Sunday, September 10, 2006

New Gearing

I put a 24t ring on the Azure in place of my 22t
My rear cassette is a 12-32

previously I tried a 27t Durace cassette with the 22t up front. the 22/27 just wasn't low enough for me.

I'd been staying in my small ring more and more lately, and found that the 22t was leaving me in a no-man's land. I could only go about 4 down on the cog with the 22t, going to the 5th down didn't shift well at all.

I could try and stay in the middle 32 but oftentimes the 32/32 was just a tad too high but conversely the 22/xx (whatever the 4th down is) was too low.

On the hardtail I've got a 24t in the front and 28 in the rear. It actually makes me go faster when I'm not really tired.

Putting the 24 on has been good so far. Shifting is fine and it lets me stay in the sweet spot longer w/o having to shift the front chainring as much. The problems arise when I'm really tired and the bailout gear of the 22/32 isn't there.

Overall not having the bailout equates to noticeably faster riding. The Azure is a wicked efficient bike, and I think I'm sometimes riding a gear higher than usual anyway. So the 24t hasn't been a liability for the most part.

For humble pie I went up Dodger today. It's a quest to see how far I can make it. I didn't make it too far but I did clear some spots that I'd never cleared before. If I had the 22t I might have been able to eek out a few more feet. But traction starts to suffer the lower you go so I might have spun out if I had it. It is so steep I have to sit on the very tip of the saddle.

The Hardest part of Douthat is going to be the 2nd climb up from the road. It gets really really steep. If I can ride this section I'll be stoked. Everything else is pretty rideable except some of the switchbacks. The key is going to be the legs. Last year I was already cramping on the 2nd climb, and totally locked up on one of the switchbacks.


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