 10t cog. The latter; I only spin out my 11 on road sections where I could care less about speed (and you can use a Sram cassette anyway, if a little more range is worth the shift quality hit you'll take and the ~$70 extra).
    Thank you for the lead into the question I wanted to ask. How important is the 10 vrs.11 on the cassette. I heard once it was like adding 3 teeth to the chain ring? If that is correct that is significant enough for me to consider the Sram.

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    Quote Originally Posted by audioguymi View Post
    Thank you for the lead into the question I wanted to ask. How important is the 10 vrs.11 on the cassette. I heard once it was like adding 3 teeth to the chain ring? If that is correct that is significant enough for me to consider the Sram.

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    It adds 10% to top end.

    Chainrings are readily available in 2 tooth increments but just for illustration, a 33 chainring with 11 tooth cassette cog would be the same as a 30 chainring with 10 tooth cassette cog. So you can see how that helps pick a small chainring to retain climbing ability without losing as much top end for downhill.

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    Quote Originally Posted by audioguymi View Post
    Thank you for the lead into the question I wanted to ask. How important is the 10 vrs.11 on the cassette. I heard once it was like adding 3 teeth to the chain ring? If that is correct that is significant enough for me to consider the Sram.

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk
    You could always run xt with the cram cassette..

  45. #45
    LCW
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    Silly question - can any hub be converted to XD, or is at at the mercy of every hub manufacturer to provide an optional XD driver that fits their particular hub?

    I ask since I somehow doubt there is an XD hub driver for my Surly Wednesday, which has some cheap rear hub (Formula?). 177x12 anyways.


    Cheers

    Santa Cruz Hightower LT


  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    Silly question - can any hub be converted to XD, or is at at the mercy of every hub manufacturer to provide an optional XD driver that fits their particular hub?

    I ask since I somehow doubt there is an XD hub driver for my Surly Wednesday, which has some cheap rear hub (Formula?). 177x12 anyways.


    Cheers
    Mercy of the hub manufacturer to provide

  47. #47
    LCW
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    GX - non-adjustable clutch, but has the cage lock feature
    XT - adjustable clutch, but no cage lock feature


    what are opinions on which is the better trade-off?

    Santa Cruz Hightower LT


  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    GX - non-adjustable clutch, but has the cage lock feature
    XT - adjustable clutch, but no cage lock feature


    what are opinions on which is the better trade-off?
    Cage lock is pretty nice but being able to turn the clutch on or off on the xt is good enough for me. It's just like taking out any other rear wheel I. The off position and I prefer the xt shifting.

  49. #49
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    I recently put the XT 11-speed group on my Bronson; I had a X9 10-speed groupset previously with a clutch derailleur. I like the shorter throw of the shifters but miss the crisp shifting of the X9 shifters, I started reading that the shifting might be because of the clutch tension in the XT. I like the cage lock of the Sram derailleur, but having the ability to adjust the clutch tension is nice--why can't we have both? It's not like Sram's cage lock mechanism is terribly complicated.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by LCW View Post
    GX - non-adjustable clutch, but has the cage lock feature
    XT - adjustable clutch, but no cage lock feature


    what are opinions on which is the better trade-off?
    I've got both. The Cage Lock is a nice convenience function to have. Turning "off" the clutch on the XT, the derailleur is still under spring tension. With the Cage Lock...the derailleur just swings freely. Getting the wheel back in with the CL makes it a bit quicker.

  51. #51
    LCW
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    Made a choice... ordered up XT M8000 1x11 ... Along with a Race Face Aeffect crank (for my fatbike).

    Santa Cruz Hightower LT


  52. #52
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    I've had the m800 groupset since it came out. I like the value vs performance. I have about 600 miles and I have a broken tooth on my 42t. Probably from shifting under pressure on tech climbs. It's made of aluminum so it's soft. Not very durable. I don't know if there is an upgrade path that makes sense but given the low priced option of replacing it with a new m8000 cassette , it seems to be the best option at the moment.

    The backpedaling issue has always existed. I was concerned at first but it's never been an issue. Ive never found myself backpedaling while grinding on the 42t

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