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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I just ordered all XTR Dynasys 10-speed stuff, but I'll be using a 9-speed XT crankset with only the middle and granny.

My dealer sent me a 34 and 22 front ring. With the new gear ratio out back (I have an 11-36T cassette), should I opt for a 24 granny instead? I'm assuming that achieves more or less the same ratio as a 9-speed with a 22?

Also, given I'm using a bash guard instead of a big ring, would you guys recommend a 32 or 34? I live in Northern California, so I'd like to be able to stay in the big ring for the medium climbs, but on some of the fireroads, don't want to run out of gear.

Thanks!
 

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You will run out of gears on the high end with your set up. Even the 2 x 10 specific cranks running a 39 big would be a bit short for road or fire road duty. A 34 middle will definitely be short.

Have a look at Sheldon Brown's gearing calculator, so you have an idea about what gearing changes you might want to try.

I run 24/34/bash x 12/32 cassette and I'm getting ~19 mph at a cadence of 90 rpm in top gear. Your set up will give you maybe ~20 mph or a bit more at the same cadence.

As for the granny, I can climb stupidly steep stuff running 24 x 32 so there's no way you'd need a 22 granny with an 11/36 cassette. Hell, a 26 tooth granny would be plenty low enough.

One more thing; you are asking about gearing for a 26er right?

Drew
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Drew - correct, I was asking for 26".

I probably need to figure out if my current cassette is a 32 or 34, I can't recall, but I do sometimes use the 22/large combo at places like Waterdog when climbing the switchbacks (just to keep the revs high for balance). I don't run out of gear now with the 32, because I don't really ever ride anywhere where the fireroads aren't part of the climbs (though I can change that later).

Thanks again - I'll confirm the current cassette size, and use that calculator to keep the same ratio.
 

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My Enduro came with a 24/36 crank and an 11/36 cassette on 26" tires. I suppose we should be converting all this to gear inches but oh well. I live in Denver and we have a lot of pretty brutal climbs around here. I think the 24 tooth chainring is about as small as I would go but my reasoning has to do partly with the slack geometry of my bike. You don't want to go too slow otherwise you are all over the trail.
On some of the more rolling trails I've ridden I'm usually climbing in 24/28 or 32 combo (1 or 2 sprockets down from the large one on the cassette).
On the downhills, I've never had a problem with spinning out on any singletrack trail I've ridden. Fire roads are a different story, so it depends on what your trails consist of. I think there is a decent amount of overlap in the upper rang on the 24 tooth chainring and the lower range of the 36 tooth chainring that I might start with a 24/38 combo and see how you like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the info. I usually ride singletrack, so I don't think spinning out on the high end will be a problem with a 32. I'm running a RaceFace bash guard, so the biggest I can go is 34. It might make sense for me to do 24/34, since 24/32 is going to have a lot of overlap (especially since I already have a 34 here, and would only have to send back for a 24).
 

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Thanks Drew - correct, I was asking for 26".

I probably need to figure out if my current cassette is a 32 or 34, I can't recall, but I do sometimes use the 22/large combo at places like Waterdog when climbing the switchbacks (just to keep the revs high for balance). I don't run out of gear now with the 32, because I don't really ever ride anywhere where the fireroads aren't part of the climbs (though I can change that later).

Thanks again - I'll confirm the current cassette size, and use that calculator to keep the same ratio.
If you are fine with your current 32x11 as a high gear a 34t ring would be fine. A slightly higher high and a better range with the new cassette.

I like a 36/24 x 11-32 on my 26" bikes and a 32/24or22 x 11-34or32 with 29".
 
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