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I haven't got a clue about 1x10, 1x11, etc!?


Things have changed a lot since I last bought a mountain bike, I have been threatening to buy over the last few years but have just stuck with my road bike.

I'm not a big tinkerer and don't really get in to thinking about gear ratios, etc.

I've seen what looks like a decent used MTB which has what looks like 30 on the chain ring and definitely 11-46 on the rear.

I'm looking for a bike to do mild off roading. Think more road and trail.

I see the numbers and mentally I can't translate that in to riding. Are they a suitable ratio? And I realise what may be suitable for one won't necessarily be suitable for others: )




  • focuszing723focuszing723 Posts: 6,643
    You could try Sheldon Browns gear calculator:

    Put in the ratios and the rpm you are likely to do and it will give you an idea about the speed you will achieve in each gear. You can then compare this to the ratios you were once were used to. One benefit of a single is no crossover gears akin to an old MTB triple setup.
  • s1mpless1mples Posts: 63
    I've just found gear calculator com, useful tool: )

    Don't think the ratios will be suitable for me, though could change them.

  • focuszing723focuszing723 Posts: 6,643
    No probs. It's difficult too because in the reality of actually riding the bike setup and ratios, it may feel right. You could try a local bike shop too. I'm sure they would let you give one a go for the potential sale.
  • JBAJBA Posts: 2,852
    If the bike is a good deal and fits your needs then you can easily change the chain ring and/or cassette to achieve a more suitable range of gears.
    11-42 cassette and a 32 or 34 tooth chain ring are the obvious alternatives.
    Make sure you check the chain length if you do make such changes.
    “Life has been unfaithful
    And it all promised so so much”

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  • Mad_MalxMad_Malx Posts: 4,933
    I'd go with at least a 34 chainring if you are doing any road. There are a few 36s around with the same BCD, as long as 36x42 is enough for your climbing.
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