KyleM Show full post »
I couldn't agree more. 👍 

Unfortunately, the major component manufacturers don't seem to be listening. They just assume that most of the bike buying public will just accept what they're being offered without questioning whether it's really what they need. Apparently, they're correct.
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Koyote wrote:
If you ride in the 10-tooth cog enough to wear it out, you've got the wrong chainring.

Hell, I ride a double crankset, and I wish Shimano or SRAM would starting giving us wide-range cassettes with less on the high-end. I'm running a SRAM 12-32 10 speed on a road bike, and wish I could get a 12-34 or even 13-34 for an 11 speed gravel bike.

I believe Volsung cobbled together an Ultegra 14-28 and 11-34 to make a 14-34 cassette.  I've been interested but haven't tried it myself.
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I usually toss the 11 and try to fit in something in the middle. On one bike I'm trying out swapping the 11-13-15-17-19... with 13-15-16-17-19. It's a little weird in concept but I use that 16 more than I ever used the 11.
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I think Shimano resistance to 10 tooth cogs for so long shows that this isn’t a case of companies dictating market forces but rather the reverse. I heard somewhere that around 60 percent of new MTB are using SRAM eagle so Shimano conservative resistance to do 1x and 12 speed have hurt it immensely. The market punished them for listening to curmudgeons like us.

As for why 10 tooth cogs the reason is it is that it appears that the selling point of more gears is now RANGE rather then tighter SPACING. Since that is the case it is much easier to achieve that range with a 10 tooth small instead of an 11 or 12. You can see that in that the eagle is a 10-50 and the new Shimano XTR, and now XT and SLX are 10-51. Clearly being able to advertise a 510% gear range is a thing even though IMO the extra bit is negligible or niche (if I wanted that I’d probably get an e thirteen)

If you want something different like closer spacing in gears or more big gears or whatever then your buying habits will dictate it to SRAM, Shimano, and Campy. The reason this stuff is in Red first and they are pushing power meters (in the CHAINRING for f-ks sake!) is because the road crowd eats that stuff up and pays those prices for it. Many gravel people are totally happy with 3x setups and 7 speed chains, their dollars are nearly unreachable by a big vendor at this point.

What AXS shows me is Gravel has come into its own as a cetegory to offer cross compatibility between road and mountain and introducing Force AXS the same year as Red. That’s a great thing imo even if I’m priced out of one or both. I’ve been mixing road Fremont and tires and mountain rears since the 90’s and living with poor shifting to boot (long before 10 speed was a thing) so color me happy.

I was hoping this discussion wouldn’t be so full of resentment to early adopters but rather practical solutions on how to actually put together a viable kit. I’m curious how people with money are approaching this with respect to gravel bikes.

For instance, for a 1x setup we are looking at Force AXS front right lever and a Eagle XX1 derailleur. Is that even possible? I believe SRAM sells an upgrade kit so where for around $1k but then you end up with a useless extra set of mountain shifters. What is the solution for the Force derailleur.

Now the road tear has a clutch, I imagine it’s much easier for 2x setups. just buy the Force AXS upgrade front and rear when it comes out and skip the crankset. Is anyone tracking the SKUs for this set and spec recommendations for gravel setups?

Finally do you think there will ever be a small diameter AXS dropper post? I would love not having to worry about internal routing of those cables and being able to swap the dropper out for  (say) my girlfriends triathlon, yet still have it available when we come bombing down the mountains together on weekends.
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Regarding range, you're correct that it's what's driving the adoption of 10-tooth cogs, but the reason is that they're trying to create 1x systems with the same range that's ridiculously easy to achieve with a 2x system, without a 10-tooth cog. The problem is that they're not offering cassettes that make any sense for a 2x system. Unless you're going to use an MTB crank with tiny chainrings, a 10-tooth cog is completely useless on a 2x system.

This is driven by the manufacturers, because they're the ones who pushed 1x systems hard and now they're trying to correct their obvious shortcomings. Unfortunately, until we have 15-speed cassettes (which is likely never), they're not going to be able to create wide range 1x systems without insanely large gaps between gears. MTB riders will tolerate that, but it sucks when you're trying to maintain a pace on a dirt/gravel road and you've only got a choice between a gear that's too big or one that's too small. 
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I just finished upgrading my exploro to AXS Force 1x with an eagle derauiler and cassette and I love it, shifting is crisp and fast way fater then the 1st gen road grouppo. at forst i was skeptical about the 50 on the cassette but once i tried it i was so glad i wnet with it; most of the "gravel here in Socal can be more MTN bike than your typical east coast gravel so this set up work amazing for me, as far as price goes if you have a good relationship with your shop they wont mind ordering what you need. I had Force 1 mechanical and it is a day and night difference .
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