Is it ok to pair 11 speed 11-36T cassette with 50-34T crankset? And is Shimano 105 RD compatible with this setup? I'm planning this setup for my Japanese vintage touring bike.


The Shimano 105 RD in its latest 7000 version has an 11-34 tooth capacity in the long cage version. So theoretically at least, Shimano is rather conservative concerning those limits, the answer is no, you can't. With some tweaking of the b-screw it might be possible but you will have to take the blame if it doesn't work.

This said, the 34 to 34 pairing gives you a 1 to 1 ratio that allows for steep climbs, and is rather demanding in pedalling cadence to keep up enough speed for balance. Example: riding at 6km/h in the 34-34 gear requires a 74 RPM cadence.

Technical details on the the 105-group to be found here:


  • 1 to 1 ratio...is rather demanding in pedalling cadence to keep up enough speed for balance. I disagree. It difficult to buy a modern modern whose smallest gear ratio is larger than 0.70. Pedaling and balancing in such a small gear doesn't seem to be a problem. – Paul H Jun 28 '19 at 18:40
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    Hell, with a 30T chainring (a reasonable choice for a trial/all-mountain bike), you get a 0.59 smallest gear ratio with Shimano's new 12-speed XT and SLX groups. – Paul H Jun 28 '19 at 18:43
  • @PaulH : You're right the balance depends greatly on the bike geometry.and on the terrain. But have you tried that on a 20% incline and a rough road with a race bike? A wobbly matter. There are problems keeping the front down and the rear from slipping. Too much power. – Carel Jun 28 '19 at 20:18
  • Well not on a race bike. But you combine the OP's touring bike with your 20% incline and loose, unpaved roads, you just describe most of my time on a non-MTB bike. My "road" setup has an 11 - 42 cassette with 38, 40, or 42 T front rings depending on where I'm headed. – Paul H Jun 28 '19 at 20:28
  • Also -- to pick a nit, it's the torque, not power that's the issue. Generally though, it's nothing that can't be solved with good technique. – Paul H Jun 28 '19 at 20:33

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