RoverAl
Hi Y'all
Anyone running an 11-34 with 46, 36 cranks? I am thinking about  upgrading from 50-34 11-32. 
Thinking it thru  The 11-34 would be nice to have for certain conditions.  Comments welcome.
thanks
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henrypretz
You can make a direct comparison here.  

All things being equal, who wouldn't want that extra cog when the conditions warrant it?
However, according to the calculator, 36f / 34r = 28.9 gear inches.  34f - 32r = 28.9 gear inches too.  So maybe to realize the gains you hope for you'll need to go with 11-34 keep the 50/34?  Give the 34 a shot and see how you like it.  You could also just swap out the 50t ring with a 46t on your current crank.  46/34 might be the best of both/all worlds?
I currently run 46/36 11-32 on my gravel bike and 50/34 11-32 on my road bike.  My old gravel bike was 1x9 38t 11-34.

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RoverAl
Thanks Henry that helps a lot.
How do you like the gravel bike combo? 
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henrypretz
I like the 46/36 11-32 a lot.  It seems to suit the rides that we do pretty well.  I've thought about going 34t on the front, but will hang with what I have for now. Stock setup was 52/36.  I see that becoming more popular now, but it didn't suit my needs very well at all, especially off road.  I swapped the rings first, then the whole FSA crankset for a Shimano CX 70 46/36.  It's a nice shifting setup.
What bike are you doing the mods to?
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RoverAl
 2015 Kona Rove AL.  Love the frame, fork and ride quality but not the entry level Claris 8 speed. I have about 800 miles on it so far which has given me a good feel for the bike. The drive train is adequate for most unloaded rides, paved commuting,urban stuff, but when I go beyond 40 mile trips I find myself looking for more gears. Throw in some trails and gravel and fatigue and I have trouble cruising with that big 50 in front with 50 miles to go home. 

So I am sort of  at a crossroads with the upgrades or not. A decent 46 tooth chain ring is almost as much as a 105 cx 50 10  speed crank set. For about $325 I can upgrade to 105 shifters, crank and cassette and be happy for awhile. I sold my 29er mountain bike so I have a little money to spend. That gear inch chart is nice.
   
    IMAG1391.jpg 
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henrypretz
Sent you a private message.

BTW, I just swapped out the group on my road bike to 5800.  I liked it so much on my Grade that it sold me on using it on my Serotta.  My riding level/ability is not really Dura Ace or even Ultegra worthy.  I spent the money I saved on a wheelset  [smile]
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RoverAl
Wheels are next up on my list too. I am thinking about some WTB I23 Frequency. I had the I25 on my mtb and they were pretty much bomb proof. They are quite reasonably priced on ebay too.

Did you have to adjust your chain when you went to the cx crankset?
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mosinglespeeder
good day guys: new to posting, but long time rider

Buddy and I ride in the midwest/ozarks, and I have used the compact set up, up front, but found the ideal for me is the standard 53/39 with 32-11

I find the range to be great and the gearing to be perfect
we have alot of short puncheur hills here and it really helps with the big ring to keep the big mo on your side

personally, i find little difference in the 34t and bet if you blindfolded yourself, you wouldn't note a difference
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henrypretz
RoverAl wrote:
Wheels are next up on my list too. I am thinking about some WTB I23 Frequency. I had the I25 on my mtb and they were pretty much bomb proof. They are quite reasonably priced on ebay too.

Did you have to adjust your chain when you went to the cx crankset?


Re: chain length - I remeasured and cut the chain after installing the 46/36 rings (removed 52/36).  I think I took out one link.  I always use the big big method to determine chain length.  YMMV.

I scored a set of DT Swiss 240S disc hubs to Stans ZTR Arch rims.  The hubs were 10s, so I had to pick up an 11s freehub to swap out.  I have the same hubs in non disc on my road bike and I really like them.  I'd also like to try tubeless sometime but not quite yet.  

Henry
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RoverAl
Here is a quick summary of my chain ring swap from 50-34 to 46-36. Big thanks to Henry for the suggestions and everything. Most of you already know the differences and benefits from switching to a lower ratio set, for me I had to try it and see for myself. 

I'll make it quick no boring details. The swap is a win for me even though I only rode it for 17 miles on my habit route which has a little of everything,gravel,pavement and single track. It's been raining for two weeks straight now in West coast Florida and my normal 25 mile ride was shortened to 17 because of rain.

Whoever said I wouldn't notice a difference between 32 or 34 in the back is correct, after a small rutty dirt climb it is barely noticeable.

My shifting front and back is very noticeably improved, a lot smoother and quieter. The old steel rings weighed about 6 oz more than the new ones. That's 6 oz less rotational weight not to shabby.

My cadence is more comfortable and higher while cruising and I don't shift as much.
In a headwind I can maintain a steady speed with the 36 on gravel.

Had to adjust my drops because I was in them much longer.
Switching between 46 and 36 and vice versa is more useful now because I don't have to search for gears.
Having only 8 speed in the back it opens up a more useful range of gears for cruising.
I passed 2 skinny tire roadies too woo hoo! Less shifting equals better riding. I wasn't in the fatigue zone yet but judging from this ride I think I will be good. Picked up a 1mph gain on average speed. When I add some gear and water I think I will be happier.

I will put some miles on them and eventually upgrade the crank arms and bb which will probably save me some more uneeded weight.

Oh installation was fairly easy since this was a first time for me about 3 hours taking my time. I chewed up 2 quarters because I didn't have a chain ring nut holder wrench...., IMAG1446[1].jpg 
IMAG1446[1].jpg IMAG1446[1].jpg
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henrypretz
Happy to see those rings getting some good use.  I'm also happy that you feel good about the gearing change.
Thanks again, Alan.
Ride on!

Henry

btw - the rings look as nice as they ride
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