Road bike gears and luggage

steve30

Über Member
I'm thinking about replacing my 2009 Specialized Crosstrail with a road bike. Not decided what to get yet. But one thing I preferred about the Crosstrail over my old mountain bike was its 11-32 tooth cassette (SRAM PG830). I live in a very hilly area and sometimes get very tired, so I have decided that gears like that of the Crosstrail will be essential for me.

But most road bikes don't come  with such gears. So is it easy to replace the cassette on a road bike with one with 'mountain' style gears?

Also, is it easy to put a rack on a road bike? I gather they aren't usually designed for this. I don't need to carry much weight, but I usually need to carry something with me.

And whilst I'm posting, what are bike shops usually like with test rides? When I bought the Crosstrail I was more interested in finding a hybrid bike which fitted and was in my price range so the quick ride round the block was fine, but I'm a bit more serious now and plan to spend a lot more money (when I've saved enough up).

Thanks

Steve
 

StuAff

Silencing his legs regularly
Location
Portsmouth
Two answers to the gearing thing:
1. Mountain rear deraillieur- Shimano ones will work with their STI shifters.
2. SRAM's new Apex road group has an 11-32 cassette option. Only standard or compact for the front though, no triples.

Many road bikes have rack mounts, you could always go for something like a Carradice saddlebag or SQR bag (I have the latter, excellent).
 

HJ

Cycling in Scotland
Location
Auld Reekie
Replacing the rear cassette relatively strait forward with the right tools, see here or see here, you only need to change the dérailleur if you want to change from a double to a triple. As for the rack, there are a surprising number of road bikes with mounting points for racks, and ever if it doesn't have them you can always get a seatpost mounted rack.
 
Replacing the rear cassette relatively strait forward with the right tools, see here or see here, you only need to change the dérailleur if you want to change from a double to a triple. As for the rack, there are a surprising number of road bikes with mounting points for racks, and ever if it doesn't have them you can always get a seatpost mounted rack.
Front dérailleur won't need changing if the cassette is changed, but the rear one may not be able to cope with the bigger sprockets, in which case an mtb rear dérailleur would do the job without needing to change everything else. Most widely geared tourers use mtb dérailleurs for this very reason.
As for rack mounting points...they are quite hard to find on a modern road bike - strangely I have just posted asking this very question. A seatpost rack is quite limited in the weight it can carry, depending on useage, but the carradice saddle bags surprisingly appear to be able to hold more than those types of rack...24 tins of beer may be beyond them though
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What is your current gearing front and rear?
My last bike had a smallest ring of 30 tooth at the front and 32 tooth largest cog at the back, which helped lug pretty much anything up the hills.
Most modern road bikes seem to have 34x25 which would have me pushing the bike up some of the hills around here if it was loaded with be...luggage.
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OP
steve30

steve30

Über Member
As for rack mounting points...they are quite hard to find on a modern road bike - strangely I have just posted asking this very question.   A seatpost rack is quite limited in the weight it can carry, depending on useage, but the carradice saddle bags surprisingly appear to be able to hold more than those types of rack...24 tins of beer may be beyond them though
cool.gif
I had noticed that a lot of new road bikes don't seem to have the ability to mount racks.


What is your current gearing front and rear?  
My last bike had a smallest ring of 30 tooth at the front and 32 tooth largest cog at the back, which helped lug pretty much anything up the hills.
Most modern road bikes seem to have 34x25 which would have me pushing the bike up some of the hills around here if it was loaded with be...luggage.
wink.gif
The rear is 11-32 teeth and the front is 48/36/28. In the lowest gear I can (very slowly) get it up one of our local steep hills.
 

John the Monkey

Frivolous Cyclist
Location
Crewe
Carradice & ViVa bag loops[1] will readily handle your commuting luggage, ime if you can't fit a rack.

[1] Assuming you don't have a Brooks saddle with bag loops.

Whilst it's rare to find separate mounting eyelets for rack and mudguards, you can buy road bikes that'll take guards, and share the eyelet...

Ribble's winter frame takes guards, if you want Steel, the Surly pacer does too, have a look around.
 

Hacienda71

Mancunian in self imposed exile in leafy Cheshire
If you are changing your rear cassette to greater than a 28 tooth certainly with Shimano road mechs it probably will not cope, as said earlier you will need a mtb rear mech. Check with the LBS though where you buy the new rear cassette.
 

Alun

Guru
Location
Liverpool
If you are changing your rear cassette to greater than a 28 tooth certainly with Shimano road mechs it probably will not cope, as said earlier you will need a mtb rear mech. Check with the LBS though where you buy the new rear cassette.
Also you can only use a MTB cassette with 9 speed shifters, as the spacing between the cogs is different.
 

John the Monkey

Frivolous Cyclist
Location
Crewe
Also you can only use a MTB cassette with 9 speed shifters, as the spacing between the cogs is different.
10 speed is now available in +28 tooth large sprocket, iirc - SRAM Apex (although a road gruppo) goes 11-32, Shimano SLX and XT (MTB groups) both do ten speed cassettes too.
 
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