Lightning cranks

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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nickf
Posts: 580
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:34 pm

by nickf

Looking at my options and I keep going back to Lightning cranks for cost/weight.

-Anyone have one long term? How are they holding up?

-Do they feel stiff? They tested low in the stiffness test from fairwheel.

I just cant see spending +$1k on THM. The frame will have a BSA bottom bracket. Also are their BB proprietary? I have a threaded hawk racing BB386 BB (30mm bearings in a standard BSA cup) Would this be compatible with the lightning crankset?

KarlC
Posts: 721
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:08 am
Location: San Diego Ca USA

by KarlC

I read mostly all good things about them so I got a nice set of Lightning cranks and different size chain rings off a member of this site. I have yet to use them as my bike went a different direction that planed, so they will be up for sale soon if you or anyone else is interested.

by Weenie


otoman
Posts: 341
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:25 pm
Location: Nashville

by otoman

I have had two sets, one with a P2M on various BB30, OSBB frames and another on a Quarq Cinqo on BSA and now BBRight frames. I have had them for 3 and 5 years I think. They are great. Very light weight and stiff. I can't detect any crank arm flex (never have in any crank though). The weak point is the pinch bolt that tightens the NDS collar in place. Be careful with it. One of my Lightning cranks never needed adjustment, the other needed more and creaked until I Loctited the collar in place. After that it was all good. Their website is the pits but you can find what you want. Finally it is effectively a BB386 crank... I did use an FSA BB30 to BB386 adapter for a while with it and it did just fine. I'd recommend the cranks.
Age and treachery shall overcome youth and skill
Courir c’est mourir un peu

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nickf
Posts: 580
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:34 pm

by nickf

otoman wrote:I have had two sets, one with a P2M on various BB30, OSBB frames and another on a Quarq Cinqo on BSA and now BBRight frames. I have had them for 3 and 5 years I think. They are great. Very light weight and stiff. I can't detect any crank arm flex (never have in any crank though). The weak point is the pinch bolt that tightens the NDS collar in place. Be careful with it. One of my Lightning cranks never needed adjustment, the other needed more and creaked until I Loctited the collar in place. After that it was all good. Their website is the pits but you can find what you want. Finally it is effectively a BB386 crank... I did use an FSA BB30 to BB386 adapter for a while with it and it did just fine. I'd recommend the cranks.



When I talked to them about the BB they said to use their BB because it has narrower bearings? Doesn't sound like my Hawk racing BSA>BB386 cups will work. I think they are going to be my crank of choice though. Plus they are made in the USA which is a plus. My other choice was the extralite qrc-2, which looks great but heard that the FD can be a pain to setup because of the super low q factor.

otoman
Posts: 341
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:25 pm
Location: Nashville

by otoman

I absolutely would use their BSA BB. Sorry I should have said that earlier. I used the same BSA Lightning ceramic BB for >3 years and it was very smooth when I changed frames. I rode it for close to 20k miles in all sorts of crap weather too. Good stuff.
Age and treachery shall overcome youth and skill
Courir c’est mourir un peu

Denavelo
Posts: 382
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:01 pm

by Denavelo

I've had a set for a long time and loved them. I didn't think I would notice crank flex, but when I went to a set of classic Clavicula cranks, I noticed the THM cranks were stiffer. not saying the lightning cranks were flex noodles, I just felt a huge stiffness increase in the THM cranks.

That being said, I would get a set of lightning cranks again for my next build, since THM M3's are getting harder to find these days. I wonder if THM stopped making them for something new they may be brewing up?

I had (2) gripes about the lightning cranks which are easily fixable. (1) The chainring spider can come loose, so you have to use loctite to secure it. This is a source of creaking if you don't loctite it down and it can come loose. (2) The qfactor is stupid narrow, so you can easily scratch the cranks with your shoes, but this is easily solved by purchasing the washers to space the pedal spindles outward or getting longer spindles from your pedal brand.

All in all, I would run them again and I recommend only running their BB. The ceramic version is butter smooth!

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Speedvagen Road Machine "2011 Surprise me | Cannondale SuperSix Evo | Rob English "Mudfoot" 29er | Firefly Ti #419 | Kogswell 650b Rando | Crema Cycles "Duo"

Denavelo
Posts: 382
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:01 pm

by Denavelo

This probably explains why the THM M3 cranks have dissipated.
Most likely working on things with 3T. I think this is a good combo of manufactures.
THM can make products in larger batches, and now have the support from a huge company like 3T.

http://www.bikeradar.com/us/road/news/article/3t-and-thm-join-forces-47184/
Speedvagen Road Machine "2011 Surprise me | Cannondale SuperSix Evo | Rob English "Mudfoot" 29er | Firefly Ti #419 | Kogswell 650b Rando | Crema Cycles "Duo"

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Tomstr
Posts: 572
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 5:04 pm

by Tomstr

Looking at the price of the Lightning cranks I'm thinking that Rotor, Extralite and AX lightness have interesting options too.

Extralite
http://www.starbike.com/en/extralite-qr ... -crankset/
476gr
494€
138mm Q

AX Lightness
www.starbike.com/en/ax-lightness-pelton/
399€
151mm Q

Rotor
http://www.starbike.com/en/rotor-3d24-crankset-110mm/
528gr
259€
148mm Q

Looking at it like this the Extralite seems ridiculously narrow. Very nice for an aero profile but I'm having a hard time believing the width. Shimano seems to be about 146 mm.
Ride it like you stole it

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nickf
Posts: 580
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:34 pm

by nickf

The extralite cranks are super narrow from what I'm told and setting up the FD can be a problem. That's coming from a frame builder I'm working with that has delt with them before. They look great but don't want compromised front shifting.

Denavelo
Posts: 382
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:01 pm

by Denavelo

If weight isn't an issue for you. Rotor cranks with a set of solid rings and Ceramic BB is pretty damn nice. I had a set and they were some of the best feeling cranks I've ridden and the front shifting with Praxis rings was on par with Shimano 7800 front shifting....

I wanted to lose grams so I started running Lightning and THM cranks. I wouldn't run AX Lightness/Extralite cranks. Both have been tested and the results don't fair well..
Speedvagen Road Machine "2011 Surprise me | Cannondale SuperSix Evo | Rob English "Mudfoot" 29er | Firefly Ti #419 | Kogswell 650b Rando | Crema Cycles "Duo"

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Wingnut
Posts: 1862
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:41 am

by Wingnut

I'm curious? Any advice would be appreciated...

I have the funds for a set of Rotor 3D+ cranks or should I wait and go for the Lightning crankset?
"It's not the destination...it's the ride!"

njyeti
Posts: 45
Joined: Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:14 am

by njyeti

I have a pair of 3D+ cranks and really like them. I also have SISL2- but for the price difference I'd recommend the 3D+. Stiff and lightweight- great for racing.

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Wingnut
Posts: 1862
Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:41 am

by Wingnut

Thanks njyeti!
"It's not the destination...it's the ride!"

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nickf
Posts: 580
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:34 pm

by nickf

Took the plunge and went with lightning. Great looking and good weight. Got the black decals, BSA ceramic BB, 110bcd.

Image

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Tomstr
Posts: 572
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 5:04 pm

by Tomstr

That is a good looking set of cranks. Please let us know how you like them
Ride it like you stole it

by Weenie


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