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Fat-tired Roadie
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I'm in my third ring on the road a lot. You don't lose much giving up the 44t ring, but if you're going to notice it anywhere, it's on the road.

That said, if I beat up my 44t enough more to need to replace it, I'm putting a bash guard there instead, and figuring out how big a middle I really need not to spin out on trails. There's an insane amount of overlap in a typical 3x9 drivetrain.
 

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Premium Member
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Hehehe

I just went with 3 X 8. :)

If I had to buy new parts, would probably go 3 X 9. Wife has 3 X 9, and even though her bike rarely sees dirt, the shifting on it needs more attention than my 8 speed bikes.

JmZ
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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18,453 Posts
Mountain Cycle Shawn said:
What is the biggest middle ring you can get? I was thinking about doing the same 2x9 setup.
Specialites-TA will sell you a 42t middle ring. It would go well with their 50t outer, in case you wanted to turn a MTB crankset into road gearing. ;) You can have up to a 30t inner from them.

I think actually buying a Specialites-TA ring and getting it in the US might be a little tricky, but Blackspire and Middleburn have pretty massive selections too.
 

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I was thinking 38/22 in front with 11-34 in the back? I am actually pretty happy with my 32, 11-34, 1x9. But I wouldn't mind a little more climbing power and even though I should just rest and cruize going downhill, I can't help but want to pedal and go down faster.
 

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T.W.O.
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8,168 Posts
Mountain Cycle Shawn said:
Do you like the 36-22 better then the 32 for trail riding?
I like them both actually. I have 36-22 on 2 bikes plus another with Hammerschmidt, and 32-22 set up on another 2 bikes.

36-22 has more high gear but it's more difficult to grind steeper climb in the middle ring, this can be good or bad depending on my mood:D

32-22 is more natural to me just take out the big ring and it's done. I don't get to use all the gear much because I rather coast on the down hill than pedal anyways. It also give me a lot more clearance.
 

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T.W.O.
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8,168 Posts
Mountain Cycle Shawn said:
I was thinking 38/22 in front with 11-34 in the back? I am actually pretty happy with my 32, 11-34, 1x9. But I wouldn't mind a little more climbing power and even though I should just rest and cruize going downhill, I can't help but want to pedal and go down faster.
I think that's too wide of the double range. I've tried 39-24 before and it was not as good as it should be it's difficult going from small to big. The magic range is 10-14. you'd get good shifting back and forth. Shimano is doing 12 and 14 and Sram is doing 13 I think.
 

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noobie39 said:
What would you go with 3x9 2x10?? And why? I a plan to ride trails with my dogs some road riding and some just plain ole fooling around on small downhill.
2x6 38/24 x 11-32. Little road, no dogs.

I have used 45/28 doubles in the past, straight cut teeth. Shifted great.
 

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for purely offroad? 2x9 is all you NEED. Unless you have legs of steel, probably wont use the third ring in the dirt :) Even on road I normally find the second enough, though the third is nice to have.

Since the OP said XC, I think 3x9 would be the way to go. Maybe there is blacktop to get to and from the trail!

8spd is a LOT less finicky than 9spd in setting up. Set the high and low stops, get cable tension somewhere in the neighborhood, and presto! Your bike shifts perfect. However take a little time with the 9spd, use good cables, and its only a few minutes more of set up :) I have had both for 10 years now, I prefer 8spd for tuning and 9spd for riding haha :D

Or, go SS... Forget gears :)
 
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