Wide Range for the Masses
After getting over the initial shock of SRAM’s massive 42-tooth cog featured in the XX1 11-speed cassette, the potential of this ultra-wide gearing configuration was quickly apparent to riders everywhere. To be on the cutting edge, however, you’ve got to pay to play, meaning the purchase of a completely new drivetrain and possibly a new rear hub. Given the situation, OneUp Components decided to design an alternative for riders looking for a wide-range cassette that would work with their current drivetrain.
Tech features: The OneUp Components 42-tooth cog is a free-standing, CNC-machined, 7075-T6 aluminum cog designed to be compatible—though not officially—with most Shimano and SRAM 10-speed drivetrains in both single- and double-chainring configurations. It features 12 upshift points and multiple contact points with the existing 36-tooth cog for smooth shifting, proper spacing and increased stiffness. It weighs 2.5 ounces and sells for $100.
Field test results: While compatible with certain double-chainring setups, given the recent surge in the popularity of single-chainring (or 1x) drivetrains such as SRAM’s XX1 and X01 1X11 groups, the OneUp cog will most likely appeal to riders as a less-expensive, wide-range, 1×10 setup.
We installed the OneUp sprocket on our Cannondale Scalpel cross-country bike equipped with a Shimano XTR drivetrain in a 1×10 configuration with a 34-tooth single chainring up front. OneUp only lists five 11-36 tooth cassettes as compatible with its 42-tooth sprocket: Shimano’s XT and XTR and SRAM’s X9, X7 and X5.
In order to make room for the new sprocket, OneUp designates the 17-tooth cog and its spacer for removal. With this slight modification and the addition of the 42-tooth, the cassette looks normal. Once installed, extra chain links may be required to account for the larger cog and the extra throw of the rear derailleur. While Shimano’s XTR 10-speed rear derailleur is only supposed to work with up to a 36-tooth cog, with a few extra clockwise turns of the b-tension screw—essentially all the way in—the derailleur easily shifted the chain into the new cog as if it had been there all along. With a double check of the derailleur adjustments, we were set.
While the system seemed to work flawlessly on the stand, we knew that the true test would be on the trail under real pedaling and shifting forces. As in the stand, climbing into the 42-tooth was seamless on the trail. It ran quietly and smoothly with our single-ring configuration. Our one minor snag with the modified setup was the newly created gap caused by the removed 17-tooth cog. While the shift from the 15- to the 19-tooth was possible, it certainly wasn’t as buttery smooth as we’d come to expect from our stock XTR cassette.