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Anyone Using A 50/34 Compact Double

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Anyone Using A 50/34 Compact Double


Old 02-18-19, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by tourisme View Post
You think it's consumer-driven. My LBS tells me it's because the manufacturers wanted to cut their costs. Whatever the reason, it's not an improvement.
Both things are true. If consumers wanted high-end road triples, manufacturers would spec them on at least some of their bikes. Since nobody wants them, manufacturers save the development and inventory costs by not supplying them to the market.

Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
But after-market triples are being made and sold by all the big group manufacturers at multiple price points - they certainly aren't disappearing, but you can't blame them if people just aren't buying.
High-end road triples have disappeared. The two best triple groups currently available are Tiagara and Microshift R10. I don't think Sram has made one for a decade. Campy discontinued the Athena triple at least a year ago and replaced it with Centaur and Potenza doubles with wide-ratio cassettes.

Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
And with my compact cranks and wide cassettes, I literally never wish I had just one more gear between any two that I do have.
Hardly anybody needs a triple because like you, most people prefer a wide-ratio cassette to three chainrings. Tough luck for guys like me who like triples.
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Old 02-18-19, 03:15 PM
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I'll add that with the wide ratio cassettes and the fact we have more gears on the rear now than when triples came out that triples only add to the complexity of knowing when to move the front or back. When I get back into shape from my winter off the bike, then my 52/36 will be used mainly in the 52 ring for all but the times I'm tired out or have a long grade to climb. In the future, even a double in the front might become unnecessary for me if 12 or more speeds can be had on the rear with a rear DR that can handle an 11 or 12 small to a 32 tooth big with an even bigger bailout gear of 42 or bigger next to it. But that example is for my ride conditions, yours are likely different.

If I had more really steep hills or hills with a long climb a 50/34 might make more sense for me. But I don't have those here, so my 52/36 does well for me and I can use it like a one speed front till I actually need a ratio that the rear can't give me. Usually that's when I'm trying to get a comfortable cadence to match speed with another such as in a paceline or simply riding along side someone to have a conversation.
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Old 02-22-19, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Dave Mayer View Post
Why have triples died? I assume because the pros don't ride them, and week-end warriors want what the pros ride.

Mid-compact doubles are becoming more and more common on stock new bikes. With Shimano upper tier short cage 11sp derailleurs handing the 30t cog, it makes a lot of sense for many when compared to the 50x34 compact crank and 11x28 cassette. More consistent gear jumps, less redundancy between the big and small ring, a wider range, and a similar low end - what's not to like. Of course, there's a little more weight but unless you are a weight weenie...

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Old 02-22-19, 11:23 AM
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34X50 with a 11-32 to save yr knees if you ride in the hills.
Better have the lower gear reserve when you have to climb a hill with tired legs.
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Old 02-23-19, 08:27 AM
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Back when I started I had a 5 speed freewheel, later a 7 speed cassette with a 52x42 crank. I rode centuries, mountains, everything with that until 2001 when I got my first road triple that wasn't a touring bike. In 2012 I got the compact double.As long as I have a low enough and a high enough gear I don't get too worked up about it.
It's nice to have lots of gears to choose from when riding with others, but it seems like a double with 11 in the back should be plenty for most, especially considering we used to only have 5, 6, or 7 back there.
I have a mountain bike with a 1x set up and I can certainly see the limitations of that if I try to go fast on a road with it, but it doesn't matter on the trail. I don't think I would be happy with a 1x on the road bike. I don't hate shifting the front and it wouldn't save enough weight to matter.
On a mountain bike getting rid of the front derailleur allows room for suspension and 29 inch wheel, plus front shifting gets bad and chains get dropped when there is mud. There would be no such advantages for a road bike.
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Old 02-23-19, 11:30 AM
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Since factories ship new bikes with that 50, 34 combo ... a lot do, + if you want to adopt them, , the cranks ready to install are pretty cheap..

benefits of making zillions for OEM installation..
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Old 02-23-19, 11:41 PM
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Originally Posted by OldsCOOL View Post
Just curious what your impressions of the gearing change might be. This I installed on my 88 Cannondale Criterium Series that has a 7sp 12-28 cassette. Being a lifelong 53/39 road double guy this spring should be interesting.
gotta go lower....
The long sweeping highway into town is posted 12 degree slope. Easy down, but no shoulder for return trip. I take the back road (the old "stagecoach road"- now paved) which has a couple sixty yard stretches of over 30 degrees. To do this with 68 year old knees I swapped out the 34/50 - 11/28 on a Specialized Dolce to a 30/46 - 11/30. Only this week I hung a 34/50 - 12/34 onto my (new to me) 86 Centurion IronMan. Now if it will only stop raining long enough to try them out! My other four bike are all triples.
Half of all the local riders on our LBS group rides are on MTBs converted to road.
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Old 02-24-19, 12:38 AM
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Every time I think I might want to replace my compact gearing setup along comes a very windy day or a particularly tough uphill section and I am thankful for the lower gears. In truth, I never spin out in high gear unless going downhill, but these days 40 mph is enough of a rush anyway.
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Old 02-25-19, 03:57 PM
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I live in flat Chicagoland and am 67. I use a 53/ 39, 11-25 on my road bike, a 53/39, 11-23 on the TT bike, a 44/34, 11-32 on the CX bike and the mountain bike has two little rings on the front and a 11-? on the back.
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