Saturday, September 15, 2018

Minus Ten Review -37

Jason Boucher shooting an image of me while I was shooting an image of him. Murphy-Hanrahan trails.
Ten years ago on the blog here I was prepping to go to Interbike in Las Vegas, Nevada. It would have been my third trip in a row to the show and my last as a "Crooked Cog Network" member. Later in '08 the network basically imploded at the hands of its leader, Tim Grahl, and the wreckage that ensued sent my life into a new direction. But ten years ago this week I had no clue what was in store for me.

I did notice that the blog lost a ton of images due to Grahl's mismanagement of a photo sharing service which cost me a lot of imagery here. Oh well........

Ten years ago I also summed up my season long experiment with 170mm cranks on 29"ers. You see, it was an unwritten rule for early pioneers of 29"ers in Crested Butte, Colorado to use 170mm cranks on 29"ers. There was "something to it" that was never really explained or written down, as far as I have ever been able to find. So, I did my own research into the matter.

I set up my '07 El Mariachi with 170mm triple cranks, (triple cranks?!! Yes!), and my Blackbuck single speed also received the 170mm treatment. I rode them from Spring all through Summer and into Fall. My assessment was that on the geared bike I really didn't notice anything substantially different from using 175mm cranks. However; on the single speed I was convinced there was a marked difference. Here is a quote from my post in September:

"I also have noted an increase in my ability to scale steeps that I normally would have crapped out on. The 170mm crank seems to get around to it's power stroke a little sooner for me, therefore I lose less momentum in my pedaling "dead spot" and I can keep those big wheels rolling easier."

In fact, I was so impressed I have never gone back to longer cranks on my single speed Blackbuck. I have used 170mm on various other single speed bikes as well, but typically my other single speeds are set up with 175mm arms. I've no real desire to go longer unless it is for a gravel bike, which then I prefer 180mm cranks. Longer, less severe elevation gains on gravel tend to lend themselves to those longer arms, I think. 

1 comment:

CrossTrail said...

Jeff Jones persistently recommended a 170 mm crank for my geared Jones Plus, to which I eventually agreed. I wonder if he stocks anything longer. ; )