Road bike gearing too high

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Andrew, May 8, 2003.

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  1. Andrew

    Andrew Guest

    I'd like to lower the gearing on my road bike a bit. But there seems to be a couple of problems.

    Its Campag equipped eight speed at the back, 13 - 24 AFAIK. So I could get a bigger cassette but I
    don't think they make them anymore & I'm not sure how much difference a 27 would actually make.
    Could I get a bigger 8 speed anywhere?

    To swap for a bigger 9 or 10 speed would be an expensive option.

    Which leaves the front. Now can I just swap the rings? They are 38 - 52 now, or do I have to change
    the whole (expensive) shooting match.

    Thanks.

    --
    Andrew

    "Look laddie, if you're in the penalty area and aren't quite sure what to do with the ball, just
    stick it in the net and we'll discuss all your options afterwards."
     
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  2. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    andrew wrote:
    > I'd like to lower the gearing on my road bike a bit. But there seems to be a couple of problems.
    >
    > Its Campag equipped eight speed at the back, 13 - 24 AFAIK.

    That's an odd size, so check (count the teeth). Maybe it's 13-23, 12-25 or 13-26?

    > So I could get a bigger cassette but I don't think they make them anymore & I'm not sure how much
    > difference a 27 would actually make.

    Even a 26 would make a small but worthwhile difference.

    > Could I get a bigger 8 speed anywhere?

    Don't panic! :) I still use one Campag 8sp wheel and know you've got a number of options. Most
    aren't cheap or easy but it'll be worth doing something...........

    1. 13-26 is a more common 8sp cassette. I don't know where you could get a new one for a
    /reasonable/ price right now but somewhere (like Mercian) is bound to have some left. Parker Int
    have a Record 13-26 for £44.

    2. I expect to have some un-needed 8sp sprockets soon. They are well used, but if lucky, the 23 &
    26 won't skip with your chain. You could have them for cost of postage. This next option is
    better though...........

    3. Marchisio sprockets. Any size up to 28. Adaptors and spacers are available to make them suit
    Campag 8sp. Could just replace largest one or two sprockets and nevermind any big jumps. See
    www.parker-international.co.uk/components.htm . Will need a 0.5mm spacer behind cassette. With a
    28, you may possibly have certain problems with mech but these can be solved; and chain may
    require an extra link.

    ...and www.sdeals.com for information details. (SDeals didn't have a 28T Aviotek last time I
    checked, and note their prices don't include VAT).

    4. Use Campag 9sp sprockets (cheap and go up to 28T). Don't fit? That's right ...until the spline
    tabs are filed down. Sounds like a right old bodge, and it is, but it works. I've done this with
    two sprockets so far and am about to do some more. Takes a lot of time and patience with a file
    or stone drill bits, etc - but little skill (if a dummy like me can do it.....!). Would have to
    respace cassette somehow because 9sp sprockets are thinner. (I'll be using 9sp shifters so won't
    have to). This bodge can be worth doing alone just for the largest and smallest sprockets to get
    lower gears; cassette wouldn't need re-spacing then. Campag 9sp cassettes now have a 14-28
    option, as well as 13-28.

    5. New hub/wheel.

    > To swap for a bigger 9 or 10 speed would be an expensive option.

    Is is quite: 43 quid to convert to convert freehub & axle so to take 9sp cassettes (see Parker -
    hub spares). Cassette could then be respaced for 8sp with a Campag spacer kit. 8sp mechs would
    still work.

    > Which leaves the front. Now can I just swap the rings? They are 38 - 52 now, or do I have to
    > change the whole (expensive) shooting match.

    What chainset make & model? 38 is the minimum that will fit modern Shimano (and all 130mm) road
    double chainsets. 39 for Campags.

    Finding a cheap 110 or 74/110 "touring double" chainset with smaller inner ring could be useful.
    Bottom bracket would most likely need changing as well, but chain, front mech and shifters won't.

    ~PB
     
  3. Mseries

    Mseries Guest

    Recently I changed the config on my 1989 Shimano 105 7 speed to get lower gears. I didn't want to
    spend much money either. I bought a cheap (£40) Ofmega Vantage triple Chainset from SJS and fitted
    it. I got a new BB but as it happened didn't need it[1], the one from my double was OK. The Ofmega
    was chosen as it has 130 PCD for the outer rings which is the same as Shimano road so I switched
    my original
    39/53 rings to give me 30/39/53 on the front and 13-26 on the rear (I think). Cost was about £40, OK
    the components are different on the bike now but it is #2 bike and I intend to switch the triple
    to my tourer once I have conquered the Pyrenees this summer.

    [40]SJS refunded my money after deducting £5 for P&P. My original order was post free as it totalled
    over £50 but after my refund it fell below £50 and they took the P&P money. So after I'd sent it
    back at my cost they refunded me £4.95 (the BB cost only £9.95) so out of the £9.95 it cost for
    the part I am left with about £3 - wish I'd sold it on eBay now. Thus I have decided not to
    trade with SJS again.

    "andrew" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I'd like to lower the gearing on my road bike a bit. But there seems to be a couple of problems.
    >
    > Its Campag equipped eight speed at the back, 13 - 24 AFAIK. So I could get a bigger cassette but I
    > don't think they make them anymore & I'm not sure how much difference a 27 would actually make.
    > Could I get a bigger 8 speed anywhere?
    >
    > To swap for a bigger 9 or 10 speed would be an expensive option.
    >
    > Which leaves the front. Now can I just swap the rings? They are 38 - 52 now, or do I have to
    > change the whole (expensive) shooting match.
    >
    > Thanks.
     
  4. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    I wrote: [about Campag 8sp hubs]
    > 4. Use Campag 9sp sprockets (cheap and go up to 28T). Don't fit? That's right ...until the spline
    > tabs are filed down. Sounds like a right old bodge, and it is, but it works. I've done this
    > with two sprockets so far and am about to do some more. Takes a lot of time and patience with
    > a file or stone drill bits, etc

    [This is going off on a tangent from the original question but may be useful to those wanting to
    convert from Campag 8 to 9-speed on a shoe string].

    Update: I've done the rest of the sprockets now. Ended up quite easy with a stone grinding bit in an
    electric drill (forget ordinary files). It's not a precision job (standard sprockets fit with some
    play anyway). Just grind little and evenly and keep testing and repeating until fits; I did the
    whole job by eye and feel. The tabs simply need shortening and the odd 'L' shaped ones need turning
    into square tabs. Curving the tops helps but is not essential. Would help to practice on a few old
    unwanted sprockets first, and wear goggles.

    Amazingly, I managed to get 9 sprockets on the 8-speed hub (which is designed for a cassette thinner
    by 1.25mm), with enough top sprocket-to-frame clearance as well. The top sprocket only just seems to
    fit (only slightly engages with splines), but the well-tightened lockring must press it down and
    hold together ok.

    Ergos to be fitted next. This hack bike is getting a bit good now

    ~PB
     
  5. "Pete Biggs" <pLime{remove_fruit}@biggs.tc> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    > Amazingly, I managed to get 9 sprockets on the 8-speed hub (which is designed for a cassette
    > thinner by 1.25mm), with enough top sprocket-to-frame clearance as well. The top sprocket only
    > just seems to fit (only slightly engages with splines), but the well-tightened lockring must press
    > it down and hold together ok.

    Admittedly, there may be differences in the spline patterns, but 8sp and 9sp blocks are made to
    virtually the same width anyway - this is ceratinly the case with Shimano, as their rear hubs work
    equally well with 8sp and 9sp cassettes.

    David E. Belcher

    Dept. of Chemistry, University of York
     
  6. Pete Biggs

    Pete Biggs Guest

    David E. Belcher wrote:

    >> Amazingly, I managed to get 9 sprockets on the 8-speed hub (which is designed for a cassette
    >> thinner by 1.25mm), with enough top sprocket-to-frame clearance as well. The top sprocket only
    >> just seems to fit (only slightly engages with splines), but the well-tightened lockring must
    >> press it down and hold together ok.
    >
    > Admittedly, there may be differences in the spline patterns, but 8sp and 9sp blocks are made to
    > virtually the same width anyway - this is ceratinly the case with Shimano, as their rear hubs work
    > equally well with 8sp and 9sp cassettes.

    I wouldn't call it virtually the same. That 1.25mm* difference means the top cog almost just sits on
    top of rest of cassette instead of engaging with the splines properly (but fortunatley, the lockring
    seems to make it work ok).

    Shimano difference is 1.1mm* and their hubs are deliberately made for both 8 & 9sp. (Is there a
    special extra spacer involved as well?)

    * Spacing numbers: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/k7.html#spacing

    ~PB
     
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