Monkey Nuts to the rescue

AUSTIN – This whole “gears” thing is working out better than I thought it would. A modern, new and proper one-by (1x10) drivetrain is quiet, shifts smoothly and stays out of the way. I have no reservations about mashing gears or churning the seemingly endless torque up hills and/or through soft stuff. 

I already covered the change from single speed to gears in a previous post (although the XT derailleur is now a Shimano Zee, as originally planned) so there is no need to get into it here. 

One issue I have is a mix of tire clearance and fighting a derailleur (which pulls the wheel toward the seat tube) while affixing the DT Swiss RWS. The wheel always seemed to not be aligned correctly – either with the derailleur or within the chainstays. 

This is where the Surly Monkey Nuts v2 came to the rescue. They work as a spacer in the frame fork tabs, adding a stop for the axle 14mm back from the end of the slot. In other words, they shorten the slot and place the derailleur in an ideal alignment to the axle, as if the frame suddenly has a regular vertical dropout. 

The Monkey Nuts make it easy to keep the wheel aligned and back far enough to allow ample room for the rear wheel (Surly Extra Terrestrial 26 x 2.5 mounted on a Rabbit Hole rim) and hopefully for something like a Dirt Wizard 2.75 or WTB Ranger TCS Tough 2.8. The fork has plenty of room for a 3” tire.  

If I buy a new Troll I won’t need the Monkey Nuts, because I won’t have the tire clearance issue. The way I understand the whole derailleur thing is the axle needs to be directly over – or pretty close – the mounting bolt to make shifting work its best. Surly (and others) show the wheel slammed in the frame fork tabs (AKA “horizontal dropouts”) on the new Karate Monkey and Troll. 

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