SRAM revolutionized MTB shifting several years ago with a 1 x 11 group that provided excellent gearing range while obviating the necessity of a front derailleur. Initially, this system was quite expensive with the cost of rear derailleur, shifter, chain, crankset and cassette totaling about $1500. Trickle down technology has provided the SRAM GX 1 X 11, 2 X 11 and 2 X 10 groups for about a third the cost of the initial offering. BICYCLIST evaluated a 1 X 10 GX group which was standard equipment on the State Pulsar reviewed on the next page. State produced the 1 X 10 system by replacing the double crankset of the 2 X 10 with a single one. The result provides the simplicity of rear derailleur only shifting while reducing the gearing range only slightly.
The GX group was tested in environments ranging from fairly steep mountain trails to more mild fire roads. The gearing provided sufficient range for most ascents, but didn’t have a “stump pulling” combination. SRAM designs their groups with components that mesh well together and the GX followed this formula. The horizontal parallelogram design rear derailleur, which reduces shift force and chain slap, allowed instant, precise shifting either up or down. The X-sync chain retention technology worked perfectly and we didn’t have a single instance of the chain separating from the chain ring even when going off drops or descending very rough terrain. Another nice feature is the GX parts are cross compatible with those from other SRAM groups allowing a plethora of options. The SRAM GX 1X10 remains a welcome addition to mountain biking. -BB
As seen in Issue #131.