Best gears for speed (without spinning)

grrram Posts: 26
edited April 2008 in Commuting chat

I commute on a Marin Novato (MTB hybrid) with 26 x 1 slicks - I have a 12-25T cassette and 44T on the biggest chainring. In the lowest gear, I can cruise at 23mph, but I really have to spin the wheels!

I'm thinking of getting a 48T big ring so I can maintain a higher speed without spinning. (I also do 80 mile weekend rides with mates who have proper road bikes and I find it tough to spin for long periods).

I'm not sure about the best tooth numbers for the cassette though. My commute's flat, except for the steep-ish Blackheath Hill in SE London. Any suggestions or examples of what you use would be really appreciated.

Cheers in advance,



  • Belv
    Belv Posts: 866
    Having looked up the spec here: ... ovato.html
    it seems to now sport a 48/38/38 Truvativ chainsest with an 11-32 cassette, so that's what i'd look at getting.
  • snooks
    snooks Posts: 1,521
    I upped the chain rings on my old Marin mtb commuter, made a hell of a lot of difference in speed and comfort...Now up to 50 (I think) at the front...didn't touch the back end at all.

    So much better, but I'd hate to take it off road now :)

    Only thing is just make sure your front mech can take the the difference from granny ring up to the top one
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  • ride_whenever
    ride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    With mechs, it is also the steps between rings.

    There isn't much point changing the cassette as you'll only go from 12t smallest to 11t
  • grrram
    grrram Posts: 26
    The front mech's a Deore LX, which I'm told should be able to handle a 48T. Looks like the new Novato uses a 11-28 8sp cassette (not that i could feel the difference!) Both my chain and cassette are knackered, so I'll probably go for the 11-28.

    Thanks for the tips.