Campagnolo or Miche Chainset

dork_knight
dork_knight Posts: 405
edited December 2013 in Road buying advice
It would appear that my crank arm is wearing and continually loosening during my commute, so I'm looking to replace the stock Miche Team Crank which is currently on the bike.

I've been looking at the following options:

1. Miche Team Evo Max with Miche BB @ £95
2. Campag Veloce/Centaur, Power Torque Cup Set and Campag BB Tool @ £145/£165 (approximate costs).

Would it be worth going Campag over Miche at the lower end of the market for the extra 50/60 odd quid, or not particularly worth it and there would be no really difference (performance wise and with wear).

Thank You
The path of my life is strewn with cowpats from the devil's own satanic herd.
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Comments

  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I'd want to know if the constant loosening is because of an inherent defect with the Miche cranks before giving them any more money.
  • No,

    Powertorque is just a hassle
    left the forum March 2023
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Shimano it is then!
  • Velonutter
    Velonutter Posts: 2,437
    Personally have found Miche stuff is like peanut butter, but that is just my experience.

    Far better if you can find some NOS UT cranks, make sure when fitting them that you plaster them in lithium grease and if you go through a deep puddle then drain the water out, they will then last 1000's of miles.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    Velonutter wrote:
    Personally have found Miche stuff is like peanut butter, but that is just my experience.

    Far better if you can find some NOS UT cranks, make sure when fitting them that you plaster them in lithium grease and if you go through a deep puddle then drain the water out, they will then last 1000's of miles.

    Handy for a mid-ride snack then...
  • GGBiker
    GGBiker Posts: 450
    Pick up a cheap fsa chainset on eBay.
  • Thank you for the info all.
    The path of my life is strewn with cowpats from the devil's own satanic herd.
  • cycleclinic
    cycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    You don'thave to look to hard to find a U-T veloce crankset. MIche BB's are not always available so that is the reason I would not use it. Nothing wrong with power torque though so long as you do not mind taking it a shop come BB time.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • bigmat
    bigmat Posts: 5,134
    I have used Campag UT, Miche and FSA and all three are pretty disappointing. The original Miche was made of cheese, I pretty much ripped the drive side crank off going up a hill - wasn't even putting that much power down at the time. The FSA replacement just clicked, repeatedly. Several bottom bracket changes, LBS inspections and the final verdict was that it was an inherent design fault - well documented on tinternet. Campag UT probably best of a bad bunch - the whole set up is needlessly complicated in my opinion and a hassle to fit / remove / replace bearings without the correct tools. They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).
  • BigMat wrote:
    They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).

    Which explains why I flogged my UT chainset to you... :mrgreen:
    left the forum March 2023
  • rolf_f
    rolf_f Posts: 16,015
    BigMat wrote:
    Campag UT probably best of a bad bunch - the whole set up is needlessly complicated in my opinion and a hassle to fit / remove / replace bearings without the correct tools. They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).

    But why would you try to replace the bearings without the proper tools? If you have them, then it's a doddle - ten minute job pretty much. Just regard the tools as being part of the initial purchase cost. And it isn't really complicated at all - just a pair of bearings, a couple of cups for them and an axle. Not sure how it could be any simpler!

    Agree with you on bearing life (7000 miles or so albeit without any regreasing) and on benefits of square taper!

    TBH, far more annoying IMO is the difficulty of sourcing replacement Campag chainrings and the cost of them when you do find some.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • bigmat
    bigmat Posts: 5,134
    Rolf F wrote:
    BigMat wrote:
    Campag UT probably best of a bad bunch - the whole set up is needlessly complicated in my opinion and a hassle to fit / remove / replace bearings without the correct tools. They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).

    But why would you try to replace the bearings without the proper tools? If you have them, then it's a doddle - ten minute job pretty much. Just regard the tools as being part of the initial purchase cost. And it isn't really complicated at all - just a pair of bearings, a couple of cups for them and an axle. Not sure how it could be any simpler!

    Agree with you on bearing life (7000 miles or so albeit without any regreasing) and on benefits of square taper!

    TBH, far more annoying IMO is the difficulty of sourcing replacement Campag chainrings and the cost of them when you do find some.

    I've found that a regular chainring with the same BCD can be fairly easily modified with a dremel, if you aren't too precious about that sort of thing!
  • bigmat
    bigmat Posts: 5,134
    BigMat wrote:
    They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).

    Which explains why I flogged my UT chainset to you... :mrgreen:

    At that price fitted it was cheaper than getting an LBS to change the bearings on my old chainset (particularly after I sold my old Veloce compact for more than I paid for your Centaur double). Its been OK so far, been more concerned about my useless Mavic freewheel...
  • BigMat wrote:
    Rolf F wrote:
    BigMat wrote:
    Campag UT probably best of a bad bunch - the whole set up is needlessly complicated in my opinion and a hassle to fit / remove / replace bearings without the correct tools. They generally work well when fitted, but the life expectancy of the bearings leaves a lot to be desired and I'm not convinced on any benefit over old fashioned square taper (other than a more modern look).

    But why would you try to replace the bearings without the proper tools? If you have them, then it's a doddle - ten minute job pretty much. Just regard the tools as being part of the initial purchase cost. And it isn't really complicated at all - just a pair of bearings, a couple of cups for them and an axle. Not sure how it could be any simpler!

    Agree with you on bearing life (7000 miles or so albeit without any regreasing) and on benefits of square taper!

    TBH, far more annoying IMO is the difficulty of sourcing replacement Campag chainrings and the cost of them when you do find some.

    I've found that a regular chainring with the same BCD can be fairly easily modified with a dremel, if you aren't too precious about that sort of thing!

    What's wrong with a Stronglight Zicral one? I have one, they're great rings!
    left the forum March 2023
  • BigMat wrote:
    At that price fitted it was cheaper than getting an LBS to change the bearings on my old chainset (particularly after I sold my old Veloce compact for more than I paid for your Centaur double). Its been OK so far, been more concerned about my useless Mavic freewheel...

    Glad my free installation works well... I was a bit concerned as everything in your BB area was either seized or corroded as a sign of high maintenance standards... :mrgreen:
    You'll be pleased to know I sold all my Ultra Torque tools... :wink:
    left the forum March 2023
  • gfk_velo
    gfk_velo Posts: 78
    edited November 2013
    OK, so I work for Campag's main UK SC as head technician so I do have bias, however, based on experience and with my other hat on as an event mechanic & instructor ....

    So long as set-up and chain choice are right, front shift will be better with Campag rings.

    All external BB cup systems, regardless of manufacturer have a number of intrinsic problems around the exposure of the bearings to adverse conditions. Issues around alignment abound, though a lot of the problems do come down to poor frame design (press fitting a BB into a frame is the worst idea in the world, mechanically) and frame prep - accurate facing and chasing of the BB shell in screw-in designs are not just advised, they are pretty much obligatory.

    PT and UT are no more complex than any other system and in fact many other systems borrow ideas from them - they are just a different way of achieving the same end and are at least to some extent self-adjusting - they don't suffer to the same extent from crank erosion against the BB axle as some other systems. Tooling is more expensive than some other options, it is true.

    When in doubt, regardless of whose system you are using, the increasing need is to use like with like - SRAM will generally perform best with SRAM, Shimano with Shimano, Campag with Campag - FSA, MIche and some other third parties have good products that work reasonably well, but in general they won't work as well within a system as the system products that are designed to work as just that - a system.

    End-users have expectation of performance now that go way ahead of where we were even 10 yeas ago when a degree of mix-and-match was possible and even in some cases desirable to get the best of all worlds - those days are fading now, though, as our performance expectations rise ...

    Campag rings - we stock them & if we don't have the ring you need, so long as it is available from the factory, it can be shipped in pretty quickly - usually 14 days max. They are expensive relative to a full chainset - that's partly because stocking spares costs a lot of money and partly because the retail prices of complete units are cut to the bone & beyond. Many cut-price sellers can't, as a result of their margin being as slim as they are, afford the overhead of a meaningful stock of relatively low turn-over spares.
  • gfk_velo wrote:

    All external BB cup systems, regardless of manufacturer have a number of intrinsic problems around the exposure of the bearings to adverse conditions. Issues around alignment abound, though a lot of the problems do come down to poor frame design (press fitting a BB into a frame is the worst idea in the world, mechanically) and frame prep - accurate facing and chasing of the BB shell in screw-in designs are not just advised, they are pretty much obligatory.
    That's a bit of an old rat to hide bad design... if design does not allow for reasonable tolerance (ie having a bit of paint on the face of the BB shell) then it is bad design
    gfk_velo wrote:
    PT and UT are no more complex than any other system and in fact many other systems borrow ideas from them -
    Except Shimano came there first with Hollowtech 2, so it's a bit unfair to say they borrowed ideas from Campag... others simply copied Shimano... nobody copied Campag. (except for Fulcrum ,for obvious reasons)
    gfk_velo wrote:
    When in doubt, regardless of whose system you are using, the increasing need is to use like with like - SRAM will generally perform best with SRAM, Shimano with Shimano, Campag with Campag - FSA, MIche and some other third parties have good products that work reasonably well, but in general they won't work as well within a system as the system products that are designed to work as just that - a system.

    End-users have expectation of performance now that go way ahead of where we were even 10 yeas ago when a degree of mix-and-match was possible and even in some cases desirable to get the best of all worlds - those days are fading now, though, as our performance expectations rise ...

    Depends what you mean by work well... as a Shimagnolo user I rate durability and reliability above the slight rattle upon changing a gear... many rate "smooth shifting" above all, when in fact it is completely irrelevant to performance on the road or reliability... in other words with my Shimagnolo setup I don't go slower, but I do go further
    left the forum March 2023
  • rolf_f
    rolf_f Posts: 16,015
    What's wrong with a Stronglight Zicral one? I have one, they're great rings!

    Actually, nothing at all. And one of those is now my inner ring. But I do like the Campag outer rings though - they appeal to my sense of aesthetic! :lol:

    Also, whilst I can believe that maybe a Stronglight outer won't shift as well as a Campag outer, I can't really see it makes much difference on a rampless inner. The Stronglight teeth are very slightly more squared off than Campags but there isn't much in it.

    I did source a Campag inner (brand new, decent price) but it turned out to be the sort without the pointlessly offset concealed bolt hole. Why Campag had to change that I don't know but it does mean I have a chainring gathering dust until the day I can find a bike to put it on!
    Faster than a tent.......
  • mididoctors
    mididoctors Posts: 18,419
    I have binned pt and ut and gone back to bog standard JIS and stronglight. unless you are racing I don't see the hassle as worth it.
    "If I was a 38 year old man, I definitely wouldn't be riding a bright yellow bike with Hello Kitty disc wheels, put it that way. What we're witnessing here is the world's most high profile mid-life crisis" Afx237vi Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:43 pm
  • I have binned pt and ut and gone back to bog standard JIS and stronglight. unless you are racing I don't see the hassle as worth it.

    You're in good company... I've even found an awesome Dura Ace 7410 chainset... and I have fitted a Stronglight 49 T chainring with a 39 inner... and the rear derailleur is Campagnolo Daytona with Veloce shifters... and it's awesome!
    Now the purists can crucify me... :mrgreen:
    left the forum March 2023
  • gfk_velo
    gfk_velo Posts: 78
    edited November 2013
    Rolf F wrote:
    What's wrong with a Stronglight Zicral one? I have one, they're great rings!

    Actually, nothing at all. And one of those is now my inner ring. But I do like the Campag outer rings though - they appeal to my sense of aesthetic! :lol:

    Also, whilst I can believe that maybe a Stronglight outer won't shift as well as a Campag outer, I can't really see it makes much difference on a rampless inner. The Stronglight teeth are very slightly more squared off than Campags but there isn't much in it.

    I did source a Campag inner (brand new, decent price) but it turned out to be the sort without the pointlessly offset concealed bolt hole. Why Campag had to change that I don't know but it does mean I have a chainring gathering dust until the day I can find a bike to put it on!

    The bolt-hole offset is there so that the rings will be mounted in synch with each other, that's all. Seems a bit over the top to me too, especially given that they didn't do it on the 135 BCD rings. The squaring off of the tops of the teeth has a very small influence in the way that the teeth "let go" of the chain on the upshift.

    The ramping and pinning on the inside of the big ring does make a big difference to front shift function - not least to how much lateral force needs to be applied to the chain to achieve the upshift. The ramps and pins are tuned to work best with a Campag chain and can cause some issues with other chains IME.
  • gfk_velo wrote:

    All external BB cup systems, regardless of manufacturer have a number of intrinsic problems around the exposure of the bearings to adverse conditions. Issues around alignment abound, though a lot of the problems do come down to poor frame design (press fitting a BB into a frame is the worst idea in the world, mechanically) and frame prep - accurate facing and chasing of the BB shell in screw-in designs are not just advised, they are pretty much obligatory.
    That's a bit of an old rat to hide bad design... if design does not allow for reasonable tolerance (ie having a bit of paint on the face of the BB shell) then it is bad design
    gfk_velo wrote:
    PT and UT are no more complex than any other system and in fact many other systems borrow ideas from them -
    Except Shimano came there first with Hollowtech 2, so it's a bit unfair to say they borrowed ideas from Campag... others simply copied Shimano... nobody copied Campag. (except for Fulcrum ,for obvious reasons)
    gfk_velo wrote:
    When in doubt, regardless of whose system you are using, the increasing need is to use like with like - SRAM will generally perform best with SRAM, Shimano with Shimano, Campag with Campag - FSA, MIche and some other third parties have good products that work reasonably well, but in general they won't work as well within a system as the system products that are designed to work as just that - a system.

    End-users have expectation of performance now that go way ahead of where we were even 10 yeas ago when a degree of mix-and-match was possible and even in some cases desirable to get the best of all worlds - those days are fading now, though, as our performance expectations rise ...

    Depends what you mean by work well... as a Shimagnolo user I rate durability and reliability above the slight rattle upon changing a gear... many rate "smooth shifting" above all, when in fact it is completely irrelevant to performance on the road or reliability... in other words with my Shimagnolo setup I don't go slower, but I do go further

    To cover those off in order ...

    All BBs have always needed proper facing and chasing, the only slight exceptions being the 1970s Lambert design (cartridge beings press fitted into a plain BB shell onto a shouldered axle, retained by circlips on the axle - the bearing seats were machined post-build to guarantee co-axial & aligned bearing locations) and some cartidge designs where neither cup used a locking flange that had to seat tight against the BB shell, where facing was not really necessary. These did sometimes need the threads chasing though, to produce properly co-axial threads.

    There is *less need* in the case of cartridge BBs where there is a flange that tightens against the frame, provided the bearing cup on the other side of the BB shell is only acting as a support for a fully enclosed and otherwise rigid unit. Still, even these can creak if there are gross distortions of the face that the cup screws against.

    Most bearings require the two bearing cups or annuli to be parallel - if there is an un-even build up of paint, heat distortion, poor machining or welding / brazing debris on the face of the BB shell, for instance, this can and does upset the parallel fitting of the cups, which, as there has to be a tolerance in the threads, can fit off-square to each other if the cups are of a design that tightens down hard against the face of the BB shell.

    The threads need to be co-axial - so that the centre of the bearings lies along the same centre-line and that can be changed by heat in the frame-building process - we have examples of BB shells where the "bow" in the BB shell formed as it is brazed or welded into the frame is naked-eye visible. This means that neither the faces of the BB shell are parallel with each other, nor are the threads co-axial. This is not at all uncommon.

    Composite frames don't generally suffer from anything other than paint residue on the external faces of the BB shell as the BB shells are not subject, when bonded into place, to significant heating effects. The paint can be and is a significant problem in many cases though. Poor bonding between alloy BB liners and the composite around them can also be an issue, making noise, so not all noisy BBs have badly installed, worn or faulty bearings ...

    There are ways around alignment issues, within some limits - some cartridge bearing designs allow the race to self-centre in the annulus - but such cartridge bearings are relatively costly and tend to have marginally higher preloads. I think Rotor have used / do use such bearings but they are not widely used in the cycle industry. Campagnolo also use them in the new OverTorque BB units.

    This is not really a question of bad design and if it is, it afflicts virtually every ball, roller or bush bearing assembly in every mechanism you can imagine - it is more a limitation and it's one that needs to be taken into account in the assembly process.

    Outboard BB cups give more problems in this area because all of the alignment issues are exacerbated by the increased distance between the cups - what can be got away with on a narrow shoulder spacing on a conventional axle with bigger ballbearings is harder to get away with on a wider shoulder spacing and cartridge bearings with (often) smaller balls, of probably higher average quality, than we saw in the open BB designs of the 1970s.

    Chainset/BB design - I didn't say that Shimano copied Campag and nor did I intent to imply it - they certainly didn't - but in point of fact, Shimano post-dated another, similar method of crank fitting by about 35 years - I am pretty sure it was Stronglite that used a hybrid square, round and pinch bolt fixing for the left crank (exactly the same in principle) in the 1960s - certainly someone did, I have seen examples of it - and all Shimano did was to marry that to what is essentially a threadless headset turned on it's side ... some BB30 designs use a thrust washer in the same way that Campag do, to preload the bearing and take up end-float and the Specialized OSBB crank is a close copy of UT, using both a centrally-jointed axle and a thrust washer, so the Campag use of these common engineering practices in the BB of a bicycle can be said to have been re-cycled by others.

    In terms of systems working with systems ... well, OK, you could moderate or re-phrase to say that systems work as the designer intended if all the parts are from the same system ... however, some of the problems that I see on a regular basis would be avoided entirely if parts were used in the way the makers intended. The fact that they aren't keeps me (at least in part) in a job but it is a problem that permeates all the way down from cycle assemblers trying to hit a price point, or to satisfy a pro-team sponsor or sponsors in the context of a wider agreement between frame and component sponsorship deals with this or that team, to shop mechanics, to end users not understanding that, say, the shaping of the outer link plates on a chain might cause them to catch on the lift pins of the outer chainring when they shouldn't ...

    All of the discussion above should not indicate to the reader that I think it's desirable that we are where we are with a gradual lessening of the ability of the home mechanic to look after his or her bike, or to mix and match to find a compromise solution with which they are happy - but we most certainly *are* where we are and the trend is continuing ... increasingly manufacturers are dictating the market & consumers have little choice other than to follow.
  • thanks, that's a very informative post.

    I would like to add that if Campagnolo (or Shimano) offered a range of groupsets to cover for intended use, rather than for pocket size, that would be better.
    Campagnolo has far too many offerings of the same thing... there is virtually no difference between Chorus and SR, yet three gropusets and virtually no difference between Veloce and Athena (OK, one sprocket), yet another three groupsets. There is actually no difference at all between Veloce and Centaur that I am aware of.
    If they offered a Veloce entry level, a Record for those with money and maybe a quality groupset for "audax, winter riding and touring" kind of riding, with increased sealing of the exposed parts and more robust components (heavier, why not?) and maybe even a full on off road CX type groupset (as opposed to a chainset with a couple of extra rubber bands), maybe people would stop buying the wrong components for the job.
    Shimano is not immune, although in fairness they only offer 4-5 levels of road mechanical groupsets (as opposed to 7) and they cover pretty much every other aspect of cycling.
    Campagnolo is way too focussed on the wannabe a Tour contender lot, while cycling is a lot more than that. They are in fact becoming less and less relevant... I would say in the grand scheme of things, cycling wise they are completely irrelevant these days, while they were the authority in all things bicycle related. Where are they in the hydraulic and disc brakes innovation? Nowhere to be seen
    left the forum March 2023
  • cycleclinic
    cycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    Campagnolo is focused on making money that is why they do what they do.

    Graham's post is why all the bikes I sell have the reamers and facers run through the BB shell and every frame I buy for myself gets the same treatment. Funnily enough I get good BB life even out of power-torque.

    I have also had that problem of a chain catching the lift pins, very annoying to solve. Mixing and matching components only works if you know what works together well.

    I also love the Dura Ace 7410 chainset. I have one on my Pinerello - 586g and with the 7410 BB 216g so it is quite light. I even have the original rings. Record 10 speed carbon square taper cranks are my other light weight favourite and for MTB's I can think of nothing better than the Shimano M730 chainset, perfect in every way. Modern chainsets are just lighter but they all do the same thing drive the rear wheel.

    I am not too sure why Campagnolo have not done anything on the disc brake front, seems to be error and yes they could loose super record and the centaur groups quite easily at least they are offering triples again.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • I am not too sure why Campagnolo have not done anything on the disc brake front

    They chose to concentrate on pointless electric shifting... of which they have probably sold a few dozens...
    left the forum March 2023
  • Velonutter
    Velonutter Posts: 2,437
    Ugo, I am a very very big fan of the Campag EPS, it runs faultlessly and I wish I had it on everyone of my bikes.perfect engineering that is faultless :-)
  • cycleclinic
    cycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    Like all tech it is and is not pointless. Going by that logic ugo we would all be riding fixies as why do we need mutli gear systems at all.

    Shimano sell DI2 and have disc brakes for road. Campagnolo have not done anything yet maybe because they are waiting to see if it become popular. Not exactly leading the market though is it.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • g00se
    g00se Posts: 2,221
    Apparently, they should be in time for the UCI rule changes:

    http://road.cc/content/news/96330-campa ... road-bikes
  • Like all tech it is and is not pointless. Going by that logic ugo we would all be riding fixies as why do we need mutli gear systems at all.

    Because not all of us live in suffolk... but you should :wink:

    You're missing my point... my point is that Campagnolo has become IRRELEVANT. They only focus on high end race components and even there they don't win a bloody race anymore!
    The last time they won the Tour was with Pantani in 1998, then Pereiro maybe, although they never got much publicity out of that half victory in 2006. All the biggest teams are on SRAM or Shimano, so even their attempt to focus on race only is backfiring.
    As far as innovation goes, the genius behind their creations has been buried with Cav. Tullio and his son is the pale shadow of the father. Nothing worth mentioning has left Vicenza since those days.
    Yes, they have come out with EPS... nobody buy EPS... I have never seen one on the road... it is little more than a curiosity in the bicycle world. Our friend Velonutter loves it, but other than smooth shifting, what's all the fuss about? Does it make an espresso? No... does it allow you to climb Everest? No... so it's just an 11 speed groupset with buttons instead of levers... big deal...
    I bet the sales worldwide are in the hundreds of units rather than thousands.
    They still have a rather heavy name and they can turn things around by coming out with something unique and amazing... but I have the feeling they have lost the spark
    left the forum March 2023
  • A lot of info, personal experience and personal preferences here...

    I decided to opt with a NOS 2009 Veloce Ultra Torque Compact Crank for £110, I guess I'll just have to see how I get on with this crank over the coming months to see if I made the right or wrong decision.

    Cheers
    The path of my life is strewn with cowpats from the devil's own satanic herd.