e13 TRS+ Cassette AndrewM
FIRST LOOK

e*thirteen's New 511% TRS+ 11-speed Cassette

Words Andrew Major
Photos Andrew Major
Date Aug 25, 2017

TRS+ Cassette

e*thirteen has positioned their TRS+ cassette as a foil to SRAM's 12-speed Eagle drivetrain. That's not surprising, the market leader in 1x* is the obvious target for everyone looking to sell drivetrain parts. It's just that e13's litany of product pros reads like an answer to every complaint - informed or otherwise - I've ever read about Eagle.

Compatibility

The TRS+ cassette is compatible with SRAM or Shimano 11-speed drivetrains with a hub using an XD driver. It greatly expands the stock gear range of either system with a 511% spread compared to a 418% gear range for Shimano's 11-46t and a 420% gear range for SRAM's 10-42t 11-speed cassettes. 

That means it's possible to get an easier gear without going to a smaller chainring for bikes that have their suspension optimized around certain tooth counts. There's also no sacrifice of suitable riding-to-the-trail gears in exchange for more bailout options on steep technical single track climbs. 

e13 TRS+ Cassette AndrewM

Included in the box from e13 is a TRS+ cassette, lockring, installation tool and a tube of grease. 

Pros

The e*thirteen cassette's 46-tooth cog and compatibility with 11-speed drivetrains mean the TRS+ works with a shorter derailleur cage than Eagle. I've mounted this cassette with 11-speed GX and didn't even need to add a chain link when replacing the stock 42-tooth**. Additionally, the TRS+ is cheaper and lighter than an X01 cassette and a claimed 100 grams lighter than a Shimano XT M8000 cassette. 

SRP on the TRS+ is $250 USD and the top three alloy cogs will be replaceable separately for around $100. Locally I'd imagine replacing a few of the top clusters for every steel lower since those gears see the most torque and sheer hours of pedaling which should make for good long term value. 

e13 TRS+ Cassette AndrewM

I'm only a couple of rides in but so far there is definitely no loss of performance compared to the stock GX 11-speed drivetrains that I so appreciate for their performance, longevity, and value. No chain derailment when backpedaling to date. 

There are a few bike and crankset factors to be considered but the chainline of the TRS+ should also be better than with 12-speed Eagle. 

Cons

The only con I have at this time is the 9-tooth cog is a bit clunky - even more so than when the comparison is made between SRAM's 10-tooth and Shimano's 11-tooth cog. 

I'm running a 29'er with a 32-tooth front ring so the only time I'm regularly in the 9-tooth is on the road, where it also happens to be more noticeable than on the trail. 

This is a long term test so I'll be reporting back on durability in the future. 

e13 TRS+ Cassette AndrewM

Shift ramps and shaping. Aftermarket cassettes like e13 and SunRace no longer include a drop in performance compared to similarly priced SRAM and Shimano products. 

Okay, one more con. I'd like to see e*thirteen make a 12-speed version as well. If the price point was similar I think there'd be a lot of interest from riders buying Eagle GX drivetrains or replacing wear parts on existing X01 and XX1 Eagle kits. Perhaps it's in development already.

Future

The TRS+ is ready to roll with an existing 11-speed drivetrain or potentially to be purchased with an 11-speed GX shifter and derailleur on clearout for the ultimate price point drivetrain. 

The only question I have is regarding the durability of the aluminum cogs and the interface between the two cassette halves. I'll be able to build an opinion on that over the course of my review. 

The TRS+ sells for $250 (USD) with the one-piece upper aluminum cog set selling for around $100. It will be available towards the end of this month. For more information check out bythehive

*I was going to say 'mountain bike drivetrains' but SRAM's 1x road groupsets are category leaders as well. 
**Your mileage may vary re. chain length. 

Comments

shoreboy
0
Shoreboy  - Aug. 25, 2017, 9:22 a.m.

Maybe its just me, but I would rather have a tighter spread at the top end (climbing gears) than a 9T cog at the bottom end.  I rarely use the bottom third of my cassette.  Maybe im just old and slow so miss the point of needing this big a range.  Granted there will be people who have to ride on the road to the trailhead, but many do not.   The pricing is also a big con.  You can get 3-4 Sunrace or Shimano cassettes for the price of one of these e.13 offerings.  If I were making the switch to 11 speed (still running 10-42T 10 speed), Id get myself a either the Sunrace (11-46) or spend a bit more and get an XT 11-42 + 47T Oneup.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - Aug. 25, 2017, 11:14 a.m.

Regarding the gear range it's definitely going to come down to a rider's individual needs.

I'm generally happy on a 30lb bike with an 11-42t cassette and a 30t ring. It's nice to have bigger cogs on bikes that ride better with larger rings (suspension kinematics). 

I do use the 9t quite frequently on the road (32t x 9-46t) because it's there - I often pedal to trails 30-45mins. I do also pedal to the same trails on my SS (32t x 20t) so I certainly appreciate the 9t is luxury not necessity.

I've had good results from SunRace cassettes although I haven't personally tried the 11-46t yet - I agree they're the value leader. 

The E13 package shifts much better up and down than any of the cassette + add-on cog kits I've used (not really surprising given it's a package unit). I also like no dropped chains back pedaling.

As a package the installation (on an XD driver) is really nifty as well. 

Anyways, not disagreeing at all but I think there's a market for the range and fit + finish if the TRS+ all the same.

Reply

DBone95
0
Darryl Chereshkoff  - Sept. 4, 2017, 10:14 p.m.

.

Reply

Pizza-Diavola
0
Pizza-Diavola  - May 1, 2018, 8:49 p.m.

So... eight months in. How is this cassette holding up?

Reply

AndrewMajor
+1 Pizza-Diavola
Andrew Major  - May 1, 2018, 9:07 p.m.

It's been an excellent experience with two caveats:

1) I'm still not a fan of the 9t cog - but certainly, take advantage of it being there on the road. It's clunky on the road and I'm never in it on the trail. I'd, personally, prefer the cassette be 11-46t with closer gaps.

2) By the end of this summer, I suspect will need to replace the aluminum cluster. I think it's held up really well considering how much time I spent in those three cogs over the winter, how little I cleaned the drivetrain, how many different chains I asked it to mate with, and etc - and the steel lower cluster is as new.

I don't feel it owes me anything but it bears mentioning.

I've submitted my review but with all Sea Otter coverage going up right now I'm not certain when it will be published. 

Happy to answer any questions you have. I recommend the product based on my experience.

Reply

Pizza-Diavola
0
Pizza-Diavola  - May 1, 2018, 9:22 p.m.

Hey Andrew, thanks for the quick reply! Do you think you would have gotten similar or more life from an X01 11sp cassette? My X01 has lasted me four years but I am sure not riding anywhere near as much as you. I have been swapping chainrings for the few days a year I can get to the bike parks. The extra range of the TRS+ would eliminate that, and I would use the 9T in the bike park.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - May 1, 2018, 9:35 p.m.

Assuming you're talking about an 1195 X01 X-Dome cassette I have the same issue with the steel cogs being very resilient and the aluminum big cog wearing out much faster.

If I already had an X01 cassette that was in great working shape except for the big alloy cog then I'd buy the 44t OneUp X-Cog and be happy with a 10-44t setup.

Buying a new cassette, I'd save ~$100 up front by buying the e13 and the one piece (3-cog) alloy cluster costs ~ the same as one a OneUp X-Cog when it comes to replacement time. 

I will say I think the X-Dome cassettes are brilliant and as much as I'm known for being cheap I think they present a really good value for people who have their bike geared (assuming kinematics work) low enough or otherwise live in places where you aren't in the alloy big cog all the time. I know of a guy on his FOURTH aluminum big cog (including the original) on an XX1 cassette where the 10x steel cogs still shift as new. 

I've had less positive results with the non-X-Dome cassettes from SRAM and would certainly purchase the e-13 every time over an HG-1175 cassette.

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