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single speed in the front cassette in the back??

jordan2hundy

Chimp
Sep 19, 2008
10
0
first of all i am a complete noob when it comes to mtbs....i come from a mx background. so please forgive me if i sound like a complete muppet :bonk:

anyhow i am curious if it is possible to convert the front crank on my xc bike to a single speed and keep the cassette in the rear. i never shift the front chainwheels and stay on the 32 tooth chainwheel constantly. would it be possible? if so what would i need to do to it besides a single speed crank??

thanks in advance
 

CrabJoe StretchPants

Reincarnated Crab Walking Head Spinning Bruce Dick
Nov 30, 2003
11,569
422
Groton, MA
Very possible, in fact 95% of DH and longer travel bikes have their drivetrain set up that way. You'll want to get yourself a chainguide to keep the chain on the chainring, my suggestion is an e.13 SRS or STS. Other companies you can look into are MRP, Gamut, Truvativ and Race Face. I doubt your XC frame has ISCG tabs (what chainguide backplates mount to), so you'll want to make sure whatever guide you get comes with a BB/ISCG adapter.

e.13 SRS:
 
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jordan2hundy

Chimp
Sep 19, 2008
10
0
thanks joe--

do you know a good place to purchase this setup w/ said apapter? also do you know a good ss crank that doesn't cost an arm and leg and will hold up to abuse?

thanks!
jordan
 

Wumpus

makes avatars better
Dec 25, 2003
8,164
154
Six Shooter Junction
Very possible, in fact 95% of DH and longer travel bikes have their drivetrain set up that way. You'll want to get yourself a chainguide to keep the chain on the chainring, my suggestion is an e.13 SRS or STS. Other companies you can look into are MRP, Gamut, Truvativ and Race Face. I doubt your XC frame has ISCG tabs (what chainguide backplates mount to), so you'll want to make sure whatever guide you get comes with a BB/ISCG adapter.

e.13 SRS:
That's a tad overkill for a XC bike.

Ghetto setup: Remove the rings that you don't use. Remove the shifter from the bars. Leave the front derailleur on and adjust the limit screws so it doesn't move. Optional: Replace big ring with a bashguard.

Little better setup: Replace big ring with a bashguard. Remove shifters/front derailleur. Get an N-gear jump stop or equivalent.


There is no need to get a "singlespeed crank". Most are just the regular three ring cranks with one ring. You might look into a SS chainring(http://www.blackspire.com/qs/product/83/5948/263230/0/0) after yours wears out.
 

CrabJoe StretchPants

Reincarnated Crab Walking Head Spinning Bruce Dick
Nov 30, 2003
11,569
422
Groton, MA
Anyone using just a middle ring up front surely wouldn't mind the extra heft and added security/peace of mind of having a REAL guide. At least that's how I look at it. All up to him of course.
 

nmr8

Monkey
Apr 6, 2007
108
0
That's a tad overkill for a XC bike.

Ghetto setup: Remove the rings that you don't use. Remove the shifter from the bars. Leave the front derailleur on and adjust the limit screws so it doesn't move. Optional: Replace big ring with a bashguard.

Little better setup: Replace big ring with a bashguard. Remove shifters/front derailleur. Get an N-gear jump stop or equivalent.


There is no need to get a "singlespeed crank". Most are just the regular three ring cranks with one ring. You might look into a SS chainring(http://www.blackspire.com/qs/product/83/5948/263230/0/0) after yours wears out.
the ghetto setup doesn't work that well, the low limit screw usually doesn't have enough range to move the derailleur to the right spot. i'd go for the chain guide, but the n-gear jumpstop + bash works pretty darn well too.
 

jordan2hundy

Chimp
Sep 19, 2008
10
0
thanks for the replys fellas. i think i might go with a crank just because the one on my bike is really old. it is a caramba crank for all you old school guys out there. i need a bb and my chainring is bent so i was going to replace it with a single speed crank and new bb to simplify things. i ride mostly xc type terrain but i have a moto background and will try and jump just about anything. I think the guide may be a good idea. maybe i can get away with a bb new chain ring and guide??? the cranks arms and spider are fine...probably just a bit heavy and dated.
 

sanjuro

Tube Smuggler
Sep 13, 2004
17,412
0
SF
I would definitely use a chainguide in the front. Even road bikes will drop chains if there isn't something keeping the chain on. David Millar, who specializes in prologues, famously dropped a chain during the TdF prologue because his mechanic took off the front derailleur, saving 60 grams during a flat 4km time trial.

The single chainring is also becoming the choice for strong climbers and all-mountain riders. One thing to consider is chainline, but the solution is keeping the ring in the middle, not the outside.
 

nmr8

Monkey
Apr 6, 2007
108
0
thanks for the replys fellas. i think i might go with a crank just because the one on my bike is really old. it is a caramba crank for all you old school guys out there. i need a bb and my chainring is bent so i was going to replace it with a single speed crank and new bb to simplify things. i ride mostly xc type terrain but i have a moto background and will try and jump just about anything. I think the guide may be a good idea. maybe i can get away with a bb new chain ring and guide??? the cranks arms and spider are fine...probably just a bit heavy and dated.
the caramba arms will probably bend if jumped hard, if your getting air go for the new SLX cranks, they're cheap and they're nice. pull the chainrings off, throw a single speed ring and a guide on and you're golden.
 

jordan2hundy

Chimp
Sep 19, 2008
10
0
thanks again for all your help!

do you all know anything about this crank --truvativ 1.1g single speed??
and this guide-- truvativ team box guide??


the sxt cranks looks nice but between that and the guide in looking at between $350-400 which is a little more than i want to spend. (i have 2 ktm mx race bikes i have to maintain) :nopity:
 

nmr8

Monkey
Apr 6, 2007
108
0
there are a few truvativ cranks w/ 1.1g in the name, which one are you talking about? if it's an external bearing stylo it should be OK. dunno much about the box guide but it looks cheap and nasty.
 

Jim Mac

MAKE ENDURO GREAT AGAIN
May 21, 2004
6,364
281
the middle east of NY
I currently run 1X9 on my trail bike and am very happy with my E13 32 Special guide. Having said that, there are lighter options - E13 LG guide and most likely the Gamut smaller guide as well. We had a team mate who ran 1x9 without a guide here in the rocky northeast, and he was constantly losing his chain.

As far as "single speed cranks", there is really no such thing. You can most likely run your regular 32 t ring, but an upgrade might be to go to a non-ramped ring. Again, E13 and a whole host of other companies make them. I ran a ramped ring for a while on my SS and it was ok, but used to stick on the chain (BMX 1/8) every now and again.

EDIT: the Truvativ guide is OK. It's light but a little flimsy. Probably not bad for trail riding, but my wife pummelled one of those guides on her DH bike in a matter of 3 rides.
 
Feb 13, 2002
1,078
7
Seattle, WA
There IS such a thing as SS cranks. I had a set of stylo SS cranks on my jump bike. There were no mounts for an inner chainring, saving several grams.....

Is it worth it to buy SS cranks? no. Do they sell them? yes.
 

want_to_jump

Chimp
Apr 5, 2009
58
0
I do trails, AM style riding. Would a N gear with a E13 be OK for a 1x8 and would a 30t be OK or too small? I have a rockhopper. There are some hills here but usually ride the 32t. I can spin fast though. I would like to lighten/simplify things but doing more then XC.