New Force ETAP AXS group set launched 43/30 and 10-36 options

Whats your views of the new Groupset?

43/30 chains - offset like GRX for wider tyres and new design finish
New medium cage Rear Derailleur and a 10-36 cassette capacity
10-36 cassette redesigned for vibration damping
New left lever specifically for dropper post
New rotors

I think its about time SRAM did this. They missed a trick not going more than a 33 before. This opens up so many options with their existing chain sets and a bigger cassette as well. Not sure if there will be a RED version but this is what they should have launched already for gravel and touring and 1x builds etc

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Already ordered my new cassette today. Need a little more bottom for my old legs on the big climbs.

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finally! I’ve been asking for more gearing as the existing road groups are inadequate. I would’ve appreciated a smaller front ring though.

I ride a compact with a 12-25 in the back. With a 30/36, I feel like I could do an Everesting attempt on Everest itself.

looks like there is no power meter option though which is not ideal and an oversight.

As you can combine with existing chainsets that might be a better option to retain the in built powermeter but means the lowest would be 33/36 which is still low but perhaps not for some applications not enough.

I think the range of a 10-36 is enough to consider some 1x options for me. Was thinking about an allroad build this year and makes this more viable. Just wondering if the 10-36 works with existing Eagle Mullet builds? The recent manufacturers have all gone mullets e.g. Diverge 1x. Would be good to have 2 wheel sets and have the 10-36 as well

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You should be able to run the Quarq Spider power meter on the new crank. I’ll find out at some point. I’ve ordered the new cassette and will change the crank once I use the current one up. I hope to take the Quarq spider off my current ETAP setup and move it over. New this spring so may take a few rides.

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I do the Pittsburgh Dirty Dozen ride/race with a 39/32 as my lowest gear and that gets grades up to 38%. That is some really low gearing, even for my 205 pound self

The new crank has a smaller bolt circle diameter (94 mm new vs maybe 103? old). The Bike Rumor article explicitly says you can’t run a Quark on the new crank and they recommend power meter pedals.

Personally, I think SRAM have mostly missed the mark here. The whole thing seems like an afterthought as a quick response to GRX. There’s a whole new crank and FD, but the only difference is spacing it out 2.5mm. Yet still the front gearing only has gasps of 13 teeth, which is kind of backwards. I want a bigger spread of gears, like GRX has with 48/31 (17 tooth gap). That gives a bigger total range with smaller steps between gear ratios when using a medium range cassette (like 11-34 or even 10-36). You need a new RD for the new cassette too, which combined with the weirdness up front makes it obvious this group was designed well after the other AXS stuff in response to GRX. Otherwise there would be more commonality amongst the AXS parts.

And the prices are too high to boot.

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Great summary. I agree this seems like a half-step solution and something of a hack fix. Killing power meter use is just plain crazy to me. Maybe they will offer a solution in the future, but that is far from ideal right now. Many people ride gravel with MTB style pedals & shoes, so that eliminates the typical pedal PM options. And people willing to fork over this much for a group are more likely to want power than a typical buyer. Just a miss on several levels, and I am quite content with the GRX Di2 on my new bike in comparison.

I had the same thoughts. People in the comments were excited about the addition to AXS but it sounded to me like almost a whole new groupset, just with the same name. Like if shimano released GRX but under the ultegra name and the only cross compatible thing was the shifters.

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I have GRX 800 2x11 Mechanical and love it. It has an unusual front derailleur setup process, but it helps a lot to fine tune the adjustment.

Crank power meters (on the arm or spider) will always be subject to changing crank, bottom bracket, BCD, frame clearance. That’sa big investment that is unlikely to work on your next bike or even upgrade to the current bike.

I actually think pedals are the best spot for the power meter. It is the most future proof option. When was the last time the crank to pedal interface changed? The only downside is meager selection of them with mountain bike style pedals. My solution is Favero Assiomas with conversion to MTB SPD. I can change the pedals between road and MTB shoes that way. See GPLama’s posts here or on YouTube for details.

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Sure, I know about the Assioma hack, and the fact that it invalidates the warranty the second you do it. SRM is close on theirs, but it’s spendy and a question mark at the moment. The IQ2 options is still vaporware. That leaves a rather murky state for MTB pedal power at the moment, IMHO.

While I agree that pedals are a great potential option for gravel, the current state leaves few options compared to crank and spider based options. None of these is without compromise, so people have to weigh the pros/cons and choose. The current deletion of power for this “new group” is an unfortunate case since it removes one option from the table completely (at least for now).

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I agree on both points. I have had my Assiomas for 2 months and haven’t yet modified them because I want to get enough use on them to be fairly confident their not defective before I kill my warranty.

I knew that you knew about the hack, but I was just trying to head off others from asking. I could have made that more clear.

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I’m pissed and I’ll tell you why. I believe SRAM purposefully phases product releases to get people to buy products twice.

**XX1 AXS was released only as a full groupset requiring you to buy a crankset. Only after a number of months did they release the “upgrade” kit that was just the shifter, derailleur, and battery system.

**Force AXS released and immediately panned for not having gearing options for gravel setups without doing a 1X “mullet” build and limited tire clearance. A number of months later they release this system.

Just a few posts up you see someone that already has Force Axs buying a new cassette, which is presumably not needing to be replaced yet. Therego SRAM sells two cassettes instead of one. With XX1 AXS they sold a ton of cranksets to people that didn’t need them but had the means and wanted the new AXS system, only to sell the new crankset on eBay.

I’ve seen this enough times to believe this is a purposeful strategy to get early adopters to buy a product and then upgrade some piece of it 6-12 months later because they didn’t sell a complete system in the first place. There are a bunch of gravel bikes that were sold with the narrow version on them that didn’t have wide enough gearing or tire clearance. Now those people are going to spend $$'s again if they want to gain the clearance their frame actually has but they are limited by the front derailleur battery.

Now the product itself? Great, it’s what they should have released in the first place. The 10-36 cassette with the 46/33 crankset w/ wide spindle, and wide FD would be a perfect system. Less than a 1:1 climbing ratio and a good gear for being able to pedal down a straight gravel road in the big ring and also throw road wheels on your bike and do the group ride.

I built my gravel/road bike with Ultegra di2 and a RX805 clutch RD. Works great, only have 1 battery to charge, didn’t require a freehub change (really expensive on Chris King hubs). At the time the Force Axs was going to cost about $800 more due to the $300 freehub and axle swap from Chris King and the tire clearance and gearing options weren’t as good as what I could do with standard 11 speed components. Cheaper cassettes for two wheelsets, etc.

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@huges84. Missed that. Thanks. I have a connection with the Man at Quarq Jim Meyer, Quarq hq is 35 miles from my house. I’ll have to send Jim a WTF message.

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I’m sure you’ll get the same runaround from any other guy in product (believe me, I’m one of them) - that there are manufacturing/supply/technical limitations that prevent them from reaching their desired tolerances/specifications/performance when interfacing with existing technology and tooling. While there is likely truth in that, the fact of the matter is that the primary reason this made it to market in spite of the power meter problem is that it will make SRAM more money over the long run.

I just got the 10-36 cassette and am using it with the Eagle derailleur and flattop chain. On my bike (Open Wide) the top portion of the cassette shifts perfectly (13-15-…-36), but the 10-11-12-13 shifts have a bit of lag that’s not present in my dedicated road bike. I think the Eagle derailleur just isn’t designed for 1t jumps, the top pulley can’t get close enough to the cassette on the high end regardless of chain length/b-tension. I think what you would need to make it work would be a replacement cage with a larger pulley offset.

My LBS put the 10-36 cassette on and adjusted the Red ETAP derailer I was using with the 10-33 cassette. Right now I can’t go big ring/big cog (36) due to chain length. Once I wear out this chain I’ll add two links to the new one and see how that shifts. Right now every other combination is spot on.