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  1. #1
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    Anyone hate the Oval?

    I am thinking about making the jump to an oval ring on my Stache. I have heard a lot of good but wanted some negatives.

    So does anyone hate their oval?

  2. #2
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    I disliked mine. Ovals are a trade off. They are better for low RPM and suck at high RPM. When your grinding out a climb or standing in a tenical section they are great. But if you like to spin circles then you will not be happy with an oval. It also makes the change over in knee posion too fast so you lose the pedals over the top and it feels like bouncin with the hub freewheeling then catching.
    There is zero increase in power to the wheels, just a tradeoff in what RMP feels the best. I like to spin so they where not my style.

  3. #3
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    I spin high RPM and and it only felt weird for the first couple of rides. Oval feels perfectly normal now.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

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    I am usually more of a masher, may suit me better?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzwardo View Post
    I am usually more of a masher, may suit me better?
    IMO...*absolute*ly

    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzwardo View Post
    I have heard a lot of good but wanted some negatives.
    Can't say I'm overly fond of the replacement cost.

  6. #6
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    I'm comfortable at using a wide range of cadences. 60-100rpm. I have no problem with my 34t oval on my 29er.
    Death from Below.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenM View Post
    IMO...*absolute*ly


    Can't say I'm overly fond of the replacement cost.
    I haven't tried one yet but Blackspire will be my next.

    https://www.blackspire.com/product-c...gletooth/oval/

    $60CDN and made in Canada.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  8. #8
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    I'm in the same camp as alex. I can't fathom how people say they barely notice oval. There is a distinct fast spot in your pedal rotation. On steep punchy climbs this has a very pronounced pogo affect that upsets the suspension and thus traction. Not to mention breathing, concentration etc. On flattish lower gear pedalling I felt I could lay down more power with less effort and this I liked.

    I participated in another oval thread where people seemed to know a lot about the subject. The conclusion was the clocking on modern oval didn't jive with my dimensions. Maybe, but in my own rational I just can't see the fast spot going away becuase the ring is.... you know....oval. I gave oval the ole college try (about 450 miles) and if it weren't for so many positive accounts I'd call it a gimmick.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexbn921 View Post
    They are better for low RPM and suck at high RPM. When your grinding out a climb or standing in a tenical section they are great. But if you like to spin circles then you will not be happy with an oval. It also makes the change over in knee posion too fast so you lose the pedals over the top and it feels like bouncin with the hub freewheeling then catching.
    Interesting, I have opposite experience. I don't feel any difference (compared to round charinrings) during slow and grind or normal to fast riding. However, very high cadence pedal smashing where I would jump in the saddle with normal chainrings, the oval allows me to pedal more smoothly.

    Another, unrelated tidbit: I have road bike with regular round chainrings and mountainbike with oval - I don't feel any weirdness when switching from one to another. First couple of rides with oval were a bit weird, though.

    Considering that oval and regular chainrings cost about the same, I will choose oval again in the future.

  10. #10
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    I felt a massive difference switching between my bikes with oval and round. I'm used to spinning 100+ rpm on the road and I could never get the power down with an oval above 90 rpm's. I got a bouncing/pulsing feeling from them. I'll never go back.
    My old touring bike had biopace rings and I put 12k+ miles on that bike. I actually like biopace as it slowed down my knees at the top and bottom of the stroke. I tend to pull/push thru the top and bottom of my stroke and not having resistance just feels weird. Round pedalers usually dislike oval. Square pedalers seem to like it more. Comes down to style.
    Note that round or oval doesn't matter for total power output. There have been lots of test and it's a plus some here minus some there game, with a no real total difference.
    Rings are cheap. Try it out and see if you like it.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzwardo View Post
    I am thinking about making the jump to an oval ring on my Stache. I have heard a lot of good but wanted some negatives.

    So does anyone hate their oval?
    You'll never know how they feel unless you try one for yourself. Everyone has their own opinion or perception of what they're feeling. I have one on my stumpjumper and I feel it has helped in techy sections of trail allowing me to pedal thru them vs getting that "hung" up sensation. On my rail trail bike I see no benefits to using one. My current Patrol build is getting an oval for sure. Try one and form your own opinion.
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  12. #12
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    H8ers are gonna h8 ^^

    Thread closed!

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  13. #13
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    Another vote for oval. I have one on my Enduro and LOVE it. Makes technical climbs a lot easier, and feel no difference in high speed pedaling. I can't even tell it's Oval anymore. I see no downsides.
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  14. #14
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    Exactly what Streetdoctor said. I notice no difference in pedaling. I just put one on and didn't notice any negatives. I did notice more traction on climbs... Loving that!

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  15. #15
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    I have read the Wolftooth has less oval shaping so if you want to get your feet wet it might be a better starter.

  16. #16
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    I put one on, and felt like it might result in more leg fatigue on really hard 5 hour training rides.

    I took it off after about 20 hours, and all seemed right with the world again.
    Whining is not a strategy.

  17. #17
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    Round rings now feel "odd"

    Oval rings feel smooth in the power delivery

    (To geek out, think of a sin wave... IMO, an oval ring reduces the amplitude of the peaks and valleys. Guess you could say its an MTB rectifier?)
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I haven't tried one yet but Blackspire will be my next.

    https://www.blackspire.com/product-c...gletooth/oval/

    $60CDN and made in Canada.
    Those look nice, but that's not what I'd call inexpensive, either!
    Saved a pic of the SRAM direct mount one to compare the "clocking" to AB's($55-65US), though. Position of the oval in relation to the crankarms is what convinced me to try an Absolute Black...

  19. #19
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    OneUp has been clearing out their direct mount oval chain rings for $1 a tooth for awhile now. Selection is limited but I picked up a 30T cinch ring for $30 shipped.

  20. #20
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    Got an ABS Black 30t Oval coming in the mail for $47 USD, delivered ^^

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  21. #21
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    I never see any making reference to the 'workout' your clutched rear derailleurs get. Plan on increased maintenance intervals on the clutch mechanism.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    I never see any making reference to the 'workout' your clutched rear derailleurs get. Plan on increased maintenance intervals on the clutch mechanism.
    I would use derailleur wear as an opportunity to upgrade my derailleur at that point.

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  23. #23
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    I'm going to buy clutches cheaply from a buddy who frequently smashes derailleurs, win-win.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    I never see any making reference to the 'workout' your clutched rear derailleurs get. Plan on increased maintenance intervals on the clutch mechanism.
    Derailleur movement seems very minimal. I don't think I've seen anything on added clutch wear or maintenance due to running an oval ring.

    Made this a while back with a 30T oval.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Gz1QfvVNDE

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by noose View Post
    I would use derailleur wear as an opportunity to upgrade my derailleur at that point.
    What would you upgrade to?

    I run a SRAM XX1, that's an upgrade, but it still has a clutch.
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleared2land View Post
    What would you upgrade to?

    I run a SRAM XX1, that's an upgrade, but it still has a clutch.
    I have a clutched deore shadow plus. Maybe XT?

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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzwardo View Post
    I am thinking about making the jump to an oval ring on my Stache. I have heard a lot of good but wanted some negatives.

    So does anyone hate their oval?
    Lots of oval threads on here but since this is up top thought I'd put my inquiry in:

    XC vs Trail/Enduro. I'm thinking SS/XC would benefit more myself, what say you all?

    Discuss
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMac47 View Post
    Lots of oval threads on here but since this is up top thought I'd put my inquiry in:

    XC vs Trail/Enduro. I'm thinking SS/XC would benefit more myself, what say you all?

    Discuss
    If I understand your question right I would say all genres benefit in different ways from oval but ss and xc for long climbs the most.

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  29. #29
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    Oval feels different at first, but after a couple rides don't notice it. Coming from road cycling I understand the importance of spinning a round pedal stroke. I find the oval ring always feels like a power stroke and has no dead spots like a round ring does. My buddy thought it was just a gimmick until he rode my bike with the oval ring. He's got ovals on all his bikes now. I like them and will keep using them.

  30. #30
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    Been using oval chainrings for many years now on my road and tri bikes. To some extent there is a learning curve to getting used to using them but the effectiveness (or perceived lack of it) depends on the type of oval ring you use. There are many many oval rings from various makers and there is a noticeable difference in feel using various types. I personally like the Rotors but do not like the osymetrics, which I find too aggressive.

    On my MTBs I use ovals as well and do not notice any difference. I have three MTBs with different rings.

    To the OP, you have to try them out for yourself and be the better judge if you want them or not.

  31. #31
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    Pros:
    - Smooth power delivery when climbing
    - Less muscle fatigue due to power spikes in crank rotation trying to get over the dead spot
    - Better traction due to smoother more consistent rotation

    Cons:
    - Having to reply to threads like these
    - Having to pay for a new oval chain ring for every bike I own

  32. #32
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    I don't like ovals since it makes good chainguide setup impossible. When mounted high enough to clear the high spots on the oval, it's no longer in the best position for optimum chain retention. Every bike I've ridden with oval rings results in me dropping the chain at some point, something that rarely happens even on my 2X full squish bike.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    I don't like ovals since it makes good chainguide setup impossible. When mounted high enough to clear the high spots on the oval, it's no longer in the best position for optimum chain retention. Every bike I've ridden with oval rings results in me dropping the chain at some point, something that rarely happens even on my 2X full squish bike.
    If running a clutched RD and NW ring, oval or round, you shouldn't need a chain retention device. The only time I dropped a chain is when my RD got hung up on a rock and broke the hanger. Other than that I've not dropped a chain.
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  34. #34
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    Oval and asymmetric chainrings come in a variety of designs. On some I don't like the way they are clocked. When spinning a high rpm they can throw my cadence off and feel real jerky. Set up properly for me and it really does smooth out the pedal stroke and thus results in more liner output. This is immensely helpful on technical climbs I can maintain traction much easier and clear obstacles.

    The downside is shifting is compromised. I can feel the chain tension change and it causes enough of a vibration that it cause my feet to slip on the pedals. If I ride clipless then it's not an issue but I've noticed my feet sliding around on flat pedals.
    Everyone is entitled to my opinion.

  35. #35
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    I have a XT setup that always dropped a chain on 1 trail I frequent. I picked up a Blackspire Trail-X guide and it solved that problem oval or round. Not all chain guides cover enough ring for oval. Narrow wide and a clutch reduces chain drop, it doesn't eliminate it.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    I have a XT setup that always dropped a chain on 1 trail I frequent. I picked up a Blackspire Trail-X guide and it solved that problem oval or round. Not all chain guides cover enough ring for oval. Narrow wide and a clutch reduces chain drop, it doesn't eliminate it.
    Couldn't drop a chain through snapping it? (w/ a chain guide...)

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  37. #37
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    I put an oval Wolftooth ring on my Santa Cruz (new build at the time) just basically in a "what the heck, I need a ring anyway so might as well try it," frame of mind. The only thing I hate about it is that I like it so much that I've had to spend the money to put one on my other bikes...

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveF View Post
    I put an oval Wolftooth ring on my Santa Cruz (new build at the time) just basically in a "what the heck, I need a ring anyway so might as well try it," frame of mind. The only thing I hate about it is that I like it so much that I've had to spend the money to put one on my other bikes...
    What size ring? I am on the fence either Wolftooth or Absolute Black. I have read the WT feels more like a round? Did you notice an immediate change from round to the WT?

  39. #39
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    Clocking of the ring makes a big difference in how the ring will feel. I'm very tall which changes my angle of pedaling force. Might be one of the reasons the AB ring didn't feel right.

  40. #40
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    No issues on SS. Took no adjustment time, and as has been echoed above, no weirdness between MTB and round road rings.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen View Post
    What size ring? I am on the fence either Wolftooth or Absolute Black. I have read the WT feels more like a round? Did you notice an immediate change from round to the WT?
    I've run 30, 32 and 34 on various bikes at various times. The ovality of the AB is more noticeable than that of the WT but you adjust to either one pretty quickly. I had an AB on one bike but do prefer the WT. I did notice a change right away, a positive one, going from round to oval. It seemed to smooth out power delivery and my pedal stroke-and made an improvement in climbing traction consistency.

  42. #42
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    ???

    W8-a-min8!

    Is this now the 'Why You Love Oval CR's' thread?

    =)

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  43. #43
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    Love, not hate.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  44. #44
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    I started with a WT 32 oval on my Yeti ASR5 and loved it. I then went to a DM (Specialized) 32t Garbaruk Melon and continue to love it. I must have different physiology than some here as I found spinning fast (120-130rpm) was smoother with the oval than the round. I also now have a 46t Melon on my commuter 1x10 bike and love that one too.

    The One-up chain guide has lots of coverage for oval rings, and makes it super easy to disable the guide for whatever need/reason you may have for needing to do so. And for those worried about wearing out their clutches, there was a Youtube video floating around that showed the RD moving a miniscule amount as a result of the oval ring. Nothing that'd worry me about longevity at all.

  45. #45
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    I have never had a chain drop with my oval an m8000 RD.. Except when my pants got caught between the chain and the chainring. This is over course of 2 years of riding.

  46. #46
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    I have the Oneup guide on my other bike and it doesn't cover enough. I haven't dropped a chain on that bike, but I don't think it's because of that flimsy thing.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  47. #47
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    I have found that I am faster & usually run a gear higher than everyone else. As fast as these NW chainrings wear out you should go for it. If you don't like throw it up on PB

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveF View Post
    I've run 30, 32 and 34 on various bikes at various times. The ovality of the AB is more noticeable than that of the WT but you adjust to either one pretty quickly. I had an AB on one bike but do prefer the WT. I did notice a change right away, a positive one, going from round to oval. It seemed to smooth out power delivery and my pedal stroke-and made an improvement in climbing traction consistency.
    What makes you prefer the WT over the AB?

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexbn921 View Post
    Clocking of the ring makes a big difference in how the ring will feel. I'm very tall which changes my angle of pedaling force. Might be one of the reasons the AB ring didn't feel right.
    AB, was unsuccessful for me as well. Do have one with a different clocking that works for you?
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  50. #50
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    I had an AB oval on an XT crankset for a while on my SS. Probably 250-300 miles. I liked it enough to keep it on. I honestly kind of forgot about it after the first ride. Didn't feel much different than round to me. I did feel like after hard climbs, my legs recovered a little quicker than they did before. I also felt, like others have said, that it was better at high rpm than low, but I did feel like the tire seemed to often 'stick' a little better than I sometimes expected. Like those rides where you have the *perfect* psi, and dirt is nice.

    That said- I sold the XT cranks to a friend and bought an RF cinch set with the stock round ring. It took about 2 miles and a climb or two to forget I wasn't on oval anymore.
    Maybe oval doesn't do anything, maybe I just got stronger and better at weight distribution.

    I'd try an oval ring again maybe.
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Yeah, why not?

  51. #51
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    Sort of the same for me. In fact, I run a Wolftooth oval on one bike and a round ring on the other. Both rigs get about equal ride time. If there is any difference, it's not something I can really put a finger on.
    Just like a raindrop, I was born to fall.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blatant View Post
    Sort of the same for me. In fact, I run a Wolftooth oval on one bike and a round ring on the other. Both rigs get about equal ride time. If there is any difference, it's not something I can really put a finger on.
    I'm wondering if this prevents a) muscles completely adapting to the oval and/or b) prevents "shock" by keeping your muscles adapted to both.

    I had the worst cramps I've ever experienced when I hopped on a bike with round rings for the first time in months.

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  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    I'm wondering if this prevents a) muscles completely adapting to the oval and/or b) prevents "shock" by keeping your muscles adapted to both.

    I had the worst cramps I've ever experienced when I hopped on a bike with round rings for the first time in months.

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    I use to get cramp, on round when I first started out...

    Then I went Oval and cramp went away.

    Back on round (for just a wee while), no cramps yet.

    Think Oval taught me how to pedal more efficiently ;-)

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  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenM View Post
    Can't say I'm overly fond of the replacement cost.
    Subscribe to the OneUp email list. About once per quarter they do a scratch/dent sale. I bought my last OneUp oval for 30$ and couldn't find the scratch or the dent when it arrived.
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  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen View Post
    What makes you prefer the WT over the AB?
    The WT feels more natural coming from round rings than the AB. It's a subtle difference, and I adjust to either one pretty quickly, but the WT doesn't feel as weird as often, and I don't feel that the AB offers much if any performance advantage. For me. I also like that the WT is made in the U.S.

  56. #56
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    Going back and forth between the ovals I have (OneUp, Garbaruk, AB, and the Ridea SXX1)...I can't really tell the difference the way the rings are clocked. All I can really tell is that they get me over the dead spot at bit quicker.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeBurnsie View Post
    If running a clutched RD and NW ring, oval or round, you shouldn't need a chain retention device. The only time I dropped a chain is when my RD got hung up on a rock and broke the hanger. Other than that I've not dropped a chain.
    That's what people keep telling me. For whatever reason I'm just as good at dropping chains off of bikes as I am at tearing knobs off Schwalbe tires. Without a good chain retention device the chain just isn't going to stay on for long.

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by noose View Post
    If I understand your question right I would say all genres benefit in different ways from oval but ss and xc for long climbs the most.

    Sent from my SM-G920W8 using Tapatalk
    I guess I was looking for a consensus on who uses them and benefits more on the different bikes. Breaking it down a bit I would think with the higher rev/cadence of typical XC bike riding over slower tech climbing of trail and pardon the catch phrase "enduro" riding.
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by pcmark View Post
    OneUp has been clearing out their direct mount oval chain rings for $1 a tooth for awhile now. Selection is limited but I picked up a 30T cinch ring for $30 shipped.
    So a 30t oval correlates to a balance of 28/32 rings depending on the point of rotation? Or is it more of a 1t variation either way?

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by JMac47; 03-20-2017 at 06:35 PM. Reason: typo
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMac47 View Post
    So a 30t oval correlates to a balance of 28/32 rings depending on the point of rotation? Or is it more of a 1t variation either way?

    Thanks in advance.
    In my book 30t is 30t. Oval may have a smoother power delivery, but it still moves the same amount of chain every revolution. Smoother, but it's not magic IME.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    In my book 30t is 30t. Oval may have a smoother power delivery, but it still moves the same amount of chain every revolution. Smoother, but it's not magic IME.
    this
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  62. #62
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    My book doesn't even have a page for round mtb rings anymore.

  63. #63
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    is that right? id assumed an oval ring - because of the radius at the point of drive from the bb centre - acted as a 2 teeth bigger ring. i assumed as much because the chain is only ever on so many teeth, so the radius seemed the most important factor - ie the leverage of the power delivery?

  64. #64
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    You are moving more chain when your legs are making power, and less when they are not. I don't feel that I can push a bigger gear, but do feel smoother power delivery. 80 rpm is 80 rpm, round or oval. Maybe others do notice a bigger difference?
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  65. #65
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    The big difference I have noticed is knees. On 20+ mile rides my right knee would really start to hurt with round rings. I have done 30+ on oval with no issues.
    In serving the wicked, expect no reward, and be thankful if you escape injury for your pains.

  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bickle View Post
    In my book 30t is 30t. Oval may have a smoother power delivery, but it still moves the same amount of chain every revolution. Smoother, but it's not magic IME.
    Hhmmm. The old guys like me insist it's helped with transferring better traction and more importantly knee pain. 😜
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  67. #67
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    I agree on the traction, but my knees feel about the same.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMac47 View Post
    I guess I was looking for a consensus on who uses them and benefits more on the different bikes. Breaking it down a bit I would think with the higher rev/cadence of typical XC bike riding over slower tech climbing of trail and pardon the catch phrase "enduro" riding.
    I've never heard of an Enduro race that had anything other than fire road climbs.

    Well, lift served, I suppose, but "technical" climbing is not really a thing I, or most people, would associate with Enduro racing.

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  69. #69
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    I have an Absolute Black 30t Oval on...

    28t at its narrow point & 32t at the widest point.

    Smoother power delivery around the full pedal stroke.

    No dead spot.

    No hanging up during max.

    Easier on the knees.

    Legs, lungs less fatigued.

    I hate that!! ;-P

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  70. #70
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    ab, wt, 1up, are just a 99% copy of the rotor elliptical - without the adjustability-which is key to clock the shape to your pedaling style. Rotor rings were made for road bikes. They were designed with round and regular pedaling in mind. They are good for classic xc/marathon.

    If you like the elliptical and want to try something that helps more with quick acceleration and good on mashing, I found the asymmetric rings being better.
    O-symmetric and a bunch of European brands make them (ari, carbon-ti, frm, stronghlight).
    Going from elliptical to asymmetric is the same difference as going from round to elliptical.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    I have an Absolute Black 30t Oval on...

    28t at its narrow point & 32t at the widest point.

    Smoother power delivery around the full pedal stroke.

    No dead spot.

    No hanging up during max.

    Easier on the knees.

    Legs, lungs less fatigued.

    I hate that!! ;-P
    +1 lol
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  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Duke View Post
    I've never heard of an Enduro race that had anything other than fire road climbs.

    Well, lift served, I suppose, but "technical" climbing is not really a thing I, or most people, would associate with Enduro racing.

    Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
    *Edit meaning the Enduro "bike" movement not racing per say.
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stalkerfiveo View Post
    Subscribe to the OneUp email list. About once per quarter they do a scratch/dent sale. I bought my last OneUp oval for 30$ and couldn't find the scratch or the dent when it arrived.
    I'd be trying one of those even at full price(~$20 less than AB or Blackspire at jenson), but for the fact that I'm needing a 0 offset ring right now to make a SS conversion doable with a Blackspire Stinger.
    Getting another Absolute Black is quite ok with me, though.

    Just from eyeballing them, I'm not seeing much difference between AB's shape or clocking and Blackspire or OneUp's. Not perfect, but I got these lined up pretty well with the photocollage thing on my phone:
    Anyone hate the Oval?-crs2.jpg
    Anyone hate the Oval?-crs1.jpg

  74. #74
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    Oh crap, I thought it was broken. I held them up against each other and they were extremley close. My BS replace AB.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenM View Post
    I'd be trying one of those even at full price(~$20 less than AB or Blackspire at jenson), but for the fact that I'm needing a 0 offset ring right now to make a SS conversion doable with a Blackspire Stinger.
    Getting another Absolute Black is quite ok with me, though.

    Just from eyeballing them, I'm not seeing much difference between AB's shape or clocking and Blackspire or OneUp's. Not perfect, but I got these lined up pretty well with the photocollage thing on my phone:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    I've got a OneUp (also picked up for $30), Absolute Black, Garbaruk, and Ridea. Honestly can't tell the difference in clocking on the rings.

    I came across a German bike site (through Google Translate) and read that on back to back tests...they can't tell the difference in clocking on a AB and OneUp oval.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    I have an Absolute Black 30t Oval on...

    28t at its narrow point & 32t at the widest point.

    Smoother power delivery around the full pedal stroke.

    No dead spot.

    No hanging up during max.

    Easier on the knees.

    Legs, lungs less fatigued.

    I hate that!! ;-P

    Sent from my kltedv using Tapatalk
    That's my understanding too. 👍
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMac47 View Post
    That's my understanding too. 👍
    :church:

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  78. #78
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    Oval rings have now been added to my long time "no-brainer" list of...

    King rear hubs
    Oury grips
    Rethal bars
    XT brakes

    Oval rings create a subtle, yet positive difference, in the motor. And no negatives, except a small additional cost.

    I think I'm going to make a separate post.

  79. #79
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    Just reporting my initial impression of round to oval.

    Yesterday was my first ride on a 5010 that was converted from 2x10 (22/36 with 11-40t) to 1x11 (30t 1up oval & 11-50t - m8000 with 1up 50&18). The whole drive train was replaced with moving to XTR shifter.

    For the first few miles I was constantly shifting just to get the feel of the system. Had to stop and move the brake & shifter outward to get it in the right position for me. Then I started going through each sprocket with forward, then back pedaling to evaluate chainline and see if I was going to have any dropping between sprocket while back pedaling (common report). I had no issues, everything was shifting very smoothly.

    Finally, after several miles I remembered the oval! By then it felt perfectly natural, I couldn't really tell any difference in the stroke. Took in up a climbing trail where I spent most of the time in the 37 & 42t sprockets - again very smooth transfer of power. The last couple hundred ft of trail ungulated and got steep enough that I needed my 50t. Again very smooth transfer of power, no lose of traction while riding near my climbing limit.

    Positive initial impressions, but I have so many changes going on that I really need more mileage to truly evaluate the oval. One other impression is that I may get a 32t or 34t chainring for long rides that don't have steep climbing.

  80. #80
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    After a few weeks, put a 30t round ring on and compare.
    I hated the round ring in low cadence, high power situations after being on oval.

  81. #81
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    I had a 3x on my old Trek Fuel Ex9 and I replaced the middle ring with an oval. After a while, even if I would change the ring to the smaller or bigger one (which where the original round ones) I was barely noticing the difference.
    Also, the brand I had, had 3 different mounting positions. So you could change the setup based on what you liked best. Unfortunately I don't remember the brand
    Edit: I found the brand. Q ring

  82. #82
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    Increased traction, decreased knee pain. Worth the price to me for those two benefits.

  83. #83
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    Thanks for the comment targnik. Pretty much sums up most AB user experience.

  84. #84
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    been on ab 32t oval for almost 2 years and i love it. been on my bike every weekend since then - dry, wet, mud, rain. m8000 rd still works fine.
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  85. #85
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    Can't remember for sure, but I thought I saw something about Sram rear derailleur s weren't oval friendly. I have no idea where I thought I saw this.

  86. #86
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    Been using the Wolftooth oval. It has been great. It hasn't made me faster but more efficient. Helped my knee pain. They make it easier at the top of the stroke which is the most awkward position for you knees. So, on steeper technical climbs, it is easier to turn over the cranks.

    The only downside I have seen is that it seems to drop chains easier due to the shape when your feet are in downhill positions.

  87. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by aliikane View Post
    Been using the Wolftooth oval. It has been great. It hasn't made me faster but more efficient. Helped my knee pain. They make it easier at the top of the stroke which is the most awkward position for you knees. So, on steeper technical climbs, it is easier to turn over the cranks.

    The only downside I have seen is that it seems to drop chains easier due to the shape when your feet are in downhill positions.
    Pics or it didn't happen

    I've been running Ovals for better part of two years

    Both times I've dropped a chain was due to a stick getting in the drive train

    Otherwise safe as houses

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  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzwardo View Post
    Can't remember for sure, but I thought I saw something about Sram rear derailleur s weren't oval friendly. I have no idea where I thought I saw this.
    I put about 1000 miles on an oval ring with a GX RD and never had any issues. Current bike has 250 miles on the same setup and problem free so far.

    In the 250 miles I've put in my new bike I haven't run a chain guide and haven't dropped a chain yet.
    In serving the wicked, expect no reward, and be thankful if you escape injury for your pains.

  89. #89
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    People say they don't get dropped chains on NW rings, but I dropped my chain on an AB 32t ring on my first ride with it. Maybe it was a fluke, but I've been running a OneUp chainguide ever since as a precaution. I couldn't say one way or the other if it's related to the oval ring, since this is my first 1x.

    Overall, the oval has been cool. The only time I notice it is when I opt to spin at a high cadences, like 110rpm+, when not pushing very hard and my hub just barely disengages. Not a big deal, really, and there aren't that many times I spin like that.

  90. #90
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    Last night I dropped a chain while running an AB 32t oval and cheap 16t rear.
    Even when it dropped off the rear (flexy chain/narrow cog/the right bump perfect storm) it stayed on the front for 5-6 crank revolutions and rolling over bumpy ground.

  91. #91
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    IME...when you do drop a chain on a narrow wide rings its one of those perfect storm type of situations. I'm not a competitive fast rider...but in my own riding experiences on a FS and HT...I have yet to drop a chain. Riding bike parks and shuttling...my chain hasn't dropped...not once. Having the chain the correct length is pretty important. I've come across many bikes with chains that are way too long. Only time I've ever had chain dropping issue was when I did 1x9 setups. I had two bikes with 9sp non clutch rear derailleurs. They were both FS and the chain would drop in the small cogs. When I went to a 1x10 ZEE...the dropped chains went away.

  92. #92
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    I followed AB's guidelines on chain length, which is 2 half links more than I normally would go (4 total big to big). I'm running a GX clutch derailleur in the back.

    Maybe I just got lucky on my first ride. I was pedaling kind of fast on a flat section, probably running a smaller cog in back, and glided over a choppy/rooty section. As I cleared the last of the roots, my chain popped off my chainring and caught on my shoe, strangely enough. I was able to use my foot to slide the chain back on and didn't even have to stop.

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    As I cleared the last of the roots, my chain popped off my chainring and caught on my shoe, strangely enough. I was able to use my foot to slide the chain back on and didn't even have to stop.
    I'd say extremely lucky! That could've been bad!
    Wait whuuut, who did he tell you that!?!?....

  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by noose View Post
    Exactly what Streetdoctor said. I notice no difference in pedaling. I just put one on and didn't notice any negatives. I did notice more traction on climbs... Loving that!

    Sent from my SM-G920W8 using Tapatalk
    I have an Oval on my SS and my 29r trail bike FS, I've become so used to it I can ride my road bike with standard rings and feel no difference. Oval for steep tech climbing is remarkable.

  95. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Back2MTB View Post
    I have an Oval on my SS and my 29r trail bike FS, I've become so used to it I can ride my road bike with standard rings and feel no difference. Oval for steep tech climbing is remarkable.
    :church:

    Was riding with a bud on some pretty technical uphill on Monday.

    He was following & later he was asking 'How the hell did you get up that!?'

    NB, I have told him about the Oval goodness before

    PS - One bit he didn't clean cost him 2 rear spokes

    He still finished the ride (there was some steep, techy descents too)

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    Last edited by targnik; 4 Weeks Ago at 11:47 PM.
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  96. #96
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    Anyone hate the Oval?

    Quote Originally Posted by Back2MTB View Post
    I have an Oval on my SS and my 29r trail bike FS, I've become so used to it I can ride my road bike with standard rings and feel no difference. Oval for steep tech climbing is remarkable.
    Same. My fatbike and xc bike are oval. Only felt the weirdness for maybe a block on the way to the trailhead the first time. I cant tell the difference when i jump on my gravel bike with a 42 nw round or my mtbs with oval.

    But when im seated or standing almost ready to bail climbing its so much easier on the knees with the oval.
    Fatbike, XC bike, Gravel Bike....

  97. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    I followed AB's guidelines on chain length, which is 2 half links more than I normally would go (4 total big to big). I'm running a GX clutch derailleur in the back.

    Maybe I just got lucky on my first ride. I was pedaling kind of fast on a flat section, probably running a smaller cog in back, and glided over a choppy/rooty section. As I cleared the last of the roots, my chain popped off my chainring and caught on my shoe, strangely enough. I was able to use my foot to slide the chain back on and didn't even have to stop.
    Mine is on a single speed. Was pedaling and the lower chain swung to the side and the next tooth on the cog went to the outside of an inner chain plate and peeled off from there. I've never run a cog as narrow before. Nor will I again.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMac47 View Post
    I'd say extremely lucky! That could've been bad!
    Yeah, it could have gotten ugly really quick. Whether it was a fluke or not, I feel a lot more secure with a chain guide. 32g is a small price to pay. Plus, the green guide looks cool on my bike.

  99. #99
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    A big majority of reviews on ovals that I have read around the web have been positive. The theory that an oval could help a person apply power more smoothly on a steep climb sounds plausible to me. Think I am going to try one on my 1*10 mtb.

    On the other hand, is it fair to conclude that big companies like Shimano, Sram and Race Face have concluded that there is no compelling benefit from oval rings--- as evidenced by them not producing oval rings, and that complete mtb manufacturers don't see any benefit in oval rings either --- as evidenced by them not specing oval rings on new bikes as original equipment?

  100. #100
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    Higher spec or niche parts are almost never specced OEM.
    Ceramic pulleys, pedals, carbon bars, seats. All very individual.

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