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should i change my cassette or get compact chainrings?

saladridersaladrider Posts: 16
edited August 2016 in Road beginners
Hey guys, Im quite new to road cycling. I have been cycling for a couple of months now and I just recently climbed a pretty steep long hill. I was able to climb it by grinding it, but I was pretty exhausted when I reached the top. Im using an entry level groupset (Microshift r8) 8 speed . Standard chainrings and an 11-23T cassette. Im thinking if I should just get an 11-28T so that I can spin. Or do you think getting compact cranks would suffice.

Posts

  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    Well a 28t sprocket would definitely be easier than a 23t. You might need to fit a longer chain.

    What cranks / chainrings do you have at the moment?
  • shmoostershmooster Posts: 355
    Standard chainring normally means 53-39. Changing the chainrings would likely allow using the same chain, but cassettes and chains wear out more quickly and might be cheaper. If the OP isn't worried about spinning out on descents a compact might be the best option, as long as the front derailleur is compatible (hard to believe it wouldn't be but best check).
  • shmooster wrote:
    Standard chainring normally means 53-39. Changing the chainrings would likely allow using the same chain, but cassettes and chains wear out more quickly and might be cheaper. If the OP isn't worried about spinning out on descents a compact might be the best option, as long as the front derailleur is compatible (hard to believe it wouldn't be but best check).


    Right now I have 53-39 on it. I figured I just have to lower the position of the FD right if I was to swap to compact right? I have little knowledge right now but I really love riding my bike! :D
  • keef66 wrote:
    Well a 28t sprocket would definitely be easier than a 23t. You might need to fit a longer chain.

    What cranks / chainrings do you have at the moment?

    Hello, I contacted Microshift and they told me it can fit a 28T max. My concern right now is the distribution of the gears might be too jumpy? Not as smooth as the 11-23. I was able to search Shimano HG-51 11-28.Also I tried looking for 12-28 because I seldom use the 11. But cant find any... Haha personally I think it just adds weight on my bike :mrgreen:
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    Yes, if you fit a compact chainset you'll just have to drop the front mech down a bit so it's still 2-3mm clear of the outer ring. I've used the same front mech with a standard 53/39, a 50/34 compact, and a 46/36 CX chainset.

    That is the downside of a bigger cassette, you do get some bigger gaps, especially with only 8 sprockets.

    I think the root of the problem is as you say, you're new to road cycling, but you appear to have a bike with gearing more suited to a racer.

    You could really do with a compact chainset, a bigger cassette and possibly a couple more sprockets, but that's close to a new groupset. It might even be simpler to sell the bike and buy another....

    What's the budget like??
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    Moving to a 28T with the 39T chainring will give you a slightly lower gear than a 34T chainring and keeping the 23T cassette. If you can find a xx-28 cassette I'd go that route, and fit a new chain while you're at it.
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  • keef66 wrote:
    Yes, if you fit a compact chainset you'll just have to drop the front mech down a bit so it's still 2-3mm clear of the outer ring. I've used the same front mech with a standard 53/39, a 50/34 compact, and a 46/36 CX chainset.

    That is the downside of a bigger cassette, you do get some bigger gaps, especially with only 8 sprockets.

    I think the root of the problem is as you say, you're new to road cycling, but you appear to have a bike with gearing more suited to a racer.

    You could really do with a compact chainset, a bigger cassette and possibly a couple more sprockets, but that's close to a new groupset. It might even be simpler to sell the bike and buy another....

    What's the budget like??

    Thanks for your help. I guess for now, I might as well try swapping my cassette with 11-28 and figure out if I can cope with it. At the end of the day it all comes down to how fit I am right? I thought of getting a new bike but I just got this bike last week :roll: :(

    This forum is really helpful!!
  • drlodge wrote:
    Moving to a 28T with the 39T chainring will give you a slightly lower gear than a 34T chainring and keeping the 23T cassette. If you can find a xx-28 cassette I'd go that route, and fit a new chain while you're at it.


    Alright, I guess swapping the cassette is the better option. Thank you! Now all I need to figure out is getting the right chain length. :D:)
  • Wooah that is hardcore double with a 23.

    There are two factors. First as you ride longer your legs will fatigue and you will need to go somewhere with the gears, that gives you nothing. Two you would like for your knees to last.

    I cycle over 200km a week and do a reasonable bit of climbing, probably 2,500m in that distance. I have done that for years. I ride a compact 11 - 27. At the start of a long ride I think ...... get a double you wimp you are spinning out. At the end I am thinking, get a 29 and admit you're an old fart.

    This isn't a macho thing. Get all the help you can from the gears and get up the hill as fast as you can with it.
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