Oval chainrings exist since 1890, but a well-known brand was brought in the 90’s on the market. The older cyclists among us know the Biopace system of Shimano. In the meantime, Rotor is a famous brand that produces oval chainrings. Carlos Sastre won in 2008 the Tour de France and Ryder Hesjedal won the Giro d’Italia on Rotor Q-rings. In 2012, the oval chainring brand Osymetric became familiar thanks to an excellent season of Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome (Tour de France and Olympic Games). By the way, they already performed great for a few seasons but if you win the Tour you will get the most attention. Since 2013 Chris Froome won the Tour de France 4 times on Osymetric oval chainrings and a great number of other victories. Old Tour Winner Bernard Hinault has his name connected to another brand oval chainrings: Ogival. Hinault obviously will not ride another tour, but Ogival has a big champion in Maas van Beek, who in 2012 beaten the world record behind the derny on the Moscow cycling track.
Some questions that might come up to you right now:
- What are oval chainrings
- Why use oval chainrings
- How do oval chainrings work
- Who uses oval chainrings
- When to use oval chainrings
- What size oval chainrings
- How to install oval chairings
oval chainrings are non circular chainrings as in not round chainrings. There are different brands and some elliptical as others are not just elliptical but have a different shape to optimize the effect the chainring should have on power output and efficiency.
Using oval chainrings produces less lactic acid at the same effort as with circular chainrings and makes it possible to generate more power.
Due to the shape of oval chainrings the cyclist has more leverage in the 3 o’clock position of the crank. This is the point where he can generate the largest amount of power during the whole pedal cycle. So the cyclist can use more of his potential. In the 6 o’clock position (called the dead spot) the cyclist doesnt have to generate as much power as on circular chainrings also due to the oval shape of the oval rings.
Many professional cyclists in the Tour de France and triathletes in IronMan races use oval chainrings because of their performance enhancing properties.
Oval chainrings can be used in all cycling disciplines, however especially in time trials (ironman triathlons) and Climbing or off road cycling where traction is a factor they give you the biggest advantage.
oval chainrings come in different sizes. What you need to keep in mind as arule of thumb: The chainring is bigger in the 3 o clock position and smaller in the dead spot position.
Sizes of different brands:
- Absolute black
There are different brands and each brand has his own guidelines.