So I have a 2001 gary fisher marlin, with a 3x drivetrain, and I want to switch to a 1x. Because I am on a budget, I don’t want to buy a new derailer and shifter, so I want to go with a 1×9. Can anyone recommend what size of cassette to get and what chainring? I want to be able to race xc for fun, but also maybe some enduro and street as well. Thanks!
What is the size of your middle ring right now? You can probably get away with using that, and replacing your big ring with a bash guard. Once you do, you can see if your cassette has the range you need.
I did a 1×9 conversion on my 29er hardtail just last week. I have a 11-34 cassette and used a Raceface 30t nw chainring, it only cost $40 with shipping. I’m really pleased with it so far, no problems going up the steep hills or getting up to speed on the flats.
Shimano makes a 9spd cassette with a 12-36 range. Its is the CS-HG400. You will loose lose some top end range but gain on the low end.
It is a heavy cassette, but it shifts well and is durable. I used one for a season on a 29er with a 32t and 30t chainring, depending on the trail.
I would recommend a new chain when you do the conversion. You could even use a 10 speed chain. It will shift fine and stay on the narrow wide ring better since it is narrower. Chain length is key since there are no 9spd derailluers with a clutch. Basically you want the chain as short as possible to keep enough tension on the derailluer cage spring in the smaller cogs, without ripping the derailluer apart if you bottom out in the large cog.
I recently did a 3×9 to a 1×10 conversion on my hardtail.
I bought a 32T raceface chainring on amazon for 25$ and bought a sun race 11-42 cassette also on amazon for 40$. I then bought a rear deraileur and shifter on jenson for around 60$ combined(Sram GX DR and X9 shifter). Swap was super easy and for the price I felt like I got a pretty good deal, especially because I did the work myself.
I converted my 3×9, 22/30/40 with 11-34 cassette to a 1×9 32t oval with a 12-36 cassette. Oval doesn’t work for everybody, but for me I feel I can climb as well as with a 30t front. I still have my old cassette and plan on taking the 11 and 13 from it and replace the 12 and 14 on the new cassette. Also I added a bash ring in place of the 40t so the 32t is centered and I did not need any spacer to correct the chainline.
Thanks for the help everyone! So does everyone think a 32 tooth raceface chainring with a cassette with a 11 or 12-36 will work well for general xc, light enduro, street etc. I only have the one mountain bike, and I want it to work well for just about everything
I would go 1×10 and replace your shifter, derailleur, cassette, chain ring and chain. I did this on a 2×9 bike of mine last year and it cost me $180 all-in (SRAM GX shifter & derailleur). I am sure you can get it cheaper now. The NX range is even lower cost. I figure for $150 you should be able to get it done. More than worth the money.
The 11-40 9-speed cassette in one of the links above alone are $139 before taxes/shipping. You can get a 10-speed Sunrace cassette with that spread for $65. And you can go as low as 30t on the chainring. A 30t chain ring with 40t low gear on the cassette gives you a pretty low ratio and you should be fine with that almost anywhere.