Oval Chain Rings – The Placebo Effect? My new toy

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I guess oval chain rings are a load of nonsense and don’t really work.

Froome Used this in his 2015 TdF victory. He probably just liked the design.


Wiggins used these for gold at the Olympic TT. Maybe he accidentally picked up the wrong bike?


Must be a placebo effect then? I’m sure everyone else knows better.

ROTOR Qarbon QRing with OCPAnyway I’ve got a new toy (above). I have used ROTOR elliptical chainrings for a couple of years now, maybe longer, I can’t quite remember. They seem to help eliminate an occasional TT-positioned deadspot. I ‘believe’ that they make me faster. Part of that belief tho comes when looking at higher power figures when using them – unfortunately for my belief system that is probably more because the power meter overestimates the power when elliptical chainrings are used – eg Garmin Vector, Favero BePro and probably many crank-based systems too.

The new Qarbon QRings are 8% lighter (nice but will make no difference to me) and 20% stiffer – again the latter probably won’t make much difference to me but it should help reduce some power loss.

The key thing with the ROTOR system though is OCP – Optimum Chainring Position. In the words of the song, “It takes different strokes to rule the world” and sure enough we all have different pedal strokes to turn those cranks. OCP allows optimal alignment of the ellipse in relation to my peak power phase in the pedal stroke.

I’ve been using the recommended position for TT on my TT bike. It could be right…or it could be wrong (that’s a song too, there’s a prize for saying which one).

And that’s what I’m going to be playing with next, my OCP.

I’m excited.


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3 thoughts on “Oval Chain Rings – The Placebo Effect? My new toy

  1. According to Power Tap the P1 will not over read as they have multiple points of measurement for angular velocity.
    I have used Q rings for a while and find that when switching back to round rings my leg action feels not so smooth, that is my legs feel better using the Q rings over a wider rpm range. Im not worried about power differences.

      1. Thanks.
        I only know this as I have been using the original Rotor power cranks and am looking to move to a pedal passed system. I feel Rotor rather left their 1st pwoermeter customers out to dry by not making their new software backward compatible with their 1st power meters.

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