All photo's are Copyright of Scott Swalling or the tagged Photographer. (Background photo Scott Swalling Photography).

About Me:

24Hr MTBike racer and general bike rider, climber and mountaineer. Good coffee drinker and cake eater (any cake, seriously, don't leave your cake laying around). Also, I like to try new things that challenge me.

Monday, 14 April 2014

WTC long term review

Some time back I promise the guys at Wolf Tooth Components a long term review, if you're not into bikes or bike gear freak, look away now.

Back in June 2013 I took delivery of my first WTC chain rings, 32t 104 BCD (one picture below), only a month before a 24hr race.  I mounted these as soon as I had them in my hands as I was completely over chain guides, the noise, the faff and the lack of reliability, unless you went for a free-ride style device.  Plus they always look rubbish on an XC bike.

Running a single non-drop ring like the WTC one however looks great! As above. Is a whole lot quieter than the alternative and the WTC ones work a treat.

So as mentioned I installed the first two WTC chain rings in June 2013, since then between them they have done close to 3500kms off road in some very grim conditions for far too many of those kilometres.  The area I live in, in the UK is a mixed of sand, clay, soil and chalk.  The sand is obviously nasty to any drive train and those who know chalk, know it turns into a gritty paste when wet and gets every where.  So it does its fair share of damage as well, so to see that after around 2000kms (there has been a bias towards one bike with a WTC fitted) with a fair majority done in the conditions mentioned above, that I will soon need a new chain ring.  Speaks volumes about the hardiest of these rings.  As with everything lightweight, you will lose some usage life, but the WTC rings have lasted longer than the Rhental rings I use to run.

So do they every drop the chain? No, I have tried, trust me I have.  At present I am running 32t in the following configuration. 1x10 on my 29er hard tail pictured above and my fat bike.  I immediately changed to WTC ring before I even rode the fat bike, due to the reliability and no fuss.  I also have a single speed configured with a 32t/18t and I am running the chain a little slacker than how I use to run my Renthal rings.  However, this means a little less wear and the chain still stays in place even on some of the roughest terrain.

The chain rings are more than light weight and durable enough, to be used for both training and racing, in all conditions.  Although they can be a bit noisy when wet sand gets in the mix, they do tend to run very quite in all other conditions, which certainly can't be said about chain devices and some other chain rings.

 Simple design that works.
Although the snow flake chain ring is pretty fancy.

Wolf Tooth keep the design on all the different chain rings they make simple and very functional.  The change rings come in a range of direct mount options SRAM, S-WORKS and a range of BCDs (that will even suit you CX bike) and colours. They have had so much success that the small Minnesotan firm, has been expanding it range to include GC 42t and 40t (coming soon) cogs for Shimano and SRAM, has a bash guard, chain ring bolts and a truing tool (which also happens to be a bottle opener).

Without trying to sound like a broken record or a salesmen, I have to say I have been very impressed with what a small firm has been able to produce and the way they keep expanding their product line with the same care and precision I have seen in the several rings I have in use at present.

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