Don't Laugh.......I have a triple

Apologies if this has been covered before,but.... I purchased my current bike, a Trek 1000SL some 10years ago. At the time it was a fairly decent ally frame with carbon forks,seat stem, decent enough eqpt for the price at a time when carbon bikes were phenomally expensive. As a standard it came with Simano 52/42/30 triple and 11-25 cassette. I rarely (try not to) use the 30 especially as I have changed the rear to 11-28 so hills are do-able in the middle ring although this gearing is still higher than the new compact/semis on the market, so I do occasionally have to drop down in the front, but it feels a bit...........wimping out.

My Q is can I change the 30 to a 34 ? The rear derailleur is already extended to take the longer chain when on the 30, so I'm assuming (always dangerous) that I should be able to change this to a 34 without any issues, were only talking 4 extra teeth ?!

Looking further ahead it is time to upgrade but I LOVE the 42 as it gives me a good range of extra gears. How much difference / benefit would a 52/36 or 50/34 give me if I can't get a new triple ? I know there are triple still out there but they are all appear to be 50/39/30 and I would like to have a 34 as the small ring, could I change that as well ?

Thanks in advance.
 

SkipdiverJohn

Veteran
Location
London
I can't understand why you are contemplating either messing around with the gearing or "upgrading" the bike, if it gives you good service. A ten year old bike is barely run in in my book, mine are at least 25 years old average age. My main ride runs a 48/38/28 triple with a 14-28 six speed freewheel, and most of my riding gets done on the middle ring, with the granny gears being reserved for uphill starts and ultra-steep humpback bridges, and the big ring used for getting the most out of a tailwind.
 

Tail End Charlie

Well, write it down boy ......
If the ring is replaceable, I can't see any problem going from 30 to 34.

I wouldn't think about changing from a triple to a double, total waste of money. Don't worry about spares, enough people still ride triples for them to be around a long while yet. In fact I reckon doubles would disappear before triples. Wimping out doesn't come into it, there's nothing wrong riding a triple, the enlightened ones amongst us can vouch for that.
 

raleighnut

Legendary Member
Location
On 3 Wheels
Apologies if this has been covered before,but.... I purchased my current bike, a Trek 1000SL some 10years ago. At the time it was a fairly decent ally frame with carbon forks,seat stem, decent enough eqpt for the price at a time when carbon bikes were phenomally expensive. As a standard it came with Simano 52/42/30 triple and 11-25 cassette. I rarely (try not to) use the 30 especially as I have changed the rear to 11-28 so hills are do-able in the middle ring although this gearing is still higher than the new compact/semis on the market, so I do occasionally have to drop down in the front, but it feels a bit...........wimping out.

My Q is can I change the 30 to a 34 ? The rear derailleur is already extended to take the longer chain when on the 30, so I'm assuming (always dangerous) that I should be able to change this to a 34 without any issues, were only talking 4 extra teeth ?!

Looking further ahead it is time to upgrade but I LOVE the 42 as it gives me a good range of extra gears. How much difference / benefit would a 52/36 or 50/34 give me if I can't get a new triple ? I know there are triple still out there but they are all appear to be 50/39/30 and I would like to have a 34 as the small ring, could I change that as well ?

Thanks in advance.
Changing the 30 to a 34 will give you 4 less teeth for the rear mech to cope with so if you can find a ring with the right BCD you'll be fine.
As for 'dropping' the gearing from a 52 why not fit a cassette with 12 highest gear next time you have to change it.
 

Heltor Chasca

Out-riding the Black Dog
Triples just aren’t fashionable. But who gives a monkeys?

All my bikes have triples. An old knee injury and the local lumps dictate this is best for me and I couldn’t care what the trendies think. They are the same trendies I leave on the steepest of hills gasping for breath, cramping and complaining their knees are sore.

I want to cycle into my twilight years, so triple it is.
 
I can't understand why you are contemplating either messing around with the gearing or "upgrading" the bike, if it gives you good service. A ten year old bike is barely run in in my book, mine are at least 25 years old average age. My main ride runs a 48/38/28 triple with a 14-28 six speed freewheel, and most of my riding gets done on the middle ring, with the granny gears being reserved for uphill starts and ultra-steep humpback bridges, and the big ring used for getting the most out of a tailwind.
Hi Skipdiver, don't get me wrong I'm not considering dumping the bike because of any snobbery etc, the cost of owning the bike for 10years is now averaging pennies per year but there are some things on it that need some TLC, there's a bit of play in the headset, some of the teeth are getting a little rounded, one of the wheels is not true anymore (awful roads in my neck of the woods), one of the shifters is bent. None of these are overly expensive but add them all together and its a bit of cash. I can get a nearly new pre-owned bike for not much more. It's amazing the bikes out there that people bought on a whim and simply don't use and want rid off for a fraction of what it cost them. The old bike will be my training bike. Cheers
 
If the ring is replaceable, I can't see any problem going from 30 to 34.

I wouldn't think about changing from a triple to a double, total waste of money. Don't worry about spares, enough people still ride triples for them to be around a long while yet. In fact I reckon doubles would disappear before triples. Wimping out doesn't come into it, there's nothing wrong riding a triple, the enlightened ones amongst us can vouch for that.
Cheers Tail end Charlie. Think all this compact / semi etc is just fashion, I won't be dropping it just to "fit in" just looking to get a bit better spec on this or the next bike. Up until recently shimano did an ultegra set of shifters which some stockists are looking to get rid off fairly cheapish, just need to know that when the current set-up needs replacing I can. Cheers
 
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Changing the 30 to a 34 will give you 4 less teeth for the rear mech to cope with so if you can find a ring with the right BCD you'll be fine.
As for 'dropping' the gearing from a 52 why not fit a cassette with 12 highest gear next time you have to change it.
Hi Raleighnut, cheers for the advice. I did ask the local bike shop if I could get a larger rear cassette than the 11-28, apparently my bike / set up can't, not sure why, but the shop has been good to me (cheap services, good discounts on kids bikes) so I'll take their word for it. I'll check out the BCD and see what is out there. Cheers.
 
Triples just aren’t fashionable. But who gives a monkeys?

All my bikes have triples. An old knee injury and the local lumps dictate this is best for me and I couldn’t care what the trendies think. They are the same trendies I leave on the steepest of hills gasping for breath, cramping and complaining their knees are sore.

I want to cycle into my twilight years, so triple it is.
Hi Heltor Chasca, same knee injury as mine ?? I'm afraid rugby has curtailed any running now days so cycling is the way forward for me. I'm no way a trendie, one of the bikes I'm looking at is 4 years old and in a local shop. The owner said "you do know this is 4 years old" My response was "does it look any different or do anything extra over this years model ?" Apparently not, so for under half the original RRP I'll happily ride a bike that is last seasons colours.........if I can fit a triple. :smile: Cheers
 

KneesUp

Guru
... As a standard it came with Simano 52/42/30 triple and 11-25 cassette. I rarely (try not to) use the 30 especially as I have changed the rear to 11-28 so hills are do-able in the middle ring although this gearing is still higher than the new compact/semis on the market, so I do occasionally have to drop down in the front, but it feels a bit...........wimping out.

My Q is can I change the 30 to a 34 ? The rear derailleur is already extended to take the longer chain when on the 30, so I'm assuming (always dangerous) that I should be able to change this to a 34 without any issues, were only talking 4 extra teeth ?!

Looking further ahead it is time to upgrade but I LOVE the 42 as it gives me a good range of extra gears. How much difference / benefit would a 52/36 or 50/34 give me if I can't get a new triple ? I know there are triple still out there but they are all appear to be 50/39/30 and I would like to have a 34 as the small ring, could I change that as well ?

Thanks in advance.
I don't really get this either. You have a 52 and a 42, which you use for the majority of your riding, but sometimes you use the 30. I guess this means that when you use the 30, it is because you really need to. So why would you make that a higher gear? If using the correct gear for the terrain and your legs is 'wimping out' then you are doing that whatever gear you use, surely?

I have a 48/38/28. I used to use the 28 more than I do now, because I am fitter now, but I'm still considering swapping it to a 24 (smallest I can get) because when I need a low gear it's because it's very steep, or I'm very tired, or I have a lot of weight on the bike, so I want my low gears to be as low as I can get them.
 

Hugh Manatee

Veteran
Funny. I was out riding the other day and I was thinking a triple might be the way to go for me. I was musing on 30-42-50 with a 12-23 or even a 12-21 9 gear cassette. I need to get the calculator out and work the ratios out.

As to the OP, you need to find out if the ring you want is made with the BCD of your chainset. For example, the lowest number of teeth I can have with my chainset is 38. As @raleighnut says, you're going larger so it should work.
 
Difficult to say from your post but the impression I get is your shoving around bigger gears than you need to, especially of you've changed the rear cassette.

Perhaps you'd benefit from changing the middle more, say to a 38. I too ride a triple but mine is a 49-38-26. I very rarely leave the 38 and that's with a 12-25 rear and that's good for an average of 14-16mph with an average cadence in the high 70s.
 

burntoutbanger

Über Member
Location
Devon
I've just gone from a 28-38-48 triple to a 24-34-42 triple on my hybrid which is my main commuter. I've a very short commute in but extend, for as long as time allows, on the way home. Fifteen to twenty miles are common, thirty five to forty aren't unheard of.

Seeing as I'm riding after a hard day's work *cough, I don't miss the high gears at all and living in a hilly area the lower bottom gears are most welcome.

Vive la triple!
 

matiz

Veteran
Location
weymouth
I ride a Trek triple as well 9 speed tiagra ,ive probably only used the small ring a half a dozen times in eight years, its good knowing it's there if needed, I don't understand the wimping out bit, I've never had any derogatory comments and couldn't care less if I did.
 
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