For those of you looking to alter your gear ratio, you can do so by changing the rear cog, which will affect the denominator of the ratio. You can also change the number of teeth in the chainring - or you can do both!
As discussed in our previous post (What's the perfect gear ratio?), every cog has “teeth,” which are represented by the denominator of the bike’s gear ratio. Gear ratios are often shown like this - "xx/yy" - with the first number indicating the amount of teeth in the chain ring and the second number indicating the amount of teeth in the rear cog. An example of this is 46/16 (or 2.88). The lower the total number the easier it feels when riding.
So, if you’re looking to get a solid leg workout in order to gain a substantial amount of speed, you’ll want the numerator to be higher and the denominator of the gear ratio to be lower. For example, a 48/15 instead of a 44/16, which would mean the rear cog has 15 teeth versus 16 while the chain ring has 48 teeth instead of 44. In a nutshell, the fewer total teeth, the harder you’ll need to pedal, but you’ll end up cruising more efficiently and at a higher speed.
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