Are gear ratios created equal...- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    dmo
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    Are gear ratios created equal...

    Does it matter if you use a 30t or 32t chainring but still get the same ratio by using different sized cogs? Is there any reason using a 32t would be better than a 30t.

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  2. #2
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    Things like gear wrap and one some frames certain ratios are harder to tension the chain.

    I run a 34 chainring on my single speed mostly with 19t, but I also have 20t and 18t. I have sliders so all 3 cogs work with same chain just by adjusting the sliders. I should be able to also get a 21t if wanted and maybe a 17t.
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  3. #3
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    Efficiency wise it won't make a difference. As mentioned above, things like chain wrap, clearance, wheel position in the dropouts, etc all matter to most people though.

  4. #4
    dmo
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    Quote Originally Posted by DualRollers View Post
    Efficiency wise it won't make a difference. As mentioned above, things like chain wrap, clearance, wheel position in the dropouts, etc all matter to most people though.
    So what's better a 32t or 30t ring? Or does it depend on the frame?

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  5. #5
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    It really depends on your frame. Personally I run a 30t because my frame has a lower bottom bracket, and we have a lot of big rock stepups that I like to have all the extra clearance I can get under the bike. With that said, I don't like the position my wheel is in with 30/18. It's give or take and you really just have to experiment. I used to run 25/15 on the same bike but was going through chains a lot quicker than a bigger gear setup, so I switched.

    Cogs are cheap, I would say just experiment and find what you like.

  6. #6
    more skier than biker
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    Running larger cogs and chainrings versus their comparable smaller sizes for the same ratio (i.e. 36x18 vs a 32x16), will result in less wear of the drivetrain since the loads are spread out more

  7. #7
    Armature speller
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    Apart from rock strikes, there's no downside to bigger rings/cogs apart from weight.
    As long as your frame can handle it.

  8. #8
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    Assuming BB height is not an issue and the relative position of chain stay sliders are good (in terms of tire clearance), I prefer running a somewhat larger ring (typically 36t with 17 - 19t cogs).
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