Compact Cranks?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Paul Cassel, Feb 17, 2006.

  1. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    I bought my bike from a guy in FL, but I live in NM where it's quite
    hilly. A friend of mine who also has a Campag equipped bike suggested I
    swap out my crankset for a compact one. Specifically, I have a 53/39 now
    in a Record Carbon with what I take to be standard cranks of 172 mm.

    My friend said I could replace the current crankset with a compact set
    of chainrings of maybe 50/34 setup. Since I'm hardly riding around in
    53/11 now, the loss of highest gearing wouldn't make any difference for
    me while the lowering of the 34 from the 39 would make a great
    difference, I think.

    I suppose the alternative would be to go triple which seems pointless to
    me because if I can get to a 34 inner chainring, I should have my hill
    issues taken care of. If I need to, I could also swap out my cogset to
    go lower too.

    Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.
     
    Tags:


  2. Chris Nelson

    Chris Nelson Guest

    Your front derailleur will work just fine with a compact crank. Cost
    will be the cost of a new crankset which varies tremendously between
    about $100 and $500. Your Record Carbon will have to be shelved or
    maybe you could eBay it and recoup some of the cost. I forget the
    reasoning but you should only have a 14 tooth difference in the front
    rings so a 48/34 would be better as a 48/11 top gear should still be
    tall enough for you.

    Chris
     
  3. In article <[email protected]>,
    Paul Cassel <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I bought my bike from a guy in FL, but I live in NM where it's quite
    > hilly. A friend of mine who also has a Campag equipped bike suggested I
    > swap out my crankset for a compact one. Specifically, I have a 53/39 now
    > in a Record Carbon with what I take to be standard cranks of 172 mm.
    >
    > My friend said I could replace the current crankset with a compact set
    > of chainrings of maybe 50/34 setup. Since I'm hardly riding around in
    > 53/11 now, the loss of highest gearing wouldn't make any difference for
    > me while the lowering of the 34 from the 39 would make a great
    > difference, I think.
    >
    > I suppose the alternative would be to go triple which seems pointless to
    > me because if I can get to a 34 inner chainring, I should have my hill
    > issues taken care of. If I need to, I could also swap out my cogset to
    > go lower too.
    >
    > Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    > of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    > does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.


    Mind telling us why the triple is out of the running? An
    advantage to the triple is that you get lower gears than a
    34/??, and can have closely spaced gears. What cogwheels
    are on the rear wheel?

    --
    Michael Press
     
  4. Sandy

    Sandy Guest

    Dans le message de news:[email protected],
    Paul Cassel <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré
    :
    > I bought my bike from a guy in FL, but I live in NM where it's quite
    > hilly. A friend of mine who also has a Campag equipped bike suggested
    > I swap out my crankset for a compact one. Specifically, I have a
    > 53/39 now in a Record Carbon with what I take to be standard cranks
    > of 172 mm.
    > My friend said I could replace the current crankset with a compact set
    > of chainrings of maybe 50/34 setup. Since I'm hardly riding around in
    > 53/11 now, the loss of highest gearing wouldn't make any difference
    > for me while the lowering of the 34 from the 39 would make a great
    > difference, I think.
    >
    > I suppose the alternative would be to go triple which seems pointless
    > to me because if I can get to a 34 inner chainring, I should have my
    > hill issues taken care of. If I need to, I could also swap out my
    > cogset to go lower too.
    >
    > Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How
    > big of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so?
    > How much does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.


    If your crankset NEEDS replacement, the the smaller bolt circle makes all
    the sense in the world. On the other hand, a cassette change (if you are
    using a 12 tooth first gear) could be a very enconomical alternative. Campa
    rear derailleurs will handle 28 or 29 teeth fine, which is roughly the same
    as moving from 39 to 34 up front, if your current cassette is topped out at
    24 or 25. Besides the crank change, figure on a bottom bracket change, and
    the cost mounts.

    On the other hand, I will send my address and pay postage for the discarded
    Record unit and its BB, should you be as rich as Croesus.
    --
    Bonne route !

    Sandy
    Verneuil-sur-Seine FR
     
  5. Paul Kopit

    Paul Kopit Guest

    On Fri, 17 Feb 2006 18:31:13 -0700, Paul Cassel
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    >of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    >does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.


    If you want a direct replacement, all you need do is get a Campy
    compact crankset. The cost would be the crankset cost less what you
    can sell your Record cranks for.

    If you want to compromise on the brand and get something that works
    well and is durable, Sugino XD cranks are available from
    www.yellowjersey.org but I don't think they come in 172.5. I use
    those on a couple of bikes. Nashbar's compact crankset is an
    excellent value and the rings are equivalent to things such as FSA.
    In each of these cases, you'd need to changeout the bottom bracket on
    your bicycle but the total cost can be <$150. That cost may net you a
    profit when you lose the Record crankset. The derailleurs should work
    fine.
     
  6. richard

    richard Guest

    I once used a triple with a 30-tooth inner. I swapped that out for a
    compact, and I don't miss the triple at all.

    Your front derailleur will work just fine - stay with it! (You might
    consider a guard to keep from losing your chain inside the small ring.
    I occasionally lost my chain there, and I have never been able to
    "recover" without getting off and putting the chain back on with my
    fingers.)

    The expensive way is to go with a Record compact and keep your current
    BB. The cheaper alternative is to get nearly any other crank and their BB.

    Paul Cassel wrote:
    > I bought my bike from a guy in FL, but I live in NM where it's quite
    > hilly. A friend of mine who also has a Campag equipped bike suggested I
    > swap out my crankset for a compact one. Specifically, I have a 53/39 now
    > in a Record Carbon with what I take to be standard cranks of 172 mm.
    >
    > My friend said I could replace the current crankset with a compact set
    > of chainrings of maybe 50/34 setup. Since I'm hardly riding around in
    > 53/11 now, the loss of highest gearing wouldn't make any difference for
    > me while the lowering of the 34 from the 39 would make a great
    > difference, I think.
    >
    > I suppose the alternative would be to go triple which seems pointless to
    > me because if I can get to a 34 inner chainring, I should have my hill
    > issues taken care of. If I need to, I could also swap out my cogset to
    > go lower too.
    >
    > Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    > of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    > does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.
     
  7. Paul Cassel wrote:
    > I bought my bike from a guy in FL, but I live in NM where it's quite
    > hilly. A friend of mine who also has a Campag equipped bike suggested I
    > swap out my crankset for a compact one. Specifically, I have a 53/39 now
    > in a Record Carbon with what I take to be standard cranks of 172 mm.
    >
    > My friend said I could replace the current crankset with a compact set
    > of chainrings of maybe 50/34 setup. Since I'm hardly riding around in
    > 53/11 now, the loss of highest gearing wouldn't make any difference for
    > me while the lowering of the 34 from the 39 would make a great
    > difference, I think.
    >
    > I suppose the alternative would be to go triple which seems pointless to
    > me because if I can get to a 34 inner chainring, I should have my hill
    > issues taken care of. If I need to, I could also swap out my cogset to
    > go lower too.
    >
    > Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    > of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    > does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.


    You didn't mention what cogset you have(53/11?- then a 11-23?) Current
    FD will work fine with a compact. A Campagnolo Centaur compact with
    Chorus quality rings, is $160, 111mm BB is about $30. You could get a
    Carbon Record or Chorus compact, no need to change the BB from the
    102mm, but they are pricey. Nice items but lots of $. FSA makes a
    Gossamer, outboard bearing type for $175, with the BB. Carbon version
    is $375. Cheezy bearings tho and soft-ish rings. With a compact and
    11-23, you will have a higher gear than 53-12 and a lower gear than
    39-25.
     
  8. richard wrote:
    > I once used a triple with a 30-tooth inner. I swapped that out for a
    > compact, and I don't miss the triple at all.
    >



    IMO, a 30T inner really isn't a great choice for a triple (yes, I know
    that's how many cranks come set up from the factory). For example, a
    26T inner will give you really low gears using, say, a 12-23 cassette,
    which also allows for nice, small steps on the rear.
     
  9. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > On Fri, 17 Feb 2006 18:31:13 -0700, Paul Cassel
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    >>of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    >>does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.


    Paul Kopit wrote:
    > If you want a direct replacement, all you need do is get a Campy
    > compact crankset. The cost would be the crankset cost less what you
    > can sell your Record cranks for.
    > If you want to compromise on the brand and get something that works
    > well and is durable, Sugino XD cranks are available from
    > www.yellowjersey.org but I don't think they come in 172.5. I use
    > those on a couple of bikes. Nashbar's compact crankset is an
    > excellent value and the rings are equivalent to things such as FSA.
    > In each of these cases, you'd need to changeout the bottom bracket on
    > your bicycle but the total cost can be <$150. That cost may net you a
    > profit when you lose the Record crankset. The derailleurs should work
    > fine.


    Thanks for the plug.
    XD compact double 110mm are now available in 172.5 length

    --
    Andrew Muzi
    www.yellowjersey.org
    Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  10. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    Michael Press wrote:
    > In article <[email protected]>,


    >
    > Mind telling us why the triple is out of the running? An
    > advantage to the triple is that you get lower gears than a
    > 34/??, and can have closely spaced gears. What cogwheels
    > are on the rear wheel?
    >


    I don't see the need for all those ratios. If I had a 34 / 48 or so,
    it'd solve all my riding needs.
     
  11. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    Sandy wrote:
    > How much does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.
    >
    > If your crankset NEEDS replacement, the the smaller bolt circle makes all
    > the sense in the world. On the other hand, a cassette change (if you are
    > using a 12 tooth first gear) could be a very enconomical alternative. Campa
    > rear derailleurs will handle 28 or 29 teeth fine, which is roughly the same
    > as moving from 39 to 34 up front, if your current cassette is topped out at
    > 24 or 25. Besides the crank change, figure on a bottom bracket change, and
    > the cost mounts.
    >
    > On the other hand, I will send my address and pay postage for the discarded
    > Record unit and its BB, should you be as rich as Croesus.


    My current crankset is functionally perfect, but it does have some
    corrosion as the bike came from FL. I can get it re-anodized, I suppose.
    If my current rear dérailleur will handle a cogset of 29, I'd rather do
    that. I currently top out at 24. I don't know how to evaluate if I can
    just swap cogsets.
     
  12. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    Paul Kopit wrote:
    > On Fri, 17 Feb 2006 18:31:13 -0700, Paul Cassel
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> Will my current front dérailleur work with the compact crankset? How big
    >> of a deal is it to swap out my 53/39 for a set with a 34 or so? How much
    >> does it cost to do the conversion I have in mind? TIA.

    >
    > If you want a direct replacement, all you need do is get a Campy
    > compact crankset. The cost would be the crankset cost less what you
    > can sell your Record cranks for.
    >
    > If you want to compromise on the brand and get something that works
    > well and is durable, Sugino XD cranks are available from
    > www.yellowjersey.org but I don't think they come in 172.5. I use
    > those on a couple of bikes. Nashbar's compact crankset is an
    > excellent value and the rings are equivalent to things such as FSA.
    > In each of these cases, you'd need to changeout the bottom bracket on
    > your bicycle but the total cost can be <$150. That cost may net you a
    > profit when you lose the Record crankset. The derailleurs should work
    > fine.
    >
    >

    My current cranks have some corrosion which makes them, I think, much
    less valuable on resale. If I re-anodize, then I lose the word 'Record'
    on them which probably makes them worthless to most buyers.

    The fellow who suggested this rides Veloce setup and he went for FSA
    crankset. As long as my shifters / derailleur works, I'm ok with
    different brand cranks, but I didn't want to lose 50% of the gruppo I
    paid so much for.

    Thanks.
     
  13. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    richard wrote:
    > I once used a triple with a 30-tooth inner. I swapped that out for a
    > compact, and I don't miss the triple at all.
    >
    > Your front derailleur will work just fine - stay with it! (You might
    > consider a guard to keep from losing your chain inside the small ring. I
    > occasionally lost my chain there, and I have never been able to
    > "recover" without getting off and putting the chain back on with my
    > fingers.)
    >

    I'll keep the guard in mind, but I don't mind losing the chain from time
    to time. I am not about to enter any event where a few minutes resetting
    the chain will affect the world or it's people.
     
  14. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:

    >
    > You didn't mention what cogset you have(53/11?- then a 11-23?) Current
    > FD will work fine with a compact. A Campagnolo Centaur compact with
    > Chorus quality rings, is $160, 111mm BB is about $30. You could get a
    > Carbon Record or Chorus compact, no need to change the BB from the
    > 102mm, but they are pricey. Nice items but lots of $. FSA makes a
    > Gossamer, outboard bearing type for $175, with the BB. Carbon version
    > is $375. Cheezy bearings tho and soft-ish rings. With a compact and
    > 11-23, you will have a higher gear than 53-12 and a lower gear than
    > 39-25.
    >


    I have the 11 - 23 cogset. I misspoke above saying it was 24
    (miscounted). Is it a user possible swap out to change cranks to the
    Centaur / Chorus? What do the special tools cost? (I'm sure there are
    those tools). I'm not close to you at all.

    OTOH, I just shook hands on a deal which will leave me broke for a few
    months, so at least until well into spring, I"ll be riding what I got. I
    guess you carry the Centaur / Chorus combo?
     
  15. Paul Cassel wrote:
    > Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:
    >
    > >
    > > You didn't mention what cogset you have(53/11?- then a 11-23?) Current
    > > FD will work fine with a compact. A Campagnolo Centaur compact with
    > > Chorus quality rings, is $160, 111mm BB is about $30. You could get a
    > > Carbon Record or Chorus compact, no need to change the BB from the
    > > 102mm, but they are pricey. Nice items but lots of $. FSA makes a
    > > Gossamer, outboard bearing type for $175, with the BB. Carbon version
    > > is $375. Cheezy bearings tho and soft-ish rings. With a compact and
    > > 11-23, you will have a higher gear than 53-12 and a lower gear than
    > > 39-25.
    > >

    >
    > I have the 11 - 23 cogset. I misspoke above saying it was 24
    > (miscounted). Is it a user possible swap out to change cranks to the
    > Centaur / Chorus? What do the special tools cost? (I'm sure there are
    > those tools). I'm not close to you at all.
    >
    > OTOH, I just shook hands on a deal which will leave me broke for a few
    > months, so at least until well into spring, I"ll be riding what I got. I
    > guess you carry the Centaur / Chorus combo?


    Changing your casseette to 13-26 (assume 10 speed, 13-28 with 9 speed)
    will get you a low gear of 39 gear inches. The same as a 34 inner ring
    and your current 23 rear cog. Campagnolo also has a 13-29 which gets a
    low of 36 gear inches. About the same as a 34 ring with a 26 rear cog.
    Going to a compact crankset really only gets you one lower gear.
    Unlike a triple which gets you really low gears. Cheapest to just
    change your cassette, takes a $6 park tool and a $5 chain whip, and a
    big adjustable wrench. 5 minute easy job. Your current short cage
    rear derailleur will easily handle any cassette and compact crankset
    you get.
     
  16. Jeff Starr

    Jeff Starr Guest

    On Sat, 18 Feb 2006 13:18:08 -0700, Paul Cassel
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >richard wrote:
    >> I once used a triple with a 30-tooth inner. I swapped that out for a
    >> compact, and I don't miss the triple at all.
    >>
    >> Your front derailleur will work just fine - stay with it! (You might
    >> consider a guard to keep from losing your chain inside the small ring. I
    >> occasionally lost my chain there, and I have never been able to
    >> "recover" without getting off and putting the chain back on with my
    >> fingers.)
    >>

    >I'll keep the guard in mind, but I don't mind losing the chain from time
    >to time. I am not about to enter any event where a few minutes resetting
    >the chain will affect the world or it's people.


    I hope you don't mind falling then. The downshift off the big ring
    while climbing a steep hill, chain comes off, and maybe you can't
    unclip before falling. Some of the the chain minders are quite small,
    like the Deda Dog Fang. I use a N-Gear Jump Stop on both my double and
    triple cranksets.
    I don't like falling, or stopping to put the chain back on. Just give
    it some thought.



    Life is Good!
    Jeff
     
  17. Paul Cassel

    Paul Cassel Guest

    russellseaton[email protected] wrote:

    >
    > Changing your casseette to 13-26 (assume 10 speed, 13-28 with 9 speed)
    > will get you a low gear of 39 gear inches. The same as a 34 inner ring
    > and your current 23 rear cog. Campagnolo also has a 13-29 which gets a
    > low of 36 gear inches. About the same as a 34 ring with a 26 rear cog.
    > Going to a compact crankset really only gets you one lower gear.
    > Unlike a triple which gets you really low gears. Cheapest to just
    > change your cassette, takes a $6 park tool and a $5 chain whip, and a
    > big adjustable wrench. 5 minute easy job. Your current short cage
    > rear derailleur will easily handle any cassette and compact crankset
    > you get.
    >


    Reading through the responses, I think it makes best sense for me to
    change the cogset. I didn't think that an option, but that's why I ask
    here.
     
  18. >From experience on my current ride, the regular front D (mine is
    Chorus) will work fine with a 34/50 combo. It's at the limit though, so
    I don't think it'll work with a larger difference than that.

    I cashed in on a Nahbar sale and got their house brand compact cranks
    and ISIS BB for 80$. The only problem I had was an annoying tick during
    pedaling which went away after I retightened the crank bolts. The
    chainrings also waver during pedaling (looking at the FD cage), and I
    can only suspect that it's because the chainring/crank isn't perfectly
    straight. I seriously doubt I flex the BB that much on the flats.

    I also don't think you'll get much for the Record cranks if the
    cosmetics are poor. I imagine other may have noticed, but ebay prices
    on cranks are ridiculously low. I picked up as-new Centaurs (including
    BB) for 50$. However, I didn't notice any real deals on compact cranks.
    If you do sell your cranks, try it later when the season is in full
    steam.
     
  19. Russell, Paul,

    The considerable advantages of compact cranks are that with two
    chainrings, you're able to:
    1-Get a large variety of gearings (large differential between lowest &
    highest gear)
    2-Have gears that are far more practical for average people (and still
    allow me to keep up with the fast group rides - who really needs a 53?)
    3-Have a cassette with minimal gaps - for optimum power production (I
    didn't realize the benefits until I installed mine)

    I've read the plugs and defenses for the triples, but with my 34
    chainring and largest cog of 23, I can climb the steepest (and it's
    steep!) of my favorite climb. Whenever I get to climb the Alpe D'Huez,
    I'll bring a 12-27 cassette (or higher) and that'll allow me to grind
    up any mountain, so there's more to considering compact cranks, than
    just the lowest gear that you need. I think the value of the triples
    lies really for those with low power to weight ratio (low power or high
    weight - e.g. touring).

    Josh
     
  20. Paul Cassel wrote:
    > Qui si parla Campagnolo wrote:
    >
    > >
    > > You didn't mention what cogset you have(53/11?- then a 11-23?) Current
    > > FD will work fine with a compact. A Campagnolo Centaur compact with
    > > Chorus quality rings, is $160, 111mm BB is about $30. You could get a
    > > Carbon Record or Chorus compact, no need to change the BB from the
    > > 102mm, but they are pricey. Nice items but lots of $. FSA makes a
    > > Gossamer, outboard bearing type for $175, with the BB. Carbon version
    > > is $375. Cheezy bearings tho and soft-ish rings. With a compact and
    > > 11-23, you will have a higher gear than 53-12 and a lower gear than
    > > 39-25.
    > >

    >
    > I have the 11 - 23 cogset. I misspoke above saying it was 24
    > (miscounted). Is it a user possible swap out to change cranks to the
    > Centaur / Chorus? What do the special tools cost? (I'm sure there are
    > those tools). I'm not close to you at all.


    Need a new BB if you choose the Centaur-111mm spindle. The Chorus
    compact uses the same BB you now have(102mm). Need a crank puller, and
    then a 8mm allen and torque wrench to reinstall the Chorus
    compact(really nice BTW-in spite of the $) Lower the FD with a 5mm
    allen and adjust and go ride. If tyou swap the BB to a AC-H, need a
    tool for the Record BB and then a tool for the AC-H. If you use the $60
    Centaur, triple bearing , same tool as for Record/Chorus.
    >
    > OTOH, I just shook hands on a deal which will leave me broke for a few
    > months, so at least until well into spring, I"ll be riding what I got. I
    > guess you carry the Centaur / Chorus combo?
     
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