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Tech FAQ: Triple-Shifter with a Double Crank?

  • By Lennard Zinn
  • Published Feb. 23, 2011
  • Updated Oct. 11, 2012 at 5:00 PM EST

Dear Lennard,
Can I adjust a Shimano mountain bike front triple-trigger shifter and front derailleur to work on a double crank?
-Steve

Dear Steve,
Yes you can, as long as you use a mountain front derailleur. If you were to use a road double front derailleur, the throw would be different and it wouldn’t work.

I have set up a 2 X 9 system this way with Shimano MTB derailleurs. I recommend using the first and second clicks to make the chainring shifts, not the second and third clicks. In other words, shorten the cable so the derailleur moves immediately from the smaller chainring when you push the lever.
-Lennard

Readers can send brief technical questions directly to Lennard Zinn.

Technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder (www.zinncycles.com), a former U.S. national team rider and author of numerous books on bikes and bike maintenance including the pair of successful maintenance guides “Zinn and the Art of Mountain Bike Maintenance” – now available also on DVD, and “Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance,” as well as “Zinn and the Art of Triathlon Bikes” and “Zinn’s Cycling Primer: Maintenance Tips and Skill Building for Cyclists.”

Zinn’s regular column is devoted to addressing readers’ technical questions about bikes, their care and feeding and how we as riders can use them as comfortably and efficiently as possible. Readers can send brief technical questions directly to Zinn.

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Lennard Zinn

Lennard Zinn

Our longtime technical writer joined VeloNews in 1987. He is also a framebuilder, a former U.S. National Team rider, and author of many bicycle books, including Zinn and the Art of Mountain Bike Maintenance and Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance, as well as Zinn and the Art of Triathlon Bikes and Zinn's Cycling Primer: Maintenance Tips and Skill Building for Cyclists. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in physics from Colorado College. Readers can send brief technical questions to Ask LZ.

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