Grand Cru 50.4 BCD Crankset
Classic 50.4 BCD cranks, like the TA, Stronglight 49D, and others, are still sought after by randonneurs and cyclo-tourists. These cranks offer tremendous versatility since chain rings from 28t to 62t fit. They are also light and have narrow Q-factors, or tread.
While the Grand Cru 50.4 Crankset looks like a classic, we have made several important improvements. They are cold forged from 7075 aluminum alloy. The rings are thicker so they don't flex as on classic cranks. The outer rings have modern shifting aids such as ramps and pins, so shifting performance is much improved. All stainless hardware with allen head nuts/bolts. Includes aluminum machined dust caps and BB bolts. Dust caps function as self extracting crank hardware.
- Teeth: 46/30
- BCD: 50.4mm
- Q Factor: 144mm
- Chainline: 43.5mm
- Speeds: 5-11 compatible
- Taper: JIS square taper
- Suggested Bottom Bracket Spindle Length: 118mm
- Pedal Threading: 9/16"
Weight: 654 gr (for 170 mm cranks with hardware)
I love this crank. It's beautiful and shiny (metal parts should look like metal!), and the 46/30 rings provide a good range of gears and a nice low gear. The pinned big ring shifts so much better than the 80s-vintage Shimano Mountain LX triple (with flat Biopace rings) it replaced.
That said, there are a couple of things to be aware of. The lovely narrow Q-factor comes at a cost.
First, the distance between the big ring and the crank arm is relatively narrow. I'm using it with an 8-speed chain, which makes it even narrower because of the protruding rivets. Make sure that your front derailleur has a flat outer plate. I was using a 1980s vintage Shimano Mountain LX derailleur, and the outer plate protrudes just a bit at the bottom, which meant that there wasn't much leeway between "rubbing the chain" and "rubbing the crank arm." I'm now using a Microshift R8 derailleur with a flat outer plate, and there's plenty of clearance.
The other issue with the narrow Q-factor has to do with physiology. I'm pretty duck-footed, so when I stand in a neutral position, my toes point out. That means when my feet are on the pedals, my heels point in. It's taken a little getting used to for my heels not to rub the cranks on each pedal stroke. It's not a deal-breaker, and I'm happy with the crank, but it's something to be aware of if, like me, you're duck-footed.
Wanted to replace my triple Tiagra hollow tech crank with a double to simplify shifting. I also really liked the look of this crank. Installed easily on my Elephant NFE and has worked flawlessly for two seasons. I've paired it with a Durace barcon friction front shifter mounted to IRD brake levers and a vintage 105 derailleur. Great value.
I love both of them and will order more when they are in stock. My only complaint is that I want 48 / 32 chainrings for some of them.
Great gear range, elegant finish and design.
I almost went with a cheaper option 46x30 FSA/GRX. You won’t regret the extra cost. Absolutely beautiful crank.