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  1. #1
    Still want a fat bike....
    Reputation: Dalton's Avatar
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    School Me on Cranks

    What are your thoughts on a decent crank for a beater winter mountain bike commuter? I have what I can only figure is a 2000-ish Kona Unit demo bike that I got a deal on about 9 years or more ago. It has a Truvativ Fire X crank which I am reading is notorious for failing due to the non-drive crank bolt coming loose and once its ridden even a short distance that way, it will no longer stay tight no matter what you try. Just so happens, I got caught on the trail with it loosening and rode it a little too far like that and now I ride about 20 mins and its loose. Locktite..... nope, doesn't work. Nothing does from what I can tell.

    Anyway, I am thinking about using this bike as my winter commuter, but I am going to need a new crank. Now I could go crazy and get a Race Face or something, but I don't want to spend too much money. I am really looking for something in the $50 range that will last for a little while. I know I can grab a Race Face Evolve for like $129, but I don't know that its necessary.

    Anyway, to make a short story long, I need a crank and I don't want to spend a lot since its my beater, but I also don't want it to fail while I'm riding. Is $50 reasonable? Am I looking used for that price?

    Any and all help is appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2
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    A Shimano XT hollowtech II bottom bracket with Upgraded Enduro BB cups and bearings will definatly survive a long cold salty mushy 6 month winter commute and maybe even the next summer as well.

    That is about 2500 winter kms and maybe 3000 summer kms, so about 5000 kms before the bearings need changing...

    The stock shimano bearings only lasted 3 months.

  3. #3
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  4. #4
    bi-winning
    Reputation: rkj__'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GroceryBagHead
    I've got one of those on my XC bike. Can't beat it for the price. Unfortunately, I have not put it through a winter commute, so I can't really comment on the BB durability.

    On my winter beater/commuter I use a Shimano FC-M443 square taper crank, with one of Shimano's proven durable square taper BBs. Super cheap, super reliable.
    Last edited by rkj__; 10-28-2010 at 07:51 PM.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.


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  6. #6
    M_S
    M_S is offline
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    Pretty much just whatever. It's a beater. I wouldn't buy a new crank because you're worried about it failing, just replace it if does start to work itself loose constantly.
    - Simon

  7. #7
    Ovaries on the Outside
    Reputation: umarth's Avatar
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    I dunno how robust your craigslist is, but digging up an older square taper bottom bracket and something like Sugino ATs or Shimano LXs is a great way to go. The cranks on my commuter, my cross bike and my mountain bike cost about 10 dollars each. BB about the same.

  8. #8
    Still want a fat bike....
    Reputation: Dalton's Avatar
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    Yeah, I am talking single speed and thanks everyone for the suggestions. Do you guys like the track style cranks vs. a mountain bike crank? If I plan to take the mountain bike on a few trails a year should that be a consideration? How much different are they when it comes down to it?

    I was thinking about going to a splined bottom bracket too just because the square taper BB never seems to hold up in the long run and the splined BB is not a super expensive upgrade if I need to replace the BB anyway. Thoughts?

    Can I just buy a triple and remove two rings? Does it work like that or do I need SS specific? These are the things I need to know.

  9. #9
    lives to ride
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    Just loctite the threads.

  10. #10
    Still want a fat bike....
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasevr4
    Just loctite the threads.
    Quote Originally Posted by ORIGINAL POST
    Locktite..... nope, doesn't work.
    Reading is a lost art.

  11. #11
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    One difference between mountain and road is the minimum size of the chainring you can run due to bolt circle diameter (BCD). Road 130BCD (38t) or 110BCD (33t). MTB 104BCD (32t?).

    It looks like the Kona Unit's BB is English thread 73mm. What about a cheap road crank with a JIS square spindle? If you buy new you probably won't get spinning for less than 75-100$.

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