MRP SXg Chain Guide - Review

Dec 17, 2015
by Mike Levy  
MRP SXg review test


The combination of derailleurs with clutches and narrow-wide chain rings has allowed many riders to move away from using a chain guide, especially those people who aren't racing on a regular basis and don't need the extra insurance, but MRP's new SXg guide is designed specifically for that type of drivetrain. The Colorado-based company says that the SXg provides as much protection as what we're used to seeing on a downhill bike, but with none of the perceived drag and complication that usually comes with that.

The SXg is available in options to fit 30 to 34 tooth rings or 34 to 38 tooth rings, as well as with either an aluminum backplate like the $169.95 model that's reviewed below or a $224.95 USD version with a carbon fiber backplate.



MRP SXg review test
SXg Details

• Intended use: single ring drivetrains
• ISCG-05 mounting only
• Full-size, enclosed upper slider
• No-contact 'Whippersnapper' lower slider
• TPU co-moulding in upper and lower slider
• Integrated skid guard
• Sizes: 30-34t, 34-38t
• Alloy (tested) and carbon backplate options
• Weight: 158g (30-34t, alloy, w/ hardware)
• MSRP: $169.95 USD (alloy), $224.95 USD (carbon)


The SXg employs an enclosed upper slider, much like what you're probably used to seeing on those aforementioned DH guides, but MRP has paired that with a no-contact (and, therefore, no drag) lower slider that they say makes the SXg suitable for everything from DH to trail bike use. ''That feature, as well as the lateral containment of the chain provided by the inside and outside wall structure, makes for a guide as secure as any we've ever produced,'' MRP's Noah Sears explained, ''but at a class-leading weight and with none of the perceived drag or suspension interference of a traditional, full-size guide.''


MRP SXg review test
  The skid and Whippersnapper are moulded as a single unit, and there are two height settings that allow it to be adjusted to the size of chain ring you're using.


What sets the SXg apart from other full-sized guides is its lower slider, otherwise referred to as the 'Whippersnapper' by MRP. It looks a lot like the lower slider that's used on any big chain guide, but two things make it very different: its position relative to the chain ring, and the fact that there's no pulley wheel tucked inside of it. A more common lower slider sits much farther back and higher up in order to add tension to the chain in all gears, but the Whippersnapper's location (lower and ahead of the six o'clock position of the chain ring) means that it makes no contact with the chain.

Because the chain isn't making contact with this slider during pedaling loads, MRP was able to use a softer, co-molded TPU material on the inner walls of the Whippersnapper to help keep chain slap noise to a minimum.

MRP SXg review test
Softer TPU material has been co-moulded into the upper and lower sliders.
The Whippersnapper and skid guard, often called the taco, are moulded together as a single piece, and the whole unit is attached to the backplate with two bolts, one of which can be removed to allow the whole thing to swing out of the way to make installation easier. MRP has also built in an adjustment that allows the Whippersnapper (and, therefore, the skid) to be set in a high or low position to work with the chain ring size that you're running; my test guide is for 30 - 34 tooth rings, and the larger size works with 34 to 38 tooth rings. This two-position system takes the place of an adjustable lower slider that can be tweaked by just a whisker before being tightened down into place, which is what you'll find on most full-sized chain guides.

MRP SXg review test
The alloy backplate has seen extensive machining to remove excess material.
MRP SXg review test
The upper slider is adjusted vertically by way of a single 4mm hex bolt.




Installation and Setup

The main installation points of the SXg are very much the same as with any guide: you bolt it onto the bike's tabs, center and clock it correctly, and then adjust the positions of the upper and lower sliders to wherever they need to be. This entails removing your drive-side crank, of course, but the upper slider is split and half of it can be rotated up so you don't have to break your finicky eleven-speed chain. The lower slider also rotates down and out of the way in order to clear the chain ring, and both it and the upper slider go back together with a single bolt once the crank and chain are back on.


MRP SXg review test
  Autobots, roll out!


Setting the height of the upper slider is pretty straightforward thanks to laser-etched height markings that correspond to whatever chain ring size you're using, although I did end up having to raise the slider a touch higher in order for it to clear the tall drive-side chain stay of the 6Fattie that I used for testing. MRP says that these markings serve as more of a starting point than anything, and, as I discovered, that some fine-tuning may be required. I could have rotated the backplate clockwise by a few degrees instead, but that would affect the position of the lower slider (which is important), so raising the upper slider by a few millimeters made more sense.


MRP SXg review test
The SXg features a split upper slider, as do most guides these days, to make installation easier.
MRP SXg review test
The Whippersnapper doesn't leave any room for the chain to escape, but its position forward and slightly lower than usual allows it to run drag-free.


I used the SXg with a 32 tooth chain ring, which is smack in the middle of the two 30 and 34 tooth height settings for the lower slider. MRP said to go with the upper setting, although the chain did brush on the slider ever so slightly when it was in the 42 tooth cog and the bike wasn't sagged into its travel. Rotating the backplate counterclockwise a touch would have created more clearance, but this would have moved the upper slider back towards the 6Fattie's chain stay while moving the lower slider down to the 34 tooth setting, creating about 10mm of clearance, far more than the 2mm that MRP recommends.

In the end, the chain did make slight contact with the lower slider when the bike was in the stand, but not at all when I was in the saddle.



Performance

There's always a lot of banter about whether riders should be using a chain guide with their single ring setup, with a lot of non-racers choosing to forgo mounting up even a minimalist guide, presumably because they don't feel that the added security is worth the complication or perceived drivetrain drag that can occur in some gears, especially when it's really muddy. That pretty much describes me, and I only need a single hand to count the number of times that I've dropped a chain in the last three or four years. Sure, I'd probably use a guide all the time if I was racing enduros every weekend, but I'm mostly just skidding around in the forest with some buddies.

The SXg made me rethink my approach, though.


MRP SXg review test


There is zero contact between the chain and any part of the SXg when you're on the trail, regardless of what gear you're in, meaning that I couldn't complain about the guide stealing any of my meager power. It's December, so my trails have more in common with a Turkish mud bath than they do with any sort of flowing singletrack, but while sticky, brown crud managed to get everywhere from down my shorts to in my helmet vents, the SXg refused to pack up. That kind of mud is often the Achilles heel for any full-sized chain guide that uses a pulley wheel at its lower slider, but the Whippersnapper continually cleared sludge that would have troubled a normal full-sized guide.

I haven't had the guide on my bike long enough to comment with any real authority when it comes to reliability, but given that once it's set up it has about as many moving parts a spoon, I doubt that it will cause any trouble down the road.

As I mentioned earlier, I rarely lose my chain, so I didn't expect the SXg to be a revelation in that regard. And it wasn't - I still didn't suffer from a single dropped chain - but I did appreciate the extra security. The bike was also marginally quieter, which is an added bonus. So, the lower slider is drag-free, isn't bothered by clumpy mud, and it also protects your expensive chain ring from smashing into things, which means that I'm running out of excuses as to why a hard charging rider wouldn't want to run a guide like the SXg. This is especially true if they were on a long-travel, enduro race bike, or if their local trails are extremely rocky and full of ledges.


Pinkbike’s Take:
bigquotesBruce Willis has starred in more Die Hard movies than the number of times I've dropped a chain over the last few years, so I'm not convinced that everyone with a single ring drivetrain should be bolting on an SXg anytime soon. That said, it's an ideal add-on for any rider who wants the security and protection that a full-sized chain guide provides but without any of the drag and complication that usually comes part and parcel with that. - Mike Levy




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123 Comments

  • 67 19
 As you all know hate carbon fibre on bikes. However this is the one of the very few (and i mean very few) applications where a would allow a carbon fibre component to be placed on a bike since there are no stresses been placed on it .What really pisses me off is how much extra people like you charge for what is an extremely common peace of meterial. Its already expensive at 169 for the metal one and you want to charge 225 just because it has a bit of bloody carbon on it. Stop using carbon as an excuse to rip people off!!
  • 19 2
 Cost aside, I had an old MRP carbon guide that I ran on an Orange 224 for a vey long time. It lasted longer than any guide I had used at that time, despite being buried into the ground countless times. The bottom of the carbon boomerang eventually began to delaminate, but the thing stayed as straight as it was when it came out of the box. It would flex and spring right back.
  • 35 1
 Oh god yeah carbon is a better material than ali for a chain device backplate.
However a piece of flat carbon about 5mm thick, big enough to cut a chainguide backplate out of costs about £5. I am not exaggerating. So how MRP end up charging an extra £56 just for the carbon backplate is beyond me. If anything, the carbon backplate should be cheaper than the ali one, as it will be much less heavily machined. Machine time costs way more than premade sheets of carbon. The price hike is purely because they can, not because it actually costs them any more to produce...
  • 5 4
 Buy the alloy?
  • 11 2
 I did. What I'm saying is carbon is a better material for the job, and should be noticably cheaper. Instead of much much more expensive because of carbon tax.
  • 4 1
 I love carbon. But I do wonder why it's so much more expensive...
  • 7 6
 Carbon is more expensive to machine. Lung cancer and all that.
  • 2 2
 Yep, but the carbon backplates are much less heavily machined. And also I would be interested to see difference in the costs of running an extractor to take away the carbon powder put in the air by high speed machining, compared to the costs of coolant and recycling for ali machining.
  • 8 1
 "flat carbon about 5mm thick, big enough to cut a chainguide backplate out of costs about £5..."

Sounds easy and simple.
I suggest that you make carbon backplates and sell £40 conversion kits. For riders it will be cheaper than buying the carbon version from MRP and it will give you a profit margin of several hundred percents.

Just remember my contribution when you are rolling in cash...
  • 4 3
 You know, I've actually been eyeing up a £400 small bed cnc machine for exactly that reason. Well, the manufacture of carbon fibre stuff in general. I think the 20 or so carbon backplates for MRP SXG devices I may sell per year if I am incredibly lucky isn't exactly gonna put much food on the table. But there are plenty of other things that can be made out of sheets of premade carbon. And even if I made a 400% mark up on materials AND valued my labour time quite highly (remember this'll be one guy in a shed, vs a factory set up for the task in hand, sp my labour costs will be astronomical compared to theirs...) I could still sell you a carbon fiber backplate for less than an MRP one...
  • 4 1
 MRP has always been a top notch company that stands behind their products. The warranty dept. is great to deal with. Just good people. Buy their stuff and know if it isn't what you expect they have your back.
  • 30 2
 i stopped reading at 170$
  • 5 1
 This is true. They have always been awesome with warranty with me. Quite happy to just send me free replacments when I break shit. Must be all the profit they are making on carbon fiber backplates...:P
  • 15 2
 Think about it. A derailleur is basically an incredibly complicated chain device, with added small/moving parts etc. yet can be bought for less than half the price of an ali plate with a simple cage top and bottom...

I wonder why.
  • 9 1
 Welcome to economies of scale.
  • 6 1
 Indeed, but then we are back to the point I made earlier that (perhaps aside from the co-molded rubber in the guides) I could make you a similar guide as a 1 off handmade item, charge a good amount for labour time, and still sell the end product for less than the above device.

Not hating on MRP, I personally think they make the best chain devices. They just charge too much for them. Like every other chain device manufacturer in the world...
  • 1 0
 I agree with the zero stresses but how would it hold up to rock hits. I run a bash guard ring and it takes hits all the time( my trails have some goid size rocks you cant avoid) and it gets bent after a few rides, so it must take side loads. The carbon back plate would be fine taking vertical hits but how well would it take side loads.
  • 1 0
 Better than the ali one. It wont bend, and you'd do bloody well to snap one.
  • 1 0
 Yeah im just wondering, carbon is good at taking straight loads but not always from the side.
  • 6 2
 Tooling, tooling, tooling. That's why it costs more. Carbon burns up bits faster and the bits have to be significantly harder to cut the carbon, therefore more expensive, you're paying for the process, not the material. That being said, the carbon backplates are on all my bikes, they last longer and DO NOT bend, they'll flex and pop right back to straight. @matt76
  • 7 2
 alum, carbon, whatever... since when do chainguides cost as much as a brand new technology XTR derailleur?
  • 5 1
 I have been to an F1 factory and have seen first hand how carbon components are made. The cost of producing carbon components simply does not justify the price! Superstar design, produce, build, market and dispatch a well reviewed set of carbon all mountain wheels for £600!! Yet bloody Enve charge £2000 for their wheels!! It infuriates me! People need to stand up and say "how much???....Im not paying that!!!" You then watch the prices tumble when people stop paying for them!
  • 4 6
 Waaaa waaa
  • 4 1
 Yeah...waaaa waaa. If you have nothing to bring to the debate then dont wear out the skin on your thumbs typing!
  • 5 4
 @mountainyj. Bullshit. That is you believing what you are told and you read. I have witnessed F1 components being made and believe me it is not as complex as they make out. Its people like you that justifies their costs that keeps prices high for the rest of us....Stop it!!
  • 2 0
 Look at the bright side. The perfectly functional g3s will go on sale
  • 3 1
 Pretty sure aluminium machining waste can be recyled. Cant really do that with carbon.
  • 5 0
 Yeah, it's not like I've ever worked in the industry around the machines and loaded them with carbon blanks... Oh shit, I have done that!
  • 3 0
 So yeah, I actually do know what I'm talking about, and what's what the machinists have told me face to face, not what I read online.
  • 2 1
 mountainyj, I hope you didn't breath any carbon dust!
  • 26 0
 You are truly dedicated to the sport if you have 12ish paragraphs of things to say about a chain guide. Great work though, just like riding, writing isn't always easy.
  • 22 2
 How is this worth $170? Just like how you get charged extra for a cake if its for a wedding. You get charged extra because its for Enduro.
  • 7 0
 Cause DH stuffs are cheaper right?
  • 11 0
 Same with flowers, never tell any event supplier it's a wedding. Glad I learned this life hack before I tie the knot.
  • 17 1
 Seriously. Looks like a nice piece of gear, but I have no idea how they got to $170 (US! - that's like $500 CDN!) from this thing that looks like it could come from the dollar store (you know, the nicer dollar stores).

Can some OneUp style company please copy this for $44.95?
  • 7 0
 I'd take a 3d printed plastic one any day. 10 bucks. Replace when necessary.
  • 3 1
 They have to maximize their profits before the cheap copies come out. Looks and sounds great though.
  • 8 0
 Pricing 101; Charge as much as the market will sustain.

If you want shit to be cheaper don't rush out and buy it at prices that you consider too high, ultimately the price will drop to a level that the market considers reasonable. Do not compare retail pricing with cost to produce.
  • 4 4
 This one's actually tested under harsh conditions like Lunch Loops in Grand Junction, and many enduro races across the western US, and has probably gone through a few iterations so it just works seamlessly once installed. Sure, someone could copy it and produce it for less, but the cost of this is more than just the manufacturing and materials. I'm not saying it's cheap, but relative to the cost of $5,000- $10,000 enduro bike, it's not that much, and if it keeps your chain from dropping and wasting the $200+ entry fee (+hotel, +travel) of your enduro race, it might even be considered reasonable. You could always just buy some cheap unit, and have yourself be the tester... Of course, when your chain gets sucked into some crap guide and you go from top 10 in a stage to DNF, you'd probably wish you'd ponied up for the proven device.

If you're just riding around the woods, yeah, this is probably more than you need for a chain device. This one's about retention + lightweight + no-drag efficiency. Not everyone needs all that. If you're regularly dropping $600+ (airfare, hotel, race fee) on enduro races you might see things differently.

All that said, I'd love to see it cheaper too. I'm sure their price is probably just based on how much do we have to sell this for to make it worthwhile to develop and manufacture and also keep the company in business and all of the employees paid and getting healthcare.
  • 4 0
 When mrp chain guides go on sale they're usually half off or more from what I've seen. This markup is insane. It's a piece of metal and some plastic. Great marketing strategy. My next guide will be one-up because those aren't a total rip-off, or if you can 3d print one that would be ideal. A zee rear derailleur has way more going on and can be had for $37 by comparison. But top guide and bash guard with a narrow wide chain is the best way to go imo
  • 2 0
 @ericwahl83 - Great point there. Comparing a consumer direct product with a product sold through traditional distributors and retailers, who all need to earn a loaf to provide you with service of other products you buy either online or face to face.
  • 2 1
 3d printing is great for fast prototyping, but it's one of the weakest methods of manufacturing. I wouldn't use it for a chainguide.

Hopefully by the time they go on sale, they've already paid off the development and other overhead costs. It's just the nature of running a business selling relatively low-volume specialty items. You only have so many units to spread the costs of R&D, etc., over. You can choose to do less R&D, and just copy other units, or come up with something that you hope works, and manufacture it, or get it manufactured in China, and sell it for less, no doubt about it.

You're right that there are less costly options. One-up, etc... and a Zee rear der is a heck of a deal. I think in the case of the Zee, most of the R&D costs have been covered by XTR and Saint units that the tech has trickled down from, and I would take a guess that Shimano sells quite a few more Zee ders than MRP sells of this model chainguide, so Shimano has some economies of scale going on there.

I don't have one of these by the way. I do have an MRP 1x guide I use with a 1x10 setup, with XTR clutch, and Wolftooth N/W that had chain drop issues before installing the guide. I did even have it drop during a race before installing the guide and went from 2nd to 5th, sort of a bummer. Most of the drops on that bike were happening when I continued pedaling full-speed through slightly downhill baby-head sections. The type of places that will steal momentum even if you're going downhill. It would happen consistently on certain sections of trail. I could certainly see some trails where you wouldn't even need a guide at all though.
  • 2 0
 @tuscondon... And how much do you really think r and d was a factor in this product? All they did was put a channel in the bottom of the bash piece.
  • 2 0
 @TucsonDon , how strong does a chainguide actually need to be though? Print it so the layers go vertically. Maybe add a spot to put in a small bolt to help bond the layers tighter where it counts (like where the chainguide replaces the derailleur at the top.) You'd be finnnnnnne.
  • 1 0
 I'll see if I can make a few over the next month... we have free 3d printing at my school (although color printing? That's gonna cost you).
  • 1 0
 @VTwintips I was thinking more about the bashguard aspect regarding strength. 3d printing might be fine for just a chainguide.
  • 1 0
 I was thinking that too, but then I realized if its 10 or 20 bucks, its worth replacing 5-10 times rather than buying a $150 one.
  • 1 1
 Depends how much value you put on not having your ride interrupted those 5-10 times when it breaks. Especially if that happens during an Enduro stage that you payed $250 to participate in, along with say $400-500 in travel/food/expenses...

Not to mention what's happened to your chain or chainring, those 5-10 times that you replaced.

There's something to be said for just doing it right the first time. Usually takes a few rounds of not doing that to figure it out though.
  • 1 0
 It'd probably be almost exactly the same as a plastic bashguard. They're lighter so they're more endurbro anyways. You could just take it off between stages if it broke badly. I ran (gasp) no bashguard and it (gasp) worked out fine.
  • 17 3
 F#$!.. Jesus..170 bucks...Where the hell is this thing going really???

I wont buy shit if i dont find it at 50% off the full price.. I wouldnt pay more than 60-70$ for this alu-plastic thing for sure..

All big companies should come back to real life..Stop buying at full price ppl...
  • 6 3
 #notbuiltinchina
  • 7 0
 I like this. Simple, protects from bashes, and still lets the n/w and clutch do the work. But why the price? Stuff should get cheaper when you pull rollers, bearings, and moving parts out of the equation.
  • 5 0
 I have a the 77 designz freesolo that mounts to the fd direct mount that is $63 that is 28g and their crash plate on the bottom $37 and only 34g. So my set up is about $100 and only 62g. Mrp claimed weight for the sxg carbon is 106g and cost $224.95. But i have had mrp stuff before it is great quality stuff.
  • 5 0
 @mikelevy or @anyoneelse Would having an oval chain-ring affect setup or retention? We're seeing a lot more these days (I'm putting one on for fun when my chain-ring wears out).
  • 1 1
 @mikelevy this is the real question?
  • 2 0
 I also use an oval ring and am in need of a new chainguide so was looking for that info myself.
  • 1 0
 I use an oval ring on my XC bike and love it, but have been holding off on my trail bike due to guide fitting. I would love an guide that works with oval rings.
  • 2 0
 @ryan83 Most users report that the popular oval rings work effectively with our guides as long as you set the up as you would for a ring roughly 2t larger (32t oval ring, setup like a 34t standard ring). The "high" point in the rings are at 12:00 and 6:00 while your cranks are level, which is how you're likely positioned while riding over rough terrain (coasting). Thus, a setup like I suggested should cover your chain and keep you safe. But, there will be gaps created between the guide elements and the ring when the cranks are at 3:00 and 9:00, so you're offered little protection there.

I haven't tried with SXG (which may be a different case), but I will and include my findings in the FAQ section of our website.
  • 1 0
 Seems like you could take this same design and sell a guide peice with a deeper channel so an oval ring is always in the guide channel.
  • 4 0
 That thing is BURLY!
  • 3 0
 When a decent N/W chain ring costs a fraction of the cost to replace I struggle to see how MRP can justify the extortionate 'carbon tax' cost to protect them. I've been running without a guide for a few years now with zero problems. It certainly made me wonder why I forked out for one in the first place.
  • 4 0
 No one is forcing you to buy one, and there is an alloy version. Going back to the point @mikelevy made earlier this year:

You may just be the type of rider that should be using some sort of chain guide. Some people, especially those who are pushing hard and going fast over rough terrain, are just always going to need some sort of chain guide.
  • 4 0
 Did I suggest anyone is forcing anyone to buy this product?

From personal experience I merely stated the cost of these things in particular far out-weigh an utmost necessity for them. Careless whether you may believe this product is solely for the super gnar, enduro-ists, that apparently suffer from such extreme forces that causes their drivetrain to implode. They are still disproportionally priced.

But that's fine, as the mincers at the trail centres watch on in wonderment, they can have that ever so slightly cheaper alloy one to still make them feel special.
  • 2 1
 It's a good point. You only want one for dropped chains. Bashing is rather irrelevant. SRAM's new steel long tooth chainrings cost like $20 or something insanely cheap like like that. They know you're gonna bash them and replace.
  • 2 1
 Not the material you're paying for, try machining carbon...hard on tooling.
  • 2 1
 Steel also bends, and I run a $150 chain(because I can). I'll keep my bashguard....
  • 1 0
 Typo
  • 1 0
 I ride the AMG with a narrow wide. One look at my bashguard tells me I would be doing a lot of hiking with bent rings if not for the guard. It's definitely paid for itself many times over. I may not need the chain retention with a narrow wide, but I do need the bash, so may as well use the guide too.
  • 3 0
 170 for the "inexpensive" chain guide, a component that most people don't need anymore? Good luck selling those bad boys.

They do look very nice, though. I will give them that.
  • 2 0
 I wish my stats were the same as his,if my chain hadn't dropped in years I wouldn't want/need a guide...however my chain would drop at least 3 times per ride the way I ride so I love having a G3 and having the protection for my chainring and frame. 1x systems are amazing but the chain does come off if you ride your enduro bike like a DH bike.
  • 4 3
 Does it come with the groovy satin bag? I once won a MRP chain guide in a raffle that came with a satin carrying bag. I was confused by this because I have never been in a situation were I wanted a delicate cloth bag for my chain guide. Nor do I ever see myself needing one. My bike is full of overpriced stuff but the chain guide is the biggest offender. I can't wait until these overpriced pain in the ass pieces of crap are phased out. Anyone notice the large amount of bikes featured during the Rampage bike checks had 1x systems with no chain guide? I would and have bought the E13 version way before the MRP.
  • 2 0
 i thought the same thing! mine ended up being a goggle bag when i lost my other one...
  • 2 0
 They do indeed come with the useful little bag.
  • 3 0
 Sorge won with a G3 on his bike, and Aggy took third with an SXg (guide in the article) on his bike.....
  • 6 0
 We decided to include those microfiber bags because we thought it would prove useful for some - kinda like those purple Crown Royal bags. It wasn't really intended for use WITH your chainguide. I know many people who use them for a goggle wipe or to conveniently carry "safety accessories" within their hydration or fanny packs.

The conditions at Rampage are a far cry from what most people do on bikes. A few seconds into their runs, many of the riders are done pedaling altogether - some could compete without chains at all. So yeah, some guys don't use chainguides. But, Aggy won qualifying on this guide and finished third - so I can't see how the added security and piece of mind a guide gives is any kind of negative. Furthermore, to my knowledge, I haven't seen anyone win a EWS or World Cup without a guide. Though, to be fair, Gwin won one without a chain altogether....but back to my comment about what most people do on bikes...

But in any case, I'm sorry you found the guide you won at a raffle to be overpriced. Wink
  • 1 0
 Ahhh, "safety accessories"... Mrp, you just won a customer for that! Smile
  • 3 0
 I actually think most of the guides I have seen seem a overpriced. Not just the MRP. It just seems like a lot of money for something that does not look very expensive to make. Sorry to use the one I won as my example but I have two G3's that I purchased. I have purchased many MRP products in the past. Two of the Lopes guides, two G2's (maybe 3, was there a heavier steel version with a clear bash guard? I may have purchased one of those), two G3's and a spider mounted bash guard I never used. As a former Denver resident I enjoyed supporting a CO company. I recently switched to the E13 because I was in the market for something without the bottom roller as I really do not think they are needed with a clutch derailleur and a narrow wide ring, on any bike. At the time the AMg V2 either was not out or I missed it and I was impressed with the one piece spacer that the E13 uses so decided to try something new. Not having the bottom roller, the opening top slider and that one piece spacer made setup very easy. As far as the bags go, I have them set aside. I have been meaning to look for an old jacket, bag or something I can steal one of those plastic spring loaded cord cinchers from. I used one once for my gopro and it fell out in transit. I don't see myself needing a new chain guide / bash guard for a while but will check back in when I do. Again, I did enjoy supporting a CO company, may even buy a GG frame next.

P.S. I have no need for "safety accessories" and for a very long time I thought people were actually having "safety meetings".
  • 1 0
 Surely another benefit of this guide is the added bash protection which is a nice feature for riders who frequent rocky terrain? This protection, combined with a minimal and modern looking guide that functions well adds up to a really nice package.
  • 2 0
 I have had no trouble breaking and/or bending the taco on these with BB cases and rock impacts. Then again, I am 200lb and I suppose one can only expect so much protection out of such a device.
  • 3 0
 My wolftooth nw started to lose retention after a year's riding and I had to reinstall a chain guide now
  • 3 0
 My Raceface did the same after about a year. No dropped chains, then suddenly, dropping all the time. Replaced the chain and that solved it. I guess the chain wear meant it wasn't gripping to the narrow wide properly.
  • 1 0
 Makes me wonder... It could be the chain as I've not replaced it for quite awhile.
  • 2 1
 get a renthal nw
  • 3 0
 invest in a good chain checker (park CC-2). It will save you lots of money in the long run. I put an intermediate amount of time on the bike and stretch 2 chains a year. Keeping up with your chain will prevent premature chainring wear, cassette wear (big bucks) and help with retention. My local LBS said when your NW chainring starts to make an audible grinding sound in the granny gears it's time replace. Just replace the chain at the same time. Also, the alloy ones wear considerably quicker than the steel ones. Sram has a new direct mount steel one that is $20 bucks.
  • 2 0
 I hate to add another Speckalized comment to another thread but they have an iscg05 top guide that fits 28t-30t that retails for $50.
  • 1 0
 Sorry 33t not 30t
  • 1 0
 To be fair, this is not JUST an upper guide. MRP makes those too, in fact they were the first to market with one nearly ten years ago.
  • 1 1
 Poorly engineered: I have the Carbon MRP 1x guide v.3 It lasted two rides: one mountain and one commute to work. It caught on my woolen dress pant leg and broke the upper ICSG mount out the back from clockwise rotational forces. Not very strong. at all. Unimpressed.
  • 4 0
 Clutter
  • 2 1
 Is that a stainless steel chainring from wolftooth? Has anyone tried one? I'm curious about just how much more durable it is.
  • 2 0
 That's a OneUp direct mount ring, made from aluminum.
  • 4 1
 two times more expensive and its missing the bottom roller
  • 1 2
 I'm not sure I understand the point of the lower guide. Just looking at it objectively, it doesn't add tension to the chain, nor is this spot going to be where a chain comes off the chainring, that is going to happen at the top of the chainring where the chain is being mated with the chainring. The lower guide is also not protecting the chainring / chain from collision - the taco does that. Am i missing something about how this item was designed and what purpose the lower guide provides? The design appears well executed, but curious if anyone else has an explanation for the point of the lower guide.
  • 2 0
 If you happen to backpedal, maybe setting up for a technical climb right after a rocky descent, the chain can be off the bottom and derail the rest of the way upon backpedaling, hence why DH riders run the lower retention device.
  • 1 0
 It IS a place where the chain comes off the chainring. The chain can go up behind the chainring bolts and get caught or jammed. This has happened to me quite a few times and once it caused the derailleur to snap when I hit a bump with the shortened, jammed-up chain.
  • 1 0
 All you really need if you want extra retention is a top guide. Narrow-wide chain rings to a fine job of holding the chain on the rest of the ring.
  • 3 0
 And that is an option. This is also an option.

I think if you examine a lot of high-speed slow motion video focusing on the drivetrain in situations where chaindrop is a possibility, you'll understand the concept of this guide and the Whippersnapper lower guide. Sometimes all it takes is a poorly timed backpedal or series of deep braking bumps dislodge the chain from the ring, even N/W rings. If you ride ride in areas where having bash protection is a necessity, then it makes all the more sense to use a guide like this.

But by all means, choose the level of chain security and protection you find necessary. If that's no guide at all, fair enough.
  • 1 0
 I've lost my chain with a top-only guide once or twice, it happens. Probably just a touch of backpedal to level the pedals in a rock garden and there it goes. I also have had the chain get stuck (with the same guide) behind the chainring while I was changing a rear flat. It's enough of a bummer that I would run one of these just to be safe.
  • 1 0
 ''but at a class-leading weight" 77 Designz(with bash plate), Shovel and I'm sure others are considerably a lot lighter and arguably as good or even better.
  • 2 0
 I don't think you'll find a guide with upper and lower retention AND bash protection that weighs less than the 30-34t carbon SXg at 106 g. I could be wrong. It could be achieved, but I'd like to see any guide lighter withstand what we put them through in development. We don't use metal for our bash/skid/taco material/ingredient (haha), it doesn't glide over rocks and obstacles like a plastic or nylon does. Instead, it just sticks - stopping all forward momentum and potentially sending you "out the front door."
  • 1 0
 guys just run a clutch deraileur with (im using renthal chain ring) and no chain device - i have never had the chain slip ever running xt clutch mech 10 spd
  • 3 0
 It doesn't work for everybody.
  • 1 0
 Very nice, very expensive. I love my AMg. This looks great too but that is a lot of coin!
  • 1 0
 UK retail is £129.99 for Alloy, and £189.99 for carbon. Same pricing as the new G4 guide.
  • 1 0
 I think the amg cost me about 70, and that was on the top limit of what I wanted to pay... Given guides are not really necessary any more. It's an expensive peace of mind.
  • 3 0
 this chain guard is boss
  • 2 2
 people talk about bikes being overpriced.....but the real problem is chainguides. For what they are, pretty much every single chainguide out there is insanely over priced
  • 2 0
 You are so right, the real problem is chainguides. If this chainguide was only $50 I wouldn't mind paying $10,000 for a new bike. Freaking chainguides!!! (shakes fist at the sky)
  • 1 0
 when i clicked on this story, i thought it was the prize for today. darn.
  • 1 0
 Yeah looks like today's prize is pretty cut rate.
  • 2 0
 What chainring is that?
  • 2 0
 Its a One-Up chainring. I was just thinking myself it looks nice in that silver colour.
  • 3 2
 Nothing new... Gamut has been doing that for years.
  • 1 0
 I got my hopes up then, and then ready 05 only! WTF!!!!! ARGGGH!!!!
  • 1 1
 Does the lower guide really do all that much to aid retention or is it primarily there for bash protection?
  • 4 1
 It does actually, check out the video on our product page mrpbike.com/sxg

You'll see how the Whippersnapper lower guide stops the chain whiplash effect you get on deep and successive hits. These are the types of events that are the cause of chain drops on upper-guide only and guide-less drivetrains.
  • 2 0
 Thanks for the reply! I just had my first ride on my Commencal Meta AM V3 and had a drop. Was considering just getting something with an upper guide, but now might reconsider because "successive hits" are the name of the game on my local trails.
  • 1 0
 are narrow wide chainrings not good enough ?
  • 4 0
 No they are not.
  • 1 1
 thats quite heavy, no?
  • 2 4
 another chainguide re-introduction post.
  • 3 0
 All chainguides from different brands all work the same. It's how well it works that makes the difference.

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