Author Topic: The Anti 1x thread  (Read 2473 times)

The Anti 1x thread
« on: December 02, 2019, 04:19:57 pm »
I'm so tired of seeing people trying to figure out ever more ridiculous ways to come up with a gear arrangement in a 1x n gearing arrangement that works for particular niche types of riding.

I guess I was most infuriated by a recent piece on the Path Less Pedalled youtube channel where Russ is fitting an 11-50t 12speed sprocket to a bike in order to give him a decent spread of gears.

A back of the envelope calculation, confirmed by a bit of tapping numbers into Sheldon Brown's gear calculator, suggested he could achieve what he wants with a nice 10 speed triple and cheap and cheerful Shimano MTB or even long cage road derailleurs. Maybe involving a J-Tek problem solver to handle the gear shifter incompatibility between Shimano's road and MTB shifters.

Anyway, it's one of the reasons why I run Campagnolo on my bike, because I can run a Campag triple with 10 speed rear to give me 30 speeds with all the usual overlaps and redundancies. However, it's cheap, reliable and it works. The only annoyance is that 10 speed only allows for a 13-29 rear cassette. Sometimes I'd like a little broader spread of gears...

I was absent-mindedly thinking that I could by an 11 speed right shifter from Campagnolo, and run 33 speeds by installing an 11 speed cassette on my existing wheel and replacing the chain and rear mech. This is still cheaper than buying one of the crazy expensive 11-50 cassettes that have crept onto the market (although the Sunrace models are surprisingly cheap).

An alternative would be to swap my rear cassette carrier for Shimano, add a J-tek shift-mate and a 10 speed Shimano MTB cassette.

It's fun to think these things through and Campagnolo triples are still a possibility in their 10 speed range and widely available.

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2019, 04:26:48 pm »
I'm anti-1x because it's expensive, so I run Campag! :) Have you seen how much decent Campag stuff is new these days?
11-50 is MTB gearing, and they have good reasons for avoiding front mechs and triples (eg mud, ground clearance, ratchet rear mechs to avoid chainslap).

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2019, 04:30:50 pm »
It is all a bit mad, IMO.

26,36,46 up front, and your choice of 8 on the back was pretty optimum for general riding (touring, commuting and audax).

Marketing just messed it up from then on.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2019, 04:53:09 pm »
The fact that these ever larger cassettes require a new bottom bracket design and a new rear hub design to accommodate their various driveline failings suggests it's not the optimum solution.

I raced mountain bikes for 15 years with minimalr (real) problems with mud clogging etc.
Today's newer rear mechs with in-built clutches have solved chain slap as I understand it, but newer derailleurs are just better than past designs.

as for Campagnolo pricing - Campag Ergos are cheaper than the Shimano equivalents in almost every case and they last ages and can be repaired.
Campag rear mechs seem about equivalent in price to Shimano, and my rear hub can accept either Campagnolo or Shimano cassettes.

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2019, 05:00:46 pm »
We’re pretending fitting, fettling and wrangling a triple costs nothing and has no downsides are we?

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2019, 05:12:07 pm »
We’re pretending fitting, fettling and wrangling a triple costs nothing and has no downsides are we?

I never had any issues with the setup on my mercian.

Only thing I had to watch for was that the 26 ring was not used much, so the chain could get worn, wear in with the 36/46, then it would skip when used on the 26. That is just poor maintenance and me being a cheapskate not replacing the chain on time.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2019, 05:23:17 pm »
Today's newer rear mechs with in-built clutches have solved chain slap as I understand it, but newer derailleurs are just better than past designs.
Some of those designs actively preclude having a front mech.
Quote
as for Campagnolo pricing - Campag Ergos are cheaper than the Shimano equivalents in almost every case and they last ages and can be repaired.
Campag rear mechs seem about equivalent in price to Shimano, and my rear hub can accept either Campagnolo or Shimano cassettes.
Maybe it's just about volume discounts, but I've been looking at the groupset prices for a while, and for a regular groupset, Chorus is as close to Dura Ace (or SRAM Red) as it is to Ultegra. That applies on the way down too, and obviously Record is off on another planet.

I just think it's about picking the right tool for the job. 1x works on CX bikes, and for certain iterations of MTB. No road racing team has made it work, and it clearly failed with Aqua Blue and contributed to the demise of the team. Unless you are earning a living from your results, where's the harm in experimenting though?

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2019, 05:38:47 pm »
I tend to think of 1x as a poor person's hub gear.  Which is sometimes a legitimate choice.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2019, 06:20:07 pm »
I love triples but then I've run them since 1995, first on a mtn bike. Never had an issue with them and mud. On the recumbent in rolling terrain shifting between the big ring and middle ring can provide the perfect gear change between downhill and uphill, without needing to change cogs at the back.

I got a 10 speed double racer in 1984 before that. Before 1984 my bikes were all single speed apart from a 3 speed sturmey archer ladies bike my dad got me second hand in the late 70's.

Never had a problem with my triples, a bit of trimming at times, but now I have returned to friction shifters that's all in the past, and shifts are as smooth as anything..

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2019, 06:40:55 pm »
I tend to think of 1x as a poor person's hub gear.  Which is sometimes a legitimate choice.

I have an 8 speed hub gear on the commuter. It's perfect for that application, but underlies one reviewers take on the Alfine at the time, "8 "wrong" gears" and I tend to agree.
compared to my proper bike, being able to find the perfect cadence by shifting up or down a bit is sublime.

bhoot

  • MemSec (ex-Mrs RRtY)
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2019, 07:03:39 pm »
An alternative would be to swap my rear cassette carrier for Shimano, add a J-tek shift-mate and a 10 speed Shimano MTB cassette.
Or possibly a Shimano 9 speed (eg 12-32) and go Shimergo with no J-tek?  Not sure whether that depends on having old Campag 10 speed shifters, but works for me with my old Daytona 10 speed ergos.

Morat

  • I tried to HTFU but something went ping :(
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2019, 07:15:25 pm »
3x8 XT and Suntour XC Pro thumbies. If you do manage to stuff it up, there's still a friction option. I wish a thousand papercuts on the scrote who stole that bike :(
Tandem Stoker, CX bike abuser (slicks and tarmac) and owner of a sadly neglected MTB.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2019, 07:59:35 pm »
We’re pretending fitting, fettling and wrangling a triple costs nothing and has no downsides are we?
Cor snot!

But they do mostly work reliably, and you can always limp home on the middle ring if necessary. Friction shift helps a LOT - removes 70% of fettling/reliabilty issues and 95% of the cost.

Then consider a 12x1 setup vs 3x5. The latter will be a billion pounds cheaper (ish). And if your rear cable snaps (just for example) you've still got 3 gears over quite a useful range.

( I think its folks on a modest budget that have most to lose by going 1x. )
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Cudzoziemiec

  • Dormant but requires tea
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2019, 08:27:22 pm »
I've never tried a 1x. Obviously (is it really obvious?) I've had bikes with single chainrings, but they've either been singlespeed or had hub gears. So I won't comment on 1x in the modern sense, except (ah ha!) to say:
I think multiple chainrings are best avoided for small children;
Whatever you think of the suitability of 1x for you, it's pretty unexcellent to get out the hates on those who do think it's good for them.

Edit: Hate was too strong a word, but there's a definite element of belittling and "it doesn't work for me so how can it work for you?"
The unwilling rider and the one who leaves each control in turn without reluctance, with no desire to come back, obviously cannot be making the same journey, even though their brevets are identical.

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2019, 09:33:23 pm »
I've never tried a 1x. Obviously (is it really obvious?) I've had bikes with single chainrings, but they've either been singlespeed or had hub gears. So I won't comment on 1x in the modern sense, except (ah ha!) to say:
I think multiple chainrings are best avoided for small children;
Whatever you think of the suitability of 1x for you, it's pretty unexcellent to get out the hates on those who do think it's good for them.

I had a budget recycled MBSO on which I had a bit of fun with 1x7. 32t ring and 13-30 cassette. I worked out that I was missing one gear at the top, which I could do without, and a couple at the bottom, which was very slightly harder. Only trouble was the chain derailing occasionally in bottom (no Dog Fang).

Then when I tried 46-30 and 46-34 doubles on the road bike I never felt right. 46-30 was the worst, never in the right gear, always cross-chaining. Since they were on cranks for a triple I ended up putting a 28t ring on the 46-34 and an 11-30 8sp cassette, which I don't have any inclination to change (unless it was to go to a 12-32 or 12-34 cassette; I really don't need the 11, it's a bit too high). Don't feel the need for more than 8 on the back.
BITD I had a 44-30 double with a 14-24 5sp freewheel. I thought it was just about perfect. It would be ok now with a 14-28 6sp. I did my first BCMF with 42-30 and a 14-28 5sp freewheel (and almost all of it on the little ring- or so it seemed); the logic was that I would never be overgeared with the 42/14 so didn't have to think too hard about what I was doing to my legs!

zigzag

  • unfuckwithable
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2019, 09:40:18 pm »
firstly, i find it strange to get infuriated by some random youtuber going about their business. they usually have their own reasons and interests to talk whatever they talk.

regarding 1x - it has it's use, especially for novice riders and mtb'ers. i've used 1x many years ago before it was a "thing", mainly for commuting and some audaxes (incl. lel, pbp, mille miglia..), it worked fine.
i've used triples too (still have it on one of my bikes which i barely use) - they also work fine when set up properly, though uncool these days, if that's a concern. 8)
the bikes i ride the most now have either a double setup or single speed.

for me - more choice and more options is always welcome.

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2019, 09:47:13 pm »
The problem is that new popular stuff drives out older useful stuff. Witness the dying throes of the triple changers. Other than a couple of low-end STI-power options, you are stuck with bar-end shifters for drop bars. For things like fast tandems, that is a pain in the arse compared to a wide-range triple chainset. My tandem runs 54-44-26 rings. There aren’t many wide range doubles that match that.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2019, 10:10:42 pm »
The complaint about cost seems to be because you're stumbling into the world of high end MTB components, where there's endless appetite for expensive bits. Nothing about that is intrinsic to 1x.

You can do it much more affordably with conventional components - 11x36 and 11x42 don't cost much more than narrower bits. If you're starting with a reasonably wide cassette you can convert for just the cost of a narrow-wide chainring* and delete the front mech.

(* you really don't want to try 1x with a borrowed double/triple chainring and no retention. The short teeth will mean frequent chain droppage on climbs)

I had a 44-30 double with a 14-24 5sp freewheel. I thought it was just about perfect. It would be ok now with a 14-28 6sp.

A quick bit of maths says you can get close to that with a 34 or 36 chainring and an 11-32 cassette, maybe as low as 9 speed. No need to take out a loan for an 11-50.

Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2019, 10:17:33 pm »
Other than a couple of low-end STI-power options

The Tiagra 4703 left shifter is *identical* in construction to the 105 5800 double shifter, which is scarcely different from the 6800 Ultegra. So if you ignore the badges you've still got one modern option in production.

No hydraulic and no road Di2 triples though.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2019, 10:18:52 pm »
The problem is that new popular stuff drives out older useful stuff.

Exactly.  Other than that, it's all good.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

zigzag

  • unfuckwithable
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #20 on: December 02, 2019, 10:32:34 pm »
The problem is that new popular stuff drives out older useful stuff. Witness the dying throes of the triple changers. Other than a couple of low-end STI-power options, you are stuck with bar-end shifters for drop bars. For things like fast tandems, that is a pain in the arse compared to a wide-range triple chainset. My tandem runs 54-44-26 rings. There aren’t many wide range doubles that match that.

racing tandems is hardly a mainstream activity and that's a very niche and out of spec setup; i'd stock up some spare parts while they are available if i was intending to run this in the future.

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #21 on: December 02, 2019, 10:37:42 pm »
It is a touring tandem, hence the 26t granny ring. Rolling a 54x13 is normal for a strong team on a valley road. The 12t and 11t cogs get used on downhills or going hard but efficiency is a bit lower. Racing tandems use 56-60t big rings if they want to have a gear or two spare for descents.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2019, 10:41:28 pm »
I think if there is going to be a future market for new tandems, the internal gearbox is worth giving a look-in. There's a chap in my LCC group with a pinion gearbox tandem that's also his cargo bike, it's pretty ace. He often rides it just by himself. I'll try to get some pics for the 'odd bikes' thread...
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Adam

  • It'll soon be summer
    • Charity ride Durness to Dover 18-25th June 2011
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #23 on: December 02, 2019, 11:07:41 pm »
The trouble is the 1x "solution" has merely encouraged the arms race up to 12 speed, meaning chains will need replacing even more often.

5 speed chains never seemed to need replacing!
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” -Albert Einstein

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: The Anti 1x thread
« Reply #24 on: December 02, 2019, 11:13:02 pm »
Choice is the key. I’m waiting for four up front.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.