I recently upgraded my wife’s bike with a Shimano XT triple crankset. The number of teeth is 44.32.22t. However, the middle chainring on the recent XT crankset is carbon-reinforced, and I’d prefer not to trust in carbon for our primary cycling activity, which is long-haul touring.
From an earlier bike build, I happen to have a never-used Shimano middle chainring lying around, made purely from metal, but this one has 36 teeth. Is it possible to replace the 32-tooth ring with a 36-tooth one, keeping the crankset's other teeth (44 and 22) the same? Or do triple cranksets require some kind of precise ratio between the number of teeth on the three rings?