Double or Triple Chain Ring



FramDog

New Member
Sep 5, 2007
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Hello to All,

I am considering changing from a mountain bike to a road bike since I do most of my riding on the street. I have a guestion regarding the number of chain rings.

Other than the obvious, greater selection of gear combinations, what are the pros and cons of having three vs two chain rings on a road bike?

The bike I am looking at is available with both, and the cost is the same. To be specific, the Specialized Allez Expert.

Many thanks for your input,

FD
 

J5311

New Member
Jul 22, 2007
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FramDog said:
Hello to All,

I am considering changing from a mountain bike to a road bike since I do most of my riding on the street. I have a guestion regarding the number of chain rings.

Other than the obvious, greater selection of gear combinations, what are the pros and cons of having three vs two chain rings on a road bike?

The bike I am looking at is available with both, and the cost is the same. To be specific, the Specialized Allez Expert.

Many thanks for your input,

FD
I am actually deciding the same thing right now... I am actualy riding on a 12 speed... this is on a road bike... i need more gears... + its a lever system. Now i was orrigonally going to buy the trek 1000 but since i have become more comfortable in the drop bars i would want to be able so switch & reselct gears from there, something the 1000 doesn't offer. Now then i wanted the 06 1200, but my LBS doesn't have it in my size. then we go to the pilot which doesn't have the right shifters, same as the 1000... & then there is the 1500...now this looks like a great bike, but then u look at the new 08 2.1 & it seems like it has everything i want... should i just save the extra $300 & buy the new 08? my orrigonal price range was in the trek 1000= 700-800, but now i'm going in to the 1.3k
 

FriendlyFred

New Member
Jul 19, 2006
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What works best for you is a personal opinion, I can only offer my own experience...I started out riding a triple chain ring (on a Trek 5200) and thought "why would anyone ride a double." I then ended up with a BMC Road Racer that had been built as a 9 speed shimano double chain ring. Now I know why people ride double chain rings. It made me a much stronger rider and I can get up all the same hills that I went up with the triple chain ring. I credit riding a double chainring with helping me to improve as a rider. It's a personal decision, but I'm a confirmed double rider now.

hope that helps,
ff
 

J5311

New Member
Jul 22, 2007
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FriendlyFred said:
What works best for you is a personal opinion, I can only offer my own experience...I started out riding a triple chain ring (on a Trek 5200) and thought "why would anyone ride a double." I then ended up with a BMC Road Racer that had been built as a 9 speed shimano double chain ring. Now I know why people ride double chain rings. It made me a much stronger rider and I can get up all the same hills that I went up with the triple chain ring. I credit riding a double chainring with helping me to improve as a rider. It's a personal decision, but I'm a confirmed double rider now.

hope that helps,
ff
How did it make you stronger? Can you elaborate alittle more?
Were you switching gears less often? Yet on the hills in the beginning was it harder or eaiser to get used to?

Like I stated before i only have 12 speeds which suck exspecially w/ the lever system. Would the 18 speed be sufficient?

Sorry to jack your thread FramDog...
 

Mr. Bill

New Member
Sep 4, 2007
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I find that I only use that little third ring in the spring, when I'm whipping my legs back into shape after the winter's layoff and conscious of hurting my knees with too much big-gear stomping. After the first few weeks, my chain never touches that little ring again. My newest road bike is a double, and I don't miss the third ring in the least, but come spring I'll be back to the tripple until my legs wake up once again.
 

iqaro

New Member
Sep 4, 2007
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Hello

I have a triple in my commuter (42 32 22 with 11-32 8 cogs sprocket) and a double (52 39 with 11-24 6cogs sprocket) in my road bike. So I'm not too sweated when get into my job, but when I'm on the road on weekends it does not matter....

The double need more force, because has larger gain, so you become stronger with time. Like making intervals in every hill.....

:D
 

rparedes

New Member
Jul 21, 2007
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FramDog said:
Hello to All,
I am considering changing from a mountain bike to a road bike since I do most of my riding on the street. I have a guestion regarding the number of chain rings.
FD

Depends on terrain and type of riding you do. Possible option: a compact double and a 10 speed rear cassette with a larger tooth count on the large cog. This almost gives you the gear ratios of a triple...
Personal opinion: If I had to do it over I would get 10 speed with a compact double...you can always then upgrade to a standard double (change BB and raise the front deraullier) as you improve... the upgrade from a triple to a double is more complicated (shifter, deraulliers, crank, BB) a lot more $$$
 

FramDog

New Member
Sep 5, 2007
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I have no problem with your questions J5311. They are all helping me decide which chain ring to go with.

The Allez Expert uses the Shimano Ultegra 10 speed cassette. So, as far as reliability, there are no issues with shifting on a triple?

One comparison I do need to make is between the chain rings and cassette on my mtb and the road bike. I'm sure that would take a bit of time to adjust to.

Thanks for everyones help so far,

FD
 

fujibike

New Member
Aug 4, 2007
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Deciding on a double, triple or compact really depends upon the terrain you're riding and your level of fitness. I live in a relatively flat area, though windy, and had a Fuji Finest triple with an 8 speed cassette.. I'm not the fittest cyclist and hardly ever used the granny gear. I've since obtained a Fuji Roubaix Pro with the standard double and 9 speed cassette. I find this setup more practical for my riding as the smaller chainring is smaller than the triple's middle chain ring and the 9 speed cassette provides me with the best gearing for my terrain. If you're in a hilly/mountainous area and are fit you may like a compact chain ring. If you're not particularly fit and cycling in that terrain I would recommend the triple.
 

J5311

New Member
Jul 22, 2007
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Mr. Bill said:
I find that I only use that little third ring in the spring, when I'm whipping my legs back into shape after the winter's layoff and conscious of hurting my knees with too much big-gear stomping. After the first few weeks, my chain never touches that little ring again. My newest road bike is a double, and I don't miss the third ring in the least, but come spring I'll be back to the tripple until my legs wake up once again.
fujibike said:
If you're not particularly fit and cycling in that terrain I would recommend the triple.
Thrse two comments me me say that i made a good choice in choosing the tripple because i'm not the lightest of riders... around 270 & dropping (woo hoo) from biking & i also just started out.
 

FramDog

New Member
Sep 5, 2007
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I did accounting of cogs yesterday and here is what is on my mtb:

Chain Ring: 24 - 32 - 39
Cassette: 7 cog 11 - 28

FujiBike, as far as fitness and terrain, I am moderately fix and cycle on rolling roads. So compared to the mtb mechanics above, any other advice on switching to a road bike with 39-53 or 30-39-53 chain ring and 10 cog 12-27 cassette?

My main concern is the triple chain ring and 10 cog cassette causing the chain to bind or derailleur problems when at gear extremes, such as, 53 chain ring and 27 cassette.
 

OldGoat

New Member
Nov 13, 2006
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FramDog said:
I did accounting of cogs yesterday and here is what is on my mtb:

Chain Ring: 24 - 32 - 39
Cassette: 7 cog 11 - 28

FujiBike, as far as fitness and terrain, I am moderately fix and cycle on rolling roads. So compared to the mtb mechanics above, any other advice on switching to a road bike with 39-53 or 30-39-53 chain ring and 10 cog 12-27 cassette?

My main concern is the triple chain ring and 10 cog cassette causing the chain to bind or derailleur problems when at gear extremes, such as, 53 chain ring and 27 cassette.
You should never be in a 53/27 pairing. Before you reach that point, you should have long since have dropped to the middle (or small if a double crank) chainring. But even if you screw up and go 53/27, nothing should bind; you'll just get some complaining-type noises telling you to pick a different gearing combination.

Incidentally, I started with a double, switched to a compact, and recentluy switched again (big $$$ as noted above) to a triple. This all after I swapped out my 13 rear cog and added a 30-tooth (something you can do easily & cheaply with a 9speed). Even though completey out of Shimano spec, everything runs fine, and I have a 30/30 combo for hills in my area that I have struggled to climb in the past (but climb "easily" now). Lets me stay seated and keep cadence up. By hey, I'm an old guy (58) and just getting into shape again after a 20-year layoff from marathon running.
 

iqaro

New Member
Sep 4, 2007
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Hi..
Let's do some numbers, assuming a 26" MTB wheel and a 27" Road wheel, gears as are in tables below...
Gears (inches) For MTB




Cog




28 26 22 19 17 14 11


Ring 24 22.3 24.0 28.4


32 37.8 43.8 48.9


39 59.6 72.4 92.2














Gears (Inches) For Road Double Chainring

Cog

27 25 23 22 20 19 17 15 13 12 Ring 39 39.0 42.1 45.8 47.9 52.7 55.4 53 71.6 75.3 84.2 95.4 110.1 119.3











Gears (Inches) For Road Triple Chainring

Cog

30 28 25 22 20 19 17 15 13 12 Ring 30 27.0 28.9 32.4 36.8 40.5 42 45.4 51.5 56.7 59.7 66.7 75.6 53 75.3 84.2 95.4 110.1 119.3
From that numbers, one can say that using a Triple combined with a somewhat larger cog 10-spd-cassete you can maintain your shorter gear as you are acustomed in the MTB: 27in against 22in in MTB. Although loosing some *smootheness* in transitions betwin cogs. Table are calculated with 30t cog, but there are *Alpine* cassetes with a 34teeth cog, that will have a shorter gear.. say 23.8in pretty same as 22.3in in MTB.

With a double, your shorter gear will be 39inches far from 22inches.

Regards:D
 

iqaro

New Member
Sep 4, 2007
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Excuse me please... Here is the table...
moz-screenshot.jpg
moz-screenshot-1.jpg
 

FramDog

New Member
Sep 5, 2007
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OG,

Thanks for the wisdom. I guess I should have known not to use extreme pairings. I have heard the mechanical systems complaining before.

Thanks,

FD