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  1. #1
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    XC Racing Cranksets - XTR, K-Force, Stylo Carbon, Deus XC - opinions please...

    In a month or two I'll be changing my current Evolve XC crankset with one of these:

    - Shimano XTR
    - FSA K-Force
    - Truvativ Stylo Carbon (not sure if it is out yet?)
    - RaceFace Deus XC (last choice as I'm not very happy with my current one)

    I can't decide, and I'd like to hear any opinions about them.

    For me the important factors are stiffness, weight, shifting quality, durability, and price (of course). I don't care about the looks, cause they are gonna get scratched anyways.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Member kaptr1d's Avatar
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    im interested to know also. whos got opinions on this?
    Im always climbing hills, but there are never any to go down....

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  3. #3
    Back to granite skunkty14's Avatar
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    I have little basis for this, but I'd go with the FSA K-Force. External bearings so it should be super stiff, and I like what FSA has to offer. Plus the all important bling factor is high.

  4. #4
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    My first question would be: What are you unhappy about with your current crankset? That should help you determine which cranks will rectify the defficiencies. In other words, what problem(s) are you trying to solve.
    1999 K2 OzM 2001 Aegis Aro Svelte OCP Club Member
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  5. #5
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    i would steer away from carbon cranks. theres a lot of BS about cranks if you ask me. Carbon cranks are no stiffer than well designed aluminum ones. Except they cost a significant amount more. personally i would go for a truvativ stylo gxp but out of those i would go the FSA route
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  6. #6
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    Carbon cranks are for bling... not performance. I have old aluminum Race Face Turbine LPs (square-taper even) right now and they're still going strong. They've given me no reason to upgrade. I admit that if I had to replace them, I'd go with carbon (Stronglight Magmas have my eye along with a FSA MegaExo-ISIS BB) but that is purely for bling.
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  7. #7
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuon
    My first question would be: What are you unhappy about with your current crankset? That should help you determine which cranks will rectify the defficiencies. In other words, what problem(s) are you trying to solve.
    Good question. I had to think about it for a while, because I don't know how to explain. I guess it's just the feeling that it is not stiff enough. I get some feedback, especially when climbing, or sprinting. After tough rides on rocky terrains, it starts to make some weird noises (like squeaking). It continues for a while, and then suddenly stops. I guess it stops some time after I slow down. My frame and the bottom bracket are in perfect shape, so I am not sure what the cause is. It just doesn't feel right.

    Also, the chainrings are wearing fast, and I have to change them soon. I thought that would be a good time for an upgrade. Well, all the cranksets that I listed above have 7075 aluminum chainrings, so wearing will be an issue with all of them I guess.

  8. #8
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuon
    Carbon cranks are for bling... not performance. I have old aluminum Race Face Turbine LPs (square-taper even) right now and they're still going strong. They've given me no reason to upgrade. I admit that if I had to replace them, I'd go with carbon (Stronglight Magmas have my eye along with a FSA MegaExo-ISIS BB) but that is purely for bling.
    yea im getting that megaexo when my current BB craps out. It looks so cool. Honestly the best crank for XC i have come across is truvativ STylo teams. I got mine for 90 or something brand new. They are lighter than XTR
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  9. #9
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erhan
    Good question. I had to think about it for a while, because I don't know how to explain. I guess it's just the feeling that it is not stiff enough. I get some feedback, especially when climbing, or sprinting. After tough rides on rocky terrains, it starts to make some weird noises (like squeaking). It continues for a while, and then suddenly stops. I guess it stops some time after I slow down. My frame and the bottom bracket are in perfect shape, so I am not sure what the cause is. It just doesn't feel right.

    Also, the chainrings are wearing fast, and I have to change them soon. I thought that would be a good time for an upgrade. Well, all the cranksets that I listed above have 7075 aluminum chainrings, so wearing will be an issue with all of them I guess.
    Usually flexing of the arms are felt during instantaneous applications of force. If you're experiencing that then a stiffer crankarm will solve your problem. If however you're hearing squeaking and such, I would look at the BB and/or the chainrings. If it's your chainrings then you can simply replace them with newer ones. You did say they were quite worn anyways. If it's your BB then it might be the bearings or maybe the interface is simply not stiff enough for you in which case a new BB will solve your problem. If you want a "better" interface and BB design then you might consider one with outboard bearings. They may or may not require you to replace your crankarms. The FSA MegaExo-ISIS is an outboard-bearing design that works with standard ISIS crank arms.

    1999 K2 OzM 2001 Aegis Aro Svelte OCP Club Member
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  10. #10
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    and you can buy it at Bulltek sports for 55 dollars (the megaexo ISIS BB that is)
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  11. #11
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    well, I already have the external bearing version of the evolve xc, so my problems could be from the crankarms as khuon said. I'm guessing that they may suffer from fatigue when I push hard.

    I also think about getting the Truvativ stylo teams with giga-x BB. They are much cheaper than the others.

    And one more question about carbon cranks. OK, people say that carbon seatposts are more comfortable, which makes me think that they flex a little. Would that mean that carbon cranksets also flex? confused here

  12. #12
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    it doesnt really flex when it absorbs shock. The truvativs are your best buy, i love mine and they are pretty damn light too. Carbon seatposts will not be noticed with knobby tires.
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  13. #13
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    how about the XTRs? I see most racers use them

  14. #14
    DEADBEEF khuon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erhan
    And one more question about carbon cranks. OK, people say that carbon seatposts are more comfortable, which makes me think that they flex a little. Would that mean that carbon cranksets also flex? confused here
    Carbon can be made to flex and flex a lot. The chainstays on some full suspension bikes are pivotless and use CF joints to do the flexing. Some designs rely on the flexibility designed into the CF chainstay tubes themselves to flex. Other companies make beam-seatposts out of CF (Softride) that's designed to flex. CF has a very high fatigue life. CF can also be designed to be very stiff. CF is an anisotropic material that can be designed to be concurrently stiff in one direction and flexible in another or any variation thereof. Obviously for such applications as crankarms, you'd want the CF to be stiff in all directions.
    1999 K2 OzM 2001 Aegis Aro Svelte OCP Club Member
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  15. #15
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    For a measly 300 dollars more you get performance upgrades that you wont notice. Not too shabby eh? I test rode a bike with XTR cranks and i didnt notice any difference from my Truvativs. Maybe im defective or something i dunno. THe reviews for truvativs are fantastic
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  16. #16
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by khuon
    Carbon can be made to flex and flex a lot. The chainstays on some full suspension bikes are pivotless and use CF joints to do the flexing. Some designs rely on the flexibility designed into the CF chainstay tubes themselves to flex. Other companies make beam-seatposts out of CF (Softride) that's designed to flex. CF has a very high fatigue life. CF can also be designed to be very stiff. CF is an anisotropic material that can be designed to be concurrently stiff in one difect and flexible in another or any variation thereof. Obviously for such applications as crankarms, you'd want the CF to be stiff in all directions.
    That explains it. Thanks!



    Quote Originally Posted by phantomcow2
    For a measly 300 dollars more you get performance upgrades that you wont notice.
    Yea that's actually right. But on the other hand, I try to buy the best stuff I can so that I won't blame the bike for a mistake that I make. It gives more confidence as well, since I don't think about the problems on the bike while I'm riding hard.

  17. #17
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erhan





    Yea that's actually right. But on the other hand, I try to buy the best stuff I can so that I won't blame the bike for a mistake that I make. It gives more confidence as well, since I don't think about the problems on the bike while I'm riding hard.
    But who said the XTR is better stuff? If you email SRAM and say whats better, the Truvativ Stylo GXP or the Shimano XTR? THey probably wont tell you XTR. But if you ask shimano you will get the opposite response - get the Truvativ. Its cheaper anyways
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  18. #18
    Newbie erhan's Avatar
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    Oh, i didn't want to mean that XTR was better. That's a thought in general. I meant I'm just trying to find the best of the best

  19. #19
    la vache fantôme phantomcow2's Avatar
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    Well personally i think that all of the top level cranks of the more respected manufacturers are the same performance
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