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So I love the idea of going 1x9 for simplicity, weight savings, and lower workload. But is it all that for the average rider (oh, OK....maybe a little below average rider)?

Normally on my 26er I don't use the granny gear much and when I do it's only for the bottom couple of gears and I'm going slow enough that I might was well hop off and push. But I do use the big front gear when commuting to work, especially on the downhills, and would probably miss it there.

Think I'll go crazy with only one front gear or will forcing myself to use it make me a better rider and/or more fit?

BTW... Saturday I met a young guy that just from biked Portland, OR to N. Idaho (and was going on to Glacier, Yellowstone, etc).... and his bike was a fixed gear, not even single speed. Wow.

Thanks.
 

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Uncle
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Plenty of posts on this subject around here

With the 29" wheels, I like the 1x9. I get out of the saddle to climb sometimes, but I like that. I use a 11/34 cassette with a 32t ring. If your local trails are all steep ups and downs, I'd say keep the granny. Otherwise, give the simpler system a try.
 

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I live in soCAL and trails can be steep at times but for me it took 3 years of conditioning on a 27speed 26er to even start a 1x9 29er. Now I can ride fairly long and steep climbs w/ 1x9. I was on the same boat, never really used granny or big ring as my training progressed so got rid of the FD, shifter, and two rings and Im loving it. Less maintenance to worry about. It's the lazy single speed version of mtb!
 

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mtbnachos said:
I live in soCAL and trails can be steep at times but for me it took 3 years of conditioning on a 27speed 26er to even start a 1x9 29er. Now I can ride fairly long and steep climbs w/ 1x9. I was on the same boat, never really used granny or big ring as my training progressed so got rid of the FD, shifter, and two rings and Im loving it. Less maintenance to worry about. It's the lazy single speed version of mtb!
That sounds like a good idea. I hardly ever use the granny and use the larger one even less.
:thumbsup:
 

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Sigmatero said:
So I love the idea of going 1x9 for simplicity, weight savings, and lower workload. But is it all that for the average rider (oh, OK....maybe a little below average rider)?

Normally on my 26er I don't use the granny gear much and when I do it's only for the bottom couple of gears and I'm going slow enough that I might was well hop off and push. But I do use the big front gear when commuting to work, especially on the downhills, and would probably miss it there.

Think I'll go crazy with only one front gear or will forcing myself to use it make me a better rider and/or more fit?

Thanks.
1 x 9 works great. You drop two chainrings, a FD and shifter etc.. and simplify the whole shifting setup to a single ring on the front and a cassette on the rear with your derailleur.

You can choose what front chainring to run, from a 20 tooth to whatever size you need. The standard 11-34 will work fine with all of them.

Once you go to a 1 x 9 and see the sense to it, you probably won't want to go back.

If you want it to get really sophisticated and nice, a short cage derailleur and a shortened chain will almost eliminate all the chain slap.

It's a great way to run geared, imo.

R.
 

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I started picking up serious mountain biking 1 year ago on a cheap hardtail. Built myself up a FS bike, then wanted to build up a light hardtail for racing. I was too cheap to buy a front deraiiluer and justified it by saying it would cut down on weight.

I live in So Cal and i'm clearly not in shape. I fell in love with my 1x9 right away on the easy trails around here. Today I took it to a serious trail with some tricky steep climbs and I didn't have my 34t in the back. So I was running a 32 up front, with the 30 in the back as my easiest gear.

Honestly, it's no problem when you have no other option. If you can't shift into an easier gear, you learn to go with it. The plus side is that is should make you a stronger rider.
 

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Depends...

- partly it is a question of where you ride and how you are coping with it.
- partly it is a question of attitude.

I went one step further and made my HT bike into a singlespeed. I can cope with that on the local trails, and enjoy the different rhythm of the SS rides. I did lose some top speed, no question about that.
 

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perttime said:
Depends...

- partly it is a question of where you ride and how you are coping with it.
- partly it is a question of attitude.

I went one step further and made my HT bike into a singlespeed. I can cope with that on the local trails, and enjoy the different rhythm of the SS rides. I did lose some top speed, no question about that.
I agree, attitude is a big part of it. However I went to a 1x9 after trying single speed because of areas and trails that I lost out on with a SS. Its still a similar attitude, though, of being ready to stand up and mash in some situations along with wanting a simpler bike
 

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In Michigan we don't have that many steep and/or long hills and the big ring is used quite a bit. But I have my F29 SS on standby converted to 1x9 when necessary if the race is going to be muddy. No problems shifting since I'm running full cable housing zip-tied to the frame.
 

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Rode one for a while

[and went back to a 2 x 9. IMO I like having a granny. But theres also alot of gearing options with a 2 x 9 set up in terms of range. .
 

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I am liking the 1X9 more and more. I kept removing links on the chain until I got the tension right and now I have very minimal chain slap. I am still looking for an alternative to the 32t up front for those longer steeper climbs and I may have found it in the FSA K force light crankset that comes with a 29t. It's an expensive solution but a sexy solution.
 

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1x9=happiness

I have dropped my granny and large chainring on my all mountain hardtail and I will not got back. having access to all 9 cogs with my 32 tooth ring offers me gear ratios that are so close to my old granny gear that I said screw it and made the switch. On top of that front derailuers really suck. After a couple days I realized how much simpler my ride became to tune. No chain rub, less **** on your handle bars and stronger legs, I think theses benefits create the first steps to a singlespeed...maybe even a fixed gear. Be careful you may end up at a coffee shop instead of trails:)
 

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Rainman said:
If you want it to get really sophisticated and nice, a short cage derailleur and a shortened chain will almost eliminate all the chain slap.
My drive-side chainstay disagrees with that comment. :)

That being said, SS has been the only solution to chain slap for me. :)
 

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I must say tho I did try a 24hr endurance ride in hurkey creek this year using 1x9 and I was really missing that granny gear on the last 8 hours of the race. I was hurtin, no lying. If anything I learned that a 3x9 is more ideal for events like that. Unless you are super fit stud who can even do endurances on single speed! Just throwing that out there......
 

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mtbnachos said:
I must say tho I did try a 24hr endurance ride in hurkey creek this year using 1x9 and I was really missing that granny gear on the last 8 hours of the race. I was hurtin, no lying. If anything I learned that a 3x9 is more ideal for events like that. Unless you are super fit stud who can even do endurances on single speed! Just throwing that out there......
I agree. I love my 1x9, but it lends itself to a style of riding that does not work well in races. I may not like to sit and spin when I'm riding for fun, but I absolutely want to have a granny gear available for even a 3 hour race.
 

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I'm repeating myself because I said the same thing on the last thread on 1 X 9. The average 3 X 9 speed drive train really has only 14 gear ratios. Ratios are repeated on different chain rings. All you loose from the average 11/34 and 22-32-44 system is the first three ratios on the granny and the last two ratios on the big ring.

Ronnie.
 

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I had deliberated quite a bit on the 1x9 setup and must say I am very glad I went ahead and decided to forgo the front derailuer. Truth be known, the additional couple hundred bucks saved in my build pushed me over the edge to try it out. I have not missed the gears atall, well there have been a couple of occassions where I would have dropped into granny, but it has just forced me to hammer down a bit harder. The cockpit and bike are much cleaner and it has made me a stronger rider. I have only thrown my chain once despite hammering over and through rock gardens.
 
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