Eagle cassette tolerance and clicking- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    vbm
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    Eagle cassette tolerance and clicking

    I'm working on a friend's 2016 Stumpjumper with a 1 month old Eagle GX drivetrain and ran into an interesting issue. In the 18t cog, the outer chain plate catches on one of 2 specific teeth on the adjacent 16t cog. These 2 teeth have the same profile (several different profiles if you look closely on these cassettes). When it does this, it clicks quite audibly. But, I can make it go away by adjusting the barrel screw on the shifter counterclockwise 3/4-full turn. However, when I do that, it causes significant lag (and occasional non-shift) when trying to drop down from the 32t to the 28t cog. There are no other significant issues with up or down shifting on the other cogs. I verified the hanger alignment and it is true. I cleaned the chain and the cassette, and relubed the chain with no improvement. See video please. The tolerances on Eagle are tight, one reason I have stuck with 11 speed. Is this a defective cassette? Or something else? I'm considering taking a file to the 2 problematic teeth and grind a bit off the inboard side. She's got a 100 mile race this Sunday and I'd like to fix it asap. Thanks alot.


  2. #2
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    Hey, I had exactly the same problem on my bike, since near-new - just further down on the cassette. I fluffed around with it a lot, for a couple of months. I did most things I could think of except changing the outer housing because it has a difficult internal routing. In the end I got my LBS to replace the outer (and inner, again) housing. He also shortened the chain by one link, even though the chain length was what came with the bike.
    Now no problems. For you it is very likely a similar story. The chance that the cassette is not manufactured correctly, or say a problem with your shifter is very low. And also just because your shifter cable and housing might be and feel near new, doesn't mean all is well there...
    Also check your B-adjustment screw position/ guide pulley gap, if you haven't already.

  3. #3
    vbm
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    thanks for that. B-screw was set correctly when I installed the drivetrain but I'll recheck. Cable and housing are new but I'll try to remove a link and see if that does the trick. She's doing a 100 mile ride today, maybe that'll just "wear out" enough metal on those two teeth to make the problem go away!

  4. #4
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    VBM, what did you end up figuring out/doing? My fairly new eagle set just started do exactly the same thing. On the 18 tooth cog, it does exactly like yours. All other cogs are fine.

  5. #5
    vbm
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    well, my friend did her 100 mile race and it seemed to fix itself. I am guessing it wore down enough to stop catching. I think the answer is to file those two particularly-profiled teeth a bit on the upside edge. Or stick with 11 speed. I recently changed jobs and just started commuting on bike a bit. I pulled out my 1993 Suntour XC Pro 3x8 speed and chuckled at how big the spacing is between those cassette cogs.

  6. #6
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    Good deal, it all shifts great. Besides the small catch and resulting click sound, itís a great performing set up.

    I appreciate you getting back to me

  7. #7
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    An update on mine. I really started slowly looking while my bike was in the work stand and slowly spinning the the cranks. It was indeed doing the same as OP. Looking closely itís teeth from the cog one below. So very carefully I barely hit the tooth casing it to hang up with a dremel, and I mean barely touching it for a second or two. I did this, spun it to see if it corrected it, then did it once more. No more catching.

    I thought about letting it wear on itís own, but the cog that the chain was in that I could hear it is the main cog I use and it was driving me crazy. Again I know some might be against taking a dremel to it, but I canít stress enough how careful I was hitting it. Plus all I have the benefit of having another eagle cassette avail if push came to shove.

  8. #8
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    I had this same problem on two GX 11 speed cassettes that I had. I just ended up slightly bending those two teeth out just a hair and everything worked fine. Still are both being used to this day without issue.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by R_Pierce View Post
    I had this same problem on two GX 11 speed cassettes that I had. I just ended up slightly bending those two teeth out just a hair and everything worked fine. Still are both being used to this day without issue.
    My experience with a brand new GX 11 speed cassette was that the chain (KMC) just wouldn't shift in a certain direction (high to low?) onto the 3rd or 4th smallest cog, but it'll settle in when shifting from the other direction.

  10. #10
    vbm
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    update to update:
    Well, she said that her drivetrain was "flawless" at the end of the 100 mile ride but she dropped if off this morning after riding with my wife. (First time I have seen the bike since the ride) Said "it's not shifting right." I put it on the stand and it was doing the same thing as in the first post. Here is today's issue:




  11. #11
    vbm
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    Taking a cue from advancedrescue, I took a dremel to the two offending teeth and voila! Fixed. Here is post-dremel video:




  12. #12
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    just joined the forum so hi and came across this thread as having the same issue on my Eagle GX
    after seeing your video's i have just checked mine and its the same as your on the same ring an catching the same ring
    so will give it a little blip with the dermal later
    can i ask any issues since doing this?

    thanks

  13. #13
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    Nice, mine did it again alittle later even after the dremel, which I corrected by adjusting the derailleur. Whatís crazy about it, like yours, was itís was always on the 5th cog.

  14. #14
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    Looks like I have the same issue. The 5th cog from the bottom. I think I will take a file to it, possible bend the tooth one time. Wish me luck.

  15. #15
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    My trek Stache with Eagle GX has always done this as well. Since it's still working well over a year later I've just dealt with the clicking. Tried every adjustment and found the same, I can get it to go away but the rest of it stops being reliable. Trek looked at it too and gave up

    I may look at filing teeth, never slowed it down enough to watch it in the stand

  16. #16
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    My newly installed GX Eagle cassette was doing the same. It seemed that some of the teeth were bent from the factory causing the chain to ride funny on the teeth. I straightened them out and the noise has gone away. Didnít have any issue with my X01 Eagle cassette on another bike...


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  17. #17
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    my wifes eagle gx shifts like shit it's always clicking, in probably the 18T like you had showed. I tried another gx cassette off on my my bikes and it still happened. But it doesnt happen with the XO1 RD on my bike. I've had so many issues with GX eagle bikes.

  18. #18
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    Weird, I'm having same issue on my 12spd GX Eagle 18t cog. Carefully sanded one teeth with sandpaper and flat-headed screwdriver and it seems to have fixed the issue. Have to confirm on the next ride.

  19. #19
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    Just wanted to say thanks. I was going nuts trying to figure out this issue, thought for sure it was just my cassette and was about the order a new one (x01) to replace it (GX). I must have used the correct search terms tonight because this thread pointed me to the issue, it was indeed the 16t causing an annoying click on the 18t, so whipped out the dremel and did a little surgery and now silence! I had the issue for a while with the mechanical GX Eagle, but after upgrading to an AXS mech and shifter I was paying attention to my shifting much more and just couldnít shake it. So thank you to everyone that figured it out and posted the fix.
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  20. #20
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    Sorry for the bump but I found this thread when I was looking for a solution to the same issue.

    Does anyone else think it's ludicrous to have to dremel a brand new $200 cassette to make it work right? Hell, even on a $50 cassette that's unacceptable.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alias530 View Post
    Sorry for the bump but I found this thread when I was looking for a solution to the same issue.

    Does anyone else think it's ludicrous to have to dremel a brand new $200 cassette to make it work right? Hell, even on a $50 cassette that's unacceptable.
    Yes. I had one bike, a Trek Fuel EX where it was a constant problem after 500 km from new. After about 2800 km I replaced it with a Giant Trance 29er. Same problem after less than 500 km. I've never looked over a shifting system so much. The tick tick (or slow shift) drove me crazy. Nearly went out and bought the Dremel. Instead I bought 11 speed XT. Close to 3000 km later and it hasn't skipped a beat and I have no need to look at it aside from typical maintenance. I don't regret it for a second!

  22. #22
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    Sram pinned cassettes are junk, always have been, don't buy one. I've not read much of this thread but imo, you don't necessarily need to Dremel anything. The teeth get bent/twist, as do the cogs themselves. You can tweek them back in line with a nice pair og channel locks and a keen eye. The xo1 cassette however, is damn nice.

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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alias530 View Post
    Sorry for the bump but I found this thread when I was looking for a solution to the same issue.

    Does anyone else think it's ludicrous to have to dremel a brand new $200 cassette to make it work right? Hell, even on a $50 cassette that's unacceptable.
    Agreed. My wife and I have five bikes between us with Eagle drivetrains (GX and X01) and they all do this, in addition to the super annoying crunch you get when the chain doesn't synchronize properly with the 42 or 50 narrow-wide cogs.

    In my opinion, Eagle is a half-baked product line that never should have been foisted upon the market. SRAM should be ashamed of this crap. Yes, it "works" and we all just want to ride our bikes. I guess that's why more people don't complain about it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bicycleriderguy View Post
    Agreed. My wife and I have five bikes between us with Eagle drivetrains (GX and X01) and they all do this, in addition to the super annoying crunch you get when the chain doesn't synchronize properly with the 42 or 50 narrow-wide cogs.

    In my opinion, Eagle is a half-baked product line that never should have been foisted upon the market. SRAM should be ashamed of this crap. Yes, it "works" and we all just want to ride our bikes. I guess that's why more people don't complain about it.
    Yeah I was a lot more impressed with 11spd. My derailleurs and cassette are GX eagle but everything else is x01/XX1 whereas last bike was all x01/xx1

  25. #25
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    I have the new Shimano 12spd xt and it was doing exactly this. It was driving me crazy. Finally found it and touched it with a file and fixed it. Thanks for the heads up. Obviously itís not just SRAM.

  26. #26
    vbm
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    Quote Originally Posted by outback2002 View Post
    I have the new Shimano 12spd xt and it was doing exactly this. It was driving me crazy. Finally found it and touched it with a file and fixed it. Thanks for the heads up. Obviously itís not just SRAM.
    Well that's a bummer! I'm still on my XTR 11 speed but thought I'd get a new bike this year with the XT 12. Maybe Box is onto something with their wide range 11-50 9 speed.

  27. #27
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    I do have the Box 11-46 11 speed cassette on a second set of wheels and it's great too. Works very well with my XTR derailleur/shifter.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by bicycleriderguy View Post
    In my opinion, Eagle is a half-baked product line that never should have been foisted upon the market. SRAM should be ashamed of this crap. Yes, it "works" and we all just want to ride our bikes. I guess that's why more people don't complain about it.

    I can not tell you how much I agree with this. Here my wife and I also have 1/2 doz bikes between us. All XTR (9spd - old school) except one XO 9spd, and they ALL work better than our narrow / wide SRAM stuff (on two Niners JET RDO's). I've never had to "dick around" with a drive train more. I feel like I have to "hold my breath" going into the top two gears on the cassette. I've been building / maintaining bikes for 35+ years, I have the tools (including the SRAM specific stuff, and don't get me stated on the SRAM brakes, why oh why did I stray from the hands down best stuff that ALL of my other bikes have - HOPE?).

    I'm literary about to pull off the SRAM dereralur and cassette (shift levers) and just write off that thousands of dollars, remember TWO bikes, to a loss. But... then of course my CK hubs I have to change out parts there too.

    So... is the big "S" and their modern 1x better?

    SRAM stuff just isn't ready for prime time. Someone (more than one) has said SRAM beta tests on their customers. I believe it.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Salt View Post
    I can not tell you how much I agree with this. Here my wife and I also have 1/2 doz bikes between us. All XTR (9spd - old school) except one XO 9spd, and they ALL work better than our narrow / wide SRAM stuff (on two Niners JET RDO's). I've never had to "dick around" with a drive train more. I feel like I have to "hold my breath" going into the top two gears on the cassette. I've been building / maintaining bikes for 35+ years, I have the tools (including the SRAM specific stuff, and don't get me stated on the SRAM brakes, why oh why did I stray from the hands down best stuff that ALL of my other bikes have - HOPE?).

    I'm literary about to pull off the SRAM dereralur and cassette (shift levers) and just write off that thousands of dollars, remember TWO bikes, to a loss. But... then of course my CK hubs I have to change out parts there too.

    So... is the big "S" and their modern 1x better?

    SRAM stuff just isn't ready for prime time. Someone (more than one) has said SRAM beta tests on their customers. I believe it.
    I have two bikes; one with GX Eagle and the other is XT 12 speed. The Sram setup is non stop annoying with some of the same issues above. Itís much more sensitive to B tension adjustment as well.

    I want to put XT on the GX bike for next year, Iím sick of it.

    The XT isnít perfect but itís much better. Usually only a 1/4 turn on the barrel adjuster to get any issues resolved. Plus, B tension isnít as sensitive and no special gauge is required as Shimano has it stamped on the back of the derailleur cage.

  30. #30
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    Interesting that this thread came back up. I have an annoying click too that I just noticed the last few days. I had always assumed it was the bb and have just had that replaced(it was really bad...more than just a click). I listened a bit more closely last night when I was out dinking around in the neighborhood, and it does sound like it is in the rear. GX cassette, everything else is XO1.

    Guess I'll check it out on my ride this afternoon. Mine only seems to happen under load. Does that make sense?(I didn't read the whole thread line for line)

  31. #31
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    Sram Eagle GX 12 spd cassette noise...

    I just installed a new Sram Eagle GX 12 speed group and am having the exact same problem with the cassette. The tolerance between the 4th and 5th cog is tight and when the chain is in the 5th, a couple of teeth on the 4th impinge on the chain, creating an annoying skipping noise twice each revolution of the cogs... I tried to adjust it out, but determined that it was a defect in the cog. It is not functionally compromised, and all the other gears shift and run perfectly. I was just resorting to the file or vice grips when I thought I'd check the forums... and sure enough here is the problem. Is Sram aware of this?

  32. #32
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    Think that is my issue. I have two teeth on the 4th cog (i think) that are badly worn. Seems like you all solved my issue....

  33. #33
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    You may also notice that the shift ramps on some of the cogs dont pickup properly either. I have one bike where one of the ramps catches just before the ramp making that anoying chain crunch sound.

    I havent filed it yet but feel this is the only solution.

    To diagnose. I took four of my daughters fingernail paint colors and marked each ramp and then checked shifting before each one.

    Ill get around to tweaking it soon i think.

    Made a ride with a friend on a new entry level giant today. It had two by and 7cogs i think. Man was he crunching gears. Was actually expecting to see him break the chain but we got 24km in without a breakdown.


    Meaning it could be worse.

  34. #34
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    B tension must be set with correct sag. As a workaround without sag, you make the gap tighter than the B gap tool shows you should have. If this isn't properly set up, nothing else will ever dial in.

  35. #35
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    Sram GX and XT 12sp M8100

    I got the same issue like you have
    TREK with XT 12sp M8100 (very smooth and got no problem at all)
    Specialized with GX (too much troubles...)

    GX got so much problems and I really want to upgrade badly
    - B gap settings
    - Skipped gears when up hills.
    - Cog 7 n 8 bent: clearly notice whenever switching from 6 to 7 or from 9 to 8, noise from the slow engaging while switching gears.

    I came across this forum and found solutions posted using dremel tool. I did not use dremel tool to fix since it did not happen from the beginning. It happened when I found the cassettes stack were loose, then inspected and found the lockring loose (thanks to Park tool FR-5.2GT and Calvin Jones from youtube with Cassette Play - Tech Tuesday # 87) and (Calvin's Wednesday problem - Tech Tuesday # 157)

    Problem found: cog 7 n 8 slightly bent.
    How did I check that? removed and check for flatness. Sure enough it bent and I corrected from slowly correct the cogs (not 9-11). I'd buy the new set to replace, but really want the true root causes. The next day riding with so much quiet and smoothly.

    I'd like to share with all bike lovers out there to fix the issue logically...using dremel tool to me will be the last resource.

    Happy biking everyone!

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