Genuine Question – What's the point of 1*10 or 1*11 setups?

Home Forum Bike Forum Genuine Question – What's the point of 1*10 or 1*11 setups?

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 103 total)
  • Genuine Question – What's the point of 1*10 or 1*11 setups?
  • Sam

    There are a lot less design restrictions if you don’t have to account for multiple chainrings, a front derailleur and somewhere to mount it.

    1xX is a boon to folks who want short stays and fat tyres.

    Also very good for designing rear suspension because you don’t have to worry about mounting a front derailleur or the effect of different chainring sizes on bob.

    Premier Icon kayak23

    It is personal. I think single front rings look way better than multiple, and so does a nicely designed chainguide.

    It’s not just about weight either, simplicity is a big factor, less bar clutter too with only one shifter. This is especially true with a dropper post as I can put my reverb button where the front mech shifter used to be under the bar.

    A 1x will generally tend to be quieter too. Enjoy the silence..

    Someone will be along in a minute to tell you it’s only a fashion thing.. 🙄




    So much easier to maintain cadence when you’re just shifting up and down a cassette rather than that horrible jump when you shift down the front ring.

    by adding something like a 42t rear spocket, a massive cage rear mech, and the requirement for a chain guide

    You don’t have to add a huge rear sprocket. You only need a medium cage mech with one of those big sprockets. With a normal cassette you can run a neat little short cage mech. More often than not you don’t need to run a chain guide if you have a narrow-wide ring and a clutch mech.

    It’s simpler, lighter and more intuitive to use. Plus you get fitter because you can’t pedal uphill so slowly!

    Premier Icon soulrider

    less crap to go wrong

    Premier Icon BigDummy

    Almost all of the frame damage I’ve ever sustained and most of the chain breakages have been due to shifting at the front. If I can get a usable range of gears without a front mech, that’s pretty compelling.

    I now use my dropper-post at least as frequently as I ever used my front shifter, so making space for that control is a real advantage too.

    Ground clearance is a real thing.

    Also, the riding I actually do has long since not really needed the very tall gears. I’m not absolutely sure whether I can do without the very low ones permanently yet.



    I’m crap at setting up front mechs.Come to think of it I’m not great at the rear ones neiver.
    I’ll stick to single speeds.

    Premier Icon cookeaa

    Functionally there is no Advantage at all…

    They were invented purely so a different halfwit (unable to use any of the internet’s various search tools) could post pretty much the same question on this forum every week, and get the same answers as the previous Morons….

    That makes you this weeks winner OP!

    Premier Icon binners

    Genuine question here: where do you lot who run single rings tend to ride? What are the gradients like?

    I reckon it’d be a non-starter for me. I live on a 25% gradient, and I reckon I’d be as likely to make it up there on a 1×10 as I would on a single-speed (which I sold 1 ride after I moved here). There is basically nowhere remotely flat where I live

    So… do you regularly ride up stuff like that? And if so, have you got thighs like Chris Hoy?

    I saved 1.2 lbs by going from a 2x set-up with a chain device to a 1x with a clutch mech, narrow wide ring and a wee top guide. It runs quieter, smoother and although I initially looked for the lower gears sometimes, I was never actually forced to walk instead of riding, so I clearly didn’t need them. I’d not go back.

    Premier Icon st colin

    I’m about to install my 1×10 setup in the next few days. My reasons for changing are pretty simple. I rarely use the granny ring. I will be able to position my Reverb lever, I’ll save a bit of weight (not bothered), a lot quieter than my current 2×9 with roller tensioner, and the chicks love it*



    Long cage mechs are not necessary to successfully go 1×10, a zee rear mech will work with a 40t sprocket, probably pushing it for 42t, though I am happy to be proven wrong.


    +1 soulrider

    For what it’s worth, I didn’t ever have functionality or reliability problems with front mechs but the bike runs more smoothly without it.

    What are the gradients like?

    Pretty steep in places around Aberdeen. My lowest gear now is equivalent to just a touch higher than the granny ring and second from largest sprocket, and I was running a 22t granny and an 11-36 cassette. You can cope with that without too much trouble. I’m running 11-42 and a 32t front now and it covers what I need no problem.

    So… do you regularly ride up stuff like that? And if so, have you got thighs like Chris Hoy?

    Yes to the steepness but it doesn’t go on for that long around here because the hills aren’t as high. No to Hoy-size legs but yes to bigger legs than many MTBers of similar height/weight.


    I can see where Binners is coming from here. I ride a single ring set up (11-36T) as I get the benefits already mentioned (weight loss, simplicity, silence, under bar dropper). I don’t regularly ride long/steep ups or terrain where I would spin out regularly so 2x or 3x is overkill. If I lived elsewhere I may have a different outlook (or probably just add a 40/42 upper sprocket).

    plus one

    Saves 15 seconds from cleaning your bike 😆

    Premier Icon D0NK

    binners a 32×11-42 setup only loses you 1 or 2 granny gears, it’d be reet. Recently put a 1×10 on my CX bike and really like it, seriously considering switching to 32×11-36 when my current (brand new) 9spd drivechain wears, for local riding (will be keeping a granny ring on my lakes bike).

    Premier Icon ton

    plain old sales guff.

    I am just speccing a new build, trying to find some good quality cheap 9 spd stuff is getting a bit easier…….long live 1 x10 and 1 x11… 8)

    binners a 32×11-42 setup only loses you 1 or 2 granny gears,

    In rough terms I reckoned that I lost about 1-1/2 gears at each end, going to a 30t ring would make it one at the low end and two at the high end. I certainly don’t miss the high gears and even as someone who only gets out once a week I can easily manage without the low gears. For me, the big sprocket adapter is definitely necessary, some of my much fitter mates can manage 32 front with 11-36 rear, but round here, I would struggle a bit.

    Premier Icon amedias

    to answer OP, lighter, simpler, no big ratio jumps, what’s not to like?

    Medium cage mech works just fine, and I only really start to miss anything lower after 6hrs+ when I’m knackered.

    Genuine question here: where do you lot who run single rings tend to ride?

    Dartmoor, and other local stuff, occasional trips to Wales or elsehwere…

    What are the gradients like?

    20%+ and rocky/slippy/pebbly etc.

    So… do you regularly ride up stuff like that? And if so, have you got thighs like Chris Hoy?

    Yes,no not really

    34t front ring, 11-34 10speed cassette on HT, 11-36 on FS

    36t front ring, 11-34 9speed cassette on XC race bike which to be fair is often ridden on slightly flatter courses, or when it is that steep it’s not for long as the races are only ~1hr so MTFU for racing required.

    *all 26ers


    1×10 – nope
    1×11 with a 30T ring – yes I think this would be better – but not enough to upgrade until my current drive train packs in.

    One of my friends just bought a XL carbon 29er with 1×11 and a 28T chainring. The wopping frame and wheels with the minute chainring does look a bit odd.


    Advantages (IMO, obviously):

    Less to go wrong
    Single ring set up looks better
    Can ‘hide’ a right hand reverb adjuster under the bar on left hand side
    Shorter cage rear mech possible (less chance of going into spokes and ballsing up the mech hanger – the true reason I went to 1×10 if I’m honest)
    Quieter if run with a clutch mech
    Makes your legs stronger
    Moderate, but still worthwhile weight saving


    You need stronger legs (see above)
    Chainring wear accelerated
    Might need to add a top guide (very small weight penalty)

    Truth be told I went for 1×10 because I badly mangled my integral mech hanger by putting a long cage rear mech into the spokes under load. I figured that anything that could use a short cage mech would minimise any leverage of chain flap on the hanger, but more importantly the smaller the mech, the less chance of twotting it on something!

    Most of my local riding is rolling hills with a few steep, but short bits. It hasn’t hampered me on away days too much, though – you just need to adopt a ‘shut up, legs’ attitude.

    I understand why people may want to go to 1 x 9/10/11… however what I really don’t understand is why people would want to go from 3 x 9/10/11 to 2 x 9/10/11.

    What is the reason for that? (slight hijack I know..)

    Premier Icon ahwiles

    i’m a luddite, in all the worst senses of the word.

    i’ve learned to love the new 10spd shimano stuff simply because of the increased cable-pull; it’s a much more reliable system.

    while i’m still convinced that i don’t need 10 gears (5 would be plenty) the new 10spd stuff is very reliable. and if the large + light cassettes grant one all the gear-range one desires, why not ditch the front mech?

    …I really don’t understand is why people would want to go from 3 x 9/10/11 to 2 x 9/10/11.

    What is the reason for that? (slight hijack I know..)

    the 40+ tooth chainring is more or less pointless*; removing it allows you to shorten the chain, making it lighter and less flappy. And you can use a short or medium cage rear mech as you don’t have to take up so much slack.

    (*it only adds a couple of extra gears, and they’re gears that you only need if you want to pedal to over 30mph – most people never do this. If you DO, then great, crack on, etc.)

    Premier Icon D0NK

    what I really don’t understand is why people would want to go from 3 x 9/10/11 to 2 x 9/10/11.

    old fashined 2×9 was just to get rid of the big ring which hooked up on steps and rocks and stuff, loss of top end speed was not really a worry. Newer 26/40 doubles with a wider cassettes are, I assume, just to reduce front end shifts.

    Premier Icon nemesis

    surely by adding something like a 42t rear spocket

    They’re pretty cut out so they don’t add a lot of weight and if you use one of adapters from Hope and the like then they’re aluminium rather than steel anyway.

    , a massive cage rear mech,

    a 1×10 with 11-36 uses a short cage mech so shorter than a triple mech.

    and the requirement for a chain guide (not always, but often) that the weight saving is negligible?

    for those worried about weight, a NW chainring removes the need

    Also, and this is purely a personal thing…but they look gopping, no?

    How? Most people don’t even notice. If anything they’re that much neater since there’s no front mech.

    Or to put it another way, why don’t you ride with a quadruple front chainset? Answer is obviously because there’s no need and it would have downsides. That’s the same answer for many people as to why they use a 1x


    however what I really don’t understand is why people would want to go from 3 x 9/10/11 to 2 x 9/10/11

    that is a far far simpler question
    When do you use the big ring off road?
    Replace the middle with a 34T and fit a Medium cage rear mech
    Job done

    I am debating changing my girlfriends bike to 1×10. She doesn’t really get on with the concept of gears and will get off and walk despite having gears left anyway, so it will simplify the issue.

    However, the last time I changed something involving the gears on her bike, it went down like a Camelbak full of cold sick. Apparently removing the gear indicators (to get the brake levers inboard for one-finger braking) renders a bike unridable. So I am undecided.

    Premier Icon binners

    binners a 32×11-42 setup only loses you 1 or 2 granny gears, it’d be reet.

    Have you ever been out riding with me? 🙂

    I’m quite surprised you only lose that, actually. I’d assumed it’d be more. I still think I’d struggle. As I know every ride from home starts on a 25% gradient, and when I’ve done however many miles I do, finishes on one too. Heres the profile of my road…

    How does that look on a 1×10? Its a bloody nightmare with a granny ring!!

    Premier Icon Daffy

    Cheers everyone (apart from Cookeaa – you Sir, can go and swivel!)

    1×10 because I can’t be bothered setting up a front mech, and I’ve found I can ride everything my friends do on 2×10 whilst I’m on a 36t chainring. I am from Kendal so ride the Lake District and Scotland, some times Yorkshire. Done 35 mile rides across fells no problem, and never struggle on shorter ones really.
    There is less to go wrong, they look better, and they force me to exert myself more, which I like. Yes I could get a 2×10 and sit and spin on the climbs, but I like to make my self feel sick…
    11-36 cassette, and all is good.
    Everyone is different though, people I ride with won’t go 1×10, and I’d never go 2/3×10. Horses for courses and all that..


    How does that look on a 1×10? Its a bloody nightmare with a granny ring!!

    A 30T ring with 1×11 probably gives you the same gears as with a granny. 28T is probably even more (and too much)

    Everyone is getting all huffy and defensive about their low ratios but is the high ratio enough? Do you not spin out going downhill?
    Why not MTFU and go SS?


    however what I really don’t understand is why people would want to go from 3 x 9/10/11 to 2 x 9/10/11.

    The reason I did this was because the only action my big ring ever saw was taking chunks out of the back of my calf.
    I swapped my triple for a 2×9 (22/36) SLX chain set, complete with bash guard, and am now much happier.
    I’d be interested in 1×9/10/11 however i’m not fit enough to do away with the granny ring yet.

    Do you not spin out going downhill?

    No, as far as I remember, dropping the 44T, and going up to a 36T on the middle only looses you 2 or 3 gears…


    The reason I went 2x was I kept bending teeth on the 42 so went bash/36/24 with 11-34 cassette.
    Now running bash/36 with 11-40.

    The way I look at it is the only reason behind the large ring and granny existing was because they could not generate a full usable range of gears with only a single ring and cassette.
    Now they can, thus rendering the front mech obsolete .
    As soon as you can buy a 10-42 11 speed cassette for £50 I think front mechs will be a thing of the past for many people on here.

    Binners’ graph looks more like 10% not 25%. Plenty of hills in-between these gradients on SDW here with 30T 11-36 on 26″

    Do you not spin out going downhill?

    No, it’s almost always possible to avoid descending anything open enough to need gears that high around here. The good stuff, there’s no way you are pedalling. In some places I can see an issue though, but you aren’t losing all that much really.

    Why not MTFU and go SS?

    Because there’s a very big difference between the 20″ ish lowest gear on a 1×10 with a 42t sprocket and the 50″ ish single gear on a SS and there’s no way I could push one single gear everywhere.


    I’m a complete lightweight, and have always been a “spinner” and not a “slogger”, but even i am managing fine with 1×10 using 32 front, 42 rear. It’s only a gnats whatsit off the 24/36 i had before (when i was 2×10) and so far, the only time i’m going fast enough to “spin out” is downhill on road, when frankly, i enjoy not pedaling for a bit 😉

    If i were doing multi-day adventuring with a heavily loaded bike/pack, somewhere hilly like scotlandshire, i’d probably put my 2×10 back on, but other than that, i’m enjoying, and staying 1by 😉

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 103 total)

The topic ‘Genuine Question – What's the point of 1*10 or 1*11 setups?’ is closed to new replies.