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Gear issues - 7 speed bike,

lamslams Posts: 8
edited October 2015 in Road beginners
Hi all,

I'm new to cycling and recently purchased a bike with the intention of getting a little fitter and rekindling my love for riding. However, I have been struggling somewhat with hills and, I do know I'm not as fit as I could be, but I thought perhaps my gears had something to do with it as it's still a struggle in 1st gear.

I have looked into the issue a little further. I have Shimano 7 speed cassette with a single crankset. However, my ration is 46/28 = 1.64. Someone said this is pretty high. Is that correct? They said their's had a lowest ratio of around that significantly different to mine? Would having 1.64 as my lowest ratio really impact my riding?

This then started me thinking about converting my bike to 10 or 11 speed with a smaller crankset, but this would be quite pricey to do, no?

Any thoughts/advice would be much appreciated. :)


  • That's a big gear for a beginner, yes. Your best option would be to get a double or compact chainset (and a new BB). What shifters are you using?
  • lamslams Posts: 8
    I'm not sure if this is the right answer, but Revoshifter?! Sorry, please treat me like an bike imbecile...a BB?! If I get a more compact chain this will adversely effect my higher gears to though, right? I already notice a lack of resistance on a very small decline, so was thinking if I get a smaller crank I'd have to do something to compensate the loss at the higher end of my gear set....
  • lamslams Posts: 8
    Does it also make a difference that I have 24" wheels instead of 26"?
  • A BB is a bottom bracket. Is this a mountain bike you've got? In theory, all you need to do is find yourself a replacement chainset and a compatible BB (and a new chain if your new big ring is much bigger than the existing). This isn't terribly difficult or expensive to do, but does need to be done correctly. If you have a good bike shop near you, you could try asking them to see if they have anything.
  • lamslams Posts: 8
    Thanks, I think I will do that :)
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