Triple vs Compact

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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby slv0700 » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:17 pm

I have a triple, and it works great, but some lady was having a much easier
time on a steep hill last week and she said she had a 24/29.....any feedback on that one ??? What does a good mountain bike have ??
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby ken f » Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:02 pm

I think the new compact doubles offer almost all the climbing gears you need when coupled with a 11-28 cassette. Plus the double set up shifts cleaner and easier up front than a triple. There's not as much need to keep the front derailleur in proper trim, which it seems like a lot of people have trouble with. SRAM's new Apex group set also offers an 11-32 cassette coupled with the 34/50 compact crank, which would really give you a mountain bike equivalent low gear. It's fairly new though and I've not seen it offered as OEM equipment on any bikes. Yet.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby Force 5 Robert » Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:26 pm

I heard somewhere that SRAM was going to offer an 11-36. That seems a bit extreme - and would have big gaps between shifts - but it seems its going that direction.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby johnncarol » Thu Aug 05, 2010 3:37 pm

We have ordered a new Co-Motion tandem and I am putting a Shimano 11/36 with a triple on it. The top three gears on the cassette are 28, 32 and 36. The Shimano is new and they offer an 11/32, 11/34 and 11/36. The SRAM that is available is an 11/34 but it is a $300 cassette. The Shimano is a $125 cassette. Our current tandem has a 11/32 on it. We don't really need the 11/36 but on the realy long climbs it might be nice to know that we have two more gears we can go to if need be when we get tired, even though the new bike is 15 pounds lighter than the current one.

I have ridden a Trek 5200 with a triple for about 12 or 13 years and just got a new 6.2 Madone with the compact. Had my first real ride on it yesterday and was absolutely amazed at how well it climbed. I was apprehensive about the compact but in fact climbed better than I did with the triple. I would not hesitate to take it on CO.

I have lost weight recently but I will also turn 74 in a month. My stoker wife is 68, soon to be 69.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby slv0700 » Thu Aug 05, 2010 10:31 pm

You guys are talking 11/34 , 11/36......what was she talking about 24/29 ??
Guess I will ask at the bike shop.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby dougnlis » Thu Aug 05, 2010 10:53 pm

Force 5 Robert wrote:I heard somewhere that SRAM was going to offer an 11-36. That seems a bit extreme - and would have big gaps between shifts - but it seems its going that direction.

Pardon a lapse for gear-heads, but this is what half steppers have been waiting for in a nine cog cassette.

With an 8% jump between rear cogs, which used to be pretty normal in a previous century, and with 42-39-26 tooth granny you could work out a very reasonable range of gears with such a range. High is 103 and next in line is 96 gear inches. Step down in easy increments until it's time to wake up granny when you bottom out on the middle cog, and then you have three more walking speed gears to get you and the truck hauling your duffle to the top of the hill.

Just to interject retro-opinion on this forum, making the small gap between gears happen at the rear rather than between front rings seems to have followed the introduction of indexed shifting on the rear cogs. Since the late 70's it seems gears were set up to work your way down for a while on the big ring, and then it was time to move to the small ring for a while and then if you had one to go to the tiny ring. Tourists before indexing had the option of the half-step model with alternating shifting front and rear if you wanted to use every combination, with that bailout gear waiting way down there for the truly fearsome hill.

It remains a viable option into the age of double digit cassettes. My Rivendell debuted on CO 9 with a six-cog freewheel half-step and granny setup. I went to an eight speed cassette in 2008 mostly because 13-28 freewheels were getting hard to find, but I don't feel that I gained anything by adding more gear options. It's still half-step and granny, but the granny is sooooo low that I rarely bottom out anymore, despite my advancing age.

I had considered dredging up some of my old 13-32 six speeds and changing the front to 52-48-30, more from nostalgia than anything else. Maybe if I do CO in 2011.

Sorry, sometimes old cyclists just can't resist a spin down a pretty geeky lane.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby mytrot » Thu Aug 05, 2010 10:58 pm

CThe 24/29 could be a 24 front and 29 rear. Close to mountain bike gears.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby slv0700 » Fri Aug 06, 2010 7:02 pm

mytrot: yes that is what she said......if you were thinking about changing out your triple, what would you put on front and back ? My Trek touring bike has 9 speeds with lower gears, but weighs 29 lbs, so if I ever
change out my triple, just looking for some low gears so I can continue using my 17 lb bike.
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby mytrot » Thu Aug 12, 2010 9:20 pm

slv,
Thats what I am trying to figure out! If I could get the triple I want I think I would stay with it. A little resistance to change, a little I like the way they ride.

With a compact I would likely stay with a 52 big front and see what kind of range I can get with a 42 in front. If with the new 10 sprocket rears I could get low enough I would try torun that. If not I would notch the 42 down a little. Hopefully only to 40. An SRAM 12-32 might do it. Close at least.

ELT
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby Chuck B. » Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:10 am

If you're looking for big gears in the back, Interlock Racing Design has their wide-range touring cassette in 11-32 and 11-34. I got mine for about $160, and it shifts very nicely. I've got it couple with a triple and it helps this fat boy get up hills...
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Re: Triple vs Compact

Postby woodway » Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:51 pm

I ran a compact double last year with a IRD 12-30 casette and was very comfortable on all the climbs.

You can buy a SRAM (and probably Shimano) 12-36 mountain casette if you really want low gearing.

Just remember to check to see if your derailuer has enough range to handle whatever gears you put onto the bike. You may need to switch to a long cage or mountain derailuer.
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