As I get the steed ready for my first race of the season in a couple of weeks I was debating what gearing to use. I currently run stock gearing on my Gary Fisher cross bike (11-26 and double chain ring up front). I was thinking of changing to 12-28 and single ring (42) up front. What are your thoughts. I race in New England.
What is your fitness level? When running a double are you often in the small c ring, and if so what size is it? I ask because personally, I tried a 42 but couldn't turn it over in the muck and grass like I thought I could. When riding i found myself mostly in the small ring (36) with a 12-26 cassette. I split the difference and opted for a 39 or 38t chain ring and, again personally, it suited me and my fitness. Try racing on the double for a few races and then re evaluate your gearing options, and remember, if you go to a single ring set up: 1. you will need to shorten your chain, 2. Get an outer (and inner ) ring guide like the one from BBG or Salsa and 3. If you can't run a double guard set up get the Jump Stop by N-Gear for inner guard. Let us know what you come up with!
I added a photo to give you an idea of what I had to do to accommodate a FD mount.
Fitness is decent and improving. I am in week 4 of the Carmichael TCC program. I have a 36t small ring that I think I will use and replace the 46t with a bash guard and chain keeper. I have a 11-26 on the rear so I am thinking replacing it with 11-32 for more climbing ability.