crazy granny gear spotted

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Winnipeg MB CA
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https://www.bikes.com/en/bikes/instinct/2019?tid=72 Saw a Rocky Mountain MTB, the same as, or similar to, the linked one, in my LBS a few days ago. The granny gear on the rear cassette was huge, with 50 teeth. The bike had a 1 x 11 drivetrain, with a 33-T front chainring and an 11-speed rear cassette (11T to 50T). I realized that the resultant lowest gear ratio is not that crazy - 50/32 = 1.5625. That's similar to my ancient (2002) Rocky Mountain Fusion (with a triple front chainring - 22/32/42) - 32/22 = 1.4545 ... and with a 34T rear cassette, which I've used on occasion, that lowest gear would drop to 34/22 = 1.5454, just about identical to the 11-speed. The only compromise would be the highest gear ratio - 11/42 (my old bike) = 0.262, vs. 11/32 = 0.34375. However, the new bike is a 29er (vs. my old 26er), so my bike would have a slightly-lower low gear at the drive wheel. 2002 RM MTB Distance traveled in lowest gear per crank revolution = 22/32 x 26" x Pi = 56" Distance traveled in highest gear per crank revolution = 42/11 x 26" x Pi = 312" 2019 RM MTB Distance traveled in lowest gear per crank revolution = 32/50 x 29" x Pi = 58" Distance traveled in highest gear per crank revolution = 32/11 x 29" x Pi = 265" Overall though, not much compromise for the weight savings and reduced complexity of having no front derailleur. (Anyone care to check my math?)
 
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Cali, USA
I've got a hybrid 15 speed bike, which is a cross between a road bike and a mountain bike, it's got crazy low gears and decent road gears. The lowest of the low is so slow that you're almost sitting still while spinning your legs as fast as you can. I can't even ride it in that gear.
 
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Originally Posted by Lolvoguy
"granny gear" ???
This may be local cycling slang. In any case, it means a gear so low that a grandmother could pedal with ease.
 
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Central NY
It's nice for climbing crazy hills, that's for sure! When I used to mountain bike a lot, I had a modified casette that had a realllllllllllly low 1st gear. Was quite nice for some of the stuff I used to do back then.
 
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Originally Posted by A_Spruce
I've got a hybrid 15 speed bike, which is a cross between a road bike and a mountain bike, it's got crazy low gears and decent road gears. The lowest of the low is so slow that you're almost sitting still while spinning your legs as fast as you can. I can't even ride it in that gear.
I've got a hybrid also - a 2010 Kona Dew Deluxe, 3 x 8. Low gear is low, and I was delighted to have it when we cycled from Banff to Jasper a few years ago. There is one sustained climb so steep that I was spinning in the lowest gear and plodding up the hill at 5 kph - sub-walking pace. Those low gears have their place!
 
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Alberta
my 1x11 is running a 32 tooth front with a 46 tooth rear as my granny gear. I could use more I'm so out of shape. Maybe a 30 x 50 would help my climbing...
 
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Pennsylbammyvania
I was behind a car with a Santa Cruz with that 1x11 gearing setup on the rear mounted rack, with a TINY single front ring. At first, I thought it was a multiple speed TRIALS bike, until I remembered that those drive train setups are becoming much more common on general use mountain bikes nowadays. wink
 
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SRAM Eagle,, (GX and above) 1X12 with a 9-50 spread. Usually paired with a 32t chainring for 27.5 or a 30t chainring for the two-niner crowd.
 
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217
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Cali, USA
Originally Posted by Number_35
I've got a hybrid also - a 2010 Kona Dew Deluxe,
Mine is a Trek of about the same era. I test rode half a dozen bikes before deciding on the Trek, it was the only one that wasn't a chore to ride. Most bikes are stiff to pedal, no matter what gear you're in, with the Trek, changing gears just makes you go faster with minimal added pedal effort, which, IMHO, is the mark of a good bike.
 
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NH
It's crazy what they are putting into cassettes these days. I'm old school and run a relatively narrow cassette. But then again both my road bikes are triples so the granny is there "just in case". I pretty much only use it on dirt roads. Some of us road bikers were getting ready to leave for a ride when we spotted my boss and his mountain bike. I kidded him about having a pie plate for a granny low. Another guy asked him how it worked--does it go backwards when you pedal?
 
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NH
Originally Posted by Number_35
Originally Posted by Lolvoguy
"granny gear" ???
This may be local cycling slang. In any case, it means a gear so low that a grandmother could pedal with ease.
It's a pretty old term. Pickup trucks used to have a granny low (think L-1-2-3 on the SM420 and SM465's and like). Although recently I came across someone calling it a bulldog low, or bulldog gear, hadn't seen that one before.
 
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New England
I used to pile my daughter into a Burley trailer and take her up in the hills around our neighborhood...my trail bike had some decent granny gears for the climbs, but there were some spots that were so steep that I had a really hard time keeping the front wheel down even when I would get off my saddle and keep as much weight as possible over the handlebars. It finally hit me that it would be a really bad scene if I flipped over on top of my daughter and I stopped going to those hills. That Burley was great, we bought the kit that made it convertible between bike trailer and jogging stroller with more or less a twist and my wife and I both used it all the time.
 
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Slovenia EU
Originally Posted by supton
It's crazy what they are putting into cassettes these days. I'm old school and run a relatively narrow cassette. But then again both my road bikes are triples so the granny is there "just in case". I pretty much only use it on dirt roads.
+1.... I dont get 1x11 or 1x12 designs..... smirk2
 
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NY, NY
I rode 2x10 for as long as ten speed cassettes were available and got very used to them. When I first built my Krampus almost two years ago, I built it 1x11 with a 30 tooth front ring and an 11-42 cassette. First few rides, I hated it. It took a while but now I like the drivetrain. I build a handful of custom bikes per year and the last ten except for one with an internally geared hub and another with single speed have all been GX Eagle 12 speed. I'm putting a fat bike together for my wife to use on the beach and while it will be total overkill, I'm putting 1x12 on there as well. Reason being, she understands the rear gears but is completely clueless about the front. With the 12 speed drivetrain, it takes out all the guesswork. Shift until you get what you want. I'm going to swap my 1x11 from my Krampus over to my beach bike and then my Krampus and my trail fatty will both have 1x12. Only difference will be the Krampus will have a 32 tooth ring up front and the fat bike will have 30.
 
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If I ever make the jump to an 11 speed I might try a 1x. On a 9 it's just too few gears for me (old and fat, I crawl up hills 10mph only to fly down them at 40). I've gotten used to the shift pattern on the FD but in truth it's only worth 2 on the rear (unless if I hit the granny) so I could see dropping it on an 11. [30/42/52 driving 12-26 9spd.] Last night I did all but jam up the works on a FD downshift, for some reason the chain got sucked up and brought the pedals to a stop. Luckily I wasn't standing or pedaling too hard--quick backpedal and all was fine. Not quite enough reason for me to go running to a 1x but a timely reminder nevertheless.
 
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Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted by supton
If I ever make the jump to an 11 speed I might try a 1x. On a 9 it's just too few gears for me (old and fat, I crawl up hills 10mph only to fly down them at 40). I've gotten used to the shift pattern on the FD but in truth it's only worth 2 on the rear (unless if I hit the granny) so I could see dropping it on an 11. [30/42/52 driving 12-26 9spd.] Last night I did all but jam up the works on a FD downshift, for some reason the chain got sucked up and brought the pedals to a stop. Luckily I wasn't standing or pedaling too hard--quick backpedal and all was fine. Not quite enough reason for me to go running to a 1x but a timely reminder nevertheless.
One of my friends is considering dumping the 2x10 for a 1x system, but the conversion is $3-400 on 2016 mtb and impossible on a bike with too narrow rear axle spacing. I've upgraded my 2001 Kona Stuff with a dropper post and a shorter stem/wider bars, as those were pretty cheap to add. But the 2x8 will stay and even the V-brakes, as our hills aren't big enough to fade them, and I'm not lift riding where you can be on the brakes a lot. One moderately hard finger braking for nose wheelies is good enough for me! I'd have to run all the ratios but I think 2x8 still has closer ratios than 1x12 without using the FD when just using the 22t front ring alone for climbing. If you double shift using the FD and RD then 2x8 definitely will have closer ratio options. Not a big deal for some but if you like a narrow range of cadence it could be annoying trying to climb a specific grade at high efforts. Anyways IMO, until you get going down flow/jump trails fast, or fast in the really gnarly rough stuff, biking is still 90+% rider. If you are hitting 25+mph on the trails then the modern geometry, big tires/ brakes, really starts to shine. For trail/xc riding with your intermediate level buddies, all the older bike does is give you an excuse if you need it, or bragging rights if you don't.
 
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Originally Posted by IndyIan
Originally Posted by supton
If I ever make the jump to an 11 speed I might try a 1x. On a 9 it's just too few gears for me (old and fat, I crawl up hills 10mph only to fly down them at 40). I've gotten used to the shift pattern on the FD but in truth it's only worth 2 on the rear (unless if I hit the granny) so I could see dropping it on an 11. [30/42/52 driving 12-26 9spd.] Last night I did all but jam up the works on a FD downshift, for some reason the chain got sucked up and brought the pedals to a stop. Luckily I wasn't standing or pedaling too hard--quick backpedal and all was fine. Not quite enough reason for me to go running to a 1x but a timely reminder nevertheless.
One of my friends is considering dumping the 2x10 for a 1x system, but the conversion is $3-400 on 2016 mtb and impossible on a bike with too narrow rear axle spacing.
11 Speed totally fits where a ten fits. It can sorta be done on the cheap too. Shop Ebay for a cassette, shifter and derailleur. Wolftooth for a front ring. The ONLY bike I had a width issue was my friend's first gen Krampus. Those have a 135mm rear hub, 50mm wide rims with offset drilling on the spokes. I installed a 12 speed cassette and it just touched the drive side spokes. A 1mm spacer solved it.
 
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