Quick Question

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Anonymous's picture

Getting one of them fancy bikes with a triple is like getting a Porsche that’s an automatic. Discuss.

Anonymous's picture
John Grandits (not verified)

a triple to a nice bike and an automatic to a porsche is not a good analogy. aside from having a license and the ability to drive standard it does not not take skill or fitness to a drive a car. on the other hand you need a certain fitness and skill level to really enjoy a good bike. you shouldn't look at a triple like a crutch. there's a lot of people out there who should be riding triples, but are not. they rather slog up the big climbs and then complain they are not having a good day when they bring up the rear. for some riders having more gears will allow you to ride bigger mtns, be more comfortable, and have a more enjoyable ride. hope everyone has a nice holiday season and new year.

Anonymous's picture
Hank Schiffman (not verified)
I agree with John...

And John Zenkus once said the gearing which we use was developed for racers. Most of us don't have the power needed to get optimal performance out of our bikes. A triple will allow the average rider to spin up hills. If you are doing some of the steeper hills in or out of our cycling region, a small chainring is a very handy blade to open in your swiss army knife.

If you have the means and space, there is a place for a road bike with a triple and a fixed gear bike in your apartment.

Anonymous's picture
Basil (not verified)
If we're going to make the comparison........

........I'd respectfully suggest it's more like a Porsche with a Tiptronic gearbox.
i.e. you have the option of making it manual or automatic.
Using the triple is always an option.
My macho side didn't want a triple when I bought by Trek. However, I bought it used and there was a triple already on there (no excuse!) There have been many occasions when I've been VERY happy to have that triple.

Anonymous's picture
Fixer (not verified)
What's a Porsche?

"If you got into this sport in the Nuovo Record days, when your lowest possible gear was a 41 x 28, you'll most likely think that ""granny"" rings only belong on loaded touring bikes. Or MTB's.

Nowadays, bike mags (aka marketing tools) tell you you're ""smart"" to use a triple. You buyin' that? In my opinion, a ""smarter"" choice for local riding would be a 110 bcd compact double, say a 36 x 50. I mean, do you really need gears in the 20's to get a 18 lb bike up Bear Mtn?

Anonymous's picture
frank (not verified)
who cares?

single, double or triple...remarkably similar to choices at a fast food stand. comparisons with an automobile seem silly, especially if we also consider engine capacity (said very much tongue in cheek). in that regard, i would suggest that regardless of gearing that a porsche can generate more HP than any cyclist. hence, a discussion of gears must necessarily revolve about what's best for you, allows you to cycle most efficiently. since you are the one doing the shifting and making the choices about most appropriate gearing; stylewise you must perforce be using a manual shifter. the number of gears? whatever floats your boat (or helps you to cycle more efficiently) strikes me as the optimum choice. worrying about what the other person thinks in this regard seems silly.

Anonymous's picture
JP (not verified)
Triple your pleasure, triple your fun?

"I have a triple and was ridiculed as a “touring” rider by friends. Well, when several of the Div I teams in the grand tours used triples on some HC climbs, the ridicule stopped. When I spin passed friends as they crunch a zigzag pace up a climb and wait for them at the top of a climb, they shut up too.

I seldom use the triple, but opt for it in 3 situations:

1. Steep climbs. Anything over 15% gets tough. I’ve done up to 26% and let me tell ya’, I’m in the granny gear.

2. Long climbs on long-rides. I’ve done 200k and 300k and when, after 100 miles you have an 8% average grade with kicks up to 12% and the climb is 8-10-12 miles long …triple! Of course I can avoid the triple and do it, but then there are 2 more similar climbs. Triple. Crunching on the pedals is like weightlifting –and how long can you lift weights? Spin? For hours, some do it for days.

3. Injuries/bad day. We all have them at times and it’s nice to granny out rather then hurt yourself, walk or cell phone a taxi.

Your power on a bike is combination of strength and cadence. If for whatever reason you do not have the muscle, you can spin a higher cadence in a lower gear up a steep climb. Triples simplify that. But I guess if you do not climb a lot or do not do steep hills, a double is fine. Many avoid a triple and have a (second) rear wheel with at least a 27 cog on it.

My dos ... uh ... tres centavos.

Anonymous's picture
David Regen (not verified)
chainrings? We don't need no stinkin' chainrings!!!

"One of my presents this year was a book on the history of the bicycle (I forget who wrote it, but I'm not at home). According to this book, the major developments were 1) two wheels with something connecting them and a place to sit; 2) steering; 3) pedals. Pedals were the equivalent of carbon fiber frames--only the most expensive bikes had them, and people who had been doing fine without them for years just sneered at them. Many felt a bike with pedals was unsafe because they went too fast, and the change to pedals was not instantaneous.

My favorite way to teach children to ride a bike is by taking the pedals off so they can ""run"" on the bike and coast by lifting their legs. I ask them to put their feet down when they feel they are loosing their balance. After about 15 minutes of this, most kids can coast quite a ways. Then I put the pedals back on, get them started with their feet on the pedals and tell them to spin, and let go...and suddenly, they're riding without any help."

Anonymous's picture
Christian Edstrom (not verified)
Anonymous's picture
Evan Marks (not verified)
quick answer


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