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I have a vintage (165mm-Crnk) Sugino 40/48 on here now, but am looking to add some gear range for up hill with med-sm load. I have a Tiagra short cage RD and a Sora double FD. I am friction shifting. I'm considering doing a chain ring like 26/36/48 with an 11-34 freewheel which would give me adequate range, I believe 20-117 ish.

Can I add a chainring to my set? Mine is 110mm 5 arm which sems like it should be replaceable with say a Shimano. I was also thinking I could just get a smaller maybe 36 tooth and call it a day with 2 rings.

My understanding so far is that my Tiagra rear derailleur has maximum of 28T. I've heard of people friction shifting using a double FD for triple front rings. Has anyone seen this?

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Check out the IRD Defiant wide range double crankset http://store.somafab.com/irdwicorodoc.html) It has a 94bcd which allows it to run 46x30 rings. Combine that with a 12-27 cassette or freewheel and you'll have plenty of range.

Going to a triple presents a few problems:

  1. They don't shift as well as a double.
  2. You have a short cage rear derailleur so max rear cog is 27, maybe 30 teeth. Definitely won't handle 34 teeth.
  3. Triple cranks require triple compatible front derailleurs.
  4. A double is simpler and lighter.
  5. The Interloc will look a lot nicer on your 80s era bike.
  6. A triple will usually require a longer bottom bracket spindle than a double.
  • I'll check them out. I'm hoping to keep my cranks if possible as they are in fine condition.. – Brendan Jul 3 '15 at 5:08
  • I'm leaning toward keeping a double ring set. I am finding a lot of good in simplicity and I've ridden with some dubious FD's. – Brendan Jul 4 '15 at 0:45

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