Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
bryce
Posts: 110
Joined: 11 Mar 2014, 9:02pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby bryce » 2 Feb 2016, 10:10pm

I've 30 gears with Campagnolo shifters, and the Campagnolo shifters and rear mech are made for 11 speed.

Generally you can get slightly lower gears now everyone has 11 speed. With road mechs there will be less range, you'll not be able to have as big jumps between gears as with a mountain bike system. I like the range of modern road cassettes with triples. Shimano has 11-32 road cassettes in high end groupsets, in 2011 my triple road mech only went up to 27 tooth cassettes officially. 11 speed may not give you lower gears now, but it has lowered what's available for road systems (without mixing in mountain parts).

Decide what you need as a lower gear, what jumps size jumps you can tolerate, and what your wallet will take. If you want to ride every day then you'll want lower gears than if you only ride when feeling fresh. If you end up sprinting because of road conditions just before the hill, then you'll want to be able to go up it in an easier gear.

Commuting is a broad area. I commute every day in heavy traffic with one small steep hill on the way home. I really like the range of a 10 speed triple, and will move to 11 speed eventually. Having large gaps between gears is more of an issue for me as I'm often in traffic moving reasonably quickly at a speed chosen by whatever is in front of me so like to be in an ideal gear. The lowest gears on my bike are for leisure rides.

RideToWorky
Posts: 211
Joined: 23 Oct 2015, 1:14pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RideToWorky » 4 Feb 2016, 11:26am

Interesting reading on Audax bikes and triples!

http://www.daveyatescycles.co.uk/custom ... s-1011.php

pwa
Posts: 11626
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby pwa » 4 Feb 2016, 11:47am

RideToWorky wrote:Interesting reading on Audax bikes and triples!

http://www.daveyatescycles.co.uk/custom ... s-1011.php


My audax bikes have always had "road triples" with a 30 tooth smallest ring, though I combine that with large sprockets too. At the end of a 200km day I want to get up that last steep hill without too much strain. I currently have a 32 sprocket on that bike, and I have passed struggling cyclists going up the Gospel Pass road from Hay on Wye on nice carbon bikes and with good legs but with gears that are too high.

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 17178
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 4 Feb 2016, 12:00pm

Late in - and not read everything - but surely you only need one gear - it just has to be low enough...
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

Brucey
Posts: 37288
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Brucey » 4 Feb 2016, 12:37pm

FWIW both campagnolo and shimano would sooner sell you a ( usually way overgeared) double of some kind for your road bike, hence they have offered fewer road triples in recent times. I have a sneaking suspicion that electronic shifting and road triples are intractably unhappy bedfellows so both manufacturers may have 'solved that problem' by declining to offer that option and thus (I think, leastways I don't remember seeing any) no longer offer road triples in their toppermost (electric) gruppos.

Just to make them less appealing (or something) the most recent road triple iterations from both manufacturers have been fitted with a ~90mm BCD inner ring that won't accept anything smaller than a ~30T chainring and shimano have gone one better than that on some models with a stupid proprietary bolt pattern that no-one makes rings for.

Similar lunacy abounds in the MTB world with riders opting for doubles or even 1x drives where a triple would have been specced before.

It is not all bad though; you can now buy 40T #1 sprockets and rear mechs to work them, so arguably wider range gearing has never had so many choices, even if pairing road shifters with them is often far from straightforward.

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Stevek76
Posts: 510
Joined: 28 Jul 2015, 11:23am

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Stevek76 » 4 Feb 2016, 2:30pm

I'm not sure it's such a problem in mtbing. Switching chainrings mid trail is not an ideal situation to be in unless you happen to be on a smooth bit. If anything I'd consider 1x with a wide range cassette better than a double where the big rings a bit too big and the small rings a bit too small. Triples are fine but in all honesty on mine (a 3x10) I only ever use the large chainring getting to/from the trail and almost never use the small one at all so it's not surprising that with a 40+ cassette it's moved to a single chainring.

I see no reason that electronic shifting wouldn't work with a triple. I thought it was just that it keeps manufacturing costs down if you don't have to bother designing triple versions of parts of the groupset?

User avatar
RickH
Posts: 4854
Joined: 5 Mar 2012, 6:39pm
Location: Horwich, Lancs.

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RickH » 4 Feb 2016, 2:39pm

Stevek76 wrote:I see no reason that electronic shifting wouldn't work with a triple. I thought it was just that it keeps manufacturing costs down if you don't have to bother designing triple versions of parts of the groupset?

Shimano do the option of a triple (3x11) for their XTR Di2 groupset. Not cheap mind!

Rick.

Merry_Wanderer
Posts: 1002
Joined: 31 Aug 2012, 9:33am
Location: North Leicestershire

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 4 Feb 2016, 3:58pm

My commute has 2 stiff hills in the first 2 miles and my commuting bike had until today, a 48/38/28 Alivio set up with an 8 speed cassette of 11-32. I have now changed the chainset to 42/32/22 as I have tended to use the 28/32 gear every day and the 48 chainring precisely never. This bike has 26" wheels and 26 x 2 inch tyres. My other bikes are 9 speed with a highest gear of 46/11 x 700. FWIW I am the same age as the OP. Until the last event my Audax bike had a gear range of 17 to 104. Probably excessively low for most people but I have found as I have got older and my knees more decrepit, I am really grateful for very low gearing and a higher cadence

Brucey
Posts: 37288
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Brucey » 4 Feb 2016, 4:02pm

RickH wrote:
Stevek76 wrote:I see no reason that electronic shifting wouldn't work with a triple. I thought it was just that it keeps manufacturing costs down if you don't have to bother designing triple versions of parts of the groupset?

Shimano do the option of a triple (3x11) for their XTR Di2 groupset. Not cheap mind!

Rick.


aye, but do they do a road triple in Di2?

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

RideToWorky
Posts: 211
Joined: 23 Oct 2015, 1:14pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RideToWorky » 4 Feb 2016, 4:40pm

Merry_Wanderer wrote:My commute has 2 stiff hills in the first 2 miles and my commuting bike had until today, a 48/38/28 Alivio set up with an 8 speed cassette of 11-32. I have now changed the chainset to 42/32/22 as I have tended to use the 28/32 gear every day and the 48 chainring precisely never. This bike has 26" wheels and 26 x 2 inch tyres. My other bikes are 9 speed with a highest gear of 46/11 x 700. FWIW I am the same age as the OP. Until the last event my Audax bike had a gear range of 17 to 104. Probably excessively low for most people but I have found as I have got older and my knees more decrepit, I am really grateful for very low gearing and a higher cadence



Cool! Hope for us all :D

Cycle on buddy! 8)

Martin

RideToWorky
Posts: 211
Joined: 23 Oct 2015, 1:14pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RideToWorky » 4 Feb 2016, 4:48pm

Hi All,

Bikes readily available at Local bike shops - to try before buy etc.

Does this trend by manufacturers to move to DOUBLEs mean that:

1. Complete audax type bikes, readily available at Local bike shops - to try before buy etc - will only have Doubles?
2. It would be harder to get a complete audax type road bike, covered by warranty, with a triple on it?
3. It would be harder to get a complete bike, to put onto work cycle schemes?
etc
etc

Hope you can advise on what is available to buy on the high street out there.

Regards
Martin

User avatar
RickH
Posts: 4854
Joined: 5 Mar 2012, 6:39pm
Location: Horwich, Lancs.

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RickH » 4 Feb 2016, 5:26pm

Brucey wrote:aye, but do they do a road triple in Di2?

cheers

If there isn't a connector problem I see no reason you couldn't use the XTR gears with drop bar Di2 levers. IIRC the gear range of XTR would give you something like 16 - 103" gears (11-40 &, I think, 22/32/42)

Rick

Merry_Wanderer
Posts: 1002
Joined: 31 Aug 2012, 9:33am
Location: North Leicestershire

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 4 Feb 2016, 8:04pm

Martin - what sort of budget do you have?

User avatar
Sweep
Posts: 6026
Joined: 20 Oct 2011, 4:57pm
Location: London

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby Sweep » 4 Feb 2016, 8:44pm

Merry_Wanderer wrote: but I have found as I have got older and my knees more decrepit, I am really grateful for very low gearing and a higher cadence


Yes, and i rather have the impression that the hoxton/shoreditch/hackney trendies on their fixies and single speeds see nowt much wrong with a high cadence.
Sweep

RideToWorky
Posts: 211
Joined: 23 Oct 2015, 1:14pm

Re: Road bike Commuting up hills - 16, 22 or 24 Gears?

Postby RideToWorky » 4 Feb 2016, 9:29pm

Merry_Wanderer wrote:Martin - what sort of budget do you have?



Hi Merry,

Asterix hedging my bets Asterix

Why do you ask? 8).

I'm not looking for a custom build at this early stage of cycling!
I'm just asking those questions to try and be more informed about what to look at to buy next. Probably at end of 2016.


Martin