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I have a dilemma. I've bought 3 new cassettes. 2 SRAM pc990's and 1 XTR. I have a brand new 991 chain on the bike. Now every time I pedal there feels like there is a small amount of grinding going on. It's not audible or noticeable in the stand, only when riding. I know it's not the bottom bracket, or free-hub because it doesn't happen on a slightly older, but non-worn cassette I have. Any ideas?!
 

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Your probably hearing the result of slight manufacturing flaws in the new cassettes. (not defects or any kind, just the small burrs and sharp edges that all new things tend to have)

Chains and cassettes wear in together, and your chain is breaking in the cassette. It's perfectly normal and it'll get quieter as the chain wears the high spots off.

Your old cassette is quieter because it's already worn smooth. This probably happened the first time around, but you weren't attuned to it, not having the contrast with the old drivetrain.

BTW- what are you using as a chain lube?
 
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