Finding the Best MTB Crankset for Your Bike
A crankset is a quick upgrade you can make on your mountain bike to open up different gearing options, make your bike that much more bombproof, and save some weight. Below are a few frequently asked questions about MTB crankset and bottom bracket compatibility.
Remy Metailler's 2021 Propain Tyee mullet build. Remy is using the ROTOR 1x13 Groupset and KAPIC Crankset with Q-rings. Photo by AJ Barlas @ardorbrand
Is my bike compatible with a ROTOR crankset?
ROTOR Cranksets use 30mm spindles across the board. Different widths are available for traditional (135mm) rear axle spacing, Boost, Superboost, or DH spacing. Using one of our bottom brackets, almost any bike is is compatible. If you're looking for specific details, the spacer charts linked below have info for BSA, BB30, BB84, PF30, BB89, and BB92:
Cranksets by Discipline:
Top 3 Reasons to Upgrade MTB Cranksets:
1. Lighter cranks
One of the main reasons why we tend to opt for upgrading the crankset is because of its weight. At ROTOR we work with many models made of different super light aluminum alloys, such as the Kapic version made of 6082 aluminum that weighs 355 grams in 170 mm length without the bottom bracket. Kapic cranks are manufactured using CNC machining, and include our Trinity Drilling System, a process by which 3 longitudinal holes are drilled along the inside of the crank arm, thus eliminating unnecessary material and making them lighter without compromising their exceptional stiffness-to-weight ratio.
The Kapic range also has its equivalent in carbon if you want to seek maximum stiffness as we explain in the next point. The Kapic Carbon cranks have a weight of just 429 grams at 175 mm in length without the bottom bracket. They are very resistant to impacts and have ‘bumper’ type protectors to customize and protect at the same time.
A change of cranks, depending on the range, model and material you start with, can give you a weight saving of between 150 and 300 grams, or even more if you come from a set of basic range cranks.
2. More stiffness and compatibility of chainrings and bottom bracket
At ROTOR one of the key points to all our types of mountain bike cranks is stiffness, whether in 6082 aluminum on the Kapic and R-Raptor, carbon on the Kapic Carbon or 7075 aluminum on the R-Hawk, our production standards always seek outstanding stiffness so that all the pedaling force is transmitted as well as possible to the rear wheel. In terms of stiffness, not only are the cranks very important, but also the bottom bracket. For this reason, at ROTOR we work with 30mm diameter crank axles that ensure the rigidity of the crank / axle interface, in addition to a great compatibility of sizes.
Compatibility is also a good reason to change cranks, since you will be able to choose the chainring that best suits your needs with the Direct Mount, OCP anchoring systems, both in our axle anchoring systems and in our Direct Mount crank fitment systems. In addition, at ROTOR, all our mountain bike cranks are available in three sizes, 165, 170 and 175mm so that you can adapt them to your preferences, or if you get a bike fit that tells you that you need cranks in a different length. You will have no problem adapting the ROTOR cranks as they are compatible with the BB30, BBRight, BSA, Press Fit 30, Press Fit 4630 bottom bracket systems. See charts linked at the top of the page for specific spacing.
3. Fitment of an integrated powermeter
And if you change your cranks, why not fit a powermeter at the same time? One of the key points of the INpower and 2INpower systems is the compatibility with the different types of bottom bracket, chainrings and crank length. At ROTOR we make it very easy for you to install any of our INpower systems, as they are compatible with BB30, Pressfit 30, BSA, BB89 and BB92 bottom bracket axles. Both the INpower and 2INpower systems connect with all kinds of external devices through the ANT + and Bluetooth Smart protocols. The battery life of the INpower system is up to 300 hours, while that of the 2INpower is about 250 hours of use.
In addition, by installing any of our crank systems with a powermeter, you can continue to select the type of chainring you want, even with OCP technology, as well as being able to choose if you prefer oval chainrings or conventional round chainrings.
Consider that the cranks are one of the fundamental elements of the pedaling cycle. They are not only a point where you can save a few grams, but also, their stiffness, together with that of the bottom bracket, will help you improve the transmission of the pedal stroke. Choose the right length, choose the powermeter option if you want to control your workouts as much as possible and do not forget that chainring compatibility is essential for the transmission to have a perfect balance.