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Oval Kool Aid

Da Peach

Outwitted by a rodent
Jul 2, 2002
12,631
2,007
North Van
So I did some drunk shopping and bought some bits on the Oneup website. I picked up a slick new black chain, a fancy top guide, and a 32t oval chainring.

I was pretty sure I ordered a 30t, but nay, I got a 32t.

So, I currently push a 30t up front, with an 11-42t cassette. (Yeah, I know, you are tough and push a 1:1 ratio and ride in Florida)

I guess I harkened back to something I read way back that said a 32t oval "feels like a 30t, but better!" round when I added to cart. Oops. The part that worries me is the 34t ratio for the other part of the pedal stroke.

Have any of you who ride in actual mountains moved to an oval and felt a radical improvement?

I'm really after a slightly "granny-er" granny gear. I spend way too much time in the top 5 or 6 cogs of my 11 speed cassette.

I think I've answered my own query...
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,307
2,122
I use an oval ring. I am slow climbing. I was slow climbing before the oval ring, too.

Hell, I think I was fastest back in the days of BioPace, which apparently is current oval rings phase shifted by pi/4.
 

Da Peach

Outwitted by a rodent
Jul 2, 2002
12,631
2,007
North Van
I use an oval ring. I am slow climbing. I was slow climbing before the oval ring, too.

Hell, I think I was fastest back in the days of BioPace, which apparently is current oval rings phase shifted by pi/4.
Imma gonna switch mine for a 30t. Have my pi and eat it 42.
 

Flo33

Turbo Monkey
Mar 3, 2015
1,162
444
Styria
I am running a 32 ovar with 11-40 cassette. We do have actual mountains over here. I like the feel of it. I don't know, neither have proof of, if it's the oval ring, that let's me do >1200 m vertical climbs on it.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
36,651
3,475
Sleazattle
If you don't like the ovalness you can just use an angle grinder to make it round again, or lop a few teeth off if the gearing is too tall.
 

Da Peach

Outwitted by a rodent
Jul 2, 2002
12,631
2,007
North Van
Man. Lubricating the clutch of an RD is pretty important as it turns out.

My 2 year old XT is still ticking along.

Hopefully my eventual conversion to oval doesn’t make it essplode.
 

vinny4130

Monkey
Jun 11, 2007
318
113
albuquerque
I ride with flats, and I think it makes the power delivery smother but in no way is it so good you can push 2 teeth more than you wanted.
 

Da Peach

Outwitted by a rodent
Jul 2, 2002
12,631
2,007
North Van
I’ve only pedalled up and down my street so far, but I can’t feel any of the weirdness often mentioned in articles about these things.

I’m actually more jazzed about my new cable housing... such smoothness!
 

canadmos

Cake Tease
May 29, 2011
9,955
5,804
Canaderp
I thought of making the same joke...

But since you asked, XTR, of course... With a genuine Shimano shifter cable... it came packaged with a cable crimp. Totally worth triple the cost of the MEC brand..
MEC ones are okay in my books. I've had a spare cable in my camel back for over a year and it has yet to rust.
 

Da Peach

Outwitted by a rodent
Jul 2, 2002
12,631
2,007
North Van
Well, 2 rides in and I think there might be something to it. I feel as though it helps maintain momentum a little better on the climbs, which helps maintain speed and acceleration on the climbs.

It's pretty subtle, but it's there. I rode with a very quick and fit rider today and managed to keep up better than usual.
 

Flo33

Turbo Monkey
Mar 3, 2015
1,162
444
Styria
That's my impression too, it certainly won't make you a Nino Schurter but the power output is a bit smoother over a revolution.