Whose take on increasing speed will win?
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  1. #1
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    Whose take on increasing speed will win?

    It seems to me that there are 2 different thinkings on chain, its friction, and speed.

    1) You have the bigger is faster set. CeramicSpeed makes the OSPW to make the chain line less bendy to do this. Further, several videos/reports/whatevers have said that for TTs, teams will go bigger on the chain rings but then use the middle of a cassette (vice the small cog) to make the chain line bigger to save watts from not as many bends.

    2) Then there is the smaller is faster. SRAM AXS system seems to go smaller on the chainrings and down to a 10-tooth cog to make use of a better gear ratio.

    So, which method will win long term?

  2. #2
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    big/big is less friction, definitely you want this for a TT bike

    I think the whole SRAM small/small movement is the result of folks wanting to:
    1. go with 1x
    2. wide range cassette
    3. that they can climb and still descend

    My personal opinion is the 1x approach is good for mtb and gravel. For road performance, it sucks.

  3. #3
    Russian Troll Farmer
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    Well, with the small/small setup, it might weigh a gram or 2 less........
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

  4. #4
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    Aesthetically speaking I'm on board with the 'bigger is better' camp, in fact, when compact chain rings were being introduced weren't they saying to expect increased chain/drivetrain wear? Then call me a cheapskate.
    1x is cool, and of course all the rage right now, but I've (and most people) never had problems with a front derailleur, heck, I even won my first cat 5 race on a bike with a 3x crankset! Egads! Also ran 2x (mtb and currently road) without the first problem..No biggie.
    Although I have a couple of 1x mt bikes, guess I just don't like seeing a chain being essentially cross-chained, call me old-school too.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by billiegoat View Post
    It seems to me that there are 2 different thinkings on chain, its friction, and speed.

    1) You have the bigger is faster set. CeramicSpeed makes the OSPW to make the chain line less bendy to do this. Further, several videos/reports/whatevers have said that for TTs, teams will go bigger on the chain rings but then use the middle of a cassette (vice the small cog) to make the chain line bigger to save watts from not as many bends.

    2) Then there is the smaller is faster. SRAM AXS system seems to go smaller on the chainrings and down to a 10-tooth cog to make use of a better gear ratio.

    So, which method will win long term?

    Actually there are 3 different thinkings.

    #3 It doesn't matter.

    A derailleur and chain drive train is already 99% efficient. Saving 2W on a chain or a pulley set or lube is drops in a bucket that are irrelevant to anyone not doing the hour-record.
    "Refreshingly Unconcerned With The Vulgar Exigencies Of Veracity "

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by billiegoat View Post

    So, which method will win long term?
    The one with the stronger rider using it.

    You lost me with "better gear ratio". There is no such thing as a better gear ratio. The best gear ratio is the one a particular rider can use efficiently.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    The one with the stronger rider using it.

    You lost me with "better gear ratio". There is no such thing as a better gear ratio. The best gear ratio is the one a particular rider can use efficiently.
    Instead of "efficiently" how about "effectively"?
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Instead of "efficiently" how about "effectively"?
    Sure, whatever. The point is if just having a bigger gear ratio helped we'd all be riding 53x11 up 20% grades for miles.

  9. #9
    [REDACTED]
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    The best way to increase speed? Ride more.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  10. #10
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    Maybe 10mm pitch chains will come back after Shimano's brief flirtation with them back in the early '80s.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    The best way to increase speed? Ride more.
    I beg to differ. The best way is to ride faster. I know people who ride lots, but slowly, and never do increase their speed.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    I beg to differ. The best way is to ride faster. I know people who ride lots, but slowly, and never do increase their speed.
    Definitely.

    Also riding lots, and fast doesn't necessarily make you faster either if you don't allow for recovery.
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  13. #13
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    I appreciate the various responses. The nuance and semantics aside, my main point was that "new" technologies, whatever they may be (think disc vs rim) and the prevalence of them drive what will be the norm in the future. Take the disc brake example - 5 years ago they weren't nearly as common as today, so much so that certain lines/models of bikes ONLY come as disc brake. So, that trend drove what is becoming normal today.

    I get that riding more will make you faster and dropping a gram will too (albeit only a barely measurable amount), but both camps from my main question have their reasons for going the way they did. Bigger/bigger to maintain a similar effort while reducing friction and smaller/smaller for whatever reason they had (to be honest, I'm not sure the main point of going that route, but it was a "feature" when GCN did a video on it...).

    I was simply curious. I find that if I think about things like that it makes me understand my set-up more (I am NOT a mech and not comfortable wrenching on my own bike...I just like riding, but also like to learn. I would love to have the knowledge and confidence to work on my own bike).

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by billiegoat View Post
    I find that if I think about things like that it makes me understand my set-up more
    Might want to reconsider that if this is what comes out after thinking!
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    Might want to reconsider that if this is what comes out after thinking!
    I just meant little things, like, in the case of the original question, which gear combo to use on a climb. By this I mean, there are several gear combos on my bike that are the same (ie 34/17 and 50/25). Maybe 50/25 is "better" for simply less friction, right?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Irons View Post
    I beg to differ. The best way is to ride faster. I know people who ride lots, but slowly, and never do increase their speed.
    OK then, I should have said the best way to increase speed is to PEDAL HARDER.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



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