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Q-ring vs Biopace?


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Biopace was around a long while back...then it disappeared because someone said that it was no good.....now there's Q-rings.....what makes these any different to Biopace??

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what makes these any different...??


They're 10x the price, which means that everyone wants a set.


Biopace was stupid, I hated the feeling. Somehow, I suspect Q-rings will be the same. But hey, Burry rides with them, so they must be the cat's whiskers!

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John Tomac used to DH with drop bars, didn't make much difference to the rest of the world ;)


I just don't understand why they are being used again, after shimano dropped them.....I thought it was for medical reasons that they were stopped?

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I ride with biopace and love it! I enjoy the smoothness of each pedal stroke. Was also not blessed with much in the leg department, so I like all the advantage I can get!

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I think that Biopace and Q-rings are both based on oval shaped crank blades.

The difference as far as I know is the positioning of the "ovaling" which is supposedly superior in Q-rings.

This theoretically eliminates the "dead spot" in every pedal revolution.

So perhaps it was pioneered by Shimano, and improved by Q-ring ... I dunno.!

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They're both BS.


If you study the development of the modern derailer bicycle, you'll notice that oval rings make their appearance every 25 years or so. It was first patented in the early 1900s and just keeps on making a comeback. Get a copy of The Dancing Chain by Frank Berto.


There is no rule that says you can't repeatedly part a fool from his money.

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What Rotor say:


So why do Q’s work, when other ovalized chainrings didn't?

Some of the most recent and infamous attempts at Ovalized Chainrings were Biopace

in the 70’s and 80’s and O.Symetric in the 90's. These chainrings all tried to minimize

the effect of the “Dead Spots” in different ways. We at ROTOR respect these designs

and the pioneering spirit of their creators, but none of them attained natural market

success. Why was that?


Biopace chainrings were designed to take advantage of leg inertia, but they placed the

greatest effective gear at the dead spots, requiring more effort to pass the though

them. The pedaling sensation was irregular and uncomfortable, and made a smooth

spin impossible. Users frequently reported knee pain, which is logical given the fact

that the maximum diameter was placed at the Dead Spots. The solution implemented

to reduce these problems was to reduce the ovality to some degree, making it

irrelevant in later versions, with the system eventually being removed from the



O.Symetric chainrings have a better orientation factor, giving a higher gear during

pedal down stroke; but are too difficult to use for the vast majority of cyclists because

they don't conserve leg inertia (the large ovalization factor and the sudden diameter

ramping cause this). The O.Symetric system reduces the gear at the Dead Spots

(which is good) but their shape causes sudden acceleration changes at and around the

point of maximum stress for the knees, the Upper Dead Spot, where the likelihood of

knee damage is already high. O.Symetric’s approximate 90deg orientation is only

useful for a low pealing cadence, because most cyclists generate their maximum

power at a crank angle later, considering leg inertia. (look at a pair of well worn round

chainrings to confirm this they

are the most worn in the area we just specified).


QRings have an intelligent, sublime ovalization free of damaging 'acceleration peaks'

and 'loading peaks' that allow both professional and recreational cyclists to ride faster

with less lactates. Their shape ensures both faster acceleration and a smoother pedal

stroke, promoting natural joint movement as well as uniform muscle and tendon

loading. The ovalization of QRings

strikes the crucial balance between performance

gain and spinning efficiency. Additionally, the orientation of QRings

is different from

any system earlier conceived. Because the point of maximum power varies between

cyclists, from when the crank is between 20 to 25º below the horizontal (as a result of

leg inertia, bike geometry, riding position and biomechanics), the necessity of a

Regulation System to customize the chainring for each cyclist’s pedaling style is

clearly evident. That's why QRings

have their unique 'OCP' (Optimum Chainring

Position) chainring hole ring. The QRings'

shape, orientation and adjustability are

what set them apart and ensures that they are here to stay.

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I have used Q-Rings for about a year now... they are awesome! ...especially uphill where you do not have the luxury of being able to pedal circles because your hammies are not nearly as strong as your quads... so in pedaling with your quads - MASHING- uphill... you get to a point - with round rings - that your torque keeps alternating between force and then just turning... this is where I always used to slip out... no more!


After using them for 7 weeks... 6 of my buddies and I went to do Sani pass... I am not the fittest or the strongest in the group, but I got to the top about an hour faster than the other guys! ..and I never really struggled! I guess if I actually raced up I would have struggled... but at just above touring pace, it was sublime...


To all of you guys who say they are ***... sah-weeeet! ...stick to what you know... if you are already strong enough to turn circles uphill then dont even bother... Q-rings are for MASHERS!

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I have been using Q rings for neerly 18 months now right from XC to Epic. I recon they work quite well. Well, the Power Tap does not lie, so I would say they work and I am pretty chuffed.


As far as I am concerned, the more people that dont use them, the better it is, as i still get the benefit that others dont.


Food for thought - all those 29er obsesed people who point out that racers/pro won their races on 29ers. have you ever looked at the rings that they ran for the race? (Kulhavey, Sauser, Stander, George, Evans). As far as I can remeber, I cant remeber when I upgraded my car for bigger wheels instead of a better gear box!

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