34/52 - anyone tried it?

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guyw1lson
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34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby guyw1lson » Sat Mar 09, 2013 19:10 pm

I currently use 36/52 QRings as I like to have a bit of extra juice compared to a compact without going to a full-on double. I'm doing the Fred Whitton in May and after my experiences of last year (34-25 lowest gear) I need lower gearing. I now have an 11-28 cassette but the 36-28 lowest gear is about the same as 34-25.

I've still got my 34/50 round chainrings but I'd really like to keep with the QRings so I'm thinking of getting a 34tooth QRing. Has anyone tried the combination of 34 and 52 Qrings (or even round chainrings) or is this gap too large for my Ultegra Derailleur to cope with?

Thanks for any advice...

Frank the tank
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Frank the tank » Sat Mar 09, 2013 19:13 pm

I don't know but it sounds a bit too much of a drop to me. Also could inccur a very slack chain.
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Overlord2
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Overlord2 » Sat Mar 09, 2013 19:32 pm

The Fred is all about the low gears. Why would you need the 52 unless you're a powerful rider? In which case you wouldn't be asking.

I consider myself a decent climber and I'm doing it on a triple. Daft I aint.

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Monty Dog
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Monty Dog » Sat Mar 09, 2013 19:35 pm

Your front mechs has a capacity of 16 teeth - so depends on whether you enjoy the noise of the chain rattling along the bottom of the mech cage whilst in the little ring? You'll also exceed your total drivetrain capacity of 34t unless you go for the longer cage rear mech.

There are few descents on the Fred where you get the chance to wind-up such a big gear either.
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jibberjim
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby jibberjim » Sat Mar 09, 2013 19:43 pm

You could go to 12-30 (depending on derailleur, but they are cheaper than a new Q-Ring anyway...)
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Grill
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Grill » Sat Mar 09, 2013 22:22 pm

You do realize that a 50 Q-Ring is effectively a 53? I push 53/39 Q-Rings on my TT bike and they can be a bit of work. Also, there's no way a 34/52 combo will stay in place- you'll just be dropping your chain all over the shop.
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Simon Masterson
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Simon Masterson » Sat Mar 09, 2013 23:28 pm

Grill wrote:Also, there's no way a 34/52 combo will stay in place- you'll just be dropping your chain all over the shop.


That. Unfortunately this is far too obvious; if it worked then people would already be doing it.

The jump would surely be ridiculous on a double, though? I currently have a 50/39 on my main bike because I needed new chainrings and they were very generously given to me (I'm poor, and grateful), but I used to use 52/42 Biopace. Seriously thinking about opting for 54/44 next time, given that there are few options available for 5 speed with a smaller cog than 14...

The Jackalcp
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby The Jackalcp » Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:00 pm

I have tried and run this set up for over a year without any problems so despite what the other posters have said it is absolutely possible. I didn't have any problems with missed shifts, chain being thrown or anything else. The front mech shifted smoothly and without any hesitancy. For what it is worth I was running a K force crank with Stronglight CT2, red shifters, DA7800 front mech, rival reach mech and a KMC chain. A complete mix and match set up that I fine tuned myself.

I realise that this set up is technically not suppose to work (as pointed out to me by my LBS who were equally surprised it worked so smoothly) and would probably suggest changing your cassette first but if you want to give it a go then my experience suggests it can work just fine

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Pross
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby Pross » Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:11 pm

I know sime pros used bigger than 16t drops in chainrings on the super steep Vuelta climbs but I think that was only as they knew that once they went down onto the little ring it wouldn't need to go back up. just use a 50 as I can't see why you would need anything bigger than a 50 x 11 on a road race let alone a sportive.

thecycleclinic
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby thecycleclinic » Sun Mar 10, 2013 13:58 pm

34-50T works well enough. I use 53-12T as my top gear which is a lower ratio than 50-11T. So Pross is right stick with a standard compact.
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jibberjim
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby jibberjim » Sun Mar 10, 2013 14:09 pm

Pross wrote:I know sime pros used bigger than 16t drops in chainrings on the super steep Vuelta climbs but I think that was only as they knew that once they went down onto the little ring it wouldn't need to go back up. just use a 50 as I can't see why you would need anything bigger than a 50 x 11 on a road race let alone a sportive.


I have a 52 because that's the speeds where I get most value in the small gear differences between the 14/15/16 - now switching to a 50 and having the 13/14/15 (not literallly the same of course) would be fine, I'd be able to find a pretty near gear, but 14/15 is 7% change but 13/14 a 7.7% change. So the jump at the point I then care about is bigger than I'd like. It's not the 50x11 gear that I'm optimising for.

Now because I also am very reluctant to grind up a hill, I run a 36, and might consider a 34 if I was on a particularly hilly situation, so I can see the value in having the option, not that I do.

As the Jackalcp says, you can often heavily violate the limits of shimano spec, but it can depend on the size of your bike too, so it might work.
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banditvic
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby banditvic » Sun Mar 10, 2013 19:20 pm

A 52 34 will work, but when in the 34 front, your top two sprockets (smallest) wont, due to the chain catching on big ring. I run this with no problems.

guyw1lson
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Re: 34/52 - anyone tried it?

Postby guyw1lson » Mon Mar 11, 2013 06:53 am

Sounds like I need to give it a go to really know...

Think I'll just bung my compact back on for the Fred then.


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