New build: XX1 Eagle or XX1 11-speed?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    New build: XX1 Eagle or XX1 11-speed?

    I'm building up a Pivot 429 SL and trying to keep the weight low. I'm committed to a SRAM drivetrain, but am conflicted between XX1 Eagle and XX1 11-speed, so advice is welcome.

    The 11-speed is attractive because it's about 1/4 lb. lighter, and it's generally a smaller system (derailleur, cassette, and shorter chain). On the other hand, the Eagle is new, is purported to be a well-functioning, integrated system, and will be supported for some time.

    Cost of the two drivetrains to me is nearly the same due to discounts from buying the frame, and gear range is not an issue as I'm focused on climbing and don't really care if I spin out at 25mph or 30mph.

    Thoughts? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    I run XTR derailleur/shifter with XX1 11 speed cassette and chain. Overall it is the lightest 11 speed set up, but I def like the stronger (and adjustability) of Shimano clutch and double down shifts on shifter. SRAM vs Shimano is def personal preference though.

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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mlloyd007 View Post
    I'm building up a Pivot 429 SL and trying to keep the weight low.

    The 11-speed is attractive because it's about 1/4 lb. lighter,
    and it's generally a smaller system (derailleur, cassette, and shorter chain).

    Cost of the two drivetrains to me is nearly the same due to discounts from buying the frame, and gear range is not an issue as I'm focused on climbing and don't really care if I spin out at 25mph or 30mph.

    Thoughts? Thanks!
    11 speed seems to be the logical choice based on what you wrote. I'll also say I live by the advice of "never buy a component you're not OK with paying for twice". That goes double for derailleurs/cassettes.

  4. #4
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    Range is the only reason for Eagle.

    I need it on my XC bike, I don't on my AM bike.

  5. #5
    Ride Fast Take Chances :)
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    I have both. XX1 is lighter and is an amazing drivetrain. The Eagle is just one more. Almost everything from shifter feel to chain control is identical.

    That being said I would pick eagle everytime. The extra 1/4lb is more than worth it for the range. You can also run a bigger more efficient front ring while spending more time in the center of the cassette, which again is slightly more efficient. I wouldn't upgrade XX1 to it but I at the same time I won't build without it.

  6. #6
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    off what you said. I'd go with the XX1 11-spd.

    Me personally do not need a eagle on my XC bike, Only two races would actually warrant using that dinner plate gearing. The 11 vs 10 cog doesn't effect me on most the trails here anyway. SO I'd go with what is lighter
    Too Many .

  7. #7
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    I have an Eagle but if I were buying again, I might go with the 11 speed and an e*13 wide range cassette. seems like the best of both worlds.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by HyperSprite View Post
    I have an Eagle but if I were buying again, I might go with the 11 speed and an e*13 wide range cassette. seems like the best of both worlds.
    I have had 2 e13 cassettes , aluminum cogs dont last . 630 miles of climbing and shot . The other bike about 1100 miles .Went to eagle for the chromolly cassette


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  9. #9
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    I've been racing all season with my largely-X01 11spd setup on my 429SL (xx1 not worth it, cassette weighs exactly the same), not once did I feel I needed harder gears. I use a 32t ring up front.

    The only benefit I'd get out of eagle is better chain/gear wear. I'm not wearing out gears left and right to start with, so that's of little importance to me. I rarely use the easiest gear (42t), but in some of the longer or harder races it's nice to have as a bailout.

    If anyone has done much racing, you'll notice often that 1hr, 2hrs or longer, into the race, you can no longer push the same gears uphill as when you were fresh. The idea that if you just had a bit more range you'd somehow go faster is largely false. It might help you spin out on a downhill a little, but the situations where that is actually helpful are few and far between. XC races are won on the flats and uphills. The bike works great with 1x11 IME.

    The 11spd X01/XX1 cassettes are all steel, except for the largest gear, which is replaceable. Should be the same with eagle.

    The other thing is suspension performance, throwing more unsprung weight out there in the form of a heavier cassette is not a good thing for the suspension. If you really truly need eagle, go for it, but IMO the bike is gold with 11spd.

    I'll say this too, at my level, there are just a few racers that put out the same watts at the expert level, the drivetrain makes no difference here (11 vs 12 spd). A lot of the guys on the factory bikes are on 12spd because that's what the new bikes come with. They aren't winning more because of this.

    New build:  XX1 Eagle or XX1 11-speed?-20621135_10101228130698428_4485553586064948077_n.jpg

    One problem may be that I remember using 32 and 30t cassettes not too many years ago...somehow we survived just fine.
    Last edited by Jayem; 09-04-2017 at 11:32 AM.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by HyperSprite View Post
    I have an Eagle but if I were buying again, I might go with the 11 speed and an e*13 wide range cassette. seems like the best of both worlds.
    That is my set up. I am extremely pleased with it.

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  11. #11
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    Thanks for all the well-considered responses guys. I was riding today and talked to a guy on a Yeti with Eagle XX1, so I took a good look at it. My overriding reaction was that the cassette, derailleur and bottom pulley on the derailleur looked cartoonishly large, and it just goes against my minimalist instincts to go there. So based on that and the consensus feedback here, I'll go with the 11-speed after all. Peace all!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by COMTBR View Post
    Range is the only reason for Eagle.

    I need it on my XC bike, I don't on my AM bike.
    no there is a second reason:
    The ability to run a larger chainring front which has great effects on anti squat / pedal bob characteristics. On my bike the switch to Eagle enabled me to run a bigger 32T chainring (was 30T before with 1x11) which significantly decreased pedal feedback. The bike rides more neutral now and I've got a 10% lighter climbing gear (32/50 vs. 30/42) which is highly welcomed on longer climbs

    Quote Originally Posted by mlloyd007 View Post
    The 11-speed is attractive because it's about 1/4 lb. lighter, and it's generally a smaller system (derailleur, cassette, and shorter chain).
    some good points here. The Eagle derailleur is indeed huge, I bent mine within five rides (didn't manage to bend the original 11speed X1 derailleur in 2.5 years!)

    I consider the 11speed 10-42 system the more elegant drivetrain but was always missing 1/2 gear and couldn't go with a smaller chainring front without completely screwing up the suspension kinematics.

  13. #13
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    I think Eagle is the nail in the coffin for multiple-ring drivetrains. But it's not a whole lot more than that IMO.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  14. #14
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    Each person's fitness, how they ride and where they ride play a huge part in If they need a 11speed or a 12 speed dinner plate

    Personally for me. I hate spinning. Only two races here would warranty needing a Eagle. Whiskey off road 30 and 50mile race, and Fire on the rim. both of which I am faster on a SS.

    Not a lot of bikes will fit a 36T chainring as many have said is the benefit with the Eagle. I run a 34oval on my XC bike with a 11-40 XTR cassette. Don't need a 36T and really don't need a 46 or 50t on the back really. trails around my area without taking a 2 hour drive don't have a big enough grade climb..


    If you wanna save weight go with the lighter of the two.
    Jayem nailed it pretty well.
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  15. #15
    LDC is ded,deth by trollz
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    This an interesting discussion. I really think they need an 11-36 11spd cassette.

    So with eagle now you can get sram 12spd road cassettes then have some serious xc gearing for a state like Michigan. Could mount a 40 chainring with 11-36 12spd. Jaro kulhavy type stuff.

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