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  1. #1
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    road bike, subcompact 46/30, 48/32, as opposed to 50/34?

    Anybody using these for general road riding? It is hilly here, I could use lower gearing. The outer range of gearing is ok for me with these. I am wondering if there would be more double shifting or cross chaining on rolling flatter roads? Any reasons not to do this? subcompact seems better than a longer cage RD and a bigger cassette

  2. #2
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    Do some gear charts here:

    to http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gear-calc.html

    Then some pricing of a 30/46 crank (and possibly b-bracket), which are not cheap as BTW, VS. a new cassette and rear derailer.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by deadleg View Post
    Anybody using these for general road riding? It is hilly here, I could use lower gearing. The outer range of gearing is ok for me with these. I am wondering if there would be more double shifting or cross chaining on rolling flatter roads? Any reasons not to do this? subcompact seems better than a longer cage RD and a bigger cassette
    Depends on your strength, weight and riding objectives aka overall speed you seek i.e average speed on your ride. Since its hilly there, that means you go both up and down, so ideally you want to satisfy both objectives. Gearing you propose will get you up the hills or help, but you can't maximize speed descending because you will run out of gearing.

    Many with your dilemma looking for goldilocks gearing we all seek including pros, will opt for a typ. compact up front aka 50-34...but will opt for a pie plate cassette ergo 32-36 climbing teeth in back. I know personally on centuries with big hills I am always wishing for shorter climbing gearing.

    All said, if you are not a performance rider and are fine with letting gravity bring you down the hills, a smaller crankset you propose in front makes sense.

    Why strength matters is, a strong rider will generally run out of gear inches on the flat in 46-11 so even matters on the flat for some and certainly not all riders.

  4. #4
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    I rode with a 46-30 for several years. I found the main drawback was descending, you'll run out of gears with 46-11 combo, but you can do a lot more spinning on climbs.

    The main warning would be your FD setup. If you have a braze-on FD, make sure the hanger can get the FD low enough to shift properly or your small ring will be useless.

  5. #5
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    I like this gear calculator.

    Bicycle Gear Calculator

    I recently installed a Praxis Zayante 48/32 on the SO's new gravel bike. It's a well make piece of kit, but does require their M30 bottom bracket. Since it was a new build from a frameset, it was fine. The install was easy (using a proper bearing press and loctite), and it's been a great setup for her. I have her on Ultegra 11-34 cassette, and it's been a great setup for her. She's not particularly strong, and enjoys the lower ratio for some of the steeper hills in the neighborhood.

    Praxis also has the slightly more budget friendly Alba in the same gearing (48/32).

    I don't know if I'd want to go any lower than a 32 in the front with a standard road FD. There could be some deal breakers with cross chaining (chain hitting the rear part of the cage on the FD), etc...

  6. #6
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    I am considering changing the sprockets to the absolute blacks. Not real crazy with the oval rings but the lower gears and compatibility with the 6800's is a real bonus.. Check out their web site.. Looks like an easy swap.


    The 50-34 is a great set for the flats and small hills,, my old bones wants a bail out gear so I can recover on those long hilly rides!!!
    Last edited by n2deep; 03-07-2018 at 10:59 AM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by n2deep View Post
    I am considering changing the sprockets to the absolute blacks. Not real crazy with the oval rings but the lower gears and compatibility with the 6800's is a real bonus.. Check out their web site.. Looks like an easy swap.


    The 50-34 is a great set for the flats and small hills,, my old bones wants a bail out gear so I can recover on those long hilly rides!!!
    I'm not sure how this helps with gearing. The absolute black chainrings are only available in the stock sizes (50t or 52t big and 34t, 36t and 38t small).

  8. #8
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    I've been running 46\30 for a couple of years now and like it. I live just south of Chicago and it is quite flat so do real descending.

    I kind of treat it like a 1x11 with a granny so I cross chain the large ring more than most would recommend, but have had no issues with anything. My cassette is a 12-25 so my big ring will give me 103 thru 49.2 gear inches and my 30 chainring will give me 53.5 thru 32.1 gear inches in my 8 largest cogs as I don't like to x-chain the small chainring.

    Here's a gear calculator that you can use to find your gearing.

    Bicycle Gear Calculator
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie the Unicorn View Post
    I rode with a 46-30 for several years. I found the main drawback was descending, you'll run out of gears with 46-11 combo, but you can do a lot more spinning on climbs.

    The main warning would be your FD setup. If you have a braze-on FD, make sure the hanger can get the FD low enough to shift properly or your small ring will be useless.
    I hadn't thought of this before, but it's definitely a concern.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    I hadn't thought of this before, but it's definitely a concern.
    A couple of solutions. Open the PDF file in the Sugino link to see attachment.

    https://www.suginoltd.co.jp/us/produ...html#pnH4MT-OX

    https://wickwerks.com/products/fit-link-adapter/
    Too old to ride plastic

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    A couple of solutions. Open the PDF file in the Sugino link to see attachment.

    https://www.suginoltd.co.jp/us/produ...html#pnH4MT-OX

    https://wickwerks.com/products/fit-link-adapter/
    Possible solution!
    "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



  12. #12
    What the what???
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    I swapped out the 50t ring for a Stronglight 46t to make a 46/34. It works great for me. It’s relatively flat where I live so I don’t spin out on long descents. I just get more out of the big ring.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    The Law of Headwinds states: If the ride out is easy... wait.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finx View Post
    I'm not sure how this helps with gearing. The absolute black chainrings are only available in the stock sizes (50t or 52t big and 34t, 36t and 38t small).
    See https://absoluteblack.cc/oval-road-c...-for-110-4bcd/

    46/30 and 48/32's are available..

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Possible solution!
    Yeah, a 46 tooth chainring may not be small enough to clear the derailleur mounted under the braze on. It would be worth a try. I keep those bookmarked in case I need to try. The Wickwerks says 41 tooth so it would have to take a work around if one could be found.

    But this is why I've decided that I like clamp on front derailleurs myself.

    Addendum

    I just looked at the Sugino PDF file again and it actually looks like it would work well. The screw that mounts the derailleur to the bracket is recessed which would allow the bracket to be mounted higher on the braze on which would allow the derailleur to mount higher than the bottom of the braze on. I'm going to replace my 52 tooth chainring with a 50 on my DeRosa and if the derailleur won't get low enough without having to file out the slot I'm going to try one of the Sugino adapters.

    The Wickwerks adapter doesn't look to have that adaptability.
    Last edited by velodog; 03-08-2018 at 09:16 AM. Reason: more info
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  15. #15
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    It looks like the absoluteblack is compatible with 4 bolt shimano, and not 5 bolt sram, which is what I have. I would need a new crank. I am thinking FSA carbon. I have been using the bicycle gear calculator, it is really nice. 46x12 @ 100 rpm=30mph. Only time I can do that is downhill. My FD is a clamp- on so it can be lowered. either 46/30 or 48/32 would work I think, can't make up my mind. I'm old, so easier is probably better, I hope to keep my strength up, but we know how it is.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie the Unicorn View Post
    you'll run out of gears with 46-11 combo
    46/11 is 36 mph (58 km/hr) at 110 rpm. On most descents at that speed you would go just as fast or faster in a tight tuck.

    It just depends on your trade-off priorities. A 1-2 mph increase on high-speed downhills or more comfort for the much longer time spent climbing.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Possible solution!
    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Yeah, a 46 tooth chainring may not be small enough to clear the derailleur mounted under the braze on. It would be worth a try. I keep those bookmarked in case I need to try. The Wickwerks says 41 tooth so it would have to take a work around if one could be found.

    But this is why I've decided that I like clamp on front derailleurs myself.

    Addendum

    I just looked at the Sugino PDF file again and it actually looks like it would work well. The screw that mounts the derailleur to the bracket is recessed which would allow the bracket to be mounted higher on the braze on which would allow the derailleur to mount higher than the bottom of the braze on. I'm going to replace my 52 tooth chainring with a 50 on my DeRosa and if the derailleur won't get low enough without having to file out the slot I'm going to try one of the Sugino adapters.

    The Wickwerks adapter doesn't look to have that adaptability.
    I found this photo of the Sugino in use. It's mighty pricy, but rather spend a few bucks than modify a high end frame.

    road bike, subcompact 46/30, 48/32, as opposed to 50/34?-adapter.jpg
    Too old to ride plastic

  18. #18
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    FSA has a few options now in the "modular" series ranging from the top end kforce to some omega stuff.

    I have a 48/32 (with additional 30t ring) coming in the kforce series to put on a dura-ace 9150 build.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by P90Puma View Post
    FSA has a few options now in the "modular" series ranging from the top end kforce to some omega stuff.

    I have a 48/32 (with additional 30t ring) coming in the kforce series to put on a dura-ace 9150 build.
    Running the FSA SLK 46/30 on my gravel rig. Nice cranks, very light. BB386EVO has room for Di2 wiring in a threaded BB shell. Win, win, win, win.
    "Refreshingly Unconcerned With The Vulgar Exigencies Of Veracity "

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