• This topic has 53 replies, 38 voices, and was last updated 2 months ago by GEDA.
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  • 1×11 can anyone convince me?
  • ollie151
    Free Member

    Is it just the industry producing more products to sell, or is it now pointless having 2x…?

    I’m getting back into riding and thinking about making some changes. Currently have a 2×10 setup. Last time I checked 1×11 wasn’t even around but now it seems like most bikes Come as standard ?

    I’ve got a vagabond, so need gears suitable mainly to long distance road riding with occasional off road
    Thanks folks

    zippykona
    Full Member

    The front mech is the most spiteful of all components, take it off and burn it.

    Del
    Full Member

    Go wide range rear but ditch the front. 1×10 will be fine. 1x anything is an improvement though imo.

    devash
    Free Member

    IMHO just go straight to 12 speed. 11 speed feels like a halfway house in comparison.

    ollie151
    Free Member

    Mainly looking at getting second hand parts so will probably for for 11

    ollie151
    Free Member

    Does the chain not wear out quicker cos it’s not able to run very straight with 1x ?

    Daffy
    Full Member

    1* on a road bike doesn’t make sense in my opinion. You end up most using the smallest and largest cogs on an expensive and heavy cassette with poor chainline and have bad jumps between cogs to top it all off. At the end you have a barely used, but worn out expensive cassette.

    My commuter had 1*11 Di2 GRX and I was almost constantly at the bottom of a £200 XTR cassette. I now have 2*11 and am all over a £60 cassette which has lasted over 20000km.

    I’ve NEVER had the trouble that most on here seem to have with front mechs.

    phil5556
    Full Member

    Disclaimer: MTBer / off road rider.

    1 x is excellent, I love it. My MTB is Eagle 10-52 and has more range than I could ever need, any lower gearing and I’d fall over because I can’t pedal quick enough.

    My gravel bike is 11 speed 11-46 and I can spin out on the road occasionally, which doesn’t upset me much as I don’t need to be going any quicker. Eventually once everything wears out and needs replacing I’ll likely go to a bigger range 11 speed or go all out and put Eagle on that too.

    Cassettes aren’t cheap.

    On road is a mystery to me but I guess 2x still has its place there.

    cookeaa
    Full Member

    Easiest way to try it out is to remove your front mech and rings, fit a N/W ring (a cheapo 30t or 32t should fit if you have 104BCD cranks made in the last 20 or so years) and buy a wider range 10speed cassette depending on the vintage of your 10 speed mech an 11-42 cassette should just about work and gives you an indication of what more range on the rear is like, if not current MTB 11 and 12 speed mechs use the same cable pull as ‘dynasis’…

    Essentially just spend the minimum amount necessary to give 1x a go…

    If you’re not convinced you can just reinstall the front mech and rings. If you decide you do like 1x just go from there, carry on with 1×10 or buy the shifter/cassette/mech to go for a wider range 11 or 12 speed…

    I’ve NEVER had the trouble that most on here seem to have with front mechs.

    [/Swoons at mechanical prowess] 😉

    dc1988
    Full Member

    I’m 1x on all my mtb’s and would never go back to a front mech but 2x on my road/gravel bikes as I like the extra range and closer ratios, I’ve never dropped a chain and don’t run a dropper on the road/gravel bikes so don’t see it as a compromise for those.

    If you do go 1x then you can stick to 10 speed if you like, there’s plenty of wide range options available.

    Daffy
    Full Member

    Agree with the comments above about MTB, but that’s because on a MTB you’re rarely at the top and bottom for long periods – you use much more of the cassette, the chainline is better and the ratios don’t matter much. It’s almost the exact opposite of what happens on a road bike.

    zilog6128
    Full Member

    My commuter had 1*11 Di2 GRX and I was almost constantly at the bottom of a £200 XTR cassette. I now have 2*11 and am all over a £60 cassette which has lasted over 20000km.

    you didn’t say how long the XTR cassette actually lasted though, but I’d guess not long from the context of your post? But XTR isn’t necessarily meant to last, it’s meant to be light for racing. I’ve had exactly the opposite experience with a SRAM XG cassette on my commuter, still going strong after 3 years! Alright, doubt I’ll get 20k out of it, and agree 11/12 speed cassettes are expensive, but if it were all down to price we’d still all be on 3×8 😂

    2x is still handy on road for racing (even if I only do it on Zwift 😂) or fast club rides, otherwise I wouldn’t bother. A lot of people with 2x on road bikes would probably actually be better off & have more fun with a 1x gravel setup anyway 😀

    tillydog
    Free Member

    Currently have a 2×10 setup.
    […]
    need gears suitable mainly to long distance road riding with occasional off road

    Then you’re all set 🙂

    Stick to 2x for road, IMHO. The gaps between gears are too big on 1x to be able to find a comfortable cadence to suit varying road conditions.

    (Plus the cassettes are a silly size if you want a decent gear range).

    I never had any problems with a front mech on MTB or any problem coordinating two thumbs at once. I have 1x 11 on my FS, but it doesn’t run as well as 2x 10 did.

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    I’ve NEVER had the trouble that most on here seem to have with front mechs.

    I know how to set the points on a Lucas distributor but if I ever see one again it’s getting thrown in the sea.

    I can’t think of any reason not to go straight to GX Eagle on a new bike.

    Onzadog
    Free Member

    My issue with 2x is that the gears I’d use most are at the cross over point between the two chainrings.

    Current gravel bike has a triple and I spend the vast majority of my time in the middle ring. The best approximation to this is actually 1x. The wider cassette covers for the occasions when I’d move out of the middle ring. If grx offered a triple, I’d use that.

    Rich_s
    Full Member

    I’ve had one bike with a 2x and found it pretty poor. Too much overlap. But I don’t rate 1x particularly, too big gaps between gears. Nowt wrong with 3x really, it’s just sram pushing away from front mechs cos their’s were rubbish gave us another new “thing” we all have to dash out and buy.

    Ebikes probably could just go back to 7 speed or something, but they never will. It’s like rallying in the 90s where they could have happily run 4 speed gearboxes due to the torque outputs, but they couldn’t because of the marketing.

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    1 x is rubbish, I hate it. My MTB is XT 10-51 and I really miss not having a lower gear than the 28-51. Even that is no use as the bike stipulates a 30T minimum chainring so consequently I’ve had to tighten the H screw to reduce it to 11 speed so I don’t chainsaw through the chainstay when using 28-10. But they don’t seem to sell 28t any more so I’ll have to revert to 30t next time and have an even bigger bottom gear.
    And whenever the drivechain gets muddy wet it makes the most hideous awful graunching noise as it wears itself into expensive pieces.

    What’s not to like 🙄

    JonEdwards
    Free Member

    For me – MTB and Gravel, 1×11 is wide enough. I use SRAM 10-42 cassettes, and that gets me up and down pretty much everything I want.
    I find kit actually lasts way longer than 2x/3x used to. The cassette on my hardtail is 4.5 years old now and has done a LOT of miles in all weather. I just keep on top of chain wear and replace once its past 0.75% stretch. I think its because the chains aren’t getting wrapped round 22T granny rings under loads of torque, and the bottom gear on the cassette is much bigger, so the load is spread across more teeth.

    When I swapped from 2×9 -> 1×11, every part of the system was lighter, even done to the XD freehub. Took exactly 1/2 a kilo off the bike which was pretty noticeable. (I ran 1x 10 on my old hardtail for a bit 32 & 11-36 and that was a bit limiting – especially at the top end)

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    Depends really, 2×9 covers the bits 1×11 doesn’t. If you’re happy with big gaps at the bottom end or a loss of range then 1x is fine. No doubt everyone will be telling you 1x is the best thing since sliced bread, I have it and appreciate it but front gears were never really that problematic.

    swanny853
    Full Member

    @thegeneralist, isn’t 28/51 lower than basically every triple ever made? I make it lower than a 20t chainring on a 36 cassette.

    matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    1x on my mountain bike = ace.
    On road, 2x or 3x (for touring) is great and covers the greater spread of gears needed if you live anywhere with a hill.

    zilog6128
    Full Member

    1 x is rubbish, I hate it. My MTB is XT 10-51 and I really miss not having a lower gear than the 28-51

    as above, and I thought I was a wuss for putting a 30 on mine 😀 Have you ever thought about just not skipping leg day 😉

    mudfish
    Full Member

    And to think we used to worry about the chainline / too much chain angle in the days of 2×7!
    2x is gone really. So many modern bikes have suspension in the way of a front mech.
    I can remember worrying about going from 3x to 2x.
    Marketing. Greener grass?

    Northwind
    Full Member

    IMO it depends entirely on the rider. Like, for road use it works great for me- but I always hated narrow gearing anyway, I did the proper road thing and fitted tiny rear blocks and ended up doubleshifting or even triple, and never really being content in a single gear so I’d shuffle between gears all the time. Switched to an 11-34 block even back in the day and liked it far more (I think a big thing was, I might not be happy in the gear I was in, but at least I wasn’t tempted to shift since the next gear was further away). This is all probably <wrong>, in terms of efficiency and excellence, but it’s just how it works for me.

    But if you like narrow ratios then naturally you’re less likely to like 1x.

    For purely offroad, for me it’s just an absolute nobrainer, for the same reason that as soon as 36-22 doubles were a mainsteam thing it was just better for me and having a triple on a bike that only does offroad seemed daft overnight. But again, that’s about the rider and the riding they do.

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    Nowt wrong with 3x really, it’s just sram pushing away from front mechs cos their’s were rubbish gave us another new “thing” we all have to dash out and buy.

    But they’ve actually deleted 2 entire product ranges. Front mechs and front shifers. Two fewer things to buy actually.

    How long has 1×12 been out now? Plenty of time for gradual upgrades. No dashing required.

    easily
    Free Member

    2×11 on my gravel, 1×12 on my mtb.

    It’s nice of course to have the small jumps and wide range, but I could do without it. I rarely use the two hardest gears on the gravel, and only very occasionally spin out on the mtb.
    Basically, advantages to both, but if I had to choose I’d go with the single chainring.

    LAT
    Full Member

    1x is great as it reduces the limitations on suspension design as the front mech no longer needs to be accommodated.

    wide range 1x does wear chains faster especially if you spend a lot of time climbing in the low end of the cassette.

    on your vagabond id suggest keeping the 2x set up that it has.

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    Have you ever thought about just not skipping leg day 😉

    The assessor on my guide assessment said pretty much the same. He was confused about why I was always spinning a lower gear than everyone.

    I guess I did it in amn attempt to prevent injury by grinding. And tbh I do love climbing hills, and it’s nice to have a low gear for the slogs at the end of a long day.

    It was only this year at the physio that I realised it applied to most/ all my sports. I’ve got arms, and legs, like cooked spaghetti and have no power at all rock climbing, but I’ve done a hundred (short) rock climbs in a day and have done a few sessions at the depot where I do over 100 problems.

    Same with cycling… probably got an ftp of 250W or something, so have always gravitated to long sloooooowww rides where I can just spin away in a gear that’s bearly making contact with the ratchet.

    ollie151
    Free Member

    So the conclusion I’m getting is 1x better on mtb. 2x on road. I actually want to have suitable gears for touring – I assume that will cover all bases? But also not keen on 3x. So perhaps stick to 2×10. Any cassette/chainring teeth recommended? I’m not a particularly fast rider, but it’s very hilly up here on the blackdowns ?

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    I got by fine on 24/34/44 with an 11-32 cassette, the 44T ring was basically never used barring flying down hills because I could.

    PJay
    Free Member

    I got by fine on 24/34/44 with an 11-32 cassette

    I’m hardly a typical rider, just a skill less, aging guy with a bad heart pootling about for fun and fitness, but I’m happy with 44/32/22 and an 11-36 cassette (and I do need the low gears for climbs).

    You can still get triple chainsets with Shimano’s trekking groupsets (although the techs. old and very in need of an upgrade). They’re designed around a 48/36/26 chainset with an 11-36 cassette (but I’m using and old MTB triple).

    Where the trekking kit lets itself down is in that it’s MTB tech. and only comes with trigger shifters; I don’t think it’s possible to get 3×10 hydraulic brifters (although I assume you could run hyros. with bar end shifters). It still gets fitted on some fairly serious kit and cable disks.

    tjagain
    Full Member

    Touring i need a huge range. Im a sit and spin climber and slow so need a stupidly low first gear. The shand runs an equivakent to a 22 / 40 bottom gear and i could do with one lower. Nice cadence for me is about 3 mph

    The 500% range of the rohloff set that low however means i spin out at about 25mph in top. Thats a pain on long gradual descents. If on my next tour i go into a lot of mountains im going to put two front rings on to give even more range but that then woukd need a tensioner.

    The wide range 1x systems look horrid to my mind as well and the mech gets low to the ground thus is vulnerable
    For touirng you need as much range as you can get.

    I guess im an outlier tho

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    10 speed is something I’ve never been bothered about, all mine is 9 speed which once you’re on an 11-36 the last 2 jumps aren’t all that bad. Keeps stuff compatible as well, if the jumps are an issue stick with lower range cassette and smaller chainring.

    Obviously I’m framing that for the OP rather than yourself!

    Jamz
    Full Member

    Depends what your local roads are like. If it’s only rolling then 1x trumps 2x just for the fact you don’t have to constantly think about shifting the front mech. Not going to work so well in the Peaks though.

    I think the Sram AXS 12 speed 10-33 is a great cassette for road use with a 44/46/48t front ring. The cogs are: 10,11,12,13,14,15,17,19,21,24,28,33 so you don’t notice gaps.

    damascus
    Free Member

    My road/gravel bike is 2×11 105 gears and 2 sets of wheels. A road bike needs 2x but a gravel bike doesn’t. A few weeks ago the front mech got caught and pulled the plastic bits out when on technical off road and I was lucky not to trash it. I’m so used to 1x on my mtb I’d forgotten how delicate 2x system are off road.

    Most people hate front mechs as they are not very easy to set up. Newer front mechs are even harder.

    I personally wouldn’t change anything on your vagabond as you mainly want it for road riding. You also don’t know if you will keep riding.

    I’d save your money for now and put it towards n+1

    Just ride what you have.

    tillydog
    Free Member

    Any cassette/chainring teeth recommended? I’m not a particularly fast rider, but it’s very hilly up here on the blackdowns ?

    If you’re looking at cassettes that top out at 11T, consider a sub-compact chainset. I have a compact (34/50) on my Diverge, but the smallest gear on the cassette is a 12T (it’s a bastardised HG50 11-36). It suits me pretty well – 50:12 is fine for blasting along at 30 MPH on the flat with a following wind, but it would be useful to have a slightly lower gear than 34:36 for lugging panniers up hill at the end of a long day, but it can be done.

    (Incidentally, the spec on affordable Diverges seems to have taken a dive since I got mine!)

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    From what the OP says I’d be sticking to touring or mountain cranksets, would I hell lug a pannier on a 34t round here.

    LAT
    Full Member

    I’ve NEVER had the trouble that most on here seem to have with front mechs.

    i would have completely agreed with you until i had to set up a 3×10 after years of 1x. perhaps i’d forgotten about the chain rub and the way you work around it while riding

    joebristol
    Full Member

    For road I’d stay 2x I think. Although I much prefer di2 to mechanical on the road – makes the front mech shift really nice.

    I’ve never done any touring but would assume you need some low gears as carrying more weight. Perhaps you could use a sub compact crankset (30/46) and then a normal size cassette – either 11-32 or 11-34?

    belgianwaffle1
    Full Member

    I would have said get a 10 speed 11-42 but considering you’re on a drop bar setup it might be more difficult. Maybe just keep the 2×10 as you’ll have better top end than a 1x setup.

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