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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I ride a lot. I commute with my mountain bike on a hilly route to work, so it sees a lot of miles. The trails here have some very difficult climbs. I loved the simplicity of 1x9 but it was overwhelmed, on downhills especially, and so I switched to 2x9 Middleburn Duos.

I've consistently had problems breaking drivetrain parts and the X.0 getting out of adjustment. I bought a big 185mm Surly Mr. Whirly crankset to fit my legs. I plan to mate it with an SRAM 11-32 8-speed cassette, an old XTR derailleur, and SRAM Attack shifters on a new 29er build.

My question is, how many retro-grouch 8-speeders are there still out there? My wife has an 8-speed bike and it just shifts, year after year. I'm friends with an endurance racer who uses 8-speed XTR. I spin pretty well on my 8-speed road bike. There don't seem to be any disadvantages other than losing the 34t cog, but if I gain a 22t granny gear chainring, that's super-low gearing anyway.
 

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I'm one of the 'vocal minority' who still lament the demise of 8 speed.

I'm running it on all 3 of my bikes, and hopefully a 4th soon. Stocked up on cassettes and shifters a while back. Still watching for more cassettes too.

If you want absolute bombproof reliability - get a set of Paul's thumbies. It'll be about $100-$120 for the thumbies and the bar end shifters. But even if the mech takes a hit, just switch to friction and away you ride.

And riding the midwest I'm on a 11-28, with a 22/32/42 on the front. My legs give out before the gearing will.

JmZ
 

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I still ride a 1x8 Redline D440. My only complaint is there's a big jump from 2nd to 3rd (it goes from 28T to 21T). But I'm used to it, and it's so troublefree I hope SRAM always makes the cassettes for it. I look at now...11 SPEED? roadies and am appalled.....
 
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