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Maximizing your drivetrain life in these trying times...


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I've been experimenting with the 10 speed drivetrain on my HT. I'm lucky enough to have two mountain bikes but at the moment I'm using the HT more than the enduro bike for obvious reasons. The HT has a Sunrace 11-42 cassette, Rapide NW ring and a Saint 10s shifter with XT medium cage derailleur. 

 

The cassette shows quite severe wear with some teeth even missing on the big ring. Despite this its still going strong and the shifting is as good as it ever was. It was already worn when I fitted it to this bike 2 years ago.  Around a year ago I tried fitting a new chain, just to see if it would work. It slipped so I slapped the old one back on and then looked for a donor chain which I found on my wifes 10 speed bike. I bought her bike a new chain and used the 50% XT version on my HT. Worked a treat until recently when I started breaking links - it was over 75% worn by then. I needed another donor and this time my 11s enduro bike offered up its 50% worn KMC chain. I fitted it around 7 weeks ago and have used it on garden exercize runs and lately on my morning rides every second day. If anything it shifts better than it did with the XT chain despite being more worn...

 

So, if you have donor bikes or friends who do, its possible to prolong the life of a bike with a worn drivetrain far beyond what you're typically advised is possible and even use the narrower 11 or 12 speed chain on it. 

 

 

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i also use 11speed KMC chains on my 10spd 1x setup. makes a huge difference. I initially got it because i couldnt get stock of the 10 spd kmc one....and it ended up being the best decision ever. 

i then put a 12 speed chain on my wifes 11spd setup too. it also shifts better now. none of that fine tuning to prevent the chain from scraping on the next cog. set it and forget it.

I've found that the ball-hair difference in chain width is just what is needed.

The thinner chain also handles cross chaining between the chainring and granny gear better because it flexes more laterally (because it's thinner). it eliminated that auto down gear when back peddling in the 46T on the wife's setup.

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So, if I understand correctly, using a 11 speed chain on a 10 speed cassette and a 12 speed on a 11 speed cassette is better than 10 on 10 and 11 on 11?

 

Interesting...

 

Makes sense.

for me there is noticeably less 'chain' noise at the back when you use 1 spd up from what you have on the bike. The narrower chain in my opinion just has slightly more room to move in the cogs so it tends to catch the next one up less when just sitting in the gear.

 

I also used a stock 10 speed XT chain when i first got the groupset. I noticed that the chain rubbed the anodising off the inside of derailleur cage where it passes through the jockey wheels.

Then I  broke that derailleur in a fall last year at K2C and got a new replacement one (exact same one).  The new one had obviously only run with 11 speed chains from the start and the anodising is all still intact.

Edited by morneS555
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So, if I understand correctly, using a 11 speed chain on a 10 speed cassette and a 12 speed on a 11 speed cassette is better than 10 on 10 and 11 on 11?

 

Interesting...

 

Makes sense.

now we need a 13 speed chain for a 12 speed setup [emoji1787]
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I've been experimenting with the 10 speed drivetrain on my HT. I'm lucky enough to have two mountain bikes but at the moment I'm using the HT more than the enduro bike for obvious reasons. The HT has a Sunrace 11-42 cassette, Rapide NW ring and a Saint 10s shifter with XT medium cage derailleur.

 

The cassette shows quite severe wear with some teeth even missing on the big ring. Despite this its still going strong and the shifting is as good as it ever was. It was already worn when I fitted it to this bike 2 years ago. Around a year ago I tried fitting a new chain, just to see if it would work. It slipped so I slapped the old one back on and then looked for a donor chain which I found on my wifes 10 speed bike. I bought her bike a new chain and used the 50% XT version on my HT. Worked a treat until recently when I started breaking links - it was over 75% worn by then. I needed another donor and this time my 11s enduro bike offered up its 50% worn KMC chain. I fitted it around 7 weeks ago and have used it on garden exercize runs and lately on my morning rides every second day. If anything it shifts better than it did with the XT chain despite being more worn...

 

So, if you have donor bikes or friends who do, its possible to prolong the life of a bike with a worn drivetrain far beyond what you're typically advised is possible and even use the narrower 11 or 12 speed chain on it.

might I suggest a 1x1 upgrade
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Nothing beats that TRAP JOU GAT AF drivetrain upgrade

also why i havent upgraded my 1x10 yet....sure i have 2 gears less and no super granny like the 11/12spd setups, but i have what i have...and when there are  no more clicks left....i think of the guys on SS bikes and realise i still have it easy and just get on with it haha

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Low end: I fitted an old 9s derailleur on my communter MTB, on a 1x9 setup. New cheap end shimano cassette (stamped black steel, R200, heavy!) and a new 9s XT chain. After about 5000km I retired this drivetrain out of boredom (fitted my then retired XX1). It had no noticable wear by then - the Parktool 0.5% chaingauge still didn't drop in. So on the low end 9s rocks!

 

High end: My trail/race bike is kitted with X01 Eagle. The first X01 Eagle chain reached 0.5% wear after 5500km of 50/50 trail/road riding. The second chain is on now since 2000km with no noticeable wear. The cassette shows some aesthetic wear where the black color is scrubbed off ever so slightly, but that is it. I am seeing this cassette giving service for 15000km or more. The investment is substantial but the upper end Eagle stuff seems to be ultra durable (note: I am not riding much in wet sand or mud, which helps with chain life. The Tygerberg trails and Table Mountain are mostly well drained in winter).

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Hairy old man, when you put a 1x1 on your Jeffsy we can talk. The HT climbs at least 400m per ride making a 1x1 an unpalatable option for me.

 

I suspect that Sram cassettes are quite durable. My GX 11 shows very little wear. I'm doing the cheapskate thing there too with a R285 Sram 11s chain because I could not find a KMC. I Will be monitoring the wear closely.

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I've been experimenting with the 10 speed drivetrain on my HT. I'm lucky enough to have two mountain bikes but at the moment I'm using the HT more than the enduro bike for obvious reasons. The HT has a Sunrace 11-42 cassette, Rapide NW ring and a Saint 10s shifter with XT medium cage derailleur. 

 

The cassette shows quite severe wear with some teeth even missing on the big ring. Despite this its still going strong and the shifting is as good as it ever was. It was already worn when I fitted it to this bike 2 years ago.  Around a year ago I tried fitting a new chain, just to see if it would work. It slipped so I slapped the old one back on and then looked for a donor chain which I found on my wifes 10 speed bike. I bought her bike a new chain and used the 50% XT version on my HT. Worked a treat until recently when I started breaking links - it was over 75% worn by then. I needed another donor and this time my 11s enduro bike offered up its 50% worn KMC chain. I fitted it around 7 weeks ago and have used it on garden exercize runs and lately on my morning rides every second day. If anything it shifts better than it did with the XT chain despite being more worn...

 

So, if you have donor bikes or friends who do, its possible to prolong the life of a bike with a worn drivetrain far beyond what you're typically advised is possible and even use the narrower 11 or 12 speed chain on it. 

 

Thanks for this thread .What a welcome change from the myriad Covid 19 discussions and other useless and irrelevant threads  which ultimately end up in a keyboard war between hubbers where the soundness of one's argument or views are mostly judged and evaluated by your number of posts.This is the type of thread I want to read when I log in to the Hub. I do not want to waste my time reading condescending remarks from a faceless and nameless hubber aimed at another faceless and nameless hubber Whether the persons who contributed towards the thread are right are wrong does not matter .I can now try my 11 speed chain  on 10 speed cassette and if it works for me it is great .if you does not work then so be it .I love practical recommendations such as this one .Bring it on !

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