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since we started talk about gearing(26 posts)

since we started talk about gearingcyclopathic
Feb 13, 2002 11:11 AM
what gear would you consider sufficient for sustained 20-25% climb?

think of riding it on mi 40, think of riding it on mi 400, think of riding 400mi full of climbs like that.
20 -25% Whew!Spoke Wrench
Feb 13, 2002 11:46 AM
For me I'd be looking for the slowest gear where I could still balance the bike.
20 -25% Whew!ngl
Feb 13, 2002 11:53 AM
where is there a 25% climb?!
They are all over San Francisco!! (nm)Cima Coppi
Feb 13, 2002 11:58 AM
I wouldn't call those "sustained" climbs nmmr_spin
Feb 13, 2002 12:08 PM
53 x 18secourir
Feb 13, 2002 12:02 PM
and yes i would kindly ask that nothing be written on my tombestone apart from the incline and the gear i was in at the time of death.

sorry but ive always been one to taunt excersizes in mental masturbation - ***400 miles of 20-25%***

how bout - "lets design a bike assuming we all had three legs - what materials, crank design, aero considerations and frame alterations would we have" - its just as worthy as a question.
oh cmon nowcollinsc
Feb 13, 2002 12:28 PM
gaining 100 miles of elevation on your bike isnt THAT unreasonable....
over the course of 3 years, you're right! ;-) nmmorrison
Feb 13, 2002 12:30 PM
How about 44-23?guido
Feb 13, 2002 12:46 PM
A little geometry here: If you climbed for a distance of 400 miles up a 25% grade, wouldn't that end at an altitude of 200 miles? They ain't no mountain that high, son.

One could ride 400 miles up and down mountains with varying grades, seldom as much as 20%, and for every uphill there'd be a corresponding downhill. Unloaded, I'd be happy with 39-23 for most of the climbing, 39-27 for those 20% grades--and 53-12 for the downhills!
Feb 13, 2002 1:57 PM
400 x 25% = 100

Unless you are a bike god 39-23 wouldn't get you through some of the tougher double centuries in CA and they don't even hit 20% grade and *only* climb about 14'K to 18'K. I'm thinking Terrible Two and Devil Mountinain Double , and the Central Coast Double, also known as the Triple Crown Stage Race.

I can assure you that you wouldn't be anything even close to happy and that you'd be rethinking your gearing options. My understanding is that there's lots of sick and sustained climbs in Europe that aree ven more demanding.
Feb 14, 2002 12:52 PM
Terrible math, sorry!

Now I get it, you're adding up all the climbs along the route and coming up with a total. But working up each rise is like an interval, the grade is always changing, and doesn't go up to 20% much of the time. If it did, mules wouldn't have made it up them when they were built, and motorized vehicles would overheat.

I've gone up Mt. Wilson north of LA twice, on a steel racing bike weighing 22#, with a lowest gear of 44-22, about 5300' elevation gain in 18 miles, with the steepest grades the last 5 miles to the top, and I'm no "bike god."

But that climb was only a 2 and a half hour workout.

I can assure you, I "wouldn't be anything close to happy" and that I'd loudly be "rethinking (cursing!) my gearing options," if I were attempting a double century in mountainous terrain, no matter what gears I had!
a bit about the ridecyclopathic
Feb 13, 2002 1:33 PM
the ride is in upstate NY in Fingerlake area (aka the Grand Canyon of the East), Quadzilla if you've heard the name.

no, it isn't 25% all 400mi you wish 8-(
but there're plenty of 20%+ grades, sometimes very short (on 15% climb) and sometimes longer. Rated at 25,000' but it is not the amount it's the grades what gets you.

this is from witness account:

I wish I had a 30x30 gear. One guy I rode with had that, and he climbed the best of the threesome I rode in. The other guy had a 30x27, and I had a 30x23. (Throughout the ride, I was offering $100 to anyone who would give me a 30 tooth cog for my cassette.) The ride organizer recommended at least a 39x26, but I can't imagine using that high a gear.

I've ridden with the guy and though I've beat him to the finish line on 2 occasions, he is better climber then I am.

for records RAAM racer rode whole thing with doubles and 12-23 cass
Feb 13, 2002 2:06 PM
Went to school at Cornell and am very familiar with the Finger Lakes area. Things aren't so bad if you limit yourself to going just north-south routes, but things get very ugly when you start going east-west. The galciers came through and left a bunch of huge gouges in the earth and some filled with water and became the Finger Lakes. The lakes are long and narrow (around 1 mi.) and surprisingly deep at 400' to 700'. Personally I'd run a 12-27, but I'm more of a spinner. Now factor in the idea that you want to do 555K and fatigue becomes a serious issue. I bet a triple starts looking attractive in the second half. RAAM racers are whole different animal - they train and become very accustomed to running tall gearing and very low cadences for efficiency reasons.
Cornell, you serious?Leisure
Feb 13, 2002 5:02 PM
Me too. I didn't much like the school but I always find it funny when I bump into someone else that went there. That's also where I started mountainbiking which is ironic since I have lived in Utah most of my non-collegiate life.
never graduatedBeth?
Feb 13, 2002 6:16 PM
I plan the samecyclopathic
Feb 13, 2002 5:32 PM
12-25 or 12-27 and triples :)

12-27 with 42t should be enough to climb standing, and when I bonk, hurt knees or anything I can drop down to granny sit and spin. Problem is I don't have strong legs I put higher output at 80-100RPM, thanks to years of MTBing. I am amaized to see people climb 16% grade on 42/16 fix gear.

btw I am doning the whole thing 410mi including "Grand Canyon". Have you ridden in Letchworth State Park? how is it like?
Baldwin Streetjim hubbard
Feb 14, 2002 1:29 AM
Most of you wont have hear of this as it is located in Dunedin New Zealand it is official recognized as the worlds steepest street. 1 in 2. something. I was at varsity down there and in 5 years I rode up it twice both times in 39x25 and I swear that if it was any slower then I would have fallen off. The street is concrete because asphalt won't stick.
Baldwin Streetjim hubbard
Feb 14, 2002 1:33 AM
re: Baldwin Streetcyclopathic
Feb 14, 2002 6:04 AM
actually I did heard about it. It is 30% and it is in Guinness book as the steepest street (not the steepest road or even steepest paved road)

It doesn't qualify as "sustained" climb on my books. It is probably doable in much higher gear then 39x25, if you can get enough momento. I have local 18% climb about as high I can usually make it in big ring if I sprint up at the bottom.
re: Baldwin Streetjim hubbard
Feb 14, 2002 8:33 AM
It is in a bigger gear I have heard of it been in gone in a 39x21 by one rider, though he is now a pro on a second div team in Europe. As for the rest of us mortals, the photo does not do the climb justice. If you think that sprinting on to it is going to help it doesn't. Gravity sucks all your momentum. And the climb is 500m long, though it doesn't look it from the photo.
re: Baldwin Streetcyclopathic
Feb 14, 2002 9:55 AM
you're right pictures don't show it well.
is it the 500m of 30% grade or total? how long is the steepest section?

I've done 1/4mi off-road climb which was in mid 30s the biggest challange was to keep rear from spinning out (loose gravel) and maintaining balance, I've lost it 2 times. If it were paved could probably do it on skinny tires with triple cranks
Feb 14, 2002 8:53 PM
I'm at Cornell now sitting in my dorm room. I'm a freshman and I'm on the cycling team. Hopefully we will do well in the ECCC this year.

similar route, different rideRay
Feb 14, 2002 5:59 AM
I'm doing that ride, but starting the next day (7/21) from Corland and I'm gonna take a week to do it. It's called the Bon Ton Roulet and it's a supported tour of about 50 miles per day. Even at those mellow daily distances, with those kind of grades, I'll be taking my cyclocross bike with mtb gearing. I'm not too proud to resort to a 24x28 gear on those kinds of hills, particularly on the 5th or 6th straight day of riding.

so I might see you therecyclopathic
Feb 14, 2002 6:23 AM
I've heard roads there are pretty bad with loose gravel and downhills ending with T stop signs, so cyclocross bike with fat semi-slicks and dual side mtb pedals sounds very good.

I'll probably bring my mnt shoes/pedals for this ride.
Feb 15, 2002 5:08 AM
Are you doing the Quadzilla or the Bon Ton Roulet? If you do the Quadzilla, I probably won't see you (can't imagine the rides will hit the same road at the same time, but I guess it could happen). If you're doing the more relaxed Bon Ton Roulet, I'll be the guy on the Lemond cross bike spinning VERY SLOWLY up the hills. Probably won't bring cross specific tires for a road tour (even if it does get rough in places), but will be riding a 700x27 or 28, which I typically do for week long rides like that.

How about motorcycle gearing?Ian
Feb 14, 2002 5:58 AM
Something with a motor sounds real nice for a ride like that. But I would go with a triple and a 12-27, gearing close to what I have on my mountain bike.

And that Baldwin Street hill, wow, pictures never do a hill justice. I have taken pictures of 13-14% grades and they look nearly flat, so that hill must be nasty. Wonder how fast you could go down it?