Author Topic: Shorter or the same length cranks?  (Read 631 times)

Shorter or the same length cranks?
« on: July 01, 2019, 12:16:04 am »
Those of you who ride both upright and recumbent bikes. Do you have the same length cranks on each bike or run shorter or longer on recumbent?

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2019, 06:02:38 am »
yes, and no.
standard ultegra triple on the Cruzbike, shortened cranks with compact double on the M5
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Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2019, 07:39:19 am »
All my bikes, including my trike have normal length cranks.
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Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
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Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2019, 12:41:55 pm »
165 on the (upright) fixed because the 170s were out of stock, 172.5 on the Baron because that was what was installed by the factory, 170 on everything else.
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Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2019, 01:57:28 pm »
In our stable:

152.5 on the ICE, because that was their short crank factory option.
155 on the SMGT, because 170mm was clearly too long.
155 on the Baron, because it was proven to work on the SMGT.
160 on the Discovery and the Brompton, which is available cheaply from Spa (155mm cranks are now expensive unobtanium) and seems to work well.
165 on the Reasonably Priced Mountain Bicycle, because that's the shortest XT cranksets come in.


I find that 170mm is Too Long - feels like my legs are flapping about, rather than working efficiently.  (I'm sure many cyclists, particularly women, have never used anything else and think that's what cycling is supposed to feel like.  I'm also sure that many cyclists, particularly tall men, haven't a clue what I'm talking about.)
152.5 is basically indistinguishable from 155, and seems a good fit for barakta.
I've ridden a bike with 140mm cranks, those felt silly.  (But on the gripping hand, I could ride it without trouble in a way that I wouldn't be able to with 180mm.)

Everything in between seems to fit me well enough, with the usual preference towards shorter cranks for spinnier riding.  I'm sure I'd be fine with 160mm cranks on everything.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2019, 05:52:34 pm »
So in other words don't sweat it too much if you decide to have different length cranks on different bikes.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2019, 06:01:39 pm »
Agreed.  If anything - once you discount restraints like pedal strike and fitting inside fairings - it's more about the style of riding than the bike (slightly longer cranks seem useful off road, where you're not just spinning along at your optimum cadence), though n+1 rule means there tends to be some correlation.  Short cranks (relative to what fits your legs) aren't magic, they just make it a bit easier to pedal at higher cadences.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2019, 08:57:21 pm »
170’s on my singlespeed to give me leverage standing on the pedals up the hills round here.

165’s on the touring bike and audax bike which is the textbook length for my legs.

I stopped riding these bikes any distance a couple of years ago after getting arthritis in the wrists and switched to recumbent.

155 on the ICE Sprint (Slug would have been more appropriate than Sprint) recumbent trike. I put this short length on after speaking to the guys who make ICE trikes who at over 6’ tall apparently used this length to set PB speeds. I find this short crank marginally easier on my knees when lugging my ridiculously heavy trike up hills. Even with this concession on crank length riding the trike up hills still feels marginally less pleasant than having nettles massaged under my eyelids.


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Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2019, 08:07:30 pm »
148mm on the SWB
165mm on the LWB
170mm on all the uprights

Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2019, 08:16:23 am »
At a BHPC race event a few years ago a competitor had multi drilled cranks, it wasn't until after the racing that he noticed one crank was 170mm and the other 155mm, no he hasn't got a club foot!  Obviously not deemed to be "that" crucial over a short distance.

Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2019, 08:43:34 am »
I ride 170mm for general upright use.  Have 175 on the mtb without any problems.  On the recumbent I switched down to 155 and stayed there.

[Edit - new toy (muni) is 150, but I haven't acquired skill on it to notice any difference yet.]

Socks

  • FFCT rally, France 2012
Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2019, 09:03:42 am »
170 on my uprights.

170 on swb and lwb recumbents.

150 on one swb recumbent.  So obviously I'm using 170 length most of the time and it is appropriate for my height and leg length.


Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2019, 01:40:33 pm »
I would like to try shorter cranks on my bent trike.
But I can only get 170mm kick plates for the Schlumpf high speed drive.
So the cranks are 170mm long.

Easy ..........  ;D

Re: Shorter or the same length cranks?
« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2019, 02:38:15 pm »
Going to take 175mm XTR cranks and SPD pedals off old mtn bike and see how they work on upcoming recumbent build.  It's the no extra cost option and if I get on with them brilliant, if not I can shell out for some shorter cranks. Im using 170mm cranks on current recumbent just fine. Also going to reuse old 9 speed xtr rear derailleur. Reuse of front derailleur depends on post sizing compared  to mtn bike seat tube sizing. Quite funny pondering this as haven't got frame set yet.