stick with standards Trent - good for character building :P
I had this decision to make a few months ago (after the Velo Adelaide torture). Went for the rear cassett option from 11/25 to 12/28 and kept the standard crank.
It takes a bit of getting used to the different selections but I found it slightly easier getting up hills like The Grove Way on the 28. Most of the time there is no need to go for the 'granny gear' but on hills such as German Town Hill, it is worth it.
if you are spinning up hills Trent that's ok, better than grinding up hills
I progressed from a compact on my first bike, so didn't really want to go backwards strength wise, but I did struggle on a few of the really steep hills with the 39-25 combination.
I find that on a good day I can get up Nortons on the 53-28 without too much effort when I'm trying to build up for a big ride. I know it's not that good for the chain and gears crossed over that much, but it's not that far and most times I would spin it out.
If I get bored with it, I'll swap back to the 11/25 cassette. It only takes 10 mins.
Nope... did consider, but for my type of riding & racing I don't need the higher ratios, my 12-25 on standard cranks does me fine. getting up the average 5-6% hill fast is more about fitness and strength. Real steep hills (aka Checkers, Sheoake etc) are best avoided unless you're a masochist!!
I also find I ride better and longer on a climb at 70-80 rpm, so not really a spinner.
likewise Baron as I am in the same boat but I use 11-25
Thanks Forest :)