You know the drill. You’re just riding along when an innocent crash sends your rear derailleur perilously close to you spokes. Hopefully you catch the bent hanger before you overshift into the spoke down the trail, and if you do, you have a few options. You can try to use the limit screws to temporarily limit the derailleur in its new position, you can try to bend the hanger back with your hands/tools, or you can just not shift into your easy gears and limp home.
But with the new Pack Hanger from Wolf Tooth Components, there’s another option. Thanks to the compact design of their new derailleur hanger alignment tool, you could actually bring it with you on your ride which may come in handy if you’re far from home.
How does the Pack Hanger tool differ from a standard derailleur hanger alignment tool? For starters, it’s quite a bit more compact with a cylindrical shape that would easily fit into most hydration packs or bikepacking bags.
The tool then comes apart into two main pieces (shown above with the optional quick release adapter). The threaded rod is inserted into the hub and frame to hold the wheel in place and act as an indicator, while the outer handle is threaded into the derailleur hanger to act as your lever to bend the hanger back into alignment.
The kits are available with 12mm thru axle adapters (142 – 197mm widths), the quick release adapter (all QR), or both.
In terms of the actual straightening process, this differs from a traditional derailleur hanger alignment tool as well. Instead of an indicator rod that you use to locate the rim in four positions, the Pack Hanger simply uses the rod sticking out of the hub as the indicator. Bend the hanger so that the handle is parallel with the indicator, and you’ve straightened you hanger. It seems that this won’t be nearly as precise as a pro derailleur hanger alignment tool, but it should be more than enough to get you home.
Don’t want to carry 300g of tool weight with you? The design makes it nice and portable to stash in your vehicle or various bags, and it can also be used at home in your shop. Made in the U.S. from 7075-T6 and 6061-T6 aluminum and 303 stainless steel, the tool starts at $59.95 for the QR kit, $99.95 for the TA kit, or $119.95 for both. The QR adapter is also available separately for $19.95.
- Thru Axle/QR Tool – 324g
- Thru Axle Tool – 297g
- QR Adapter – 54g
- QR Kit – 175g
Shimano 12 Speed chainrings for XT M8000 cranks
You’ve seen that Shimano just introduced the long-awaited 12 speed XT and SLX, yes? Then you’ve probably also seen that the XT group uses the same crank that was introduced as a stop-gap for XTR which employs direct mount chainrings. That’s great if you’re buying the new crank along with the group, but what if you already have an XT crank?
To address that very issue, Wolf Tooth Components has a new 12 speed chainring specifically designed for the Shimano XT M8000 and SLX M7000 cranksets with an asymmetric 96mm BCD. With a tooth profile developed for the new Shimano HG+ chains and drivetrains, the ring will allow you to update 11 speed XT cranksets to work with the newest groups.
Offered in 30, 32, and 34t configurations, the rings sell for $79.95 and are available now (30 & 32 only).