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surly inbred
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1,539 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've noticed a couple online retailers listing the XT Octalink as discontinued already. I want to pick up a new set but was hoping to wait until the offseason. I'm not sold on ISIS and not too familiar with the integrated BB set-up (although I'm familiar with it's high price :rolleyes: ) Should I snatch a set up now before they're completely gone?

~mud
 

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Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
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10,908 Posts
Hell no its not. Octalink ver.2 (XT/LX) is trickling down to the lower price point models. Deore and Alivio and likely the hybrid groups soon. They have the BBs down to the ES31 level already and will likely be even lower next year or so. Octalink ver.1 on the other hand is likely (the original spline version that was used by XTR 96-02, DuraAce 97-03, Ultegra600 and 105SC) to be replaced by the new ver.3 stuff (aka Hollowcore II).
 

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MTB Rider
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3,007 Posts
Wish they would switch to ISIS ...

muddog999 said:
I've noticed a couple online retailers listing the XT Octalink as discontinued already. I want to pick up a new set but was hoping to wait until the offseason. I'm not sold on ISIS and not too familiar with the integrated BB set-up (although I'm familiar with it's high price :rolleyes: ) Should I snatch a set up now before they're completely gone?

~mud
It would be nice if everybody could get on the same standard. But I guess this is like the computer world. There is Intel, and then there is the open standard that everybody else uses.
 

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Trail rider and racer
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4,691 Posts
willtsmith_nwi said:
It would be nice if everybody could get on the same standard. But I guess this is like the computer world. There is Intel, and then there is the open standard that everybody else uses.
ISIS sucks, thats why no body jumped on that bandwagon.
 

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MTB Rider
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3,007 Posts
Well Octalink for EVERYBODY then !!!!!

Trevor! said:
ISIS sucks, thats why no body jumped on that bandwagon.
;-) Well, then it woulld be nice if the other guys settled on Octalink (provided it isn't patented). I just would like to see everyone settle on a standard so Shimano Bottom Brackets will match up with 3rd party cranks and vice-versa.
 

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ballbuster
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12,718 Posts
Sure, good deals to be had

muddog999 said:
I've noticed a couple online retailers listing the XT Octalink as discontinued already. I want to pick up a new set but was hoping to wait until the offseason. I'm not sold on ISIS and not too familiar with the integrated BB set-up (although I'm familiar with it's high price :rolleyes: ) Should I snatch a set up now before they're completely gone?

~mud
But the crank arms have been discounted to $90 and the BB to $25 since Jan '03 when I got mine. Are you seeing them for cheaper out there?

Solid as a rock that set is. Light (except for the BB), strong and cheap.

There are some other companies making Octalink V2 crank arms, but there really is only one BB available from Shimano. It's a tad heavy for the weight weenie set, but it's solid and runs forever. It's not servicable, but for $25 its a cheap replacement when/if it goes.
 

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Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
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10,908 Posts
willtsmith_nwi said:
;-) Well, then it woulld be nice if the other guys settled on Octalink (provided it isn't patented). I just would like to see everyone settle on a standard so Shimano Bottom Brackets will match up with 3rd party cranks and vice-versa.
Actually that was never an issue. See shimano patented the octalink splines yes, and refused to allow aftermarket BBs to be produced by other vendors using that spline, but they quite liberally licensed the patent to other crank makers. Also they did allow OEM only licensing of the BB (FSA made a octalink BB for selected brands that needed a special length spindle shimano was unwilling to produce). Adventure Components, Truvativ, FSA, Coda, Profile Designs, and many others have offered Octalink compatible splined cranks. I have a pair of the Adventure Components LoPro cranks on my Giant presently, with an XTR M950 BB.

But companies like Raceface couldn't compete in quality terms with shimano's hollowcore cranks, and since they lacked a decent R&D budget to come up with AMAZING products, they instead collaborated with truvativ and chris king to develop a goofy new standard for splines that would allow aftermarket BB sales (something raceface had a vested interest in, as it was one of their few products at the time), which has produced ISIS, a generally mediocure product idea. Mediocure because they never bothered to think that maybe there was a reason shimano was only slowly tricking down Octalink to its other group levels, and why their first BBs were built with roller bearings. Oh yeah...BEARINGs....those things... the stuff that gets physically smaller and requiring higher tolerances when you keep the outside BB dimensions the same, and reduce the space available in the inside dimensions (from larger diameter spindle).
 

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Derailleurless
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9,122 Posts
As outboard bearing designs trickle down to LX this coming season, the only thing I "fear" as Octalink goes bye-bye is the silly length ES51 121 and 126mm bottom brackets becomming extinct. I have every reason to expect these cranks to outlast my square tapers, some of which are 10 years old. But a crank in any condition is pretty useless without a properly sized bottom bracket to go with it.
 

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Registered
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571 Posts
pimpbot said:
...There are some other companies making Octalink V2 crank arms...
Yup. I have set of Specialized Strongarm II cranks that I have been happy with for two years now. They are Octolink and were OE on an Stumpie FSR. I have moved these cranks to at least 3 XC frames over the past two years.

My guess is that Shimano will keep making Octolink and it'll just trickle down to their lower spec'd comfort bike class groups.

I'll keep holding out and riding my current cranks til the outboard bearing design get's more affordable, ala LX in the near future.
 

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Daniel the Dog
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6,761 Posts
I hope not....

muddog999 said:
I've noticed a couple online retailers listing the XT Octalink as discontinued already. I want to pick up a new set but was hoping to wait until the offseason. I'm not sold on ISIS and not too familiar with the integrated BB set-up (although I'm familiar with it's high price :rolleyes: ) Should I snatch a set up now before they're completely gone?

~mud
I have been very happy with my XT crank, Race Face rings, and ES71 BB. Works perfect. I am interested in the Deus, but for $200 plus, I will keep my set up. Duckman's set up is pretty cool.

Jaybo
 
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