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crank length and bike weight in track sprinting

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crank length and bike weight in track sprinting

Old 03-25-16, 12:05 AM
  #51  
carleton
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Originally Posted by Baby Puke View Post
Carleton, you should read that article I linked to before. it's going shorter even for roadies these days, so this may apply to pursuits as well. It seems like any rider whose primary obstacle is air resistance would be better served by going shorter. But, for all of us this as academic and just a hobby, so why not experiment.
Hey, I'm with you. Here I am in the Road forum strongly suggesting that they start using 165mm cranks...5 years ago:

Originally Posted by carleton View Post
Crank length his highly personal and as others have already stated, personal preference based on feel trumps any leg length formula.

Those who mash and grind lower cadences will likely prefer longer. Those who "spin to win" with higher cadences will likely prefer shorter. Ironically, for a given cadence, longer crank arms require higher footspeed than short crank arms because the foot has to cover the longer radius in the same time period.

It's easier to cover moves by quickly accelerating with shorter crank arms. It's obviously easier to climb with the mechanical advantage of the longer lever of longer arms.

Consider the terrain when choosing a crank length. If you ride/race a hilly course, maybe longer will be better. If you ride/race a flat course, maybe shorter will be better. Maybe have 2 sets of cranks for different styles of riding/racing, just like people have compact cranks and big cassettes for when they ride in the mountains and a different setup for everything else.

For example, maybe have a set of 165mm cranks for that flat crit and 172.5 or 175 for the hilly road race. Neuromuscular adaptation won't be an issue. People often ride road, MTB, TT, or track bikes interchangeably through the month all with different crank lengths. You will have to adjust saddle height, but that's not a major issue.

I think one setup doesn't have to work for all terrain and types of riding. I think that's where all of the different opinions come in. A guy racing in Florida is gonna LOVE 167.5s whereas a guy in North Georgia cringes at the thought.
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Old 03-25-16, 12:30 AM
  #52  
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Also 5 years ago:

Originally Posted by carleton View Post
Thanks for responding.

I'm working with a local fit expert (Specialized 3D fit) named Clovis Anderson (BRA) who also happens to be an Olympian in the sport of track. He was coached by Eddie B. Clovis came highly recommended and I can vouch that he really knows his stuff. But, he isn't my coach so I can't really bug him as much as I'd like.

I've lost some weight and increased my flexibility by focusing on both for the past few months. I've also moved to 165mm cranks after riding 167.5mm for the last 2 seasons. All of this has allowed me to adopt a lower riding position.

I recently had a fit where I asked him to put me in the sprint position that he'd to see me race in 2012. So he moved me from a 120mm, 0 degree stem, with 15mm stack to a 120mm, -17 degree stem, with no stack which moved my bars down 50mm and out 10mm. This definitely put me in the track sprint position which I could not comfortably maintain in the past. Similar to this:

(this is Matthew Crampton, not me)


I could not maintain it because I didn't have the flexibility or lower weight to do so effectively. I'd try it for a few sessions mid-season then go back to a much higher position that was more powerful. Now I'm making time to do this.

As you can imagine, my body is like "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!".
...
I saw some immediate gains in fluidity with the shorter cranks...but also experienced lots of new fatigue. Sometimes I'll get off the rollers after only 10 minutes (this is rare, though). I do experience some unusually tight glutes after my rides. And my back is much tighter later in the evening at bedtime. It should be noted that I switched to 165mm cranks on my road bike, too, in order to speed up the adjustment process for neuromuscular work. I don't care about the loss of leverage for climbing or whatnot. My road bike isn't for road racing.

I have an SRM on the track bike. I haven't really put much stock into the numbers yet because I know that I'm going though an adjustment period...I just don't know for how long, haha.
So, I'm with you man. I was with you 5 whole years ago
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Old 03-25-16, 12:37 AM
  #53  
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@babyPuke, I was riding 165s when we did this together:



Our 1st man, Carleton, did a blazing acceleration out of t2 and Paul (2nd man) was gapped, but not as bad as last year. By the line, it was probably 5 lengths so not a total disaster, but definitely not ideal. I didn't freak out and just rested on his wheel, nearly skimming his tire. He faded a bit, but gradually, and I readied, backing off out of t4 and rolling on through the straight.
Keirin-jo Tourist: October 2012


PROFIT!!


OK...maybe I'm making your point.

But, my bigger point is that we should experiment. I got even faster using 172.5s... I swear (in all seriousness...I really did)...then BAM...allergies and on-track dizzy spells.
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Old 03-25-16, 09:07 AM
  #54  
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Haha, see? It works!

Jeez, look at how little Henry is there!

Seriously though, this is something Zac was telling me about years ago, and I thought he was a bit nutty with it. And it goes beyond just getting lower, though I won't get into the more esoteric stuff he was onto. I'm still on 167.5, but I'd like to go shorter, but realistically that's gonna be 165. A buddy of mine is now on 155 and really liking it with no loss of speed on the same gears, and still getting the new fit sorted. I think there's something to this.

Relatedly or not, I recently went from 172.5 to 170 on my road bike, and found I was a lot more comfortable on climbs as well as feeling better doing sprint-type stuff. So I do think there's something to it, but as you say it's all individual and feel plays a big part. If 172.5 works for you, then it works for you.
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Old 03-25-16, 09:44 AM
  #55  
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For me, being Man 1 using 172.5 and bigger gears:

1: I'd have less of a chance to drop my #2 .
2: My drop-off speeds were higher in early season testing.

I can spin 172.5 at 140 RPM.
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Old 03-25-16, 11:04 AM
  #56  
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Just want to point out that you're probably not slower on shorter cranks, but you're also probably only faster if hip angle is a limiter. If you're super flexible, I don't think changing crank length is going to make you faster or slower (after you adapt)
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Old 03-25-16, 05:24 PM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by wens View Post
Just want to point out that you're probably not slower on shorter cranks, but you're also probably only faster if hip angle is a limiter. If you're super flexible, I don't think changing crank length is going to make you faster or slower (after you adapt)
Yeah, I think it's more of a event-specific tuning for the reasons stated above.

For example, if I were doing a Standing 250M event, maybe 165. I'd rev a lot then taper off at the finish. But, if I were doing Man 1 where I need to 1) not drop man 2, and 2) drop the team off at my max speed, then a bigger gear and longer cranks would be in order.

Same with a standing 500M. Longer was better for me.

But 165s were great for me hanging on in bunch races. I remember riding 165s and finished a points race on the lead lap and impressed my teammates because usually I'll be toast mid way and drop out.
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Old 03-26-16, 10:42 AM
  #58  
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I've been trying to find 165's to re-outfit a couple of my road bikes for a month now. Problem is i'm a nerd so i'm not going to buy a new Dura Ace or Ultegra crank to put on an otherwise D-A 7700 or 7800 bike

165's are out there as they are OEM on a lot of short bikes, and you can order anything brand new i guess, but not a lot of 165's (road stuff) are out there in the aftermarket. I just want to open the hip agle to achieve a little more comfortable position while i'm riding in the drops


Regarding bike weight - one should pick up one of the Trimble built GT's or a Corima-- I guess now these are pretty dated but they were ridden by the best in the world at 18-20 pounds depending on size. I recall our Superdrome hotshoe, Jeff Labauve,s bike having a steel fork, steerer and a tall Salsa mtb looking riser stem to boot --- a heavy bike, but darn tough to argue with results. You needed a bit of substance to deal with 225 lb guys putting out 2300 or so peak watts
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Old 03-26-16, 10:57 AM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by DMC707 View Post
I've been trying to find 165's to re-outfit a couple of my road bikes for a month now. Problem is i'm a nerd so i'm not going to buy a new Dura Ace or Ultegra crank to put on an otherwise D-A 7700 or 7800 bike

165's are out there as they are OEM on a lot of short bikes, and you can order anything brand new i guess, but not a lot of 165's (road stuff) are out there in the aftermarket. I just want to open the hip agle to achieve a little more comfortable position while i'm riding in the drops


Regarding bike weight - one should pick up one of the Trimble built GT's or a Corima-- I guess now these are pretty dated but they were ridden by the best in the world at 18-20 pounds depending on size. I recall our Superdrome hotshoe, Jeff Labauve,s bike having a steel fork, steerer and a tall Salsa mtb looking riser stem to boot --- a heavy bike, but darn tough to argue with results. You needed a bit of substance to deal with 225 lb guys putting out 2300 or so peak watts
105 compact cranks are available in 165 and, if you want to experiment with shorter cranks using the cranks you already have, google "Ride2 crank shorteners"
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Old 03-26-16, 12:28 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by McBTC View Post
105 compact cranks are available in 165 and, if you want to experiment with shorter cranks using the cranks you already have, google "Ride2 crank shorteners"
YEah, i know ---- most of my road machines are getting long in the tooth though, ---- i don't want to "cross pollinate" the build kits too much by putting a current crankset on a 10yo bike ---- the OCD side of me would rather just install a complete new updated build kit than cave in to the kind of mass hysteria and manic mindset that would install late model stuff on a 10 y/o DA 7800 equipped bike -- LOL
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Old 03-26-16, 01:35 PM
  #61  
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Rotor also make cranks in <165mm length for most of their crank. Might have to do a special order from your local distributor but still possible.
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Old 03-27-16, 08:44 AM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by DMC707 View Post
I've been trying to find 165's to re-outfit a couple of my road bikes for a month now. Problem is i'm a nerd so i'm not going to buy a new Dura Ace or Ultegra crank to put on an otherwise D-A 7700 or 7800 bike

165's are out there as they are OEM on a lot of short bikes, and you can order anything brand new i guess, but not a lot of 165's (road stuff) are out there in the aftermarket. I just want to open the hip agle to achieve a little more comfortable position while i'm riding in the drops


Regarding bike weight - one should pick up one of the Trimble built GT's or a Corima-- I guess now these are pretty dated but they were ridden by the best in the world at 18-20 pounds depending on size. I recall our Superdrome hotshoe, Jeff Labauve,s bike having a steel fork, steerer and a tall Salsa mtb looking riser stem to boot --- a heavy bike, but darn tough to argue with results. You needed a bit of substance to deal with 225 lb guys putting out 2300 or so peak watts
You can find some budget 165mm road cranks. I found some. Them make them for Jr racers. They are inexpensive.

For example, SRAM Apex for like $150: https://www.sram.com/sram/road/produ...-apex-crankset
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