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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey folks,
Let me first say this is my first post here. I've screwed around on this website for a year or so and I dig it. I'm hoping to get some good advice.

I ramble a lot so here is my question:

Basically what I am asking, For about $100 what crankset would you put on your bike?

Here is the background if you would like to read on...

Here's the deal. I got into biking two years ago. I fell in love and I ride A LOT now. I'm five minutes from starting my 50 miles today...anyways...

I bought my first "real" bike a couple months back and I love it. Marin Alpine Trail 29'er. I've read (here) much about the faults of the stock, less than stellar crankset (Truvativ Isoflow) and bottom bracket. Has mine had a problem yet? Well, no. It has pushing a thousand miles on it and it squeaks once in a great while. No biggie.

That doesn't matter though! I can't leave #%$ stock. I want to upgrade to a newer, better crankset and bottom bracket. Here is what I have for options within my $$$ bracket.

I've found a few Truvativ FireX 3.3 w/ GXP bottom brackets I can probably install myself.

Or, my local shop (who has treated me REALLY well, seriously) thinks I would be cool with Shimano Deore LX or maybe XT.

I ride off road about 25 percent of the time otherwise I am on the road, kind of "urban crawling" if you want to call it that (I live in San Antonio now...ehh...and I'm in Medical School).

I've heard good and bad about the Truvativ. The Shimano stuff seems like it might be getting reputation (good and bad) based on brand recognition.

Thanks a ton for the help, now go ride.
 

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Shimano SLX. They can be had for around $130, I have one and I like it. The arms are actually lighter than the XT's, so with a little modding you can have a really nice crankset.

Here's mine with a single ring on it:

 

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I agree about the SLX, but I have an Isoflow on my SS and it is a fine crankset , just a bit heavy. You can get a LX crankset from jensonusa.com for $89-. I would ride it a bit before you bother upgrading anything. Because upgrade-itis is have to cure once you catch it!
 

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SLX is the best value out there IMO of your are buying new. I personally and standardizing all six of or bikes to Shimano XT.

I have a Race Face Deus three ring (22/32/44) take off from my Knoa Hei Hei... it's used but in very servicable condition. I'd sell it to you for way less than your budget..

If your want brand new SLX is hard to beat.
 

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Rebmem Rbtm
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I got the Shimano Deore LX and I love it. Picked it up from JensonUSA for $89.00 plus shipping. That does not include the tools needed to uninstall my old crank and the tools needed to install my new one. The LX is light and stiff. Just like daddy likes it.
 

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psycho cyclo addict
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+1 for the Shimano LX (FC-M582). I paid less than that ~6 months ago... bought 2 of them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok, so I know I want to upgrade. I have the -itis. I upgrade everything else, why not my bike? But what can I can actually expect, say, on my first ride with a new upgraded crank? Faster? More efficient (i.e. less effort on hill climbs for instance)? Maybe I'll just be the coolest kid on the block...heh...
 

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AKmonzter said:
Ok, so I know I want to upgrade. I have the -itis. I upgrade everything else, why not my bike? But what can I can actually expect, say, on my first ride with a new upgraded crank? Faster? More efficient (i.e. less effort on hill climbs for instance)? Maybe I'll just be the coolest kid on the block...heh...
Chain suck if it's a Race Face...
 

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+1 for the SLX. It's nice and light, durable, and looks quite sexy if I do say so myself. I bought one last year from blue sky cycling and never looked back.
 

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Bike to the Bone...
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AKmonzter said:
Ok, so I know I want to upgrade. I have the -itis. I upgrade everything else, why not my bike? But what can I can actually expect, say, on my first ride with a new upgraded crank? Faster? More efficient (i.e. less effort on hill climbs for instance)? Maybe I'll just be the coolest kid on the block...heh...
I went from a Shimano Hone crank (same as LX but black) to a SLX. I really wasn't expecting anything except looks, but I did feel the crank more stiff in a better sense.
 

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saddlemeat
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AKmonzter said:
Ok, so I know I want to upgrade. I have the -itis. I upgrade everything else, why not my bike? But what can I can actually expect, say, on my first ride with a new upgraded crank? Faster? More efficient (i.e. less effort on hill climbs for instance)? Maybe I'll just be the coolest kid on the block...heh...
You will probably notice that the pedal response is slightly more positive due to increased crank stiffness for part of the first ride. The rest is cumulative so changing one part is not very noticeable.

My current xtr 970 crankset is the best I have ever used because it doesn't ever catch my ankle in awkward off camber situations.
 

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Don't Tread on Me
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Shimano is the only way to go when it comes to cranksets in your price range. The only other crankset I would ever consider would be a FSA crankset (way out of your price range).
 

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AKmonzter said:
But what can I can actually expect, say, on my first ride with a new upgraded crank?
Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Even if new crank is lighter, you will be not able to notice that difference alone. If your old crank is working properly, you will not notice any difference in shifting quality. So expect nothing. You will just spend some bucks on some stuff you do not really need :)
 

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insert sarcasm here
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Funny, my bike is in the process of having a Firex 3.3 put on. My race face deus was trashed so I had to find a cheap replacement. I'll let you know how it feels once my bike is up and running. If you want an XT crank, be prepared to spend over $100, unless you buy used.
 

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Bike to the Bone...
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I and a friend DID notice a difference in stiffness going from a Hone (LX) crankset to a SLX. I can't tell if it makes any difference in shifting.
 

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chainrings

sorry to interupt this thread but this is my first visit and I can't find how to start a new post on this website... so please let me know or perhaps someone can answer my question and show me how to start a post/question.

Can I replace my Shimano XT drivetrain parts with LX or Deore? (heavier but longer lasting) Will the chainrings fit my cranks or should I replace them with same model as chainrings?
I believe in getting the best possible bottom bracket and chain but am happy to push heavier cassette and chainrings around if they will last longer.

Here's some background: I ride to keep fit, have fun, catch up with mates, and am never going to win but ride the odd local 100km MTB race.

all suggestions are very welcome and humble apologies again for hijacking your thread

:D
 

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I had a similiar question AKmonster had. If you don't mind I'll hijack your thread and ask a few questions about my own search fro new cranks.
I'm looking to buy new cranks and I want to def upgrade, but I'm not sure how good my existing cranks are. Presently I have Truvativ ISIS Firex. They are stock and have served me well for 2k + hard trail miles in Phoenix. I want to buy atleast one step up in quality to upgrade. I'm considering used SLX but I am open to suggestions. I like the look of the Truvative Stylo from transition bikes and its in my price range ($100+). Weight isnt a big deal, I want durability and will buy used if they are a good brand. What models do you suggest? I know what Shimano I want, what about Race Face, Truvativ and sram? I'm kinda buying blind here if I picked anyhting but the shimano brand.
 

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jofmon said:
I want to buy atleast one step up in quality to upgrade. I'm considering used SLX but I am open to suggestions.
In general bicycle transmission is something you do not want to buy used. Chain, sprockets and chainrings need regular replacement because they are doing most of the job on your bike. It is almost like timing belt in a car. Would you buy used cam belt?

It is OK to buy used cranks as long as you know what you are doing: you need to detect if chainrings are worn (there are special tools for that) or you need to be ready to replace worn chainrings. And keep in mind, that aftermarket chainrings could be expensive. Sometimes it is cheaper to buy new crankset than 3 matching chainrings.

I do not really understand this idea of upgrading perfectly good cranksets. Do not take me wrong. Sometimes you really want to do it, ie. if you are weight weenie and want something definitely lighter or something like that. But there are lots of things to upgrade on most of the bikes which will make a much bigger difference.

For me the single most important upgrade i ever made on any bike was clipless pedals. Try SPD first if you do not use em and learn it - probably in a hard, but rewarding way.

The second most important upgrade was a saddle. I tried thru several different models until i settled for really matching one (for me it is WTB Racket V, but for you it may be something different, because every ass is different).

The third most important upgrade was from lousy front shock to really good one.

The fourth most important upgrade was handlebar. It took me some time to find matching angle and lenght (there is a huuuge difference in your hands position between 5 and 7 and 9 sweep or between 580 and 660 and 710 cm) and this is really something which affects your riding.
 
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