I enjoy going fast and my current bicycle tops too early, what kind of upgrades would I need to make to achieve a taller final gear?

  • 1
    You need to tell us what type of bike you've got
    – PeteH
    Sep 29, 2014 at 22:02
  • 9
    It's not the bike topping out. It's the rider. What cadence do you call "tops out"?
    – andy256
    Sep 30, 2014 at 5:20
  • Get a steel frame bicycle. They seem to carry momentum much better.
    – MadmanLee
    Oct 4, 2014 at 17:58
  • Can you please elaborate on the size of tyres... Road bikes use 700C with thickness ranging 23 to 28 or higher Apr 8, 2020 at 15:22

2 Answers 2


Bigger tires, bigger chainrings and a smaller cassette all lead to a higher gearing (the crank arm lengths among other things also come into this, but that encapsulates into bike fit).

Bigger tires are subject to frame clearance and feeling squirmy possibly.

Bigger chain rings require front derailleur compatibility.

Smaller cassette also requires appropriate derailleur capacities.

Other ways of getting more speed include improving your aerodynamics (part of your bike fit - if you have drops for example, you may not be using them effectively) and increasing your cadence (most of the time when people ask this, their cadence is too low and they should be riding in a lower gear or pedaling faster). Losing weight (bike and yourself) does help as well, to some extent. If you're spinning out on say a steep downhill incline, that's normal (chances are you shouldn't be going faster than that anyway).

You may find that the type of bike you're riding is not a good fit for your riding style, i.e. you're using a mountain bike for road riding. Switching the type of bike (which does include corresponding gear and position changes) can help as well.

  • +1 Except that heavier riders would likely achieve a higher top speed on the flat or downhill. Sep 30, 2014 at 9:39

Easy max out tire pressure, get 1.75 thick wheels with no tread, speed up at downhills

  • 1
    Maxing out tire pressure is not necessarily a good idea - your ride will be bouncy and you may lose some control. Also tire sizing is dependent on frame clearance.
    – Batman
    Oct 4, 2014 at 4:06
  • 1
    Welcome to Bicycles SE. We're looking for answers with more detail. Please consider expanding your answer to include how these changes will help with the OP's problem. It's not clear if you are suggesting larger or smaller tires than what the OP has. There are arguments in the bike world in favor of both.
    – jimchristie
    Oct 4, 2014 at 15:30
  • NB: the poster seems to mean getting slick 1.75" tires, not wheels.
    – Weiwen Ng
    Apr 9, 2020 at 13:03

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