SRAM Force 11 and SRAM Force 125 July 2020
SRAM has renamed and reinvigorated their road groupset offerings this year. CX1 has gone and is now replaced by 'Force 1', while the ever-amazing 'Force 11' remains, essentially unchanged - just how we like it! Here's what SRAM have to offer all us keen, skinny-tyred cyclists this season.
SRAM Force 11
Sitting just one rung below SRAM’s range-topping 'Red' groupset, 'Force' is designed with racers and dedicated cycling enthusiasts in mind. SRAM Force is by far one of the lightest and technologically advanced groupsets in its price range. This, combined with responsive shifting and silky smooth transmission, make it an excellent choice for performance oriented cyclists who demand the efficiency from their set-up.
SRAM Force 1
Hailed by SRAM as ‘Everything you need. Nothing you don’t’, Force 1 is an updated version of what was formally CX1. Initially developed for mountain bikes, then later used to great success in cyclocross, SRAM’s 1x (known as 'one-by') technology is at the forefront of the evolution of road cycling. Multiple gearing options are provided by combining different combinations of chainring and cassette, providing the same wide spread of gear ratios we all depend on, only significantly lighter and more efficient. Excellent! The removal of a front mech and inner front chainring reduces weight and increases chainline efficiency. Crit racing is a particularly good example of where the benefits of a 1x drivetrain are apparent - most crit riders never use their smaller front chain ring, so using a 'one-by' set-up such as SRAM Rival 1 and Force 1 provides a much wider selection of gearing across the entire rear cassette. Hey presto! Suddenly a wider spread of gears are available with zero losses in momentum - no need for the front 'granny' whatsoever. Rival 1 and Force 1 are also great options for TT and Triathlon racing, as well as adventure and gravel riding and especially cyclocross racing.
Both SRAM Force 11 (22 gears total) and Force 1 (11 gears total) are available with hydraulic braking. Rival 1 is currently disc brake specific only, but Rival 11 has both disc and rim options for backward compatability on non-disc brake equipped road brakes. There are many other great features to both Rival 11 and Rival 1 - check them out here:
Yaw is only availible with SRAM groupsets and essentially it allows the front derailleur cage to rotate, maintaining a consistent angular relationship with the chain. YAW technology eliminates the need for shifter trim. As a result, shifts feel more direct and precise, delivering unmatched performance in front mech shifting (sorry Shimano).
DoubleTap makes changing gears simpler and faster, eliminating the cumbersome and awkward engagement associated with two-lever systems. DoubleTap handles up and downshifts in one short, sweeping motion, with minimal effort and maximum comfort no matter where you are on the bars. For user new to SRAM, getting familiar with the feel of DoubleTap only takes a few moments - it's so 'natural'. Short, rapid taps moves the rear derailleur through the smaller cogs of the rear cassette so quickly, whilst shifting up to the bigger cogs comes via a longer sweeps of the lever, all in the same direction. Simple and easy. It really does make a difference. Many of our sponsored riders have now converted to SRAM on all their bikes. DoubleTap also works great for upshifts while sprinting or attacking. This allows the brake and shift levers to be completely independent from one another, each operating with their own pivot points. Try braking heavily on the front whilst shifting gears on a Shimano STI lever. Not easy - the lever pokes out in all manner of directions - unnerving and not as much control. SRAM eliminates the risk of engaging brakes or shifters unintentionally - an unfortunate side effect of other shift / brake lever designs.
WiFLi is an abbreviation of 'Wider, Faster, Lighter'. It's SRAM’s revolutionary concept that allows WiFLi users to accommodate a much wider range of gears on the rear cassette, much more so than a 'standard' double or triple groupset. With Rival 1 this, combined with different sized front chain rings, offers an incredibly wide range of gearing options. WiFli accommodates this range of gears without compromising shifting or efficiency, too.
SRAM Force 1 X-SYNC Chainrings
SRAM X-SYNC chain rings are used for 1x groupsets only. They provide the highest level of performance and durability by using wide-tooth, narrow-tooth chainring technology which provides maximum chain control, effectively eliminating the need for a chain catcher. This adaption to the chainring is crucial to the success of one-by groupsets. You can't go fast if your chain is always coming off, eh! Thankfully, of course, SRAM well know this and their Rival 1 and Force 1 systems utilise the X-SYNC chainring to perfection. Never will your chain drop off using these systems, even over lumpy and rutted terrain. From every angle, SRAM's one-by drivetrains mean business. Now we can all take advantage and boost our cycling performance and enjoyment.