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Gearing

Fatlad71Fatlad71 Posts: 15
edited August 2016 in Road general
Forgive my stupidness !

I am finding hills quite tough at the moment and it's quite clear if I shifted some timber they would be much easier but can gearing help me ? I currently have a 20 speed 12/27. I am seeing a lot of 21 speed 11/32 on newer bikes and I am wondering would this set up make much of a difference ?

Posts

  • trek_dantrek_dan Posts: 1,366
    edited August 2016
    Yes absolutely, use the appropriate gearing for your fitness/ability. Although ultimately if your going to be in such a low gear your travelling at walking pace then maybe its time to get off and push. Depends on what you mean by hill.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,490
    What's at the front? If it's a "standard" 53/39 then your best port of call would be to swap that for a compact - 50/34.
    You may have a mid-sized one - 36 being the smaller cog.

    On the back...
    You can get wider range 10 speed cassettes - 30-12's are available - just need to check that your mech can accomodate it - otherwise a 28-11 is pretty standard.

    Now - if you're just after a new bike - then yes - a 21speed 32-11 will make a big difference .... ;)
  • andcpandcp Posts: 652
    Fatlad71 wrote:
    Forgive my stupidness !

    I am finding hills quite tough at the moment and it's quite clear if I shifted some timber they would be much easier but can gearing help me ? I currently have a 20 speed 12/27. I am seeing a lot of 21 speed 11/32 on newer bikes and I am wondering would this set up make much of a difference ?

    It depends on what's on the front!

    If you're using 50/34 chainrings on the front with a 27 rear, and you swap to a 52/36 front and 32 rear there be some difference, but not as much as if you'd still got a 34 on the front.
    Have a play here:
    http://home.earthlink.net/~mike.sherman/shift.html

    or here:
    http://www.ritzelrechner.de/

    eta - shifting the 'timber' is, of course, the solution to which diet is the key (but I suspect I'm telling you nothing new)
    "It must be true, it's on the internet" - Winston Churchill
  • dj58dj58 Posts: 2,132
    If you can locate one, you can possibly use an Ultegra 6700 10sp 12-30T cassette, the Tiagra 4600 12-30T cassette has been deleted. New Tiagra 4700 10sp cassettes are available in 12-28T, 11-32T and 11-34T, though as already mentioned you would need a long cage GS RD to use the two bigger cassettes. Annoyingly the 4600 STI's are not compatible with the 4700 derailleurs.
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 8,197
    Fatlad, basically what we need to know to advise properly is what the front chainset is ie 50/36 which is basically how many teeth on the front two chain rings. Once we have this information and also what the rear mech is. Even better if you say what bike it is we can search the spec and advise what is best.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • ravey1981ravey1981 Posts: 1,111
    dj58 wrote:
    If you can locate one, you can possibly use an Ultegra 6700 10sp 12-30T cassette, the Tiagra 4600 12-30T cassette has been deleted. New Tiagra 4700 10sp cassettes are available in 12-28T, 11-32T and 11-34T, though as already mentioned you would need a long cage GS RD to use the two bigger cassettes. Annoyingly the 4600 STI's are not compatible with the 4700 derailleurs.

    Plenty of 4600 cassettes still available, get a 32t cassette and a 4600 GS derailleur (and a new chain). Should be able to get the lot for £50 or so and you'll climb up a wall with that gear.
  • Fatlad71Fatlad71 Posts: 15
    Thanks for the replys so far I have 50/34 on the front.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,490
    your options for climbing then are a smaller front chainring - which will probably mean swapping to a triple - or larger cassette - which may involve swapping the rear mech ..
  • dj58dj58 Posts: 2,132
    Assuming your transmission components are Shimano 10sp, either 4600/5700/6700 series, the easiest solution is as ravey1981 suggests, is to use a RD 4601 or RD 5701 GS rear derailleur with the CS-HG500-10 11-32T cassette and new appropriately sized chain.
  • Gearing down is no bad idea, but 34x27 is a low gear and 34x32 is a very low gear. It's important to have some perspective on this - for most healthy people, 34x28 should be ample for most of what the UK has to offer, and usable for the most challenging gradients - but you can't go very much smaller on standard road equipment anyway. As well as fitness, there's a strong mental component to climbing tough hills on a bike, too.

    In other words, by all means gear down, but what you really need to do is ride a lot more, and ride up a lot more hills.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,490
    Gearing down is no bad idea, but 34x27 is a low gear and 34x32 is a very low gear. It's important to have some perspective on this - for most healthy people, 34x28 should be ample for most of what the UK has to offer, and usable for the most challenging gradients - but you can't go very much smaller on standard road equipment anyway. As well as fitness, there's a strong mental component to climbing tough hills on a bike, too.

    In other words, by all means gear down, but what you really need to do is ride a lot more, and ride up a lot more hills.
    The OP's handle is "Fatlad71" ...
    it doesn't matter if he's fit - if he's heavy it's going to be hard work to get up the hills - so 34x28 being "Ample" isn't ...

    it is perfectly possible to go smaller - however it does mean you'll end up going slower (unless you spin quickly)- and there's a limit to that whilst staying upright!
    You're right though - there's a strong mental component to climbing [tough] hills ...
  • slowbike wrote:
    Gearing down is no bad idea, but 34x27 is a low gear and 34x32 is a very low gear. It's important to have some perspective on this - for most healthy people, 34x28 should be ample for most of what the UK has to offer, and usable for the most challenging gradients - but you can't go very much smaller on standard road equipment anyway. As well as fitness, there's a strong mental component to climbing tough hills on a bike, too.

    In other words, by all means gear down, but what you really need to do is ride a lot more, and ride up a lot more hills.
    The OP's handle is "Fatlad71" ...
    it doesn't matter if he's fit - if he's heavy it's going to be hard work to get up the hills - so 34x28 being "Ample" isn't ...

    And if he gets fit, chances are he won't be fat anymore. I can't imagine that he's too heavy for standard gearing, though.
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