Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Big Cassettes and 1x10

   A popular build for mountain bikes recently has been to exchange the multiple chainrings for a single chainring, combined with a wide ratio rear cassette.

1x11 Drivetrain

    This reduces weight and complexity, and simplifies shifting. Initial reports are that this 1x11 system is great. It's simple, efficient, and reliable. It is even starting to show up stock on some 2015 models. All you need is to yank off your derailleur, get a chainring you like and put on a wide ratio cassette. The thing is, the new cassettes can be quite pricey!

Sram XX1 - $400

   SRAM is rumored to have a cheaper cassette coming out soon, but in the meantime, several companies have come out with alternatives to a whole new cassette. 

   First up is the Twenty6 cog. This cog comes in 40 and 42 tooth configurations and is the most common type of adaptor - remove one of your cogs from the middle of the cassette and slap this bad boy on the top. Usually it's the 14t or 16t that are removed. Retail: $95. 

Twenty6 40/42t cog

   The Ari cog is the same thing, $5 cheaper. You can see that both come with some machined ramps to help with the chain get from from the previous large cog onto this new monster cog.

Ari 40/42 cog

   Next is the OneUp Components. This one comes with a 16t cog to help smooth out the jump made by removing the 14 or 15 or whatever. It's also $90, and comes with another cog, so it seems like a good deal.

OneUp Components Cog and 16 Tooth spacer

   Finally, here's the Leonardi General Lee. This replaces the last three cogs on your cassette. It comes in at $160, which is approaching the cost of a whole new cassette. Some cassettes come with the last few cogs attached together, so this is meant to replace that whole set, all while smoothing out the jump to the largest cog.

Leonardi General Lee Cog

  All in all, these are great options for the economically minded, it will be great once some performance reviews start coming out. look out 1x11, here we all come!

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