Salsa XX1 SS conversion help?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Salsa XX1 SS conversion help?

    Hey guys, looking to turn my XX1 into a SS.

    My problem is that I'd rather not run a chain tensioner. Can I find the magic ratio using the XX1 28T front chain ring? If I did find the magic ratio, what chain do you guys recommend?

    I want the tensioner to be my last resort if possible.

    My LBS owner is a real good buddy of mine and says that I have to run a tensioner....period. I'm hoping you guys have some better ideas that can prove him wrong lol!

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    Which Salsa frame are you using? Your buddy is most likely right about a tensioner. Finding the magic ratio for your frame is difficult and chain stretch will occur, which will require the use of a tensioner to save your knees from slamming into the bars when the rear cog drops the chain.

    To find the magic ratio, you first need to know the exact chainstay length.

    Use this site to determine possible gear ratios.
    I see hills.

    I want to climb them.

  3. #3
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    Thanks man, I was afraid he was right. I'll be using the Salsa Beargrease carbon frame and fork.

  4. #4
    Beer Drnkr w/bike problem
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    Hold off on the tensioner, look at your other options first.
    http://www.philwood.com/products/bbp...hilcentric.php
    Trickstuff
    also look into eccentric Hubs.
    "Not drinking is the Single Speed World Championships version of doping" -Jacquie Phelan

    E-bikes are Mountain Mopeds

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by TacoBeer View Post
    Hold off on the tensioner, look at your other options first.
    http://www.philwood.com/products/bbp...hilcentric.php
    Trickstuff
    also look into eccentric Hubs.
    Unfortunately the Philcentric BB won't work as the Beargrease has a press-fit GXP bottom bracket. The hub is a tough one with the 177mm width hub spacing. I think a tensioner is your only option.

    This is based on my research of trying to SS my Beargrease as well.

  6. #6
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    My first ss conversion I did by drilling out my cassette and taking apart my cranks, wound up with 18 potential combos, swapped stuff out until I found something that worked. Lots of chain splicing involved. Once you find one combo that works you can figure out others. Worked OK long enough to convince me to get a ss specific frame. It skipped sometimes. But it skipped just as much with the tensioner. Don't go too small in the back. Nothing you do will work as well as a ss specific frame. No guarantee you'll find something that works.

    Doesn't matter what chain. 8 speed, 9 speed, whatever. Something cheap.

  7. #7
    Beer Drnkr w/bike problem
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    Wow! all options out now. That sucks, in this case I would suggest sell the bike and get something more specific to your need. My first SS I had a tensioner and will never go that route again, too many problems with them. Not worth it in my opinion. Good luck.



    Quote Originally Posted by keifla123 View Post
    Unfortunately the Philcentric BB won't work as the Beargrease has a press-fit GXP bottom bracket. The hub is a tough one with the 177mm width hub spacing. I think a tensioner is your only option.

    This is based on my research of trying to SS my Beargrease as well.
    "Not drinking is the Single Speed World Championships version of doping" -Jacquie Phelan

    E-bikes are Mountain Mopeds

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TacoBeer View Post
    That sucks, in this case I would suggest sell the bike and get something more specific to your need. .
    No, don't sell that gorgeous bike!

    In fact, maybe that bike is too gorgeous to hack up anyway, huh. You know, people are usually doing this kind of experimental surgery on their backup bike, maybe you just need one of those. Find an old bike with horizontal dropouts, and you're good to go. Specialized was building horizontal dropouts well into the 90's, looks like they sealed off the dropout at one point but fifteen seconds with an angle grinder and you can fix that. You can find Rockhoppers for cheap and occasionally you can get a deal on a stumpjumper, not at all a bad bike to have in the garage. Parts (wheels, tires, forks) for those old 26er's are delightfully cheap. You'll have a load of fun wrenchin and ridin and that'll give you a chance to get your head screwed on straight before you start spending real money.

    Among other things, you'll increase your confidence in building, and it opens up a whole world of possibilities in terms of frames for a single speed build. If you really get into this, maybe you'll want to save some money and just buy a trek, or maybe you'll want to invest in a titanium Jones frame, who knows? If you like ss you might like rigid, but if you go rigid, are you sure you know what tire/rim solution you want? Because it matters. Is 29 gonna work for you? Are you sure you don't want to go 29+? Or maybe b+? Something to be said for walking before you run.

    Find a good deal on one of those old bikes, mess around with it, and then sell that when you're ready to invest in a ss frame.

    There are also a couple of mail-order single-speeds out there, the Nashbar 29er comes to mind and the redline monocog is pretty durn cool also. That'll get you into 29er size, which has its advantages, although you kind of take a hit when it comes time to sell, and you don't get the garage time in, which I think has its merits. Don't get me wrong, I'd way rather have a 29er ss but you can still do stuff with a 26er frame. Invest in a salsa chromoto 425mm fork and you can do pretty much anything, make it into a 69er if you want. Not as fast as a 29er, think of it as a sort of a half-fast 29er.

    It's fun spending OPM, keep us posted.

  9. #9
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    Can an FSA eccentric bb not work in this case?

    I have one on my Raleigh XXIX, it converts a pf30 bb to be used with a gxp 24mm crank. I use some spacers but other than that it works fine

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trev View Post
    Can an FSA eccentric bb not work in this case?

    I have one on my Raleigh XXIX, it converts a pf30 bb to be used with a gxp 24mm crank. I use some spacers but other than that it works fine
    The issue is that the Beargrease has a press-fit GXP BB that is 100mm wide. The press-fit bearings are smaller than the BB30 arrangement so I highly doubt it would work.

  11. #11
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    Ic, missed the part that they were press fit gsp

  12. #12
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    Thanks for all the help guys. I'm afraid my buddy and LBS owner is right about me running a tensioner. I'd rather not run a tensioner, just plain hate them.....just my personal opinion.

    Rather than hack up one of the 2 carbon Beargease's, I think I'll just sell them off and look for a more SS specific lightweight frame.

    Right now, my main ride is a Ti Mukluk with the Alternator dropouts. I went with this frame because of the dropouts and no need of a tensioner. I just wanted to build a super lightweight carbon SS out of 1 of my BG'S.

    Thanks again for all the help guys! Really appreciated.

  13. #13
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    Problem Solvers

    This might work ive seen it on a fatboy that uses PF30. The guy just had to modify slightly, as in get longer bolts i think

  14. #14
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    I don't think the Problem solvers eccentric is recommended for a carbon bottom bracket. Alloy frames ok, but not carbon.
    I see hills.

    I want to climb them.

  15. #15
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    Another method (other than derailleur mount tensioner) would be a ghost ring. Also, there's some chainstay mounted tensioner/guide thingies that might work.
    I see hills.

    I want to climb them.

  16. #16
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    Or use the dr as a tensioner. Mount the middle ring on the outside of the spider, where the big ring is now. Space the cog all the way out and use the h screw to line the dr up. I imagine it might be hard to get the chainline exactly right but, you know, the dr is working now isn't it...

    Much as I hate tensioners, I gotta admit something like this would probably work Q2 Chain Tension Master - BlueSkyCycling.com or Shimano Alfine CT-S500 Chain Tensioner from BikeBling.com

    Thing about magic gear is,
    -- sometimes there is one and sometimes there isn't, the gear calculator didn't help me find one, that was trial and error. But it helped me know what my other options were once I found it
    -- hard to get the chain tension just right, but if you're running a big cog (18-20) and you get the chainline right, it's not necessarily horrible. People do it all the time. I did it for years, in fact I was able to ride around in New Mexico for years with one gear combo and later found a different one that worked in Florida.

    I don't think ss is supposed to be expensive...

  17. #17
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    Thanks for all the help and ideas guys. I just hate chain tensioners......just my personal preference.

    It looks like I'm just gonna have to throw in the towel on this one and sell the 2 BG'S and keep them geared. This will let me fund a new SS specific frame and/or bike.

    This is my current SS fatty and while it's the most fun I've ever had on a bike, I'd like something rigid and light for those after work rides when I only have a short time.

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