Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Proof positive

For anybody who is convinced that compact road cranks are just a marketing myth, here's a quote from today's Tour de France stage winner;

Dessel believed that the yellow jersey was the reward for a solid first week of racing for him. "I even did a decent time trial although I really am a climber," he said. "I had been waiting for this stage all week, and I was right to ask our mechanic to give me a compact chainset for these really tough climbs. That certainly helped!"


I'm just sayin...



Rich said...

Its all about gear ratio. If i was in the tour, I'd need a compact crank along with a Mega 9 XTR rear derailler to have enough low gears.

Theres no difference between a 110 bolt 53/39 and a 130bolt 53/39, as I doubt on the flat stages any of those guys used the common compact CR 50/34

Paterfamilias said...

We all know that for climbing the 34 with a 25 in the rear helps out. Don't forget that a 50 with an 11, is taller than the 53 with a 12, so the compact crank really gives the best gear ration for a MTN stage that has some flats or even some down hill portions.

Ed W said...

Tim, the compact gearing post triggered an idea, and while it's only tangentially related, I thought you may want to hear it.

Paul Sherwin always mentions the 'monster gears' that TDF riders use in the time trials, but in the real world, monster gears are impractical. Also, if I recall right, the bicycling demographic indicates that the average cyclist is getting older. So why include a 53T that most, um, middle-aged riders will find minimally useful? Wouldn't more modest gearing be kinder to our aging knees?

Just a thought.

Paterfamilias said...


I just read your post, and it perfectly supports why Shimano put different gearing on it's 105 group last year. We offered a 50x 39 double and a 50x39x30 triple. When you have a gear jump from 39 to a 53 most intermediate riders will also need to drop a gear or 2 in the rear to keep the same cadence. Some people don't realize that, so Shimano lowered the out gear to help with this issue. The product is out there.