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Old 09-07-07, 01:08 PM   #1
prendrefeu
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do the Pros use compact cranks?...

Hello -

I was watching some highlights from the Vuelta Stage 4 - which was one stage featuring both long flats and some substantial climbs... very dynamic. I tried to take a good look at the cranks of some riders while the camera focused on them, but it was hard to ascertain what set up most riders had running. That being said, I'm wondering - Do the Pros, on courses such as Stage 4, use compact cranksets? Or simply standard double gearing?

Does anyone race with compacts... and do well?

Thanks.
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Old 09-07-07, 01:16 PM   #2
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yes. The infamous Tyler Hamilton famously used them in the 2003 Tour when he broke his collarbone: http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech.php?...003/news/jul28 .
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Old 09-07-07, 01:20 PM   #3
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They have been gaining popularity in the pro peleton. However, most stories I have read/heard is that they are being used in serious mountain stages by riders who are not neccicarily in contention. Say for a sprinter to have an easier job getting over the mountains in the gruppeto while keeping his legs fresher for flat stages to come.
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Old 09-07-07, 01:32 PM   #4
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Wasn't there a stage of this year's TdF with ridiculously astronomical climbs where quite a number of the riders had compacts installed? I could be wrong and can't remember where I read that info (VeloNews?).
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Old 09-07-07, 01:40 PM   #5
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IIRC, Danilo Di Luca was using them on the Zoncolan in the Giro.
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Old 09-07-07, 01:46 PM   #6
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Thanks guys - this really helps
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Old 09-07-07, 01:50 PM   #7
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IIRC, Danilo Di Luca was using them on the Zoncolan in the Giro.
I think di luca was using a triple on the zoncolan stage.

edit

perhaps not. I thought I saw him using one while watching the race but looking at pictures it looks like a double

Last edited by Lithuania; 09-07-07 at 01:57 PM.
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Old 09-07-07, 07:07 PM   #8
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yes. The infamous Tyler Hamilton famously used them in the 2003 Tour when he broke his collarbone: http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech.php?...003/news/jul28 .
From a purely scientific, objective and analytical standpoint that simply proves that compacts are jinxed with the dreaded Fred Curse.
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Old 09-07-07, 07:17 PM   #9
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http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...giro0717/fs015

http://www.cyclingnews.com/photos/20...CTM-GIRO17-005

Looks like a compact SI crankset...with FSA rings???
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Old 09-07-07, 07:19 PM   #10
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Leonard Zinn comment from 2006 Giro

"Basso rode 36-52T compact (110mm bolt circle diameter) chainrings with an 11-23 cogset, but he rarely used the 23. Many others rode 34-50T compact chainrings. "
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Old 09-07-07, 07:44 PM   #11
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They use whatever they are paid to use.
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Old 09-07-07, 08:14 PM   #12
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They use whatever they are paid to use.
thats not always true.
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Old 09-07-07, 08:29 PM   #13
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thats not always true.
Correct.

http://www.cyclingnews.com/road/2007.../tour_tech_607

& the ultimate blasphemy (or proof of Shimano's greatness depending on which you prefer)

Quote:
In addition, on the seat stays, there were mounts for cantilever brakes but Ballan and the team opted for un-marked (probably Shimano) brakes. We confirmed with the head mechanic, Antonio Biron, about this. "We normally use Campagnolo but these brakes allow for more clearance with the tires and any possible mud build-up."
From: http://www.cyclingnews.com/road/2007..._leroi_roubaix on bikes at this year's Paris-Roubaix.
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Old 09-07-07, 11:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpongeDad View Post
Leonard Zinn comment from 2006 Giro

"Basso rode 36-52T compact (110mm bolt circle diameter) chainrings with an 11-23 cogset, but he rarely used the 23. Many others rode 34-50T compact chainrings. "
What qualifies as a compact? I'm upgrading to road bikes from my touring bike which used a mtb 42 tooth crank. My new bike will have a 53-34 crankset. I thought that would be a pretty big step up. What's compact?
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Old 09-08-07, 04:05 AM   #15
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Compact cranks tend to have a 110 BCD. Regular doubles use 130 BCD (? right? sorry, off the top of my head).

Also, gearing is different... you probably have a double - which, by standard, is 53/39.
Compacts have 50/34... but you can always change around the rings if you can find 'em in 110 BCD.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gloss_cn...l#compactcrank
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Old 09-08-07, 02:32 PM   #16
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What qualifies as a compact? I'm upgrading to road bikes from my touring bike which used a mtb 42 tooth crank. My new bike will have a 53-34 crankset. I thought that would be a pretty big step up. What's compact?
I would think any inner ring below 130bcd, which I think limits you to 38 teeth or more. I'd get a compact, but I'd like to use shimano rings, and they don't make 50/36 rings for 10 spd - 50/34 is too big a jump.
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Old 09-08-07, 09:30 PM   #17
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I remember reading that DiLuca used a 34-27 in training on the Zoncolan, I assume that's what he used in the Giro. The pros use whatever they need to to get them over the hill.
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Old 09-08-07, 09:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
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I would think any inner ring below 130bcd, which I think limits you to 38 teeth or more. I'd get a compact, but I'd like to use shimano rings, and they don't make 50/36 rings for 10 spd - 50/34 is too big a jump.
I don't think the chainrings are truly 9/10 speed specific, despite what Shimano says. I think you'd be fine with 9-speed rings.

Incidentally, referring to the post about a 53/34 crankset, I think that is too big of a chainring difference for front derailers to handle.
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Old 09-08-07, 10:00 PM   #19
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16T is the limit for modern derailleurs, or so Shimano, Campy, Cannondale, FSA and others state...
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Old 09-08-07, 10:01 PM   #20
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Quote:
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What qualifies as a compact? I'm upgrading to road bikes from my touring bike which used a mtb 42 tooth crank. My new bike will have a 53-34 crankset. I thought that would be a pretty big step up. What's compact?
I'm not sure if your set-up will work. 53-34 is a too large of a jump! Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 09-09-07, 09:50 AM   #21
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Quote regarding the TDG this year......

# Former world U23 time-trial champion Danny Pate said Brasstown Bald was the hardest climb he'd ever done in a race in North America.

"We had to put special gears on," Pate said. "I rode a 38-27, and some of the guys were on compact cranks. It's just a really hard climb to do on day five."

As found here
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Old 09-09-07, 10:24 AM   #22
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I like my 50x36 setup, but I'm not a pro.

With my 11x26 cassette, it fills the range of what I need.
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Old 09-09-07, 11:40 AM   #23
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16T is the limit for modern derailleurs, or so Shimano, Campy, Cannondale, FSA and others state...
only if you insist on using bogus cross chained ratios like 53-27 and 34-12, then yeah, you might not have enough travel in a short cage derailer. The front also might not shift super crisp, but bigger jumps than 16T can certainly be made to work, just maybe not as refined as OE.
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Old 09-10-07, 08:08 AM   #24
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Slightly off topic but the talk of the triples above made me think of an interesting story that I'm sure some of you remember.

Several years ago (~2003 maybe?) the Vuelta included a stage that went up this crazy closed road to a mountaintop Army installation. A microwave communications installation, IIRC. It turned out to be an example of Johan Bruyneel just being smarter than the rest of the team managers. Everyone was fretting about it - talking about how tough it looked on the profile but how they couldn't ride it in advance since it was a military installation. Well, I guess Postal was the only team to actually think to ask because they rang up the spanish army and were told they were welcome to come ride which of course they did. Come race day, Postal shows up on the line sporting triples and Heras proceeded to just blow everyone away on a wicked climb. Everyone else was over geared and spinning out or lifting the front trying to power up a couple nasty sections.
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