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  1. #1
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    Crank Set Upgrade and New Cassette

    I got my bike several years ago used from a young guy that worked at a bike shop and had added several nice things to a 2000 Trek 8000. Mostly XTR components with some XT. My chain, cogs and rings are worn pretty bad and I'm also doing a wheelset upgrade (maybe discs while I'm at it). I want to stick with an 8-speed cassette because I have little interest in replacing my XTR shifters. My current cassette range is 11-28 and my rings are 22-32-42. I'm very interested in saving weight, but my pockets aren't crazy deep and durability is very important to me as well. I'd prefer to get a crankset with a standard bolt pattern.

    On the bike now is the old Shimano Deore XT crank set, and I believe the cassette is as well -- at least I found the same gearing on a replacement cassette listed as a Deore XT, while most other 8's I've seen have a different range. I think the 8's shift better anyway.

    So I've seen a SRAM 11-32 cassette, a 12-32 Forte cassette, and the best climbing gear in a Shimano setup I can find is 11-30. Leaning toward the SRAM...

    I don't suppose there is a big difference in chains, but if there is I'd like to know about it. I've only seen SRAM and Shimano offerings so far.

    Now for my largest drivetrain expense, the crankset. I'm really out of touch on current technology, but I've been researching enough to think I can't afford CF, and don't want to go with the XTR even at clearance prices. What is the most cost-effective crankset that is durable, reliable, and relatively light weight?

    Thanks in advance,
    ~ Fred

  2. #2
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    Anyone? Bueller?

    FWIW, I'm currently looking at these:

    FSA V-Drive Megaexo Crankset w/ BB - $180 - weight?
    Race Face Evolve XC Crankset '05 - $149 - 925g
    Race Face X-Type Deus Crankset - $225 - 830g
    Race Face Atlas X-Drive Crankset w/ BB - $283 - 945g
    Race Face Deus X-Drive Crankset w/ BB - $283 - 820g
    Shimano XT FC-M760 - $200 - 860g
    Shimano XT M760 Crankset w/ BB - $272 - 860g
    Shimano XTR FC-M960 Crankset - $299 - 797g
    Shimano Hone FC-M600-3 Crank w/ BB - $165 - 928g
    TRU Vativ Firex Team GXP Crankset '06 - $170 - 940g

    As you can see there is a pretty wide price range, so I'm hoping some of you can offer some solid advice.

    Thanks in advance,
    ~ Fred

  3. #3
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    I think the XT is a good performance/value combination. It goes for about $200 incl BB on ebay. The rings do wear fairly fast if you ride alot, but that's the penalty of light weight I guess. The cranks are very stiff, even more so than the XTR. Be careful not to overtorque the pinch bolts though.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RagerXS
    ..... What is the most cost-effective crankset that is durable, reliable, and relatively light weight?

    Thanks in advance,
    ~ Fred
    Most cost effective are the Shimano LX580/Hone cranks at $110. I would put maybe the Raceface Evolve X-Drvie at $132 as the second best buy.

  5. #5
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    Well I've narrowed it some, and currently unsure about whether to get new chainrings for my old FC-M739 Deore XT crankset, as advised by LBS. I'm told that the new cranksets are setup for 9-speed cassettes and narrower chains and that I'm very likely to have compatibilty problems and lose some gear combinations if I get a new external BB crankset. Please advise...

    FWIW, I'm now down to these, in order:
    Truvative Stylo Team - 880g (no bad reports, and I will be using SRAM chain and cassette)
    Shimano XT FC-M760 -860g (rings wear fast)
    Race Face Deus - 830g (lots of problems reported early, possibly corrected by now)
    FSA Afterburner - 870g (no reports at all, but similar FSA stuff rates well)
    Shimano LX580/Hone (unable to determine any Shimano chainlines)
    Race Face Evolve
    FSA V-Drive (48mm chainline may be an issue)

    Regards,
    ~ Fred

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by RagerXS
    Well I've narrowed it some, and currently unsure about whether to get new chainrings for my old FC-M739 Deore XT crankset, as advised by LBS. I'm told that the new cranksets are setup for 9-speed cassettes and narrower chains and that I'm very likely to have compatibilty problems and lose some gear combinations if I get a new external BB crankset. Please advise...

    Regards,
    ~ Fred
    shimano chainline was 47.5 as well, although it might be 50 w/ the new external BB's.
    9spd cranks will work totally fine on 8spd, no worries. w/ a wider chainline, crosschaining is more of a problem.

    What's the matter with your old xt crank (aside from worn rings)? it's a 5-arm, no?
    I'd stick with it and get some new rings, but I prefer 5-arm & square taper... It works fine & I can't tell any difference in flex. I guess I'm a retro grouch now.

    You can get a set of new raceface rings for ~$75 @ someplace like cambriabike, or mix n match old stock rings for lots less. I'm running these raceface rings on my old shimano xtr cranks (m900) & RF turbines.
    [SIZE=1][/SIZE]

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by logbiter
    shimano chainline was 47.5 as well, although it might be 50 w/ the new external BB's.
    9spd cranks will work totally fine on 8spd, no worries. w/ a wider chainline, crosschaining is more of a problem.

    What's the matter with your old xt crank (aside from worn rings)? it's a 5-arm, no?
    I'd stick with it and get some new rings, but I prefer 5-arm & square taper... It works fine & I can't tell any difference in flex. I guess I'm a retro grouch now.

    You can get a set of new raceface rings for ~$75 @ someplace like cambriabike, or mix n match old stock rings for lots less. I'm running these raceface rings on my old shimano xtr cranks (m900) & RF turbines.
    Are you saying that the chainline on my current Shimano Deore XT FC-M739 is 47.5mm? It is a 4-bolt pattern, square drive. If that is the current chainline, then a 48mm seems like a much better match than 50mm, unless the ones listing 50mm come with spacers that could be shifted to the other side...

    ~ Fred

  8. #8
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    I've been using the Truvative Stylo Team GXP all of this year with no trouble at all.

    I'm very happy with it.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Moore
    I've been using the Truvative Stylo Team GXP all of this year with no trouble at all.

    I'm very happy with it.
    Hi Dave,

    What is the rest of your drivetrain? The Stylo is my current frontrunner, would like to hear if you are running 8-speed or not.

    ~ Fred

  10. #10
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    Race Face Evovle this is a ISIS BB. Any water, mud = failure, I got about 1500 km per BB

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by RagerXS
    Hi Dave,

    What is the rest of your drivetrain? The Stylo is my current frontrunner, would like to hear if you are running 8-speed or not.

    ~ Fred
    I replied to you PM but...I run a 9 speed. You have my drivetrain specs already.

    Let us know what you go with.

    Oh, and as far as mud goes, I did a 12 hour (Dirty Spokes) in Georgia. The preride the day before was a mud fest and the crank has still been going strong. I've cleaned it and re-lubed the bearings of course but all that muck and it's still smooth as glass

  12. #12
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    I have been running a Stylo GXP crankset for almost two years now. The bearings are great, but I'm not crazy about the design. There is a single big hex wrench bolt that fixes the non-drive side crank arm to the spindle. I have to use Loctite to keep that bolt from loosening after every ride. And Truvativ uses a proprietary design for the BB cups, which means they are the only source for replacement parts. My friend has a RaceFace external bearing crankset, and it loosens itself as well. If I was buying a new crankset I would go with XT.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunfodder
    I have been running a Stylo GXP crankset for almost two years now. The bearings are great, but I'm not crazy about the design. There is a single big hex wrench bolt that fixes the non-drive side crank arm to the spindle. I have to use Loctite to keep that bolt from loosening after every ride. And Truvativ uses a proprietary design for the BB cups, which means they are the only source for replacement parts. My friend has a RaceFace external bearing crankset, and it loosens itself as well. If I was buying a new crankset I would go with XT.
    I haven't been running mine as long as you have but I've not had any issues with things loosening up. I'll have to keep and eye on it though...

    Is it true that the XT is about 20 grams lighter than the Stylo?

  14. #14
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    I listed the advertised weights. From weightweenies.com:

    XT FC-M760 - 870.5 average
    Truvative Stylo Team - not weighed, but older Stylos average 20-25g higher than advertised
    XT FC-M739 (current) - 930g (674, plus 256 for the BB assuming correct XT BB in there)

    I was leaning toward new chainrings... I can get Blackspire outers for $12.50 and $38.99, plus a Truvative steel middle for $15.54, or $67.03 total. Then if my BB does go in the near future, I could take the chainrings to the next crankset. More likely the rings will last the life of the BB or wear sooner. However, I just found this thread: Shimano FC M739 Crankset and then confirmed on my bike that the spider is integrated with the (totally worn out) outer ring. I can get a 44t outer ring for $97, and I just can't see spending $125+ for chain rings when I could get a new external BB crankset for that kind of money and have the same weight or lighter in a better design. For $50-60 more I can shave off 100g or so.

    ~ Fred

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Moore
    I haven't been running mine as long as you have but I've not had any issues with things loosening up. I'll have to keep and eye on it though...

    Is it true that the XT is about 20 grams lighter than the Stylo?
    The good thing is that I don't even notice when the cranks loosen until I get home. This problem has never been serious enough to prompt me to replace this crankset.

    I have not been able to find a reliable weight for the Stylo GXP.

  16. #16
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    Well I guess I'll throw my $0.02 in here........

    The new HollowTech2 LX cranks are lighter and stiffer than your old XT cranks and they can be found very cheap. As for the chainline, this can be adjusted to suit whatever you want - if you spend a little time like I did. I run my XT HT2 crankset with a 47.5mm chainline and some small modification to a spacer.

    As for the Cassette I would recomend the SRAM 8spd you can get a range from 12-23, 12-26, 11-28, 11-30 * 11-32 and they're very inexpensive and weigh very little especially for the price you pay.
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  17. #17
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    Check out my setup. I too have the 4-arm xt spider whatever crankset and am looking to upgrade the rings and also found the 44t outer ring for $97, which is more than what I paid for the whole crankset (minus BB) back in 1999! I really only intend to replace the middle (tooth is missing) and not the small ring, as the granny looks alright.Thinking replacement Salsa rings. I have had no drivetrain problems with my current SRAM/Shimona set up until I lost a tooth.

    my 0.02
    Last edited by dbruning; 08-10-2006 at 07:33 PM.

  18. #18
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    Im currently running a full XT 9 speed drivetrain with XT 8 speed cassette, and old LX 8 speed shifters. My drivetrain works flawlessly. I absolutely love the way its set up. You can score M752(9spd) crankset for about $100 bucks new on ebay or online closeouts. You can get an XT bottom bracket for under $50 new. New XT 8spd cassettes are cheap, as are the chains. I bought the cassette for I think 40 or 50 bucks and they threw in a free HG93 chain. FYI, You can also score the new crank and integrated BB for a good bit under $200. You can replace the 8spd cassette, chain, crankset for well under 200 bucks. Beware though, 8spd will be harder and harder to come by as years pass. Its already difficult to find the stuff. Im trying to decide if I want to buy 9 speed shifters and cassette or try to find a replacement set of 8spd shifters for whenever mine wear out.

  19. #19
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    Most cost effective? Probably the LX octalink cranks (M572) that are still kicking around for <$65. You also need a matching BB: ES51 I think as it engages further on the spindle than the earlier M571 or the XT equivalent.

    Wombat



  20. #20
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    http://store.airbomb.com/ItemDesc.asp?IC=CR5134

    LX M569 8spd 42t 104mmouter ring Black, any ideas if this might work? I figure you could swap out the outer ring and just attach the xt arms.

  21. #21
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    Damn that sure looks close to the XT part: http://www.bikeparts.com/productinfo...130-93466.html

    As it is I'm sitting here with a brand new Race Face Deus. I expect it will work well with the SRAM chain and cassette, but should I have any trouble that would prompt a return I would have to pursue the LX replacement ring above.

    Further searching confirms that the LX ring is a compatible replacement, as specified here by the listing for the LX ring: http://www.bikeparts.com/search_resu...639_622%2E9517 and you can get one in 42t, 44t, or 46t...

    ~ Fred

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