Shimano 1×9 Setup. Time to get serious

One oversight with the FSA crank is the lack of rings available due to them coming up with their own standard of 94mm BCD 4 arm which no-one covers. 29T is just too small for us here on the edge of flatland. The chainline just dosent work with the Pegasus bulging chainstays anyway.

I think the XTR960 crank of a few years ago is the best crank ever made. Super stiff, light and what ever they coated the main shaft with is rock hard and never wears. OK so you have to put up with external bearings, but the crank fits on/off with ease and no tools. This crank will never wear out. An early problem was that Shimano put silly BCD ring sizes on (102mm). mmm sounds familiar but with a one main difference; the crank is so good that there are plenty of replacements out there. Blackspire also spotted that this crank is loved by singlespeeders and make SS specific rings in 32/33/34 sizes.

Bought the set above secondhand, XTR Grey anodized and all the logos worn off. 

Then I set about them with hacksaw, files, emery cloth an a bit of polish. Very sore fingers later I Added a Blackspire 33 Tooth Veloce ring, no ramps and super tough and I now have one strong light 1×9 or singlespeed crank, bargain.

The Chainline is a perfect 51mm but the 33T ring is the max posible for this bike, it really is only a wafer thin metal to metal gap. Its proved theres little flex down there though as no metal shavings after a good few days thrashing.

[update: One very muddy race later and the small gap and mud/sand combination have worn a small groove in the chainstay. 32 teeth max it is then, or space out the crank by another mm with a custom spacer.]

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