Why oval chainrings improve your ride? - watch the video


SHOP PRODUCTS

WE HAVE PROVEN OVAL RINGS

Our studies led by the University of Primorska, Slovenia show on the above video significant differences when using absoluteBLACK Oval chainrings compared to round. Up to 9% increase of Force effectiveness, up to 7% less oxygen consumption, up to 15% less Ventilation (breathing) and up to 10% heart rate decrease when using oval chainrings versus round. What does that mean? In short, it means that you will consume less energy at the same power output using Oval chainrings so you can ride for longer and/or faster. Our data show that the higher you climb the more effort you have to put in, therefore it's important to maximize efficiency and effectiveness and you can improve both by using oval chainrings. Watch the video.

These are short excerpts from the independent study made by Dr Borut Fonda, University of Primorska, Slovenia. To read full document click here:

Download the study



INDEPENDENT STUDY: Cycling performance improvement with oval chainrings after 1 year of adaptation

These are short excerpts from the independent study made by Dr Borut Fonda, University of Primorska, Slovenia. To read full document click here:
"The results showed a significant increase in indices of pedaling effectiveness as well as a significant increase in gross efficiency.One of the reasons that could explain the improvements is the adaptation in ankle joint kinematics" , "Although the differences in absolute terms (e.g. total force) were not that big (~5 N), they could be interpreted in a different way. If one is pedaling at 90 rpm and is saving 5 N every pedal stroke, it sums to 27000 N (2700 kg) for every hour of cycling. Similar outcomes could be derived from the results on gross efficiency."


FACTORY SHOP

Why our oval chainrings work

Our premium Oval chainrings work because riders do not produce power evenly through a pedal stroke –the musculature of human legs makes it difficult to maintain an even power delivery to a round chainring. Believe it (or not), but a round chainring doesn't transfer torque to your rear wheel as smoothly as an Oval one. Oval rings work with the natural human physiology. Oval chainrings maximize the part of the stroke where power is produced and minimize resistance where it isn't. As a direct consequence, Oval rings enhance a cyclist’s ability to spin with a smoother power delivery and feel easier on legs while climbing. You will actually feel your pedal stroke to be more "round" with an Oval chainring than with a round chainring.



Why using AbsoluteBlack oval chainrings matters

Absolute Black oval road chainrings deliver power more smoothly to your rear wheel. This means you are better able to generate and maintain, constant cadence. In mtb with oval rings rear tire traction improves greatly on loose and slippery terrain. Smoother power delivery to your rear wheel means that you will be able to maintain better, constant cadence. Because oval chainrings reduce the peak loads on knee joints, riders using them get less stress on the joints (knees) and therefore are able to keep certain level of effort for longer. This results in higher average speed.



Why our Oval chainrings do not have adjustable timing

At Absolute Black we have extensively studied the relevant performance data regarding the optimum percentage of ovality, shape, and critically, the timing of the oval – the positioning of the high and low points of the oval, in relation to the position of the crank arm and focus this into one single mounting position – this is the really important part of what makes Absolute Black Oval chainrings so effective. By simplifying our oval chainring design, to reflect a single high performance ‘sweet-spot’, we are able to make the process of fitting Absolute Black oval chainrings faster and easier, as well as making our rings even lighter.



Can I use only small oval chainring and keep big one round? (and vice versa) Or should I use both oval rings?

There is no problem using two different shaped chainrings mounted to one crank from mechanical and biomechanical point of view. However, please remember that oval chainrings are most effective in two situations; when you pedal uphill and if you don't have perfect pedalling action. We recommend using small oval ring as a starting point. Many professional riders switch to using an oval inner chainring for races with hard climbing – even when their equipment sponsors do not make an oval ring – knowing that it cannot be seen tucked behind their sponsors outer round chainring. When it comes to the style of outer chainring you need to answer two questions:

  • How often do I keep riding on big ring over smaller, less demanding climbs?
  • If the answer is "often" then fitting an Absolute Black outer chainring is advised to gain the maximum benefit. However, if the answer is "very rarely" then keeping your existing round outer ring is a way to save some money.


  • Do I have a perfect pedal spin?
  • This is an important one. Professionals and semi pro cyclists spin perfect "circles". The rest of us often struggle with our pedalling action, simply because we don't spend every day of every week on the bike, to master this skill. Switching to oval rings effectively correct an imperfect pedalling action – delivering the smooth power delivery the pros developed through thousands of hours of training. One of the key reasons the benefits of oval chainrings have historically proven hard to prove in lab tests, is because they were nearly always done using Professional riders – as a user group they are the least likely to gain a performance increase from a switch to oval, as their pedalling is already close to perfection. Where ovals shine however is with rest of us, who ride for pleasure and not for a job. Simply 99% of road cyclists will benefit from having oval chainrings on their bikes.



Word on BIOPACE

Please understand Absolute Black’s oval design IS NOT ‘Biopace’ technology. Shimano created their non-round Biopace chainrings with a completely different orientation of the biggest radius of the oval. Their ring orientation has since been widely accepted as being fundamentally wrong. Instead of positioning it in power zone - which is slightly below the level of the crank - they clocked it to the dead zone where human physiology generates least power. The result was that in power zone pedalling was too easy and in dead zone too hard, causing knee pain and lumpy pedalling cadence. Exactly opposite to how it should be. The opposite of how it is with an Absolute Black oval chainring fitted to your bike.



The importance of timing and shape with oval chainrings

The oval chainring movement across all cycling disciplines is growing rapidly, led by absoluteBLACK, the world leader in this important product category.

However, not all oval chainrings share the same performance characteristics as absoluteBLACK. The 'clocking' (timing) and shape of the oval are the most crucial parts of any oval chainring design, absoluteBLACK spent three years in design development and have perfected both timing and shape design elements - ensuring the ride quality of absoluteBLACK oval ring will be different and superior to ovals from other brands (as many abosluteBLACK customers already realised).

Where most other brands retain the same timing (position of the crank arm relative to the oval) and shape of the oval across all their sizes - because it's cheaper and less time consuming. absoluteBLACK believe that each different size ring requires a bespoke, optimised, perfect pedalling solution. So that is what we do - for every chainring absoluteBLACK make. For example, the smaller the chainring size, the bigger the ovality has to be to help climb steeper hills more effectively. We keep our exact Patent Pending data a secret, to ensure we get the best possible absoluteBLACK advantage over other brands, and you get the best possible ride experience.

Our longterm belief in oval and development of our design, has led absoluteBLACK to become the most commercially successful oval chainring product in the world. So keep in mind that not every oval chainring is equal to an absoluteBLACK.