All photo's are Copyright of Scott Swalling or the tagged Photographer. (Background photo Scott Swalling Photography).

About Me:

24Hr MTBike racer and general bike rider, climber and mountaineer. Good coffee drinker and cake eater (any cake, seriously, don't leave your cake laying around). Also, I like to try new things that challenge me.

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Wolf Tooth chain rings

My previous post introduced my newest cycling sponsor Wolf Tooth Components, well of course nothing comes for free.  So here is a review on their 32t 104 BCD chain ring.  A one word review would be "AWESOME!" and yes I would be that enthusiastic, trust me in this.

As many of you know I mainly run my MTBikes as single speed, but there are occasions when I would like to use gears.  My solution to this for a few years has been 1x9(10) and a chain device.  This has its drawbacks, if the chain does come off its an ar*e ache to sort, if it is muddy the chain device jams and they generally are a pain in the butt.

So what is the solution? Well a little while back the guys at WTC worked out how to reduce the chances of dropping a chain on a 1x XX configuration by having a narrow wide tooth configuration on their chain rings, with a slightly higher profile then some others out there.  Below the is the 32t chain ring fitted to one of my bikes prepared for the Bontrager Twentyfour12 (race report to follow).

It is recommended to fit the chain ring with the appropriate speed chain (10 speed in this case) and a clutch rear mech (Shimano SLX SGS - not shown). The clutch mech helps reduce chain slap and hence further reduces the chance of chain drop.  Ensure the chain is measured and broken to the right length (say 3-4 links overlap when wrapped around the chain ring and the largest rear sprocket - yes I read the manual).

Once fitted something was apparent pulling the chain down and forward of the chain ring you could feel the wider teeth holding on and the narrow ones letting go of the chain. Interesting!

So how does it actually perform.  Did you read the bit were I said AWESOME!, I wasn't joking.  My first test ride on the local trails and I was so impressed.  However, the Bontrager Twentyfour12 would provide a real test.  A big test would be how would this work on my 1x9 configuration with no clutch mech?

Fast forward to the morning of the 2412 and a quick test ride on the 1x9 config with no clutch mech and no chain device et voila the chain stayed in place. Super! Now I was amazed.  I could also answer the question, how does it work without a clutch mech that I had been asked the Friday evening and Saturday morning by other racers and their pit crews.  It work really well.

A full 24hr race with me making some poor line choices and bad gear changes would be the ultimate test.  After 24hrs of racing on both configurations I can safely say this.  I didn't drop a chain once, it didn't even come close.  Even at the point when I broke my drive side crank arm off my bike, the chain stayed wrapped neatly around the chain ring.  This certainly helped a more graceful stop and sensible dismount.  Clutch mech or not, these chain rings work. :)

I have to say I am so impressed and really happy to be able to promote WTC.  I had researched their product quite a bit, before approaching them and I now can safely say I will replace all worn 1x chain rings I own as I need to with these. 

Your is pedaling in circles for a bit,

No comments: