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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is there a particular reason why no chainring manufacturer makes 26t or even smaller chainrings for Shimano 12s? Is it physically impossible for some reason? It seems strange to me that there are several places making 28t chainrings, but nobody wants to go for the competitive edge of getting the market of people who want even smaller chainrings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
mikesee I presume that this means running normal SRAM compatible 12 speed chainrings right? The issue with that is I would like ideally to have chainrings designed around Shimano 12 speed.

noapathy an e-bike does not actually provide what I want. I enjoy doing climbs very slowly, that is one of my favorite and most meditative parts of mountain biking. With a 28t chainring I am doing 2.9mph at 60rpm, I would like to go even slower. Conversely I never pedal if I am going above 5mph already, so the rest of the cassette range is wasted for me.
 

· since 4/10/2009
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If you want smaller, then ask for it. When Shimano 12spd hit the market, I wanted a 28t chainring and the only company making one compatible with Shimano chains was Shimano, for their own cranks (which were next to impossible to find).

I had Race Face cranks that I wanted to use, and I reached out to a bunch of the aftermarket chainring manufacturers about a 28t ring. The only company that didn't give me a hard no was OneUp, and it took them almost a year to get their chainring to market. Wolftooth told me that they've seen demand for small chainrings drop as 50t+ big cassette cogs, so they had no plans to offer them. I presume other people were asking for 28t rings, too, because most others (including Wolftooth) followed suit eventually. Blackspire makes a 26t ring.

RaceFace Cinch Shimano 12spd Narrow/Wide Snaggletooth Chainring - Blackspire

I use a 10-45 shimano cassette because the range of the 10-51 isn't really all that useful for me. I need a low gear for climbing, but when it comes to top end speed, I'm relying on gravity and coasting so range is a low priority.

And to your physical impossibility question, I think limits are getting approached. Wolftooth and OneUp for sure are trying to move to their DM spider systems so they can cut down on sku bloat with their rings. OneUp and Blackspire took so long to release their chainrings because their 12spd rings are meant to work with both Shimano and SRAM chains (another sku bloat-reducing strategy). I don't know the exact minimum chainring size required by the various spiders on the market, but there is one.
 

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Have been using the 26th hg+ 12speed oval chainrings from Garbaruk in 64bcd with my shimano zee crankset, however they have “abonded” this offer and now im stuck... need to go to AB for similar chainrings but not HG+ specific (that means using sram quicklink). Also for me its unpossible to “upgrade” to a direct mount crankset because i need it to be shortened and only the oldschool full aluminium zee crankset allows for this.

i fear the day when all manufacturerd abondon these smaller chainrings and the 64bcd mounting.
 

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I"m a fan of low gearing as well, although I am currently happy running a 28t with a 10-51 cassette. I used to run a 26t when I had SRAM and only a 50t cassette,

I'm mostly replying to rant about the chainring issue as well - It really is ridiculous how there are 15+ chainring mounting standards now. Worse than bottom brackets. Thank God for companies like Wolftooth that can punch out all the necessary combos on their CNC machines, but its still quite frustrating.
 

· since 4/10/2009
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The competitive edge of grabbing 50% of the two person 26t chainring market? The speed difference on a 29er between 26 and 28 is 0.3mph at 90 rpm.
low gears aren't about speed. they're about riding vs. walking when the going gets very steep and/or after you've done many miles already and have a level of fatigue (especially at altitude). and yeah, when you're riding at 3mph already, 0.3mph is a pretty notable difference in effort expended.
 
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