Benefits of upgrading chainset?

Mr Plum
Mr Plum Posts: 1,097
edited February 2012 in Workshop
In general, what are the benefits of upgrading your chainset? And more specifically, what would the benefits be of upgrading a cheap square taper FSA triple chainset with something like a 6600 Ultegra triple chainset?
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  • No real benefit, only worth if you get some amazing deal...

    Last week campagnolo UT cranksets were on sale at £ 50 on Ribble.. given that's pretty much the price of a couple of cheap new rings, it was worth upgrading...
    Bear in mind new chainsets have external bearings, exposed to the elements... they do last less than old fashion cartridge BBs... they do spin a bit better, especially Campagnolo UT... Shimano Ultegra Hollowtech is not a great chainset, in my view.
    With Chainsets you can still mix-match Campagnolo/ Shimano/SRAM etc...
    left the forum March 2023
  • the benefits are debatable i'm sure . gxp and similar BB's are lighter and with external bearings you get more strength due to the extra width of the bearing spacing .
    Britannia waives the rules
  • Yossie
    Yossie Posts: 2,600
    Lighter, stiffer - and therefore better power transfer, not knackered, cooler, possibly cheaper with new rings than just rings themselves, availablilty of lighter, smoother more efficient bottom brackets.
  • Mr Plum
    Mr Plum Posts: 1,097
    Cheers for the replies. Was more out of curiosity than anything else. I took advantage of the deal Merlin had on the Ultegra SL triple chainset for £72 with bottom bracket. Going to replace my 18 month old (6000 miles +) square taper FSA chainset with it in a month or so when the winter grit/salt has gone - commuting bike (Tricross) so probably won't really feel much benefit anyway with heavy wheels/tyres + rack, but it would have been due changing soon anyway.
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  • ptr_
    ptr_ Posts: 126
    I went from an Ultegra triple on an octalink BB to a Sora compact on a hollowtech II BB... huge improvement I found.

    The modern Sora weighed the same as the old Ultegra and stiffness was vastly improved, only cost £50 for brand new chainset and BB.

    There is obviously the possibility of a placebo effect when subjectively comparing the stiffness of parts but I'm happy with my 'upgrade'.