Gearing advice

nick1972 Posts: 144
edited May 2013 in Road beginners

I'm trying to get my head around all the different variations on gearing. I see 53/39, 50/34 and compact or standard. What is the difference between all these?


  • islandman
    islandman Posts: 73
    To keep it simple 53/39 ( standard) is suitable for racers, 50/34 ( compact)for the rest of us.
  • nick1972
    nick1972 Posts: 144
    Nice and simple, thanks Islandman. A compact it is then.
  • drlodge
    drlodge Posts: 4,826
    A compact will gear you lower gearing (due to the 34 small chainring) and also I find the 50 tooth chainring more usable on the flat too. Its all a question of ratios - less teeth at the front, and more teeth at the rear will give a lower gear.
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