BikeBiz takes a look at the latest chains, gears and cranks from some of the leading brands in the sector, including Izumi, Gusset Components, KMC, Campagnolo, Shimano, Absoluteblack, Race Face, Cane Creek, SRAM, Classified, Rotor, Sunrace and Praxis
This guide first appeared in October’s edition of BikeBiz magazine – get your free subscription here
Izumi – 1/2 x 1/8 Chains
It was an Izumi chain that helped power Dan Bigham to his recent World hour record. Izumi is also the chain of choice for many World and Olympic Track Cycling Champions. Izumi chains are made in Japan and are the mark of absolute toughness and quality for fixie track and urban bikes. The Japanese NJS-approved Super-Tough is the most formidable chain, built for a purpose it looks the part too, with a stunning gold and black finish. Izumi’s Standard 1/2x 1/8 chains are available in Black, Silver and Gold at a more affordable price for a funky and functional upgrade to you your urban warrior or track speedster!
RRP: from £14.99 to £79.99
Gusset Components – Oil Slick Chains
Distributor: Ison Distribution
Upgrade your drive train with the Gusset Oil Slick Chains. Not only do they look great, but they also perform faultlessly on road, MTB, gravel and BMX bikes, with a self-lubricating PTFE coating for longevity. 10-speed or 11-speed GS options, or for BMX, there is the MX model that has flat back for grinds and is compatible on 9t Drivers, or also the Slink Half-link chain.
RRP: From £29.99
KMC – X11-R Grey Chain
Distributor: Chicken CycleKit
A high-quality and extremely durable 11-speed chain available in both 114 and 118 Links. It provides the high-quality chain technology that you’ve come to expect from KMC but with a cheaper price tag. Compatible with all 11x Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo systems and non-directional.
Campagnolo – 12x Chorus Chain
Distributor: Chicken CycleKit
Campagnolo’s Chorus 12-speed chain is not only suitable for any Campagnolo rim or disc brake 12-speed groupset, but it also offers one of smoothest and precise shifting performances available.
Shimano – 105 Di2
Di2 technology finally arrives to Shimano’s third-tier groupset. 105 Di2 brings all the shifting quality of Dura-Ace and Ultegra and packs it into a more affordable package. Using the same semi-wireless setup as its more expensive siblings, 105 Di2 is incredibly easy to set up using the E-Tube app, and brings many other great features to 105 level for the first time.
Absoluteblack – Carbon Mech Cage for SRAM AXS 12spd
Hollowcage for eTap AXS Red and Force 12spd derailleur finally makes your AXS drivetrain whisper quiet. The revolutionary mono-plate OSPW is the quietest and best shifting oversized derailleur cage for eTap AXS created to date. Hollowcage OSPW has a carbon-polymer mono-plate construction with bespoke, oversized, full ceramic bearings and the most advanced silencing pulleys ever made. Sram eTap AXS is known to be louder than other drivetrains. The Hollowcage with Silent “Xring Pulley” completely eliminates this problem allowing you to enjoy the ride.
Race Face – AEffect-R E-Bike Cranks (Arms Only)
Distributor: Silverfish UK
Combine smooth-pedalling ergonomics with an extra-burly eMTB build. The Race Face Aeffect R cranks are e-optimised for Bosch G4 covering Trail, All-Mtn, Enduro and eMTB use. They come in 160, 165 and 170mm crank lengths for improved ground clearance on smaller sizes and at 444g are among the lightest alloy eMTB cranks out there.
Cane Creek – eeWings All-Road
Distributor: Extra UK
The eeWings All-Road titanium cranks and the included CNC aluminium bottom bracket preloader are the ultimate in stiffness and durability while weighing in at less than 400 grams. Available in 170, 172.5 and 175mm either with or without a Stages power metre. All eeWings cranks comes with Cane Creek’s legendary 10-year guarantee.
Weblink: Cane Creek eeWings All-Road (extrauk.co.uk)
SRAM – Rival AXS Power Meter Upgrade
Power every ride. We’ve taken the reliability, elegance, and features of Quarq’s legendary crank-based power meter and dropped the barrier to entry once again. This new power meter platform is entirely contained within the DUB spindle for clean integration that fits more bikes than ever. Its invisible technology that adds minimal weight and will help you get to the finish line faster and can be used to upgrade any eTap AXS bike to power.
Classified – Hub Only Powershift Kit
Classified introduces Powershift. A wireless shifting technology in the rear hub, replacing the functionality of the front derailleur while allowing you to change gears instantaneously, under full load, on any terrain and with uncompromised ratio coverage and gear steps.
Absoluteblack – Road Oval Premium 2X for Cannondale, black
Absoluteblack Premium Cannondale Hollowgram compatible 2X road direct mount Oval chainrings designed for Hollowgram crank family: SI, SL, SISL, SISL2. Incredibly stiff and light. Super fast shifting thanks to the patented shifting ramp design. It is the most Premium oval chainring on the market with scientifically proven performance gains.
Race Face – Bosch G4 e-MTB Direct Mount Shimano 12 Speed Chainring 36T
Distributor: Silverfish UK
The Race Face Bosch G4 direct mount rings features tough a steel construction and is strong and hard-wearing with enough stiffness for all your e-MTB torque needs. Its narrow-wide tooth profile is SHI-12 spd compatible and provides secure chain retention. Designed to mount directly to Bosch Gen4 Performance Line CX motor. Two sizes and two chain lines to ensure the perfect fit, plus a NW tooth profile means you’re always pedalling smooth, even when the trail gets rough.
Rotor – Vegast 2x Direct Mount Crankset
Distributor: Velotech Services
Vegast’s innovative modular system allows you to select each crank component based on your unique requirements. Direct Mount technology features a proprietary spline interface connecting crank arm, axle and chainring allowing you to easily assemble and disassemble your crankset with only one bolt. Crafted using expert CNC processes, Vegast includes Rotors Trinity Drilling System, with three internal holes from axle to pedal, giving the benefit of an exceptionally light crank with superior stiffness, at an affordable price point. Available in 165mm, 170mm, 172.5mm and 175mm crank length. Power upgrade options are available with the INspider power spider.
RRP: From £334.50
Sunrace – 22/32/42 175mm 9 Speed Chainset & 22/36 175mm 10 Speed Chainset
Distributor: Walkers Cycle Components
An intermediate-level black chainset, ideal for gravel, city, e-bike and MTB riding. The 10-speed chainset also includes the bottom bracket.
RRP: £59.99 & £120
Praxis – Zayante S Chainset
Distributor: Upgrade Bikes
The US-led brand Praxis makes precision forged and machined parts but also perfected their own in-house hollow-form carbon cranks exclusively in their Taiwan factory. With its 30mm diameter M30 alloy axle, carbon arms, direct mount forged alloy spider and combination of cold forged and machined “lever time” S-rings, the Zayante-S chainset packs high performance for low weight (680g, 172×50/34) and great value. There is a wide range of M30-compatible BBs, crank lengths, and ring options. Increasingly popular as standard spec on large brands Praxis is established as the performance upgrade.
RRP: £240 with rings