singlespeed_cog_absoluteblackCalling the new single speed cog from Absolute Black simply a “cog,” would be doing the beautifully CNC machined component a disservice. Designed in the UK, and manufactured in Poland, this fancy bit of 7075 Txxxx Aluminum has several unique features.
singlespeed_cog_absoluteblack_design What elevates this beyond the level of a simple cog is the narrow wide alternating tooth profile, which has now become common place on front sprockets. In this implementation, the design offers additional strength, better wear characteristics, and has the added benefit of better chain retension. This means as your chain stretches, the cog will prevent the chain from dropping.

The one caveat, is that cog is not compatible with half link chains, and will perform best with either a 10 or 11 speed. singlespeed_cog_absoluteblack_0
Available in a 16T, 18T, and 20T, although the larger and smaller cogs will not be available till June 25th, price will vary depending on region. For those in the US, retail is $39.99.  Not bad for the lightest single speed cog on the market! Current claimed weights for the anodized beauties are 16T(23g), 18T(24g), 20T(29g).

singlespeed_cog_absoluteblack1The base of the cog is 7mm thick, so it will not mar the finish of an aluminum free hub body. Also, the teeth have been positioned centrally, so you can always flip the cog to prolong the wear life of the cog.

If you ride your single speed every day or could in any shape, way, or form, be dubbed a Clydesdale, then stay tuned for the future steel version, which will be launching soon.

Want one? You can place your order here.


  1. Tyler on

    @Andy You can run lower chain tension that should help drivetrain efficiency and be easier on your rear hub bearings.

  2. Matthew on

    If you ride your single speed every day, or your a Clyde , put the $ toward a dedicated hub; and invest in an Eno freewheel . You’ll be happy.

  3. anonymous on

    Please explain how that would help for the standard +/- 1/4″ to 1/2″ slack on a single speed. Under no load, the drivetrain is under almost zero tension except for the weight of the chain sagging. Under load, the top of the chain is under full tension, like any other bike drivetrain.

    I also fail to see how narrow wide teeth would improve wear on a cog, especially one designed for narrow chains and made out of aluminum.

  4. Walter Sitter on

    Who needs the added cost of 10 and 11 speed chains. If they made the cog to work with 8 &9 speed chains I would be interested. The surly cogs are hard to beat.

  5. Wookie on

    OMG! I drop the chain on my SSCX rig all the time…and it’s such a heavy bike. Finally my prayers have been answered. Anyone interested in some used ENO freewheels?

  6. Rob Cordry on

    Oooooh, 7mm thick!

    … Just like every other high quality SS cog on the market. *yawwwwn*

    And, seriously, why thick-thin on an SS cog? It doesn’t truly add any functionality, and you can’t have odd number gears or half links. This cog creates twice many problems as it supposedly solves.

  7. Brendan on

    Okay, before the hate gets out of hand:
    My wife was contemplating going to SS world champs this year, and currently rides XX1 on her hardtail. This cog is all she’d need to buy to qualify.

  8. Derek on

    There is pretty much no reason to do take the X-Sync philosophy on a single speed cog like this. How does it reduce wear? The bearing surfaces on the teeth are still the same thickness as on a normal cog. Chain retention on a single speed? How does it even fall off in the first place?

    The downsides are major. You have to use a 10s/11s instead of a longer lasting 8s chain? Only even tooth counts? Can’t use half links?

    I guess they look neat.

  9. Derek on

    What we’re all trying to say is that this cog offers no advantages over any other single speed cog and only has disadvantages. Whether your wife has an XX1 chainring or not has no impact on this. She could run any single speed cog that’s compatible with a rear wheel that you have.

  10. absoluteblack on

    Marcin here at Absoluteblack.

    I always love to read a comment section in here.

    It’s normal that everyone speaks from their own shoes perspective, so we have so many different comments (which is great btw). But with a little bit of research you will be surprised how many people actually use 10/11speed chains in their singlespeeds. Moreover they are usually top end DLC ones or similar.

    In general we have two types of singlespeed bikes.
    1) build from what we have left in shed or our old bike convert to not to spend much cash on that. In the same time one usually do not care if it is heavy (surly cogs for eg) and rather thinks for low cost and good durability.

    2) Bikes build on special purpose. Usually owner has 2-3 other geared bikes to ride. So this bike is usually really light, with high end components and 10spd chain.

    We are fulfilling the needs of a second group. Like every product on the market it has its own reception group.

    On 50km ride your chain can stretch enough (if it was already a bit loose when you started) to drop it while descending. Please also bear in mind that many excellent carbon frames do not have sliding dropouts, so such build will result in a need of a tensioner. If this one gets loose you will drop chain as well. If you have used such tensioner once i am sure you know what i mean.


  11. bicimundo on

    It’s really unfortunate how many negative comments are posted on this site now. Everybody is an expert at what they don’t know. I use my old 10-speed chains from the CX bike on my single speed mtb. No extra cost there. And when they stretch further, there is a possibility of chain drop while climbing. It is rare, yes but lightweight frames do flex under load. And any cog that accepts a 10/11 speed chain is 1/2″ pitch by 3/32″ and therefore compatible with any 8/9 speed chain too. Do some homework before jumping to conclusions folks. I think these look great. And I personally think the short freehubs are better than threaded hubs. These are single speed specific too, you know. And in my experience last longer and are easier to maintain than a thread-on freewheel.

  12. Dr D on

    As a long time SSer… I run a 10 speed chain on a XX1 chainring/crankset. This would be a good complement to my setup. Full rigid, Specialized Carve SL – 17 lbs

  13. Trey Richardson on

    One benefit of a narrow wide cog with the narrower 10 or 11 speed chain is that it keeps the chain from scooting left and right on the teeth. When you take a wider 8 speed chain and put it on a standard width cog, there is a lot of side to side play that is actually caused by the flex in the frame when under load. Most SS’ers have heard that occasional “pop” sound, and that is the chain scooting under tension on the cog. Perfect chain alignment doesn’t compensate for flex. Will it make or break your ride? No. Is it more refined? Yes.

  14. rcpeters on

    absoluteblack You’ve hit the mark with me. I’m actually looking to make switching back and forth between 1×1 to 1×11 easy. Looks like the cog will be part of that hat trick. Right now I’m planning on switching the driver, but if someone came out with a SRAM XD Driver single speed adapter…….

  15. Matt Ackland on

    #1 – These look amazing! Just like all of your other products.
    #2 – I am definitely your category 2 type rider. I have a 7kg Rigid SS Niner One9RDO running a 10speed KMC X10SL chain.

    I disagree that you need NW tooth profiling on a rear cog. Apart from the initial ride with a new chain, if you are stretching it enough on a 50km ride to require re-tensioning then you are using a horribly weak chain. My current chain has done 2000km since March this year and the only time I need to touch the chain tension is when I swap gearing.
    I was disappointed to see the NW profile as it means that I can’t get this cog in 17t or 19t.
    As a dedicated SS marathon MTB rider, I need to be able to vary my gearing to suit the course and commonly use 32 and 34t up front with 17-20t rear combinations.
    Ditching the NW design would make your CNC machining much easier and therefore cheaper.
    Kudos though for bringing a high quality SS product to market!

  16. Jeff on

    My 1st thought: who in their right mind would trust a 10/11speed chain on a SS rig?
    Its a chainsnap waiting to happen. Unless you are some kind of puny weakling.

    On the positive side, you can probably get rich quick with some help from an ambulance chaser.

  17. Baz on

    For those her who don’t ride single speed and so haven’t dropped a chain riding one, it is a bad experience! It can happen, especially as Absolute Black say, on long rides, I race SS in 60-70 km races and have had it happen. High quality SS chains and track chains (1/8″) reduce the chances of it happening. If you do lose your chain on a SS rig under a full power acceleration, it usually means a trip over the bars.

  18. kjbkj on

    “who in their right mind would trust a 10/11speed chain on a SS rig?
    Its a chainsnap waiting to happen. Unless you are some kind of puny weakling.”

    So how is it that 11 speed chains survive the power outputs of world class sprinters on geared bikes but don’t stand a chance against an average single-speeder?

  19. Jim on

    If you get chain drop issues from frame flex just fit a non-geared chain. Deeper plates and less flex. If it’s too heavy for you, have my pity : )

  20. absoluteblack on

    If there is big enough demand i see no problem in doing NON-narrow/wide 17T and 19T for those who need it:) to compliment to the even numbered cogs range.

    Like i wrote before, chain stretch is one thing and running fixed or sprung tensioner is the other. While you can account for chain stretch or get much better chain, it is hard to fix tensioner in one position for long. Of course not everyone ride with tensioner as there is plenty of nice SS frames out there with various tricks to adjust chain length. But there is equally many frames which need the tensioner.

  21. Eric on

    Nice…like it and will try one out when it hits the US market. Used Rennen’s for awhile, then Endless Cog’s for the last 5 yrs and really like the tall teeth and the ability to symmetrically flip them. Now I an running a Niner Ti cog to see how the life span is compared to aluminum. As others have said It is funny of all the experts in the world but it is this diversity that make it wonderful. I read, sometimes laugh and move on. I really appreciate the artisans that try hard to bring new and innovative ideas to the old school ride. this allows me to have a sweet light responsive rig to do my endurance races on. Been SS specific for years…..S-Works SS 18.5lb

  22. Robbie Mubbledutt on

    @ Marcin-

    two things come to mind reading your posts:

    1) no, you can’t stretch a chain enough in 50k to cause it to drop. that’s plainly wrong.

    2) care to elaborate on how you think you’re going to make odd number cogs for narrow-wide?

  23. Robbie Mubbledutt on

    @ Marcin-

    Sorry, I just saw your post was edited to say “non narrow-wide.”

    But my point stands, chain stretch is a fallacy as it’s percieved and as you present it. It’s just wear from the rollers binding on the pins.

  24. Tyler Benedict on

    All – yes, technically the metal on chains doesn’t stretch, but to avoid a battle of semantics, any elongation of the chain is typically referred to in laymen’s terms as “chain stretch” regardless of whether it’s the rollers and pins wearing or whatever. Same with cable stretch. There’s no need to defend that statement. Let it go, we know what it means.

  25. Abeck on

    Haters gonna hate, gets boring after a while. I ride a non-SS specific frame running a magic gear with less than ideal chain tension, so shame on me. I’ve dropped two chains in my 2+ years on this bike, once during a race, and once in the middle of a 4+ hour ride. Both times the chain fell off the cog during a decent and wasn’t exactly cake to fix. If this product would help alleviate this failure mode, even though rare, I’m all over it. Nice work.

  26. Johan on

    Jeff, 10 and 11 speed chains are often stronger and last longer than 8 speed chains, in my experience. The chain is narrower due to the width of the rollers not the plates? I also ride a 7.5kg (16.5lbs) carbon ss with chaintensioner and a lighter chain is great.
    I am not sure the N/W is a good idea on ss , as I use this on my 1×11 and have found the N/W cogs to be the least durable part of that set-up ( even when flipped over). So chain retention ( which is pretty sorted on SS with tensioner) versus high cost replacement because of N/W, I would need to be more convinced of the benefits.
    Great to see guys innovating though and it looks beautiful!

  27. Martin L on

    I really like this concept, it is what has been missing from the market for a long time!

    For example on my single speed XC bike, I used to have the perfect combination of chainrings for my chain to fit perfectly, even though my vertical (/geared) drop outs.
    This was perfect until the chain started to stretch a bit. For smooth rides on roads this was no problem, but while riding high speed over bumpy xc trails, I had a lot of issues of my chain dropping off my cog. If I would have had this chain ring back then, I could have been riding the same set up for much longer, instead of having to either replace my chain every couple of 100km (while it is still good), or having to mount a shitty chain tensioner.

    I’m planning on getting one of these for my single speed full suspension bike park machine (single speed because I only ride it 5-10 times a year, and use the lifts to go up the mountain. Don’t want to spend much money on a bike that I don’t use often + no maintenance + no possible issues + a more fun ride). I will trust a N/W cog a lot more in the back, combined with the chain tensioners that work with springs (like a non-shifting derailleur). This will reduce my chances for my chain falling off on te descents, so will give me more enjoyable rides and even less things to worry about.

    I really like this N/W cog, it’s exactly what I was waiting for to come on the market.

    Really hoping someone will release a fixed gear cog like this aswell.

  28. Ed on

    I first bought both the Surly steel cogs in 16t and 18t. I had chain slippage problems on my Chameleon SS with both cogs, especially the 16t. I ride in Austin, TX – where its moderately hilly, and you get a lot of limestock rocks and ledges that require sudden hammering on your pedals to punch through. Basically what would happen, is at the most inopportune time – the chain would just slip on the cog (not the chain ring at my pedals) with the Surly cogs. I figured they would be tougher, since they are steel – but i think its because they just aren’t that pricesly shaped. I didn’t matter how tight I got the chain – to the point of making my freehub sluggish – it would still have a slip now and then. With the amount of pressure you are putting down, and the kind of sharp crap underneath you – that’s just unsat.

    I had also bought the 16t Absolute Black cog shown here. This guy is aluminum, but after I swapped it in, I have only had one chain slippage of this nature. I think these cogs are just made better – more precisely, and they are narrow-wide profile, like my chain ring, and unlike the Surlys. My main concern with them is the aluminum – i’ve bent aluminum chainrings before. And once aluminum bends – its basically done. No issue so far though. And I ride my SS 3-5 days per week.

    Next up – I just bought Wolf Tooth SS cogs – they are steel. Will be interested to see how they do.


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