a Weekend Warrior
from Chicago, IL, USA
Date Reviewed: August 20, 2001
Strengths: Light...about 305g, stiff-I'm about 160 pounds, they're different than your standard XTR or RaceFace setup. It's a nice way to cut about a 1/4 pound of your bike(assuming you have next lp, also one of the lightest at just over 400g). They also seem to accelerate more quickly given their weight. I have found it easier to keep up a fast pace when spinning these crank arms...the weight difference adds up quickly as you turn the arms.
Weaknesses: 1)they are being re-designed, so they are no longer sell the model I have. 2)If you find them in the future, the price tag will make you gag...about 7 bills, which is 3x the about the next lp arms. 3)the customer service is good, but difficult to understand, given that it's in the Czech republic.
If you have the money, and are willing to wait for the new model.....Why not? You may hear bad things about ti cranks. such as them breaking, which on occasion will happen, but don't treat nice products like crap(not to say that this is why others have snapped, but be careful, otherwise you'll be out big, and super angry). And most of the people at shops that are a bit critical, are the ones that haven't used them. I mean really, unless your racing, how important is a unnoticable flex in crankarms. Actually, don't buy a set, cause if you do, mine won't be as unique.
Bike Setup: Ritchey softail, mora cranks, Mora M-bar, phil wood ti bb, king with valient rims, king hs, time atac ti pedals, moots post, precision billet f/r derailleur.
from Berne, Switzerland
Date Reviewed: November 28, 2000
Strengths: Actually, I'm cheating, I don't really own morati ti cranks. But what I used (emphasis on the past) were 2 sets of early 90's welded C O O K Bros Ti Cranks (334g with Spider) which were a tapered tube with two bits welded on either end for the bb taper and crank threads respectively. A bmx-style Aluminium Spider was circlipped and bolted on the back. They loocked cool (in minimalistic kind of way) and were stiff until they both broke at the weld between the tube and the bit with the pedal thread. I am to blame, however, because I bought them cheaply from a friend who told me frankly that he wouldn't trust them. But from a theoretical engineering point of view, hollow ti rules (stiff because of the wide section, longevity because of Ti's superiour fatigue live compared to Al). And, if you haven't guessed by now, i was the epitome of a weight weenie, every sensible riders's worst nightmare.
Weaknesses: As you have already guessed, they break.. dead, bleadin' demised, RIP, disintegrate.. Ok, the one on my intense uzzi sl freeride bike survived an astonishing amount of 3 foot drops (i guess about 20), but the one on the road bike broke after only about 2000 miles.
Ok, freeride light is a crap concept, but every lightweight (280-350g) welded crank (be it made of steel as sweetwings or worse, ti like morati and the bad old cooks) is just plain stupid and dangerious!!
get something really bombproof like BMX-cranks or at least forged Aluminium Cranks like AC Lo Pro, Race Face, (or Shimano if you must)
or maybe ti is great after all, but don't weld it!! maybe Caramba should make a ti version of their bored-out sidewinder cranks..
Similar Products Used: Not really, but there were readers in a german bike magazine complaining about broken morati cranks with limited mileage, the exitus arriving at a traffic light on the road.. I even know a bloke who broke his welded syncros steel cranks (not exactly light at 470 g!!)
Bike Setup: Bike crank: Intense Uzzi SL, Pace RC 37 Dual Crown Fork, Hope Discs, 27 lbs Road Cranks: Genius Steel frame, mizuno full carbon fork, campa nucleon wheels, record carbon shifters, rest chorus, 18 lbs
a Weekend Warrior
from Huntington Beach, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: July 28, 2000
Strengths: Light, stiff, durable, and very easy on the eyes!
Weaknesses: Hard to get and (relatively) expensive.
The Morati titanium cranks rule. I've got the standard-pattern crankset on both my Ibis bikes and have yet to notice any manifestation of a weakness in them (I'm 140lbs). If the local shops stocked them I've probably have more than just the two sets...
The only thing I'm not too excited about is the "Morati" polished onto the outside face of the arms. On one set, I've actually removed this by polishing the whole arm. It was practically an exercise in futility (took a long time) but I finally got it the way I wanted it. Yeahyeah, it's a little obsessive but you live and you learn.
Sure, there's no denying that the price is very high on these and they're not for everyone - but you get what you pay for. If you're looking to equip with your bike with the ultimate crankset then these are very good candidates. If you're budget-conscious then you should steer clear.
I'm giving them a value rating of 5 because if you're looking into these then you're in the cost-no-object territory and price no longer really matters.
Bike Setup: XTR-equipped Ibis Ti Mojo and Ibis Bow-Ti.
from Middlebury, VT, USA
Date Reviewed: June 26, 2000
My Morati road cranks lasted all of 1,000 miles, before breaking on the drive side, right near the pedal hole.
This happened at 30mph, while I was hammering in a 53-13. I landed on my head, and I will definitely give a 5 Flamin' Chili rating to the Specialized Sub-Zero helmet. It quite possibly saved my life.
At first I was dumb enough to want new Moratis. They did, after all, perform beautifully until they snapped.
I was in contact with Jeff at Mrazek, who told me Mrazek was having the cranks tested independently. Mora in the Czech Republic, meanwhile, was denying that their cranks could break.
I asked for my money back in April, and I have yet to see a check. I did get word by phone from Jeff, however, that the cranks did not perform well under testing.
BICYCLING and VELONEWS both gave Morati cranks their tacit stamp of approval. Did these publications do any independent testing?
I strongly doubt it, and as a result, my opinion of both has diminished. They should be more responsibile when reviewing new products, especially when the safety of the consumer may be at risk.
Because Morati cranks look pretty doesn't mean "the workmanship is first class", to quote one of the other reiewers in this note.
The welding of titanium is a complex process, which MUST happen oxygen-free. Corrupt the weld with oxygen, and the titanium becomes brittle and easier to break, a possible cause for the failure of my cranks.
Of the sixteen Morati reviews submitted so far, two cranksets failed. That's better than a ten percent failure rate. Manufacturers in Former Iron Curtain countries like the Czech Republic either have a lot to learn about quality control, they ignore it, they lie about it, or some combination of these.
The bottom line is, ANYONE WHO BUYS MORATI CRANKS DOES SO AT THEIR OWN RISK. Ditto for anyone who already owns a set, and continues to ride them.
a Cross Country Rider
from Czech republic
Date Reviewed: May 31, 2000
Strengths: light,stiff,good-looking, possibility to use custom chainrings
Weaknesses: price,durability-titanium is easy to scratch
They are the best cranks I've ever tried.I have switched from XTR 99s. I had to throw out the BB as well, these require standard square axle. Morati cranks are considerably lighter than the XTR, they seem to have the same stiffness and they allow the use of any chainring with any teeth number. (XTR are only replaceable with original 4-arm shimano 24-34-46, which are quite expensive- $200). I'm satisfied, but the question is, whether they are worth their price?
A long time bike racer friend warned me about low quality Ti components that had come from eastern Europe in the past. But on the other hand, for whatever it was worth, the crankset has a lifetime warranty. I was thinking it could be MY lifetime if the crank broke at the wrong time. A pound of titanium is stronger than a pound of aluminum. Comparing the Morati's weight to Raceface and XTR, the Morati should equal or better them in strength and durability. Although this means nothing in real world terms, it was the justification I had been looking for, so I ordered a Morati. I'm not a gonzo-kamakazi-DH rider, but I weigh 250lbs, and I like climbing hills almost as much as going down them. I have two broken crank arms in the to my credit. The Morati is well designed and beautifully fabricated. But when I took it out of the box my first impression was that it was too fragile for me. I almost sold it the same week I got it, but decided to try out the guarantee instead. When combining parts from various manufacturers there's always a potential for incompatibility. To achieve the spacing needed for Shimano index shifting, my Action-Tec Ti chainrings required some creative shimming, and mounting one chainring wrong side out. The crankarms set a little high on my Syncros bottom bracket, but engagement was adequate. Fortunately the Syncros BB allows chainline adjustment. Without this feature chainline would have been off quite a bit. Since my first time seeing the crank I've put over 500 miles on it. It has taken me into some very remote areas, and brought me back again. The assembly weighs a lot less than a good aluminum one. In spite of comments you may have heard denying it, saving this much rotating weight off the crank is noticeable to even a novice like myself. Fitting issues aside, I'm very pleased with this crank. Few of todays high tech lightweight bicycle components are going to outlast a 50+ pound 1958 Schwinn Black Phantom. If you can accept that, the cost of the Morati, and are willing to invest some effort to be sure it works with your components, there is no reason not to have one. It's a fine piece of craftsmanship, and better yet, it does what it's supposed to do very well. My next bike project will be a titanium hardtail, with a Morati crank.
Bike Setup: Built from modified K25000 frame & swingarm, dual crown fork, Hayes disc brakes, Mavis disc only DH rims, lots of modified and custom made pieces
from Grand Rapids,Ohio,USA
Date Reviewed: February 2, 2000
Strengths: These cranks are sooo strong and sooo stiff,I have them on my stock trials bike for two years now with out a single flaw,I usually will go through a crank set a year,that was until I got a pair of the MoraTi's.If they can hold up for trials they can hold up to anything.And an extra bonus they are very light.Thanks Jeff
Weaknesses: If you can stomach the price there is no weakness
These cranks withstand more than an average crank does,But thats what sets these apart from the masses,They are truely above average.And if you thought these were good wait untill you see the new version of these sometime next season,All I can say is they will be lighter,and stronger.How could this be? They are going to be using Ti plate to make the cranks,and a different Heat treating process,the shape will also look burlier.I cant wait.
from Brno,Czech republic
Date Reviewed: September 29, 1999
Strengths: ultralight very stiff looks pretty good
These cranks are much lighter than the XTR and nearly as stiff as cool race-face products. I tested the standart version (325g), and man I felt the lovely difference when pedaling! The price might seem to high, but as far as I saw,everything made from titan is unfortunately the same expensive,too.I can't afford that $400 now, but still 5 chillis.
Similar Products Used: STX....XTR 99,RaceFace,Roox
Bike Setup: Morati HC 1.1,Morati titanium frontshock,XT+XTR,Crossmax
a Cross-Country Rider
Date Reviewed: September 7, 1999
Strengths: Light and Stiff!
Yea, I know this is for mountain bikes, but just wanted to pass on some info about my experience with the Morati road crank version. I've had mine for one year and put about 2400 hard miles on it. Today, while doing a fast climb up a hill, my Morati right crank arm broke at the pedal end cleanly off. Needless to say I left a few square inches of my skin on the road. However, I was ready upset it was these cranks that failed me. Up until this time, they were wonderful and I still would recommend them for those who want a very light and stiff crank. I just wanted to let everyone know, no matter how great the product is, there's always a chance you get one that may fail on you when you're not expecting it.Despite this, I'll still give it three burning chilis. Anyone out there had similar problems with their mountain version?
Strengths: Lightweight and suprisingly Stiff as my XTR cranks
I can't say it's the best cause I havn't tried all the cranks! If it's as stiff as my XTR but lighter then an XTR it sure behave like the Best.Jared Morris is one confuse individual. He's willing to pay 8 grans for his bike then place a negitive review about this crank.
Similar Products Used: XTR, LX, and White Industry USA
Bike Setup: Merlin, RShox Sid
a Cross-Country Rider
Date Reviewed: July 20, 1999
Strengths: Stiffness and weight
These crank provides indentical durability and stiffness with all the cranks that I've tried. The only difference is the weight. Although I can not feel the weight difference when riding but with the cranks alone, you can feel and see the difference when it's on the scale. Because of my frame and brake system, my bike is not super light but these cranks help it from being too heavy.Sure the price of these cranks hurts my credit cards but you only live once. Why do people buy Lamborghini when you can get a other sport car that has identical performance? Luxury. Sorry about sounding snobby but it kills me when someone gives this product a poor rating base on cost. No I'm not rich nor that could buy some hot shot Itallian sport car but this is the only thing I can afford that I feel proud owning. I'm happy to include these set of cranks to my drean bike. To Jeff at Mrazek, thanks for your quality service. - Noel or Leon(noel spelled backward)
Similar Products Used: LX cranks, XTR, Race Face, and White Industry
Bike Setup: Titus Quasi Moto, xtr drive, Z2 bam, Hayes brakes
a Cross-Country Rider
Date Reviewed: June 8, 1999
Strengths: Stiff. Incredibly beautiful and well crafted. Simply the lightest.
Weaknesses: Cost keeps them from the masses. Wait! That maybe a good thing. Not enough Morati experienced riders to help spread the word.
I wanted to wait after at least a month of riding before posting this but after reading the last review which was more a personal statement against expensive cranks than a reasonable review, I just couldn't wait to share my POV.I have had the cranks for 1 week and remember how amazed I was after opening the package that came in the mail. The craftsmanship is top notch as it should be. They are simply THE lightest MTB cranks produced PERIOD. So, of course it won't be cheap! The satin ti finish will give any rider a woody before the first pedal stroke!Oh yeah pedal strokes. You wouldn't understand the benefit of extremely light rotating weight in your crankset if you have never used light cranks. It's like trying to imagine sex when you've never ever had physical contact with a woman.Why do I keep making referenced to sex? Maybe because now, I think more about night riding than cozy nights at home with my girlfriend. These cranks are just that good. They make me want to ride 24/7. I have to keep shifting gears to keep power to the pedals because they spin so fast. I'm accelerating up climbs with unprecedented speed and with less effort.Of course this phenomenal occurrence has to do with the overall reduction in weight on my bike. Weight reduction can be attained with other light cranks. There will be people who would suggest those Pryex carbon fiber cranks that are cheaper and weight 65 grams more than Moratis. That's okay. Even more people will even recommend that you save more money and stick to something like RaceFace or other aluminum cranks which are a bit heavier more but are more affordable. I can't say that these people are wrong but I can bet that they have never ridden on a pair of 315 gram Moratis.I'm so amazed at the power of light spinning weight that I'm setting aside my 747 pedals for a pair of bebops and have also bought lighter MTB shoes. To think pedaling could feel even better than it does now makes me think about all day MTB rides in West Virginia. (About Bebops & mud: see my Pedal listing: Which ones? Dilemma & solution posted in Tech talk 06/07/99 Weight, General, & Drive Train sections)It's odd that the benefit of light racing wheels with less rotating weight is a well known fact. People have no qualm with spending 6 to 7 hundred bucks on a light wheelset with rims that simply will not last forever or maybe even one season!At the same time, the issue of spinning weight which is directly connected to the riders pedaling effort isn't given the same attention. As a result people believe that spending 600 dollars on a pair of the lightest cranks available is absurd even when the lifetime of those cranks will exceed by far the lifetime of a super light wheel set.Maybe folks are looking for proof and results in competition. Hey, we all know that Tinker is an awesome rider who has proven his greatness time and time again. No, he doesn't ride Morati Cranks but he does ride those ultra feathery cranks made by Magic Motorcycle. He could have easily chosen to ride the Coda Tarantula crankset because its not like he has Magic Motorcycle Cranks written on his jersey. He just might have chosen to ride them because he wanted to and could. He's not bound by contract to use Shimano parts. Also, unlike the average guy, he doesn't have to worry about replacing those expensive chainrings that must be used with his cranks. Also Cadel Evans is another rider who may be using the Magic Motoercycle cranks. I'm not sure. Anyway, everyone knows about Mr. Evans cycling prowess. Superlight cranks an important aspect in producing supernatural speed? Hmmm.Last item. Jeff Mrazek of Mrazek Bicycles, who imports these cranks is a great guy. I called and talked to him myself when ordering these cranks. How many times do you buy an expensive after market part and feel like you've made a friend during the process? That's how I felt when buying from Jeff. I couldn't imagine having a problem (defect) with these cranks that he couldn't handle.If you don't like these cranks because you can't afford them, it's okay. I won't be hurt. But, just like the one guy in the area with a Ferrari (not counting LA), I won't ever mind the lack of elite company. Fortunately, however, I didn't have to sue anyone, embezzle corporate funds or star in a porn flick to buy these and there are no speed limits posted on MTB trails in the EAST! 5 Flamers. If I could make it 7, I would. 5 + 2 to offset the ridiculousness of the last review. PEACE and thanks Jeff!
Similar Products Used: Grafton, ShimanoXT & DX, CODA
Bike Setup: sub 25 lb. 98 C'dale Raven pimped out like an S.C. L.A. low rider! Talk about garish!
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: May 30, 1999
Strengths: strong, light, sweet looks
Sure they're nice and stiff and sweet, but who wants to spend that much on a pair of CRANKS? Go buy some Nytex/Pyro Carbon cranks for only 170 and be hapy that they're nicer than the Morati's, and better looking to.
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