MTB Drivetrain- Cassettes

24 April, 2012

MTB cassettes come with different gearing ratio. The most widely used are 11-32T and 11-34T. What does that means. 11-32 is the number of teeth from smallest cog to the biggest cog. This mean the smallest cog has 11 teeth and the biggest cog has 32 teeth. So, 11-34T mean the biggest cog has 34 teeth , the extra 2 teeth.

For Shimano cassette 9 speed drivetrain, the lower range Shimano Deore has only 11-32T cassette. Only on higher range like XT and XTR they have the 11-34T.

On my bike drivetrain, I only use Shimano Deore from crank, chain, shifter, brake and everything except cassette because I want to use the 11-34T of which Deore do not have. XT cassette is quite expensive. I chooses SRAM PG970 11-34T and the price is about the same as Shimano Deore cassette.

From my experience, the 11-34T work well with shorter crank arm 170mm in conquering steep hill. You can spin the crank faster and lighter and control your motion better on steeper peak.

For more information on crank arm length, you can click here

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