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Gearing Suggestions
Hi there,

Right, so I'm looking to gain some lower gears on my bike. I'm stuck between getting a new chainset, or new cassette (or both?), but as always looking to keep costs down!

So I have a 2009 Claude Butler Roubaix, 53/39 up front, and an 11-26 SRAM cassette behind. Sora 2300 Derailleurs (short arm on the rear one)

I was hoping to just get a 11-32 cassette and do a quick swap, however I fear my rear derailleur won't be able to stretch to the 32 (lots of rear derailleurs only seem to be capable of a max 26/27T ??) - However from doing some searching online there seems to be a few people who've managed to pull this off even with a triple up front?!

If the cassette change won't work, I would have to change my chain set ( Because my crank is 130mm, it can't allow for any smaller sprocket than the 39T currently in place).
I could put in a compact chainset and use the current cassette, but then I'm wondering if it'll be compatible with my current bottom bracket ?! ( Haven't a clue what type/make it is, and can see it's a square taper from taking out the bolt at the crank..)

I was just going to drop the bike off at a shop and get the guy/girl(!) to see what they think will work best, and be the best value for money - But figured I would post on here first to see if you people had any thoughts??

Am interested to hear what ye got to say,
Thanks ! :-)

I currently have a 9 speed cassette ( and would look to replace it with another 9 speed one --> 11-32 )

Crank is an FSA CK-C200
FSA CK-C200 is a square taper, any JIS square taper (99% of all square taper cranks are JIS) will fit, though the BB may be the wrong lenght, messing up your FD and chainline.

Probably the easiest is to source an compact double (50/34) crank set on e-bay, I just got one for less than $40- including the BB.

Other choices:
* mountain rear derailleur, cassette and chain - it will need to be longer;
* current new crank sets are $$$.
FWIW Sparkie I’m running a 50/42 in front and a 12-36 8spd on the rear using an old Dura Ace short arm derailleur. The 50/36 gear doesn’t work (there’s no more give in the derailleur and not enough chain), but everything else is fine. Someday (whenever that is) I will replace the rear derailleur with a long arm one and replace the chain, too. I managed to get lower gears for only the cost of a new cassette.

I like your nickname!

Anyway, as it happens I've just bought a new bike. I figured it best to just buy a bike that better suits my needs instead of trying to adapt a road bike.

I opted for a Specialized Tricross Sport 2011 (On sale!)

I get 50 x 39 x 30T up front, and an 11-32T cassette, which is perfect for what I was looking for. Also have tiagra shifters and a nice groupset, so I'm a very happy boy now!

Next question, do I sell the original bike for circa £200, or hold on to it for the sake of it?

Cheers, Mark (Sparkie) :-)

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