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  1. #1
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    opinions about gearing

    26' hardtail gearing is 32x14. Im seeing alot of people do 32x18 gearing . havent gotten the rest of the bike together yet to ride it really just curious what you guys think. is that goin to be impossible to climb small but steep hills with? I also got an 18 rear gear, but that felt way too spinny. didnt get a chance to ride the bike cause I got it cheap and it had a bent crank on it. didnt like the homemade cog spacers that were on it ordered a spacer kit and put the 14 cog on and awaiting a chain breaker to shorten the chain. its raining here all week anyways, its killing me. figured id let you guys give me your opinions what gearing you got and why?

  2. #2
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    32x16 is pretty sweet for me around my parts, not a lot of overall elevation change, but a lot of steep short hills or longish gradual ones. tight single track 32x16 is pretty burly but good.

    i recently went to a 33x17 gear ratio to try something a bit different and allow me to ride the more technical nasty uphills on some of the area trails. so far it's also good but i find it a bit spiny for my taste when the trail straightens out (luckily this is infrequent so not much of an issue).

    i'd say 14 tooth is gonna be too steep for tightish single track, and 18 is gonna be way to spinny. you need to be in the middle my friend.

  3. #3
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    Try it out.

  4. #4
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    My neighbor rides strictly kiddie wheels and he's geared 32x16. He's on a blinged out custom Seven and races quite a bit, and would destroy me.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by umarth View Post
    Try it out.
    +1

    I had been running a 32/16 for the last three years until recently swapping to a 32/18. It was a noticeable change.

    I like the new gear to run my usual trail at the Tyler State Park in Texas...(a 9 mile loop, up and down, short, steep climbs...a good overall one hour ass-kicking), but I like the 32/16 at other trails with less climbing (like the Monkey Trails in Shreveport, LA).

    Experiment with the different cogs...worst that can happen is you'll get to work on your bike a little more .

  6. #6
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    oh, think I forgot to mention this but I DID buy a 16t cog but when it showed up its an 1/8" cog so I couldnt use it. I did get my chain breaker and got the chain setup last night then figured out the F'n spacers are one shim off (chainline) so I gotta take the nut off and swap that around. the ***** about that is i got a solid axle, so that means either buying a diff. tool, or taking the axle out again to take the nut off. but I plan on trying to get that done tonight or tomorrow night so I can try the 14 before I buy another 16. or should I say, wait for another 16t to show up. cause I do plan on getting one anyways to have a selection. been thinking about doin the modified dingle speed thing. only 32 up front still, but the ability to swap the chain and reposition the brake accordingly at diff. trails.

    so far that makes NOONE running 32x14 then huh? atleast the 14 was already on teh bike when I got it. lol.

  7. #7
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    I run 32x14 on my SS hardtail and even around here I seem to be the only one. 32-14 is nice on the straights and flats (we obviously have a lot of that here), but it's a killer on the inclines. It's especially killer if you're on a cooldown because hell, it's not a cooldown! You HAVE to maintain that minimum speed to keep the effort low.

    I don't know where you live/ride and what the terrain is like, but I'd venture to say that you'll find it very difficult or borderline impossible to ride 32x14. Of course, try it first, and then regear if you so desire. Experiment among all the different rear cogs, and you'll find a happy medium. I would recommend picking up a complete set of cogs, including 15T and 17T.

    If 32x14 is too difficult for you, don't condemn the sport yet. Part of the fun is experimenting with the different ratios and wrenching on your bike!

  8. #8
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    My first ride SS was with a 32/14 on 26" wheels.
    That wasn't my intention though; I thought I had put the 16 from my cassette on.
    So I'm riding along thinking "Man, SS is hard, even on the flats this gear is too much in the singletrack. I'm going to have to go to the 18."
    I was relieved to find my mistake.

    I know some guys who can push a gear about that big on a flat course, but not me.

  9. #9
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    I can't push 32x18 on flats LOL.
    32x20 or 32x21 works best for me.

  10. #10
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    Opinions about gearing are as valuable as opinions about shoe size.

    --sParty
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    We don't quit riding because we get old.
    We get old because we quit riding.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    Opinions about gearing are as valuable as opinions about shoe size.

    --sParty
    11- 11.5, unless I'm wearing Nike. Then 12.

  12. #12
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    I think 10.5s would fit you best, umarth.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexrex20 View Post
    I think 10.5s would fit you best, umarth.
    He has small hands.

    --sParty
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexrex20 View Post
    I think 10.5s would fit you best, umarth.
    Only in my tap shoes.

  15. #15
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    cool thanks for the feedback I'll report back this weekend cause Im gonna drill out my socket to be able to use it w/the axle on that way i can swap gears easily.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    He has small hands.

    --sParty


    You know what they say about guys who run big gear, don't you?




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  17. #17
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    Nice

  18. #18
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    use your waist size for the number of teeth up front and the length from your shoulder to your wrist on the left arm for the number of teeth on the cog. in my case 32x20.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by jellytronics View Post
    use your waist size for the number of teeth up front and the length from your shoulder to your wrist on the left arm for the number of teeth on the cog. in my case 32x20.
    wow, good thing I dont have a 40" waste band!

  20. #20
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    I took my 8 year old daughter out today for her first ride on her first geared bike . It's a 24" wheel Mongoose (in pink, naturally).

    I was at Wally World a few days ago with her and had stopped by the bike section to see if she could fit a bigger bike yet, not intending to buy one, just to size her. When she saw the seemingly 100 lb pink 21 speed Mongoose, her little eyes lit up .

    I tried talking her into letting me build her a better bike, but in her mind she thought I meant carving it out of wood or something. She asked if it would have the same flower stickers...so, yeah, in the end we took it home .

    We took it out today and rode several miles on a flat concrete trail. Her on her 21 speed, me on my new 32/18 SS 26" wheel set up with sneakers and eggbeaters .

    All I can say is...I couldn't keep up with her, hahahahaha.

    32/18 seemed like a nice change for the hilly trail I usually ride, but it was just downright painful on the flat concrete. P-A-I-N-F-U-L-L-Y spinny .

    I'm pretty sure I could have pushed it faster than I was peddling . I would definitely be eyeballing the 32/14 for the street, if I ever really rode it there.
    "There's little traffic on the extra mile".

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus View Post
    Opinions about gearing are as valuable as opinions about shoe size.

    --sParty
    And saddle fit! Its all personal preference. You gotta try it to see what works for you on your home course, then its a crap shoot if you travel somewhere.

    I'm on a 29er SS and started with a 32-20 combo and although it climbs great and I can sit down to climb, I spin out way too quick on our flowing parts of the trail. I'm going to a 32-18 for my home trail. We have one guy here that is running a 32-16 on a 29er but he's an animal. That's a big gear combo for a 29er. We have another guy running a 32-17 on a 26" and he likes it. The 32-18 for a 29er is gonna be great for me personally. But that's me.

    You have to try multiple combos to get your own personal fit.
    "...quit hitting me with your hammer"
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  22. #22
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    got it together and rode it around the block/parking lot area by my house and its great for flat for sure. Im sure some of the hills this would NOT work for though. Im def. goin to get a 16t cog though and try that too. hopefully one day I can get back to my "home" trail and do half with the 14 and half with the 16 see which one I like better.

    but yeah I understand what ya'll are saying about it being a personal thing. I just wanted to hear what everyone else's experience was and what gear they ended up with. cause I know it'll be a trade off between easy hills or no top speed on the faster stretch's. it wouldnt kill me if I had to jump off halfway up some of the hills I "think" Id prefer to go faster through the rest of it. actually walking the bike up the hills feels harder to me then riding up. when Ive had to bail previously cause of bad gearing choice or whatever else.

    tell ya what though, I saw a single gear "collar" setup instead of the shim method and I wish I would have gotten that. it make it a LOT easier to set the chainline. instead of put it all together, figure out no its off a bit this way, take it all apart again, several times through. I gotta take it apart one more time to adj. the bearings on the axle, and move the gear in a tad more. after that I'll have my shim stack that will ofcourse always work so wont have to deal with that again when swapping gears.

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