Why ROTOR 1×13 Is Perfect For Gravel Bikes?

autorRotor Bike Components
fecha22nd May 2019

The 1x revolution has been one of the most notable in mountain biking in recent years. You will not find an MTB transmission that does not have compatibility with one front chainring. In road it is beginning to adopt followers, and in cyclocross it is considered the present, and future of the gearing world. And what better future than a 1×13 transmission? ROTOR has made it possible. We explain to you why ROTOR’s 1×13 transmission is perfect for Gravel. 

If you are a fan of Gravel, you will have noticed that even more brands are equipping their models with 1x gearing. Gravel riding has situated itself as a viable option for people that like a bit of everything, and that the bike is not a drawback. Road, rail trails, mountain and everything else that comes between. And for all of this, here at ROTOR we think that a single chainring set up is the best solution for a simple user friendly system and to avoid possible mechanical failures. The fact that the 1×13 transmission ratios are almost identical to a 2×11 setup, means that the advantages are undeniable. With all of this, add the 1×13 hydraulic system and you can forget about maintenance and adjustments even in the harsh conditions of Gravel riding.

Advantages of the ROTOR 1×13 Groupset

One of the main advantages of the ROTOR hydraulic transmissions, is the almost total absence of maintenance. Once fitted and adjusted, you just have to worry about keeping it clean and the chain oiled. Nothing else. Like electronic groups, the ROTOR 1X13 groupset have this great advantage that conventional cable groups cannot match. On more than one occasion we have heard from riders that after months of training and competition with a 1×13 system, they have not had to make any kind of adjustment. Simple and super effective.

Another advantage is the weight saving. Firstly, you have to take into account the weight savings of having only one chainring, no front derailleur, shifter or cable. In addition, ROTOR 13-speed cassettes start at 236 grams in the 10-36 combination.

The simplicity of use that the ROTOR 1×13 systems have is another key point and its excellent adaptation to gravel models. When you only have one chainring, you only have to worry about using the right shifter to change between the 13 available speeds. As simple as that. No noise, no chain jumps, no problems in technical areas. The single chainring, together with a cassette with ranges of up to 10-52, will allow you to face any type of difficulty, no matter how complicated it may be.

The perfect combination for Gravel

One chainring and 13 sprockets. As simple as that. The new ROTOR 1×13 transmission offers you a huge range of possibilities. Here is an example. Using a traditional 2×11 double chainring combination with an 11×36 cassette (491% range) is equivalent to a ROTOR combination with a 42 tooth chainring and a 10-46, 13 speed cassette (460% range). 13 speeds compared to the 14 usable ratios that are given with a double chainring system and 11gears, but with the simplicity of not having a front derailleur or two rings. This combination allows you to pedal faster, climb hard inclines with a more progressive sequence on asphalt and keeps the chain stable on rough terrain. Do not forget that of the 22 theoretical speeds that are given with a double chainring system and 11 gears, only 14 of them can be used correctly.

And this is one of the many options. One of the strengths of ROTOR 1×13 transmissions is that you can combine chainring sizes and different cassettes as you like. In fact, the 13-speed cassettes are available in 4 combinations; 10-36, 10-39, 10-46 and 10-52. While for gravel we recommend 10-46 in combination with a 42-tooth ring, you can always use another cassette or chainring depending on the conditions and the terrain you usually ride. With our DM chainrings that can be swapped in a matter of minutes, you can have the right gear ratio for each type of route if you need it.

Another key point to use 1×13 transmissions in gravel models, is that the ROTOR rear derailleur through its ‘clutch’ system eliminates the harsh whips of the derailleur with a high retention system that keeps the chain stable even in the most extreme conditions. It is common with gravel models to pedal on all types of surfaces. In the most complicated of these, this system helps the chain always stay in place and does not oscillate with rocks, potholes or roots that you can find on the road.

Forget about problems

The combination of a single chainring on gravel models inherits many of the benefits of this combination in mountain bikes. From the simplicity of use, we combine reliability, reduced maintenance and greater precision of gear changes in more technical and abrupt areas. By not having the front derailleur, no matter how technical the area, we only have to focus on the use of the rear derailleur. In addition, the chain is always kept in the selected sprocket regardless of the terrain. By having a hydraulic operation, the rear derailleur is not affected by mud, water or muddy conditions. In addition, and to avoid premature wear on the most commonly used sprockets, the first smaller sprockets are made of high strength steel and the larger ones in 7075 T-6 aluminium (CNC) and with maximum quality controls that ensure that every part that leaves our factory meets our high standards.

Lastly, do not forget that when cleaning the transmission, having only one chainring allows access to all the necessary cleaning points without problems and without the need to disassemble any parts. This way, cleaning the chain and the chainring after a ride in wet or muddy conditions, is fast and very easy.