Chinese IXF Cranksets Review- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Hardtail Steel Forever
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    Chinese IXF Cranksets Review

    I literally can't find more than a few legitimate reviews and posts for these cranksets, and they're all over ebay and other websites, so figured I'd start a thread. (Will update with pictures later.)

    We purchased one of these as a low budget replacement. Got a 170mm version for about $40 shipped, which is very cheap. They look great in the pictures, use a 24mm spindle, and weight about 640g, which isn't horrible for the cost. So in theory it's a good cheap replacement crank for many bikes.

    Initial thoughts:

    First off, these look a lot better online than in person. Numerous imperfection in the ano on both arms. The milling where the rings attach is extremely rough, there's machine marks and burs on both sides of all 4 spider arms. It's interesting that they anodized these before milling them, doesn't make a ton of sense, but assuming they did it to save cost and production time. The milling is bad enough that it would be a really good idea to debur and file the surfaces before mounting rings so they actually sit flush against the spider.

    Second, the spindle interface on the non drive side is clearly not done at a perfect 90 degree angle. I can easily see it wobble, not a huge amount, but clearly their machining guides were not setup carefully so the spindle hole was milled off from perfectly perpendicular. Rightfully, this might be a deal breaker for some people. I don't know the mechanical implications of this, I would think it would be minimal on a person's legs and hips.

    Third, I don't have a caliper accurate enough to tell exactly but the spindle was extremely tight getting it into a good quality 24mm bottom bracket. I just about pushed the bearings and dust cover off of the non drive side, getting it fully seated. In some ways this could be considered good because it eliminates all play between the spindle and bottom bracket, but it's too tight IMO. Another 50th of a mm and you're not going to get it in the BB at all.

    Forth, the arm clamping mechanism is simple and should work fine, but the retention bolt on the end of the non drive side that pulls the arm all the way onto the spindle is plastic. They provide a weird plastic hex tool to tighten it, but seriously, it's plastic. The hex interface is also something like a 7mm or 7.5mm, which I found isn't common for bike tools. None of my bike specific allen wrench sets had this size, I did have it in my main toolbox in one of those 50 allen wrench super sets, but don't lose the plastic hex tool they provide if you don't have a bunch of larger metric allen wrenches. Don;t over tighten this because you're going to strip out the retention bolt and will likely not have an easy way of pulling the arm on the spindle.

    So basically you get what you pay for. In theory this should be usable and assuming there aren't internal material defects, it appears to be otherwise decent quality. However, if you consider the $45 cost does not include a BB or any chainrings, I would highly recommend looking for another option. Numerous defects and poor milling and some poor design make this a tough sell even at $40. By the time you purchase a bottom bracket and any amount of chainrings, you might as well get a lower end SRAM or shimano where you're at least sure of the machining quality, a warranty, and that you're not going to have a wobbly crank.
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

  2. #2
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    Not sure why anyone would try this when a Deore crank can be bought for $75.
    The bottom bracket being tight could depend on the BB. FSA cranks can be too tight in Shimano BBs. A FSA BB might fit better.
    Shimano uses a non-drive side plastic retention bolt with an odd drive socket, FSA does on some cranks as well. Pretty common. It's not intended to have any real torque applied, only lightly hand tight.

  3. #3
    Hardtail Steel Forever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slash5 View Post
    Not sure why anyone would try this when a Deore crank can be bought for $75.
    The bottom bracket being tight could depend on the BB. FSA cranks can be too tight in Shimano BBs. A FSA BB might fit better.
    Shimano uses a non-drive side plastic retention bolt with an odd drive socket, FSA does on some cranks as well. Pretty common. It's not intended to have any real torque applied, only lightly hand tight.
    We did it because we already had the chainrings and a 24mm BB, and I had an ebay gift certificate, but I would not purchase again. Looking at the pictures, they definitely look decent, but yeah for $75 for a new deore, it just doesn't make any sense.

    These are all over ebay, ali express, amazon and other sites, tons of them are sold as well, so they definitely found a market. Maybe the color anno options are the driver...
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

  4. #4
    BOOM goes the dynamite!
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    There's a lot of stuff on fleabay I would never buy. Thanks for adding to that list (and taking one for the team). lol

    I really hope the thing doesn't break, seriously. Keepin' my fingers crossed for ya.

  5. #5
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    How are these holding up? I got a set same way as you had some credit on ebay. Not coming in for another 2 week

  6. #6
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    I actually have an almost entirely Chinese drive train on my hardtail.
    "This" crank set Inc. BB for 22.
    A 7 NW 36t oval chainring.
    17 11-42 10 speed cassette.
    25 10 speed shifter+der.
    Chain is local.
    Working like a charm so far when putting power down.

    Edit: shit this is an old topic xD

  7. #7
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    For historical purposes. I have a set of IXF cranks I bought two years ago. Up to now they rode approximately 7000km ( ~5000miles ) with me and have been absolutely trouble free. Best $26 I ever spent.

    I concur with their rather rough finish - anodisation is splotchy, arms are in two different shades of blue, some edges were not properely deburred.

    Currently using them on my commuter.

  8. #8
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    Anybody know what size fixing bolt (preload bolt) these cranks use? My son came home the other day with his non-drive-side crank arm loose, and the fixing bolt was gone. Tried a Shimano hollowtech fixing bolt, but it's the wrong size.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by uzurpator View Post
    For historical purposes. I have a set of IXF cranks I bought two years ago. Up to now they rode approximately 7000km ( ~5000miles ) with me and have been absolutely trouble free. Best $26 I ever spent.
    er.
    Exactly!!!

    I have them on my FS which is my favorite bike, and I have no issue at all, the ride perfect, and there was no need to spend stupid money on something else.

    If I was going top replace them, it would be for a center mount carbon set. Just for weight. Nice thing is ixf are pretty light as it is.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe_bloe View Post
    Anybody know what size fixing bolt (preload bolt) these cranks use?
    I would look up a vendor on ebay or aliexpress and see if they can get you one. I don't know the exact size but you want the actual replacement part for these.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe_bloe View Post
    Anybody know what size fixing bolt (preload bolt) these cranks use? My son came home the other day with his non-drive-side crank arm loose, and the fixing bolt was gone. Tried a Shimano hollowtech fixing bolt, but it's the wrong size.
    It is not standard. M20 threaded is too big, M18 one is too small.

  12. #12
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    A replacement square taper crankset + squaretaper BB cost more than the ixf + BB combo...and the ixf cranks + BB I put on a week to replace the junky squaretaper cranks I had, that was a night and day upgrade. That $45 + a chainring was an amazing upgrade!

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